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Tommy Band Bolin/Tommy Bolin: Live at Northern Lights Recording Studios 9/22/76

Album Notes

Recorded just two-and-a-half months before Tommy Bolin's untimely drug-related death, the Tommy Bolin Band are heard playing in an intimate setting for an FM broadcast (after spending the summer of 1976 playing huge stadiums with the likes of Steve Miller, Peter Frampton, ZZ Top and Rush). Surprisingly, the production is a lot more raw than the other live CDs issued through the Tommy Bolin Archives label, which is strange, since it was taped in a recording studio. The playing is quite ragged, and does at times catch fire. Tommy's younger brother Johnny joined the band on drums a few months prior to the Live at Northern Lights Recording Studios 9/22/76 taping, and he proves to be quite solid, especially during the improvisation of the sadly prophetic "Post Toastee," which warns about the dangers of drug burnout. Also of note -- the sullen ballad "Wild Dogs" and the saxophone workout "You Told Me That You Loved Me" (which was rarely played live by the band). But like the version found on the From the Archives, Vol. 1 release, "Shake the Devil" is again off-key, which takes away from the powerful Zeppelin stomp of the studio take. ~ Greg Prato



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