Subject: I have found a DVD that I think you would enjoy
It's refreshing to have something to look forward to..." - A
M. F. Hunt | Washington, D.C. USA | 11/03/2006
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you've ever seen these guys live, then this DVD is the perfect fix while their off touring other venues. The film's director, Justin Kreutzmann, gives you genuine camera angles that make you feel as though you are with the boys at the Fox Theater, while you grove to some of their great oldies, and get a first hand look at a bunch of their more recent stuff. I also appreciated the interviews, that give you amazing insight into the lives of some of the most prolific musicians of this generation, while giving you a glimpse of what keeps them going on their routine 7 month tours.
A lot of people love to compare Tea Leaf Green to Phish, or the Dead, and as this DVD truthfully illustrates, these guys have taken these influences and combined it with their own vision, to turn their music into something all their own. Each member brings their own unique styles to the table, with Trevor's inquisitively unique voice, Josh's ability to beautifully stretch every note to its breaking point, Ben breaking down the funk on the bass, and Scott's distinct rudiments that erupt into awesome beats. It is a definite buy for any music enthusiast, and if you haven't checked them out live, I highly recommend it. Make sure you buy Josh a shot of Jameson after the show, he loves that stuff."
A grand jam band gets the Last Waltz treatment
Mat | Strasbourg, France | 10/16/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"From the ashes of the Grateful Dead rose a veritable scene of improvisational players of rock - or jam bands - all vying for the top spot now vacated by the defunct Dead. Yet no one band could be crowned king. Phish came closest, but for all the fans they gained there was a collective chorus of You're not the Dead - instead an army of the jam coalesced and proceeded to noodle and space into improvisational bliss.
For archival purposes one could divide the remaining jam bands into two categories - those involved in serious musicology, and those ready to party. The split actually often occurred during the height of popularity for the Dead. Heads often speak of the scene changing after the Dead fanbase grew proportionally when they scored a top ten hit in the late 80s. Suddenly legions of folks were showing up to concerts not for inspiration at the muse of music, but to get high, get laid and get down.
With no more Dead, these fans ran to other concerts, and bands who were more than poised to be the soundtrack to the next party.
Tea Leaf Green fall flat into this category. There's a party going on and these boys are the mix-tape.
By saying this, don't for a minute think that I a implying they lack musicianship. For all four members seem accomplished at their chosen instruments. This is not a frat party band playing for kegs. These are serious musicians who create songs that aren't meant to be taken seriously.
With Rock 'N' Roll Band, Tea Leaf Green have created a memorable rock film in the vein of The Last Waltz and the Grateful Dead Movie.
Director Justin Kreutzmann (son of legendary Grateful Dead drummer Bill Kreutzmann) has created more than just a recording of a live performance, but a snap shot of a band on the move.
Featuring most of the bands concert on May 19, 2006 in Boulder, Colorado the film intertwines band interviews and a few impromptu jam sessions. Making great use of split screen Kreutzmann creates an excellent portrait of the band and the music they create.
Honestly, Tea Leaf Green is a name I knew from bootleg trading circles, but I had never actually heard their music until I plugged in this DVD. At first listen, I gotta say I counted them as another flakey band riding the jam band wave, but after a few more spins there's another level to their songs that pushes them forward. The bottom line still seems to be about having a good time, but there is craftsmanship to the music that makes it more than just party music.
Take the lead song, "These Two Chairs," for example. It doesn't have a chorus to speak of but there is a repeated line that just kills
"They just don't understand
But they got a rock and roll..."
Then pause and wait for it
It is a great moment that gets the whole audience jazzed. It might not be studied by graduate students in years to come, but it sure is a lot of fun.
And what else do you want from a rock and roll band anyway?
The DVD doesn't come with any extras to speak of, but it sounds good and looks fantastic. Justin Kreutzmann obviously knows his way around a rockumentary and creates a video that is more than just another rock concert caught on tape, but is cinema, and an important portrait of a band.
The soundtrack album to the movie comprises thirteen of the songs played, including "All of Your Cigarettes" from the sound check. It's a nice disk, and a good companion to the movie.
Gustaf FryksÚn | Lund, Sweden/Trondheim, Norway | 03/21/2007
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I discovered this band quite recently and think they're just awesome and has become my favourite jamband after the Dead, Phish and SCI left the scene. The DVD is just great. Fantastic lyrics and good music. Definitely worth buying if you're into jambands."