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Old 12-21-2009, 06:41 PM   #121
inmytree
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I realize that they needed to create Big Whiskey the way they did because they were on the verge of breaking up as a band. So we got another album in the same vein as Stand Up and Everyday - pretty much zero road tested material, all studio creations. This isn't necessarily a bad thing for a band, but for DMB, its not a formula for greatness and its not really true to who they are. They've proved that they have good ideas post 2000 that work on the road, but they just never follow through it seems due to personal drama. The second Big Whiskey got released they already began the process of changing the songs and trying to make them work on the road. This is what they should stick to. That is their strength.

Who knows, maybe if they'd worked on Seven more on the road before Big Whiskey got released I'd like it more. The song just has no room to breath and I don't see it ever evolving into something more than what they put down in the studio. Its a shame because there are a lot of good ideas there but they just didn't come together all that well, in my opinion.
I don't know about this; again how do we explain BTCS? That was an album that for the most part did not recieve significant roadtesting (yes, I'm aware that songs on this album were played beforehand, but I don't really think half of Rapunzel being played live once in 94 and Spoon getting played once by Dave and Tim a year before it's release qualify as the type of roadtesting you're talking about). So I wonder; is it their strength like you say it is? I think we're just trying to fit the DMB method of making a great song into a step-by-step formula when there is no formula. What's worked well at one point has been a disaster in another; BTCS and the LWS were created for the most part in the studio, and look at the riches that come from the work there. Stand Up was created entirely in house and it sucked. They've made masterpieces that were created entirely on the road, and there were songs created on the road that were poor. I understand what you're saying here, but I think I disagree just cause it hasn't proven to work any one way.
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Old 12-21-2009, 06:57 PM   #122
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Old 12-21-2009, 07:34 PM   #123
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Then how would someone explain BTCS, which is primarily just open and barre chords? This is not to mention the fact that Dave's playing is all over Big Whiskey, even in a song like Seven where Dave does not play much live (I believe that's him playing the electric rhythm riff on the album). The songs that center around Dave's guitar are the exception rather than the rule, and I think it's been that way probably since the mid-90's, when they made the transition of primarily playing songs Dave just wrote on his own to playing songs developed by the group. And certainly no one would say the songs on BTCS suffer because of the lack of those identifiable riffs.

I don't really get the notion that DMB is now a more "showy" band than they were in the mid-90's. Maybe by increments, but what's really changed? Dave was dancing like a buffoon in the mid-90's? Boyd wasn't running around like a maniac? I think all of these things, from the accusations of too much showiness and a stagey atmosphere, may just be different ways for people to say they don't like the sound and songs of the band now. Which is perfectly valid; they've progressed quite a bit from 2002 to now, as they did from 91 to 95, 95 to 98, 98 to 2000, etc. They're not an entirely different band from transition to transition, but changes happen, especially with the loss of a band member and some additions in personnel. It's not going to be interesting to some people, and they're going to move on. Which I understand, although I disagree; but I don't think accusations of the songs being less centered on Dave's guitar than they were in 2000 or the accusations that they focus less on music and more on the show, are accurate.

I think you make a lot of good points. Still, can you think of any pre-02 songs where Dave doesn't play the guitar at all? You're right that a lot of the BTCS songs don't have that immediately identifiable guitar riff, like a SMTS, WWYS, Jimi, etc. But that album still gave us guitar gems like the Stone, Spoon, and Dreaming Tree. BTCS is also very Tim-heavy, yet Dave's playing still comes through and strengthens the songs. Dave not playing any guitar at all during live performances of songs is a pretty recent development, I think.
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Old 12-21-2009, 07:53 PM   #124
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why does it matter? the songs are still great regardless of who plays lead
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Old 12-21-2009, 09:32 PM   #125
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Originally Posted by inmytree View Post
Then how would someone explain BTCS, which is primarily just open and barre chords?
Agreed the production glosses over a lot of what Lillywhite had stand out in the first two albums, but from Dave's songwriting perspective:

Rapunzel -- riff-driven
Stay -- riff driven
The Stone -- riff driven
Crush -- More than 20 chords implemented, few of which are barre
The Dreaming Tree -- somewhat riff-driven
Pig -- (Simple) riff-driven / breakdown is anything but conventional chord theory
Spoon -- riff driven
All the mini songs -- riff-driven

