Recording information: The Lawrence Arts Center.
Recorded at the Lawrence Arts Center in the Get Up Kids/New Amsterdams/Terrible Twos mastermind's hometown of Lawrence, Kansas, the Equal Vision-issued Nine Forty Live finds the prolific singer/songwriter working through a set list comprising songs from both of his solo outings (May Day and Wrist Slitter), along with some choice New Amsterdams gems like "Ex's and Oh's," "Without a Sound (Eleanore)," and "Drunk or Dead," the latter of which closes the show in a rousing fashion. Backed by a colorful pit orchestra that includes a full horn section, strings, drums, pedal steel, bass, and banjo, Pryor and company put a real charge into the intimate venue with a spirited set that blurs the line between folk, country, indie rock, and emo. It's probably not the place to start for newbies, but longtime fans of all of Pryor's projects, especially the more roots-based ones, will find much to love here. ~ James Christopher Monger