|moe. — No Guts, No Glory [Deluxe Edition] (2014)|
moe. — No Guts, No Glory [Deluxe Edition]
♦↔♦ A fixture of the jam band scene with their brand of freewheeling, improvisational rock emphasizing Americana, psychedelia, and musical chops.
♦↔♦ Moe. have always been at their best while performing live on stage, and many of these songs may actually grow wider legs in that setting. But overall No Guts, No Glory is a fine collection to their recorded projects. Fans get everything they expect from the band on this release from sweet compositions, Pink Floyd-esque jams, to escalating changes and more. I wouldn’t say it is one of their best, but maybe for listeners it will eventually grow more and more on them as it did for me.
Styles: American Trad Rock, Jam Bands, Adult Alternative Pop/Rock, Alternative/Indie Rock
Location: Buffalo, New York, USA
Album release: May 27, 2014
Record Label: Sugar Hill Records
01 Annihilation Blues 4:21
02 White Lighting Tupentine 4:42
03 This I Know 4:26
04 Same Old Story 4:24
05 Silver Sun 9:41
06 Calyphornya 5:12
07 Little Miss Cup Half Empty 5:19
08 Blond Hair And Blue Eyes 5:00
09 Do Or Die 3:51
10 The Pines And The Apple Trees 3:52
11 Billy Goat 9:39
12 Hey O 3:22
13 Mar De Ma 3:12
14 Runaway Overlude 5:28
Sugar Hill Records © 2014
♦•♦ Chuck Garvey / moe. 1
♦•♦ Rob Derhak / moe. 2, 4, 6, 8, 10, 11
♦•♦ Al Schnier / moe. 5, 7, 9
♦•♦ Al Schnier: guitars and vocals
♦•♦ Chuck Garvey: guitars and vocals
♦•♦ Jim Loughlin: percussion and vibes
♦•♦ Ray Schwartz
♦•♦ Rob Derhak: bass and vocals
♦•♦ Vinnie Amico: drums
♦•♦ Vinnie Amico Drums
♦•♦ Dave Aron Clarinet, Engineer, Producer
♦•♦ Adam Ayan Mastering
♦•♦ Jay Blakesberg Photography
♦•♦ Ian Callanan Tracking Assistant
♦•♦ Seff Crollett Mixing Assistant
♦•♦ Rob Derhak Bass, Composer, Vocals
♦•♦ Chuck Garvey Composer, Guitar, Guitar (Acoustic), Vocals
♦•♦ James Loughlin Mallets, Percussion
♦•♦ Lukky Martin Trombone
♦•♦ Sue Meyer Design
♦•♦ Johnny Montagnese Studio Manager
♦•♦ Mikhail Pivovarov Tracking Assistant
♦•♦ Al Schnier Composer, Guitar, Guitar (Acoustic), Hammond B3, Mandolin, Piano, Vocals
♦•♦ Willie Waldman Trumpet
♦•♦ Chris Young Mixing Assistant
♦•♦ “It's an amalgamation of a wide variety of the history of rock, all regurgitated and recycled through the eyes, ears, hands, whatever of the guys in our band and all of that with a sense of adventure, a sense of humor, also a constant desire to push the envelope. All in this arena of taking chances, improvising live, and making things up on the spot.” — Al Schnier © Al Schnier from moe. playing guitar at snoe.down 2010 by John Gullo ♦↔♦
♦•♦ Available May 27, 2014 on Sugar Hill Records, moe.´s new album No Guts, No Glory finds moe. at their most inventive and resilient. The album´s eleven songs (fourteen on the deluxe CD, digital, and double vinyl editions, and features artwork by Emek) took a winding path into existence. “These songs were written with an acoustic album in mind,” says guitarist and vocalist Chuck Garvey. When that original intention fell victim to logistical hurdles, Garvey says, “we ended up making a whole different thing.”
♦•♦ That “different thing” turned out to be a vibrant collaboration with longtime moe. ally Dave Aron. Aron has distinguished himself over the past twenty years as a go-to hip-hop engineer and producer, facilitating albums by Snoop Dogg, Tupac Shakur, Dr. Dre, and many others. “But he′s also worked with Prince and U2,” moe. drummer Vinnie Amico explains. “Hip-hop is where he carved his niche, but he′s got an ear for rock.”
♦•♦ The acoustic foundation of No Guts, No Glory adds a buoyancy and richness to the album”s songs and performances, which are put across with an energetic, spontaneous feel true to moe.”s well-earned reputation as as a casino online thrilling live band. “Dave basically wanted to emulate a show,” says percussionist Jim Loughlin. “He was focused on the vibe.” Acoustic instrumentation, from mandolin to vibes, is woven into the album”s multi-textured fabric, enhancing songs as diverse as the expansive psychedelia of “Silver Sun,” the churning, rootsy “Annihilation Blues,” and the languid, loungey “Same Old Story.”
