New Morning: The Paris Concert (DVD)

Living Colour

Inakustik, 2008

REVIEW BY: Vish Iyer


Living Colour might just be the most talented band alive. The virtuosity of each of their members always stood out individualistically rather than as a whole on their studio efforts, and made their records a joy to listen to.

And what a treat it is to actually see these immensely gifted musicians vaunt their prowess in a stripped-down concert at a tiny rock club where the stage is insignificant, lighting is indistinct, the crowd is intimate, and all focus is on the four great members of Living Colour.my_heart_sings_the_harmony_web_ad_alt_250

New Morning: The Paris Concert delivers on everything that’s expected of it. As one whole concert, the set-list spans through selections from the entire -- though small -- catalog of the four albums that Living Colour has released to date, with added covers of The Clash’s “Police And Thieves” (as an extension of the track “Type”) and the ‘70s classic “Papa Was A Rolling Stone.”

Unquestionably the band puts together a fabulous concert. But the real gratification is in watching each of the players manipulate their instruments and creating the most interesting and inspiring sounds.

Through the course of the concert, each member gets plenty of limelight to blaze his skills and enthrall the crowd: drummer Will Calhoun’s six-minute long drum solo during the lull before the encore, bassist Doug Wimbish’s treatment of the bass guitar as the lead guitar while playing the solo on the twelve-minute version of “Flying,” guitarist Vernon Reid’s shouldering of the lead section in this rhythm-dominated line-up. And the shaky camera captures the magical moments precisely. Singer Corey Glover has a tough role in standing out in the shadow of his fellow band mates, but he does just fine as the charming frontman that he is.

It is an absolute delight to see, in spite of the gargantuan individual strengths of these musicians, how they come together and jam in harmony -- and without compromising on their strengths -- to create straightforward rock songs but with intricacies that can be best enjoyed in a live setting only.

A Living Colour concert is about watching the players perform marvelous musical tricks with their instruments. And New Morning: The Paris Concert provides the best seat in the house to experience this and to be amazed.

Rating: A

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© 2008 Vish Iyer and The Daily Vault. All rights reserved. Review or any portion may not be reproduced without written permission. Cover art is the intellectual property of Inakustik, and is used for informational purposes only.