I agree with most of what you wrote, though.
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Old 12-21-2009, 11:10 PM   #126
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They are doing a ton of things that I like right now, just not with material that I'm particularly fond of. I agree though, maybe I just need to take a step back and take some time off.
we would all appreciate it.
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Old 12-21-2009, 11:11 PM   #127
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DMB 2000-2007 blows. Seven is a jam. You suck. The end.
fixed.
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Old 12-21-2009, 11:11 PM   #128
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since when does DMB 2000 blow?
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Old 12-21-2009, 11:12 PM   #129
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why does it matter? the songs are still great regardless of who plays lead
BUT DAVE MATTHEWS THE MOST UNIQUE GUITARIST EVAR ISN'T PLAYING. I DON'T WANT TO LISTEN TO THE TIM REYNOLDS BAND
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Old 12-21-2009, 11:12 PM   #130
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since when does DMB 2000 blow?
compared to the 90's and now? since always.
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Old 12-21-2009, 11:25 PM   #131
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I think 2000 is allowed to be considered part of the 90s for this argument.

Also, DMB in 2000>DMB in 1999.
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Old 12-21-2009, 11:28 PM   #132
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well yeah. at least there was bartender, grey street, jtr, etc. in those slow as fuck sets.
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Old 12-21-2009, 11:29 PM   #133
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I think 2000 is allowed to be considered part of the 90s for this argument.

Also, DMB in 2000>DMB in 1999.
in terms of "eras", absofuckinglutely
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Old 12-21-2009, 11:56 PM   #134
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Agreed the production glosses over a lot of what Lillywhite had stand out in the first two albums, but from Dave's songwriting perspective:

Rapunzel -- riff-driven
Stay -- riff driven
The Stone -- riff driven
Crush -- More than 20 chords implemented, few of which are barre
The Dreaming Tree -- somewhat riff-driven
Pig -- (Simple) riff-driven / breakdown is anything but conventional chord theory
Spoon -- riff driven
All the mini songs -- riff-driven

I agree with most of what you wrote, though.
It's kind of semantics I guess; what one person may describe as a riff-driven song may not be the same as another, but I don't know if I would say most of those songs are riff-driven. I mean, if we're counting Rapunzel as being riff driven when 90% of the time Dave's playing straightforward barre chords and a progression based on sliding the C-chord position up and down the fretboard, I think there are many songs on Big Whiskey that would qualify, including Seven.

I mean, I think a fair way to judge these kind of things is trying to see if the songs could survive if Dave was not playing guitar on it. I think most of those songs would be fine in a way that a song like The Stone, So Much To Say, Alligator Pie, etc. would not be. So it's not like Dave's guitar has always been absolutely essential. It seems like HeyJoe's saying that it's not a good thing that Dave's not playing guitar live. I guess I can see what he's talking about, but from what they've said in interviews and stuff Dave was very involved in putting together Seven, so what's it matter if he's not playing on it?
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Old 12-21-2009, 11:56 PM   #135
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well yeah. at least there was bartender, grey street, jtr, etc. in those slow as fuck sets.

2000 was a great year... did you catch any of those shows? Last tour before the infestation of Everyday into the sets. The Lovely Ladies sucked some of the life from songs like #36 and BOWA but the band was also experimenting with the Lillywhite songs and it was cool to see them develop.

For me, 2002, 2000, and 2008 were the three best years of the decade.
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Old 12-22-2009, 12:00 AM   #136
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Yeah, Two Step from 2008/2009 alone trumps any song played from 2000 - 2007
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Old 12-22-2009, 10:04 AM   #137
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2000 was a great year... did you catch any of those shows? Last tour before the infestation of Everyday into the sets. The Lovely Ladies sucked some of the life from songs like #36 and BOWA but the band was also experimenting with the Lillywhite songs and it was cool to see them develop.
2000 is one of my favorite tours. ladies were only around for a month or so. the second half was fantastic.
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Old 12-22-2009, 10:05 AM   #138
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we would all appreciate it.
Get off your high horse, Spence. Non of us are bitching ad nauseam about how much DMB sucks these days. We're having a discussion. I'm rarely around here at all and when I am, I don't need the "you should take time off" bit when I throw my 2 cents around.
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Old 12-22-2009, 11:13 AM   #139
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Old 12-22-2009, 12:20 PM   #140
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i dont understand people who dont understand seven. its being received as was rapunzel....a choppy, "weird" song that doesn't sound like anything we've ever heard before.

getting lost or annoyed with the "love yous" misses the point. listen to the music. best song on big whiskey and it gives me hope that they're still able to come up with a song that is funky and sounds like something that no other band in the world would come up with.

go seven
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