♦•♦ “Looking back,” reflects guitarist and vocalist Al Schnier, “the thing I was most surprised about was just how easy this record was to make. After all the initial setbacks, once we got down to it, everything just seemed to take shape, and it came out great. I doubt that it would come out that way without Dave on board.”
♦•♦ “Basically,” concludes bassist and vocalist Rob Derhak, “everything we started out to do turned into completely something else. An album that was supposed to be an acoustic based album recorded in a barn turned into a hard rock album recorded in Connecticut with a hip-hop producer. Go figure. Typical moe.”
Review by Stephen Thomas Erlewine; Score: ***½
♦•♦ Originally planned as an acoustic album, the 11th moe. album No Guts, No Glory experienced a transformation during the recording process with Dave Aron. A producer best known for hip-hop, Aron didn’t move the jam band in that direction but he encouraged moe. to do what they do best: to play with themselves. This is a group where interplay trumps all, which sometimes means they ride a groove, sometimes they lay back and solo, sometimes they cluster around a microphone and harmonize, sometimes they just enjoy the ruckus they cause. All of this can be heard on No Guts, No Glory, as can the album’s acoustic roots; many of the songs begin with an acoustic intro — or something spare enough to suggest an acoustic intro, like the bluegrass “Do or Die,” which is on electrics but surely feels like it originated on a back porch — and then build into something else, something a bit more full-blooded. This nimbleness, along with little bits of color like the sly marimba on “Calyphornya,” is why No Guts, No Glory can seem simultaneously fresh and familiar. moe. aren’t explicitly pioneering into new territory but they’re digging deep into their surroundings, still finding something to explore within themselves.
Artist Biography by Jesse Jarnow
♦•♦ Rising from the dingy college bars of upstate New York, moe. carved a niche for themselves with a distinct blend of Americana, melodic turns, clever songwriting, and jam band ethics. The bandmates were born and raised in the industrial town of Utica, but it took matriculation at the University of Buffalo for moe. to finally coalesce. Founded in 1990 by bassist/vocalist Rob Derhak, guitarist/vocalist Chuck Garvey, and original drummer Ray Schwartz, the band toured the university's party circuit under the name Five Guys Named Moe with several rotating members. Although they covered both contemporary pop and classic rock songs in concert, they also recorded two demo tapes of original material — Codename: Weaselshark and Spine of a Dog — in 1991. Guitarist Al Schnier was added that same year.
♦•♦ While playing Buffalo bars like Broadway Joe's, they refined their cartoonishly offbeat sound, a slaphappy mix of Primus-like dementia and focused rhythms. By the time Fatboy was released in 1992, improvisation had begun to creep into the band's sets. Schwartz was soon replaced by Jim Loughlin. As Schnier began to develop his trademark psychedelic oscillating guitar sound, the quartet recorded HeadSeed in Buffalo and migrated east to Albany, which served as the band's home base for the next three years. In early 1995, the band began to tour nationally; by mid-July, Loughlin had left to join Yolk and was replaced by Mike Strazza, a meticulously precise player. The band recorded Loaf over a two-night stand at New York City's Wetlands Preserve. By December, Strazza, too, was gone, replaced by Chris Mazur.
♦•♦ Mazur's playing, infinitely looser than Strazza's, opened the band up to wider improvisation, though it was a step back in terms of musical maturity. In the spring of 1996, moe. signed to Sony/550 Music, for whom they recorded No Doy in the summer. For their first single release, they chose a 46-minute cut of "Meat," recorded in the studio over the summer. In November, Mazur was fired, replaced by Vinnie Amico of Buffalo's Sonic Garden.
♦•♦ Following an opening slot on the Furthur Tour in the summer of 1997, moe. recorded Tin Cans and Car Tires as they began to place increasing importance on the traditional song form. Loughlin rejoined as an auxiliary percussionist in 1999, and the band was dropped from Sony's roster. That fall, the expanded lineup recorded and released the double-live album L on the band's own Fatboy Records, showcasing the new textures of the quintet. This was followed in early 2000 with Dither, an experimental effort that was co-produced with John Siket. Three years later, moe. highlighted their studio and live brilliance with the release of Wormwood. A parade of concert albums followed during the 2000s, including volumes in the Instant Live and Warts and All series.
♦•♦ moe. have been a staple for years at music festivals nationwide — especially at Bonnaroo in the Southeast. In addition to headlining festivals, moe. host two of their own: moe.down and snoe.down, both held in upstate New York in the late summer and late winter, respectively. Amid all this live activity, the band released a compilation of two earlier releases, No Doy/Tin Cans and Car Tires, in 2006. They followed it up with their first studio effort in four years, 2007's The Conch, and returned in 2008 with Sticks and Stones and Dr. Stan's Prescription, Vol. 1. For 2012's What Happened to the La Las, the band refined and shaped its trademark jam sound into more compact, structured melodies, many of which were developed at live shows. Two years later, the group delivered their eleventh studio album, No Guts, No Glory!, which was helmed by Dave Aron, primarily known for his work with hip-hop acts.
