Travis Larson Band
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Travis Larson Band

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Dec
30
Travis Larson Band @ Travis Larson Band

None, Louisiana, USA

None, Louisiana, USA

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More and more excellent music DVD's are being released these days, but sometimes the most enjoyable are the hard to find ones. Take this one for example, a live concert from the Travis Larson Band-probably not one you will find in your local Virgin Music Store, but one that every guitar and instrumental rock fan should seek out. Travis Larson is an extremely gifted guitarist, with obvious influences like Steve Morse, Eric Johnson, Eddie Van Halen, and Steve Vai poking out through his playing. His bandmates are quite adept at their instruments as well; bassist Jennifer Young is way cute, and owns some serious muscular chops, while drummer Dale Moon keeps a steady groove and pounds away furiously when needed (check out his acrobatic drum solo included here.) The band has written a host of melodic songs that feature complex time changes, chunky riffs, blinding solos, and steady grooves, all elements that make this DVD an enjoyable near 90 minutes of fun.

Steve Morse Band fans will love the the aggressive attack of tunes like "Stratospheric Alien Boundaries" and "Junkablaja", not to mention the intricate lines of "Nut Boy." Bassist Young shows off her impressive slap & pop style on the frantic "Squeeze & Shake", and her melodic side on "Know Strings Attached", a song that really shows the synergy that she and Larson have on stage. Larson throws the audience all sorts of curveballs, as he incorporates searing legato lines, whammy bar fills, manic arpeggios, and tasty jazz breaks, all played with melody, finesse, and style on his Music Man guitar. While he can be flashy when he wants, the guitarist never shows off, instead utilizing the less is more technique, which allows this ensemble to really come across as such, a band with plenty to offer.

Rock Show is filled with plenty of intriguing and memorable tunes that instantly pushed me to repeated viewings. Being an admirer of Steve Morse also helped me get into this DVD very quickly, as structurally many of the TLB tunes are stylistically similar to the work of the Steve Morse Band or the Dixie Dregs, and that's not a bad thing in my opinion. Check out the band's website for more info.


By Pete Pardo


- Sea of Tranquility


More and more excellent music DVD's are being released these days, but sometimes the most enjoyable are the hard to find ones. Take this one for example, a live concert from the Travis Larson Band-probably not one you will find in your local Virgin Music Store, but one that every guitar and instrumental rock fan should seek out. Travis Larson is an extremely gifted guitarist, with obvious influences like Steve Morse, Eric Johnson, Eddie Van Halen, and Steve Vai poking out through his playing. His bandmates are quite adept at their instruments as well; bassist Jennifer Young is way cute, and owns some serious muscular chops, while drummer Dale Moon keeps a steady groove and pounds away furiously when needed (check out his acrobatic drum solo included here.) The band has written a host of melodic songs that feature complex time changes, chunky riffs, blinding solos, and steady grooves, all elements that make this DVD an enjoyable near 90 minutes of fun.

Steve Morse Band fans will love the the aggressive attack of tunes like "Stratospheric Alien Boundaries" and "Junkablaja", not to mention the intricate lines of "Nut Boy." Bassist Young shows off her impressive slap & pop style on the frantic "Squeeze & Shake", and her melodic side on "Know Strings Attached", a song that really shows the synergy that she and Larson have on stage. Larson throws the audience all sorts of curveballs, as he incorporates searing legato lines, whammy bar fills, manic arpeggios, and tasty jazz breaks, all played with melody, finesse, and style on his Music Man guitar. While he can be flashy when he wants, the guitarist never shows off, instead utilizing the less is more technique, which allows this ensemble to really come across as such, a band with plenty to offer.

Rock Show is filled with plenty of intriguing and memorable tunes that instantly pushed me to repeated viewings. Being an admirer of Steve Morse also helped me get into this DVD very quickly, as structurally many of the TLB tunes are stylistically similar to the work of the Steve Morse Band or the Dixie Dregs, and that's not a bad thing in my opinion. Check out the band's website for more info.


