(All Album Reviews by BrianG)
Liquid Village plays music that inhabits a new territory between fusion, blues rock and jam bands. Staked out by acts such as moe, Widespread Panic and lately Umphrey's McGee, the music has blues roots with plenty of room for exploration of fusion, jazz and even art rock. Liquid Village heads more for the compositionally easier locale begun at Grateful Dead concerts, especially in the album's guitar parts. The harmony vocals are very tight, and remind me of Echolyn's work on Cowboy Poems Free and even Wilco.
Based in Nashville, the Gary Godbey (bass) and Alan Powell (guitar) are joined by Carlos Ruiz (drums) and Matt Jacobs (guitar). I heard Tony Levin's Resonator album at the same time and found many similarities in the compositions and the laid back feel of the music. But in the same vein, progressive rock staples such as multiple time signatures and multi-part compositions are lacking. Which is ok because Liquid Village is not playing strictly to a progressive audience, but has its midwestern audience more in mind. Face it - Yes would never has gotten started if they began touring around Nashville. In the same way, Liquid Village plays to its local audience, and is a challenge to that.
As an example, the song "One The Flesh" quickly devolves to short guitar solos over three chord stomps. "Moth" and "History" follow suit. It’s all well done, though, with very little repetition of ideas. But the lack of much keyboard input results in a turn toward even a southern rock sound.
This is shown in their ripping slide guitar work on "Rope of Sand". The solos are there to augment the song, though, not to try to impress. This is much appreciated and shows a real maturity in the players. Liner notes and album are art are minimal but sufficient. A nice listen for fans of fusion and jam bands.