More and more excellent music DVD's are being released these days, but sometimes the most enjoyable are the hard to find ones. Take this one for example, a live concert from the Travis Larson Band-probably not one you will find in your local Virgin Music Store, but one that every guitar and instrumental rock fan should seek out. Travis Larson is an extremely gifted guitarist, with obvious influences like Steve Morse, Eric Johnson, Eddie Van Halen, and Steve Vai poking out through his playing. His bandmates are quite adept at their instruments as well; bassist Jennifer Young is way cute, and owns some serious muscular chops, while drummer Dale Moon keeps a steady groove and pounds away furiously when needed (check out his acrobatic drum solo included here.) The band has written a host of melodic songs that feature complex time changes, chunky riffs, blinding solos, and steady grooves, all elements that make this DVD an enjoyable near 90 minutes of fun.
Steve Morse Band fans will love the the aggressive attack of tunes like "Stratospheric Alien Boundaries" and "Junkablaja", not to mention the intricate lines of "Hut Boy." Bassist Young shows off her impressive slap 'n' pop style on the frantic "Squeeze & Shake", and her melodic side on "Know Strings Attached", a song that really shows the synergy that she and Larson have on stage. Larson throws the audience all sorts of curveballs, as he incorporates searing legato lines, whammy bar fills, manic arpeggios, and tasty jazz breaks, all played with melody, finesse, and style on his Music Man guitar. While he can be flashy when he wants, the guitarist never shows off, instead utilizing the less is more technique, which allows this ensemble to really come across as such, a band with plenty to offer.
Rock Show is filled with plenty of intriguing and memorable tunes that instantly pushed me to repeated viewings. Being an admirer of Steve Morse also helped me get into this DVD very quickly, as structurally many of the TLB tunes are stylistically similar to the work of the Steve Morse Band or the Dixie Dregs, and that's not a bad thing in my opinion. Check out the band's website for more info.