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Non-Prog CD Reviews

J. Geils Band

House Party Live in Germany

Review by Gary Hill

I remember many years ago, when I was a kid I had an old scratched up live album from the J. Geils band. I loved the raw energy and solid rocking jams. I was never as enamored with their pop period. It just seemed to have lost a lot of that edge in favor of hit singles. Well, this newly issued live album is the real deal. This thing is a killer live set from the meat and potatoes era of the group. It’s well worth having for just the audio CD. The bonus is, you also get a DVD of the show. That’s a win-win, as far as I’m concerned.

This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2015  Volume 2 at lulu.com/strangesound.

Track by Track Review
Jus' Can't Stop Me

They waste no time pounding out in the high energy soulful rock and roll. This is a smoking hot jam with some great harmonica playing.

I Could Hurt You
What this loses in energy, it gains in terms of classy bluesy style. The bass really stands out on this cut.
Sanctuary
This is a killer hard rocking piece with a lot of harmonica. I really dig the piano breakdown on this.
One Last Kiss
Seeming to come straight out the drums at the end of the last number, this is a more straightforward 60s rock song. It reminds me a little of the more psychedelic side of the Yardbirds. It has an extended harmonica solo.
Teresa
This is a pretty and evocative piano and vocal ballad. Fans of Jeff Healey will likely find the chorus to this one seems a little familiar. Of course, this predates the other by a long time.
Nightmares
There is a serious percussion work out here with some vocals and organ on top. It’s a short piece.
Wildman
Sharing a lot of territory with the Rolling Stones, this is a smoking hot hard bluesy rocker.   
Lookin' for a Love
This feels so much like The Blues Brothers. Of course, again, this predates that outfit by a long time. At least it give you an idea of what this rocking groove sounds like.   
Give It to Me
Old time party music mixed with bluesy rock and roll, this is another energetic and fun tune.
Whammer Jammer
A bluesy instrumental rocker, this one showcases the harmonica.
(It Ain't Nothin' But A) House Party
With a catchy vocal hook, this is literally party music. It’s another that I could picture the Blues Brothers doing. This is one of my favorites here. 
Where Did Our Love Go
An old school rock and roller, this is J. Geils gone Motown.
Pack Fair and Square
This is definitely an old time rocker. It’s also a lot of fun.
First I Look at the Purse
More old time rocking music, this reminds me of “I Don’t Need No Doctor” at one point. It’s a fun number and a great way to end things in style.

 

 
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