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The Les Claypool Frog Brigade - Live Frogs Set 1 CD (album) cover


The Les Claypool Frog Brigade


Eclectic Prog

4.00 | 9 ratings

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4 stars In which Colonel Claypool serves up a prog jam sandwich.

Frog Brigade was formed for a jam band festival in 2000, and the line up included two former Primus members who were collaborating with Claypool in a band called Sausage. This was the first of two live releases, and it's a pretty good hour and a bit of highly accomplished jamming with a distinctive prog flavour.

The album is bookended with two prog covers. It opens with a 14 minute exploration of King Crimson's Thela Hun Ginjeet, looser than the original but faithful to its spirit. At the other end of the album there is an uptempo version of Shine on you Crazy Diamond with a Primus style vocal from Les Claypool. In between there are five Sausage and Holy Mackerel songs, all given the jam band treatment and mostly twisted into interesting new shapes. Twin guitars, keyboards and saxophone all add extra texture and the soloing (especially Skerik's sax) is often inspired.

It would be a stretch to call this an essential album, and some might find it a tad self indulgent. If you enjoy Zappa's archival live albums or King Crimson offshoots like the Crimson Projekct then there's plenty to enjoy here; a tight rhythm section underpinning a group of highly accomplished musicians at the top of their game. A solid four star live album.

Syzygy | 4/5 |


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