The other day, Jish asked "hey, you want to catch a concert on Friday? It's this band Guster." I hadn't heard them before, but Meg reminded me she went to college with them and they were good live, so I said sure.
I popped on napster and listened to a bunch of tracks, and I have to admit, I wasn't all that impressed.
I went along with the concert plans anyway, because I rarely get to see live music, and after a pretty good canadian openning band (half the audience knew all the words to an obscure Newfoundland band - if you thought there was an impending canadian invasion let me tell you, it's already happened. Fear the maple leaf.), Guster took the stage.
And they were amazing.
There's been other bands I've seen I could compare the experience with, Rusted Root is incredible live - so much energy and so much great music that is all but lost when they record on a CD. I'd put Guster in the same place, all the incredible energy and wonderful sounds that their percussionist creates can barely be heard on their studio stuff. Just watching him play was worth it, imagine a cacophony of rhythm being produced by a guy with two hands (no sticks, just his hands) moving at the speed of light and bouncing around for an hour non-stop.
I bought a disc of theirs, and will buy their two earlier releases, as they've made a Guster fan for life. Bonus: they're cool with taping their live shows, so cruising napster for artist:guster song:live results in a lot of their past gems (though a kid with a DAT recorder still doesn't compare to hearing it in person).