By Pete Pardo


- Sea of Tranquility


Now, I can finally say I've had the great pleasure of seeing this amazing fusion trio live! Watching guitarist Travis Larson and Bassist Jennifer Young working together (with drummer Dale Moon pacing both on drums) is a sheer delight. These kids absolutely cook together, and not just in the kitchen.

The occasion for this classy video document, recorded last Sept. 18 in Arroyo Grande, Calif., was the bands 10th anniversary. The three have a big stage to fill but that makes for comfortable viewing angles, which shift from wide-angles to close-ups and tastful fade-overs.

As a stylist, Travis' bright, sinewy, melodic phrasing technique brings to mind Steve Morse. Technically stunning, always tasty. Young stays solidly "in the pocket", the perfect foil, who also can dazzle when called upon (her tapping rocks).

This concert comprises 20 tracks, each a highlight: If closer "Thin Air" and encore "Nevele" don't get your heart beating double time, you probably ain't breathin'.

Disc two comprises documentary material including band member interviews, archival footage, photo gallery, and a guided tour of Larson's guitar rig.

Note: The band also has released the concert soundtrack as two CDs in a double gatefold digi-pack.

By John Collinge

- Progression Magazine


Now, I can finally say I've had the great pleasure of seeing this amazing fusion trio live! Watching guitarist Travis Larson and Bassist Jennifer Young working together (with drummer Dale Moon pacing both on drums) is a sheer delight. These kids absolutely cook together, and not just in the kitchen.

The occasion for this classy video document, recorded last Sept. 18 in Arroyo Grande, Calif., was the bands 10th anniversary. The three have a big stage to fill but that makes for comfortable viewing angles, which shift from wide-angles to close-ups and tastful fade-overs.

As a stylist, Travis' bright, sinewy, melodic phrasing technique brings to mind Steve Morse. Technically stunning, always tasty. Young stays solidly "in the pocket", the perfect foil, who also can dazzle when called upon (her tapping rocks).

This concert comprises 20 tracks, each a highlight: If closer "Thin Air" and encore "Nevele" don't get your heart beating double time, you probably ain't breathin'.

Disc two comprises documentary material including band member interviews, archival footage, photo gallery, and a guided tour of Larson's guitar rig.

Note: The band also has released the concert soundtrack as two CDs in a double gatefold digi-pack.

By John Collinge

- Progression Magazine


Travis Larson Band - "Rate Of Change Live"
(Precision Records PRCN-1008, 2 DVD, 2009)

This concert video commemorates The Travis Larson Band's 10th anniversary. With four studio albums and a ton of touring under their belts they've made a name for themselves as purveyors of white-hot instrumental fusion in the Steve Morse / Eric Johnson vein (though without as much country or pop in their arrangements.)

Hailing from the central California coast, this video captures the trio of Travis Larson (guitar), Jennifer Young (bass), and Dale Moon (drums) playing to an enthusiastic home crowd and running through a monster set list taken mostly from the last two albums, 2006's Rate of Change and 2004's Burn Season.

The songs run the gamut from melodic mid-tempo toe-tappers like "Winter Still" to steamy barnburners like "Axe to Grind" to proggy workouts like "Dirty Magic" that recalls Rush's "La Villa Strangiato." Many of the songs allow Larson to show off his command of the guitar's many tonal and stylistic possibilities, whether it be lightning-quick shredding, tapping, or clean, melodic work. He even plays with some sophisticated delay and looping effects during his solo spot. Moon and Young are no slouches either, the latter especially proving herself a virtuoso capable of giving Tal Wilkenfeld a run for her money (and she's darn cute, to boot!)

Some may find the band's music a bit clinical, and there's a question if this style of progressive fusion hasn't been thoroughly mined already, but I found the entire show to be entertaining and I never tired of watching Larson and crew show their stuff. The second DVD includes a lengthy documentary capturing the recording of Rate of Change, plus another home made video of the band in their studio. Plus, Larson walks the viewer through the details of his guitar rig, and there's even bonus live footage of the band from 1999. Recommended.

