Alive in Little Five! captures Stand & Deliver - in its previous incarnation as Mystery Train - at the peak of their powers during the days immediately following the release of the band's first studio album, The Blue Line.
This is a true bootleg. The show was recorded on videotape by Tim Collins, bass player for the Atlanta band Ill Mic. It has been digitally remastered but the sound really captures the ambiance of the band and their fans in the year 2000.
Recorded at 9 Lives Saloon in Little Five Points, the set features favorites from The Blue Line plus live staples Velvet Elvis, Love Me, and Preachin' Blues that have never been heard before except in concert.
Singer DK Brainard hits his improvisational peak on the live favorite Velvet Elvis, weaving a made-up-on-the-spot narrative about Elvis' parents, Graceland, and Martin Luther King. Brainard's increasingly erratic and confrontational behavior forces the band into full-on improvisational mode on Preachin' Blues. Guitarist Jeff Lupo rises to the challenge as drummer Ivan Prosper and bassist Matt 'Shovelhead' Brady maintain a rock-steady groove.
Alive in Little Five! includes classic live versions of Sherri Says (complete with improvised extra verses), a bass-alicious version of No Way, and sizzling Lupo guitar solos on When All Else Fails, and Flint MI. A real raw rock n roll show, made before auto tune. A true representation of what it was like to experience an early Stand & Deliver concert.iTunes Store
Ten Year Bender is sort of an interesting title in light of this record’s journey. The song of the same name is a meditation on the previous decade of my life, a time in which I was running from my demons and trying to drown them in drink and smoke them out of me with drugs and soothe them away with women and, well, you probably get the picture.
This record was recorded after I had stopped drinking but before I found my way into any kind of recovery framework. I was white-knuckling it, as they say, and while I was hoping life was about to get a whole lot better, in fact I was standing on the edge of the abyss. Which may be a necessary place to visit if you want to get rid of all that old pain and the horrible programming most of us endure and absorb throughout our lives. The abyss will take that stuff right out of you, if you let it.
Getting back to the light is another story, and it took ten more years for Lupo and I to get to a place where we could release this record. Not that it was all bad in those ten years. There was living through Hurricane Katrina and its aftermath, but there was also becoming a father and…well, that’s another story for another day. What I’m trying to say, I think, is that the space we were in when we recorded this thing (Lupo – slowly recovering from a life-threatening illness; me – slowly recovering from a deep alcohol addiction and several years working in large corporations, and just about to fall completely off the grid) was so intense, it just took us a decade to be able to go back and “listen without prejudice” to these songs we’d recorded together one cold winter in the borderlands of life.
And wouldn’t you know when we finally did listen – we liked this little record! We hope you do, too.
– D.K. BrainardTen Year Bender @ CD Baby
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Ten Year Bender @ iTunes