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The Sadies

Live Vol. 1 – 2006 (Yep Roc)

Reviewed by Jacquilynne Schlesier

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CDs by The Sadies

The Sadies are like a house band for the city of Toronto; all the best shows feature a Sadie or two. That makes for a lot of outstanding favors. For two nights in February, frontmen Dallas and Travis Good called in those favors, putting on genre-crossing shows exploding with guest talent. This captures the heart of those nights. It's a family affair, with Margaret Good joining her sons for some gospel rave-up. The previous generation of Good siblings, The Good Brothers, contribute sharp bluegrass breakdowns and background picking.

Various members of Blue Rodeo show up alone, in combination, and as part of Sadies side project The Unintended. Jon Spencer and Matt Verta-Ray brought significant energy to the second half of the show, though the crowd pleasing power of Jon's band introduction comes across as clichéd on disc.

The real highlights come from The Sadies doing what they do best - sitting in behind their friends. Backing Neko Case on "Hold On, Hold On," Gary Louris on "Tailspin" and Jon Langford on "Memphis, Egypt," the band never lets them steal the stage. They blend and mesh, but always stand out as superb musicians.