The newest edition to the ever expanding catalog of exemplary work by the Brooklyn-based Snarky Puppy has recaptured what fans of “The Fam” have known for a while – this group is best heard and experienced live.
After the Grammy success of their most recent studio album Family Dinner, Snarky Puppy returned to the roots of their newest record We Like It Here. In the liner notes for this record Michael League (band-leader and bassist for the group) described the groups genesis as “slowly amassing a word-of-mouth fan base and making slow, but steady, improvement through relentless (and incredibly unglamorous) touring.” By recording this album in the middle of yet another slow and unglamorous, yet very successful tour of the UK and mainland Europe, League and his compatriots captured, in my opinion, the absolute best parts of what it is to hear and to experience Snarky Puppy.
This experience and evolution as artists, virtuosic players, and songwriters easily shines through musically on the album itself. By utilizing the amazing ability of keyboardist Shaun Martin and Michael League, the interplay between both the electric bass and the Moog keybass is something to be heard to believe. Although it is this coaction which is a mainstay of Snarky Puppy’s sound, somehow each and every time they do this it sounds fresh and new. This may be a plausible cause for why the live albums and shows are so much more fun to watch than to listen to a studio recording.
The grit of this band is meant to be heard live to be believed. Although the studio does add a certain shine to the music it does not do this band justice.
So, keep your ear to the ground, and next time you hear about Snarky Puppy coming to your town, do not miss your opportunity to see this band.
This video features Lalah Hathaway – a very accomplished and talented soul and throat singer. Prepare to have your mind blown with this one: