Live Trax 31 pros and cons
Dave Matthews Band will release Live Trax Vol. 31: Tweeter Center at the Waterfront, Camden, New Jersey on Sept. 16. It’s a recording from June 23, 2001, and 2001 was one of the most divisive tours in the band’s history. The Lovely Ladies guested on a larger number of songs, including some classics. Setlists became fairly predictable. And songs from Everyday dominated the concerts.
That said, 2001 also had its bright spots, and the Live Trax 31 show was one of them. Let’s check out the pros and cons of DMB’s upcoming release, which you can pre-order from the Dave Matthews Band Official Store:
Pro: “Prelude to Grace”
One of the highlights of Live Trax 31 is this intro to “Grace Is Gone.” DMB played it live for the first time at this concert and has played it just one other time since, in 2004. The band originally recorded “Prelude to Grace” in the studio during the Lillywhite Sessions, but it did not appear on the album when it leaked in 2001.
Con: Lots of Lovely Ladies
Backup singers Tawatha Agee, Brenda White-King and Cindy Mizelle perform on eight of the 18 songs on Live Trax 31. No matter what you think of their talent, that’s a lot. One of those songs is “Best of What’s Around”; many fans’ sentiments began to turn against the Lovely Ladies once they began to appear on this and other DMB classics.
DMB has released so much live material that fans who collect all official releases find themselves with dozens of versions of some songs. It can be tough to find shows that don’t pile on, but Live Trax 31 is one. As noted by DMBAlmanac.com, eight of the album’s songs have been released live less than 10 times. And a few have been released live less than five times.
Unfortunately, “Mother Father” and “Sleep to Dream Her” are two of these songs. There’s a reason DMB has only played “Mother Father” seven times ever, and why “Sleep to Dream Her” hasn’t been in regular rotation for more than a decade.
The other highlight of Live Trax 31 is Dave Matthews’ solo cover of Phish’s “Waste.” Dave had recorded the song a few months prior for a Phish tribute album.
What do you think are the best and worst parts about Live Trax 31? Let us know in the comments.