Search - Built to Spill :: Live

Built to Spill
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
  •  Track Listings (9) - Disc #1

While additional guitarists Brett Nelson of Caustic Resin and Jim Roth of the Delusions pop up in a couple of tracks on Built to Spill's Live, the person most responsible for the extra-crispy sound is Phil Eck. He produced...  more »


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CD Details

All Artists: Built to Spill
Title: Live
Members Wishing: 0
Total Copies: 0
Label: Warner Bros / Wea
Original Release Date: 4/18/2000
Release Date: 4/18/2000
Album Type: Live
Genres: Alternative Rock, Pop, Rock
Style: Indie & Lo-Fi
Number of Discs: 1
SwapaCD Credits: 1
UPCs: 093624761624, 724384928520

While additional guitarists Brett Nelson of Caustic Resin and Jim Roth of the Delusions pop up in a couple of tracks on Built to Spill's Live, the person most responsible for the extra-crispy sound is Phil Eck. He produced the Idaho-based trio's last two albums, the critically acclaimed Keep It Like a Secret and Perfect from Now On, and here he mans the soundboard to make sure the band's dynamic combination of the intimate and the explosive comes through just right. Live is one of the shinier sounding in-concert documents in recent memory, sounding (at times) more like a polished studio project rather than a collection of live cuts. This works in the group's favor, especially during psychedelic moments such as "I Would Hurt a Fly." Live won't stem the fanatical bootlegging and tape trading among devout fans, but it's a fine sonic souvenir of alt-rock's quirkiest power-pop-'n'-jam band. --Jason Josephes

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CD Reviews

Good performances, great sound
Jeremy York | Bothell, WA USA | 08/01/2000
(4 out of 5 stars)

"I've seen Built To Spill a few times, in large and small venues that had one thing in common - the acoustics and the sound mix were pretty bad. With all the distortion and effects, it made it pretty hard to hear the actual notes being played in the louder passages.This cd, in contrast, is very nicely mixed; you get to hear all the playing. Martsch's singing is a little strained here and there on tracks (I winced at the very opening of The Plan), but is pretty good overall. There are nice arrangements of songs from recent studio albums, with space in them for his guitar improv work. The more complex and subtle songs from Perfect From Now On get boiled down to essentials - melodic lines and riffs - with guitar noise textures to fill things out in place of the many guest musicians who played on that fine cd. Cortez the Killer, and Broken Chairs, both really let the guys stretch out with loose playing and effects for a great wall of sound. These two songs, especially, are the kinds of things that just sound like mud in a live venue - it's great to be able to hear things more clearly.Lots of folks rant and rave over Martsch's guitar god status, but I think they're off base a bit. He's not a technical wizard capable of intricately difficult parts like a Steve Morse or Vai. Rather, this is a guy with a good ear for sounds and textures, a good composer and arranger, who happens to use the guitar to make his music. His playing tends to strong melodies contrasted with broad washes of noise and texture; plus, he's got a good command of dynamics. I say this just to warn anyone who buys this cd hoping for more "clean" traditional technical playing - you might be disappointed.My only regret with this cd is that there wasn't room for some of the stranger covers that Built To Spill have been known to do, like a Macy Gray song (!) or Ozzy's classic Mr. Crowley."
A guitar masterpiece
Jeremy York | 12/05/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)

"I'd give it 4.5 if I could. This was the album that got me started on BTS about 2 years ago, so I agree with the people saying this is a good way to get introduced to the band. This album, more than any other I've heard from BTS (or probably anyone, for that matter) has absolutely amazing guitar work.
The two 19 minute tracks are excellent. The meandering guitar on Cortez the Killer is pretty good (and that's the best Neil Young impression I've heard), but the real jewel is Broken Chairs, with its awesome buildups and creshendos.
The Plan, Randy..., Stop the Show, and Car are all significantly better live, as the guitar is allowed to stand out more. And Virginia Reel is amazing. The guitar on that one soars. Seriously, with that song I put on the headphones, close my eyes, and imagine soaring through the clouds. So overall, this album is really special. If not for Singing Sores, which lacked the interesting guitar work found everywhere else, and Hurt a Fly, which was the exception by being better in the studio version, this would definitely be a perfect album.
If you love great guitar, you really should own this."
Showcase of a Guitar Rock Genius
William Carter | Salt Lake City, UT | 04/19/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)

"This collection of built to spill live tunes, including a halo benders number and a neil young cover, showcases Doug Martsch's incredible talent for creating minimalist guitar melodies. Songs from "Perfect From Now On" are given new life, and "The Plan" from Keep it Like a Secret is expanded into a classic jam piece. Martsch's guitar greatness is especially shown on the cover of Neil Young's "Cortez the Killer," which is turned into a guitar driven improvisational piece. I was a little skeptical of a BTS offical live release, because I wondered how it would come off. In my mind, it came off as a great representation of a great band."