By Paul Hightower


- Expose


Travis Larson Band - "Rate Of Change Live"
(Precision Records PRCN-1008, 2 DVD, 2009)

This concert video commemorates The Travis Larson Band's 10th anniversary. With four studio albums and a ton of touring under their belts they've made a name for themselves as purveyors of white-hot instrumental fusion in the Steve Morse / Eric Johnson vein (though without as much country or pop in their arrangements.)

Hailing from the central California coast, this video captures the trio of Travis Larson (guitar), Jennifer Young (bass), and Dale Moon (drums) playing to an enthusiastic home crowd and running through a monster set list taken mostly from the last two albums, 2006's Rate of Change and 2004's Burn Season.

The songs run the gamut from melodic mid-tempo toe-tappers like "Winter Still" to steamy barnburners like "Axe to Grind" to proggy workouts like "Dirty Magic" that recalls Rush's "La Villa Strangiato." Many of the songs allow Larson to show off his command of the guitar's many tonal and stylistic possibilities, whether it be lightning-quick shredding, tapping, or clean, melodic work. He even plays with some sophisticated delay and looping effects during his solo spot. Moon and Young are no slouches either, the latter especially proving herself a virtuoso capable of giving Tal Wilkenfeld a run for her money (and she's darn cute, to boot!)

Some may find the band's music a bit clinical, and there's a question if this style of progressive fusion hasn't been thoroughly mined already, but I found the entire show to be entertaining and I never tired of watching Larson and crew show their stuff. The second DVD includes a lengthy documentary capturing the recording of Rate of Change, plus another home made video of the band in their studio. Plus, Larson walks the viewer through the details of his guitar rig, and there's even bonus live footage of the band from 1999. Recommended.

By Paul Hightower


- Expose


This powerfully virtuosic trio just gets better. Not only can one hear the remarkable chemistry between guitarist Travis Larson, bassist Jennifer Young and drummer Dale Moon, you can feel its organically seamless flow through raucously rockin' changeups and delightfully nuanced shifts in mood. Just kick back, crank it up and close your eyes for a fun ride on the sonic continuum.

Seldom does instrumental music this precisely delivered sound as melodically "lyrical", or smooth. The sweetly resonant likes of "Ol' Gus", for instance, flows like water, pairing acoustic guitar and bass. The earnest "Out of Bounds" and wistful "Dream Catcher" offer further evidence that TLB is in less of a hurry to strut its prolific arsenal of chops than craft a good song with feeling.

But plenty of the former is in play on Soundmind, as well. "Nevermore", "Cartoon Justice" and "What's What", for instance, rock powerfully. Jazzy shadings also provide supporting contrast.

The Steve Morse allusions still apply to Larson's style, and that's a good thing!

By John Collinge



- Progression Magazine


This powerfully virtuosic trio just gets better. Not only can one hear the remarkable chemistry between guitarist Travis Larson, bassist Jennifer Young and drummer Dale Moon, you can feel its organically seamless flow through raucously rockin' changeups and delightfully nuanced shifts in mood. Just kick back, crank it up and close your eyes for a fun ride on the sonic continuum.

Seldom does instrumental music this precisely delivered sound as melodically "lyrical", or smooth. The sweetly resonant likes of "Ol' Gus", for instance, flows like water, pairing acoustic guitar and bass. The earnest "Out of Bounds" and wistful "Dream Catcher" offer further evidence that TLB is in less of a hurry to strut its prolific arsenal of chops than craft a good song with feeling.

But plenty of the former is in play on Soundmind, as well. "Nevermore", "Cartoon Justice" and "What's What", for instance, rock powerfully. Jazzy shadings also provide supporting contrast.

The Steve Morse allusions still apply to Larson's style, and that's a good thing!

By John Collinge



- Progression Magazine


Silky bends, sweet legato lines, and tuneful shred characterize Larson's playing on these 12 cuts. Some stellar moments include the slick lines on the opener, "Nevermore", the swooping whammy work on "Down on Victory", and the cornucopia of tones on "Forest for the Trees". Larson is expertly backed by drummer Dale Moon and bassist Jennifer Young. Instrumental rock fans should catch a gig or clinic from this guy.

