Shooter Jennings

Live at Irving Plaza – 2006 (Universal South)

Reviewed by Jeffrey B. Remz

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CDs by Shooter Jennings

Shooter Jennings can't be accused of not being prolific in releasing his second disc this year, but it's quality that matters not quantity. And on that score, Jennings succeeds on his live disc recorded in the Big Apple.

But is it essential? Not exactly, but that doesn't mean it isn't worthwhile to get a sense of the musical abilities of the son of Waylon. Introduced by Little Steven Van Zant, Shooter Jennings is grouped in with what Van Zant refers to as Outlaw Country. That was really the musical movement of his father because Shooter is more a mix of rock (particularly on the closing "Daddy's Farm"), country and roots music.

A little bit off vocally he sounds slightly flat on "Electric Rodeo" - Jennings and his backing trio regain their footing on the true story of "Busted in Baylor County" and particularly the country ballad "Lonesome Blues." Going live brings "Manifesto No. 2" more alive here than on the original CD. Ditto for the follow-up "Manifesto No. 1" where Jennings lets loose musically and vocally.

The disc, which fortunately lacks production polish, may not be essential for fans, but for those unfamiliar with Jennings, the disc may be a welcome introduction to an artist who does far more than mine the memory of his father.