Saturday, December 17, 2011

My Morning Jacket - Madison Square Garden

My Morning Jacket Shakes the Garden
Images and Article by Bill Kelly

Referring to Madison Square Garden as “holy ground” MMJ frontsman Jim James led his band through a rollicking 3 hour set at the venerable arena.  Home to the NY Knicks, NY Rangers and 52 Grateful Dead shows, the Garden’s suspended floor shook from opening song “Victory Dance” through the last encore, an ensemble cover of the old holiday chestnut “I’lll Be Home For Christmas” that brought opening act Band of Horses back onstage.     The last show of the “Ciruital” tour, the band pulled songs from all corners of their catelog, including the rarely played “Mahgeetah”.  Several tunes during the evening were accompanied by the Elvis Perkins in Dearland horns, bringing punch and brightness to the bands sound.  Throughout the show, James, guitarist Carl Bremel and bass player Tom Blankenship would charge back to drummer Pat Hallahan’s riser, jumping and spinning like dervishes.  The Garden literally pulsed with the energy emanating from the stage, the crowd jumping and singing in unison with the band.Hailing from Kentucky, with the roots of a Southern rock jam band, MMJ somehow transcends that labell by bending it beyond the usual clear noodling common to the genre.  Loud, beat driven with electronica undercurrents, the band demonstrated how a jam band can sound in 2012.

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