LEO Weekly ran my review of the new Trans Am live album today:
Live albums generally serve two main purposes: as documentation of a one-time-only, you-had-to-be-there concert that defines an artist’s career (think James Brown’s 1963 classic Live at the Apollo); or as a survey of greatest hits performed live (with the caveat that said album is a fulfillment of contractual obligations). Regardless, either approach usually disappoints. In the first instance, I end up bummed out because I wasn’t there. In the second, I hope whatever variation of “Greatest Hits Live!” I’m listening to finishes quickly. Unfortunately, Trans Am’s new live album, What Day Is It Tonight?, falls into the second category. While I’ve enjoyed seeing them many times over their nearly two-decade long stint, listening to their pleasant-but-superficial tunes sprawled over 70 minutes (without much noticeable variation from their albums, aside from a superfluous drum solo or three) doesn’t seem necessary.
Buy it from Thrill Jockey.