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Jayhawks livestream may be better than the real thing

Slamhammer (livestream), Minneapolis, November 29, 2020

Reviewed by Dan MacIntosh

You may still be skeptical about shelling out good money for livestream concerts and would rather wait until post-COVID-19 concerts come back in full before paying for live music. Sets like Jayhawks' "Sound of Lies" performance might change your mind about the whole concert streaming concept, however. To paraphrase U2, this event may have even been better than the real thing.

For starters, though, the mindset of performers (or at least in the case of the Jayhawks) is different for livestreams, than live shows. There isn't interaction with an audience and no applause between songs. Therefore, there is no real pressure to pace a show just right. No momentum to gain or lose.

This is even more the case when a group is performing a full album, in its original order (including bonus tracks), from start to finish. What you got in this instance was a lot of fun banter between band members; ones that have been together for a long time, which gave the performance an entirely different feel.

The camera angles for this performance were especially advantageous to appreciating the show differently from a usual concert. For much of this performance, the viewer was put inside the band circle, which felt more like being on stage, instead of viewing from a concert hall seat.

Not surprisingly, the album's highlights from the alt.-country mainstays were also some of the show's high points. This included album and show opener, "The Man Who Loved Life," and the rocking "Big Star." Even if you didn't particularly enjoy "Sound of Lies" (It's not a particular fan favorite). Jayhawks are now seasoned pros, which makes nearly everything the group touches sound good. "Sound of Lies" done here rings with the sound of true musical goodness.

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