♦•♦ moe. is the preeminent progressive rock band on the music scene today — a quintet of world class musicians, whose creative output equals that of their longevity. ♦•♦ In a remarkable career that has touched three decades and produced a discography of 24 albums, the Sugar Hill Records recording artist of Al Schnier and Chuck Garvey on guitars and vocals, Rob Derhak on bass and vocals, Jim Loughlin on percussion and vibes, and Vinnie Amico on drums, continue to push the standard for performance art higher and further.
♦•♦ Whether touring around the globe, headlining music festivals, or sharing the stage with such diverse acts as the Allman Brothers, Dave Matthews Band, The Who, Robert Plant, Government Mule, or Blues Traveler, among many others, what keeps moe. at the forefront of the music scene is not only the energy and vitality of their music and songwriting, but the showmanship in which it is delivered. Their music is clever, melodic, refined, filled with “ferocious guitar riffs” and “intricate rhythms” (Relix); their performances are entertaining, mesmerizing, and epic.
From their humble, inconspicuous beginnings as a local bar band in Buffalo, NY, to headlining Radio City Music Hall on New Year’s Eve, moe.’s journey has been one of hard work, perseverance, and dedication. Critical acclaim and a solid national and international fan base has resulted in a dedicated following that grows each year. Rolling Stone magazine named Chuck and Al among the top twenty new “guitar gods,” The pair have been featured in Guitar World and Modern Guitar, Jim and Vinnie in Drum!, and Rob in Bass Player. The renowned guitar play between Al and Chuck has become the stuff of legend. The exceptional vibe and percussion work by Jim is brilliant. The understated bass play by Rob is masterful. The seamless, efficiency of Vinnie’s drumming is extraordinary. Together, the five create a musical synergy greater than the sum of their parts.
♦•♦ The news about moe. keeps getting better, too, in the studio and on tour. A new album, their second on Sugar Hill Records, is set for a 2014 release. It follows the critically acclaimed 2012 release, What Happened To The LA LAs, and the 2010 Smash Hits, Volume One — a rerecording of some of moe.’s most endearing classics. The band’s tour schedule is extensive, playing in venues, intimate and grand, from NYC to LA, San Fran to Atlanta, Chi Town to Bean Town, from Tokyo to Toronto, and across the Atlantic to Paris, Amsterdam, London, Hamburg, and Milano. Long a featured act at music festivals, they’ve performed and headlined at the likes of Bonnaroo, All Good, and High Sierra, in the US, and Fuji Rock Festival in Japan, and Burg Herzberg in Germany, to name a few; yet made time to promote and perform at their own festivals — Summer Camp, Snoe.down, and moe.down.
♦•♦ By all accounts, for this “legendary jam band,” as Rolling Stone described them, moe. represents rock and roll at its best. Welcome news for the moe. faithful and the band’s ever-expanding fan base. Even better news for the world of rock and roll, for moe. is just hitting their creative stride.
Photos inside the album: Jay Blakesberg
By Jeff Miller on May 23, 2014
By Tim Hurley, Wed, 05/21/2014 — 5:37pm
1992: Fatboy — independent release (re-released 1999, Fatboy Records)
1994: Headseed — Fatboy Records
1996: No Doy — 550 Music
1998: Tin Cans and Car Tires — 550 Music
2001: Dither — Fatboy Records
2002: Season's Greetings from moe. — Fatboy Records
2003: Wormwood — Fatboy Records
2007: The Conch — Fatboy Records
2008: Sticks and Stones — Fatboy Records
2012: What Happened to the LA LA's — Sugar Hill Records
2014: No Guts, No Glory! (May 27th) — Sugar Hill Records
2000: L — Fatboy Records
2000: L Version 3.1 — Fatboy Records
2001: Warts and All: Volume 1 — Fatboy Records
2002: Warts and All: Volume 2 — Fatboy Records
2003: Warts and All: Volume 3 — Fatboy Records
2005: Warts and All: Volume 4 — Fatboy Records
2007: Warts and All: Volume 5 — Fatboy Records
2008: Warts and All: Volume 6 — Fatboy Records
2008: Dr. Stan's Prescription, Volume 1 — Fatboy Records
2009: Dr. Stan's Prescription, Volume 2 — Fatboy Records
2010: Smash Hits Volume 1 — Fatboy Records
1996: meat. — 550 Music
Out of print. 10,000 made. The song clocks in at a little over 45 minutes. The liner notes said, "Lyric by Al Schnier."
1998: moe. Sells Out — 550 Music
2007: High And Congress — Fatboy Records
Limited Edition Releases:
1991: Codename: Weasleshark — independent cassette release.
1991: Spine Of A Dog — independent cassette release.
1991: Real Live, Nearly Free — independent cassette release.
1996: Loaf — Fatboy Records
Video and DVD releases:
2006: moe.: Live at the Fillmore — DVD — Fatboy Records
|moe. — No Guts, No Glory [Deluxe Edition] (2014)|