By Matt Blackett

- Guitar Player Magazine


Silky bends, sweet legato lines, and tuneful shred characterize Larson's playing on these 12 cuts. Some stellar moments include the slick lines on the opener, "Nevermore", the swooping whammy work on "Down on Victory", and the cornucopia of tones on "Forest for the Trees". Larson is expertly backed by drummer Dale Moon and bassist Jennifer Young. Instrumental rock fans should catch a gig or clinic from this guy.

By Matt Blackett

- Guitar Player Magazine


Based in the idyllic California Coast city of San Luis Obispo, Travis Larson's instrumental-rock power trio has been stirring up a signature brew of Steve Morse influenced riffs and grooves for ten years now, and to celebrate they've created this abundantly stuffed double-live-CD-plus-bonus-DVD package from a show in late 2008.

Bassist Jennifer Young handles the tricky unison runs, chordal tapping, and kinetic form changes like the advanced pro she is, and her solo breaks on "Heads or Tales" and "Times Like These" stand out for their restraint and melodic maturity. But make no mistake: This group is about bringing the unapologetic heat and light of a power trio with no singer, and Young (who co-produced the effort) employs the appropriately ass-kicking approach, taking up her fair share of the sonic space on heavy riff-driven tunes like "Dirty Magic" and "Edges", and plenty more when required.

By Bryan Beller



- Bass Player Magazine


Based in the idyllic California Coast city of San Luis Obispo, Travis Larson's instrumental-rock power trio has been stirring up a signature brew of Steve Morse influenced riffs and grooves for ten years now, and to celebrate they've created this abundantly stuffed double-live-CD-plus-bonus-DVD package from a show in late 2008.

Bassist Jennifer Young handles the tricky unison runs, chordal tapping, and kinetic form changes like the advanced pro she is, and her solo breaks on "Heads or Tales" and "Times Like These" stand out for their restraint and melodic maturity. But make no mistake: This group is about bringing the unapologetic heat and light of a power trio with no singer, and Young (who co-produced the effort) employs the appropriately ass-kicking approach, taking up her fair share of the sonic space on heavy riff-driven tunes like "Dirty Magic" and "Edges", and plenty more when required.

By Bryan Beller



- Bass Player Magazine


The Travis Larson Band is one of the most long-lived and commercially fortunate in the world, although not everybody knows it...These three extraordinary musicians (Travis Larson on guitar, Jennifer Young on bass and Dale Moon on drums) have collected enormous credit from fans and music media since their self-titled debut cd in 1998.

Rate Of Change LIVE is a double live cd, a kind of tribute to the live dimension of the band, that serves the purpose to "homage" these aficionados and the chance to live the emotion of the mega-concert performed by TLB, September 18th 2009 in celebration of their 10th anniversary. There is a lot of "meat on the barbecue", 20 tracks for more than 90 minutes of pure genuine rock/prog that is evidence of one of the most precise guitar players on the music scene.

The axeman combines in top form, a strong rock/blues language with utterly interesting melodic lines and incredibly incisive timing. The ethereal guitar work and delay loaded Sticks and Stones, finds its center of gravity with rhythmic dynamics and a melodic chorus that contrasts with the following prog metal intro of Barrage a Trois. Larson "changes skin" one more time working with the whammy bar in the evocative Burn Season opening, a little masterpiece that would seems to be a tribute to the visionary genius of Steve Vai.

A splendid live CD, also available on DVD...


By Matteo Roccia
- AXE Magazine (Italy)


The Travis Larson Band is one of the most long-lived and commercially fortunate in the world, although not everybody knows it...These three extraordinary musicians (Travis Larson on guitar, Jennifer Young on bass and Dale Moon on drums) have collected enormous credit from fans and music media since their self-titled debut cd in 1998.

Rate Of Change LIVE is a double live cd, a kind of tribute to the live dimension of the band, that serves the purpose to "homage" these aficionados and the chance to live the emotion of the mega-concert performed by TLB, September 18th 2009 in celebration of their 10th anniversary. There is a lot of "meat on the barbecue", 20 tracks for more than 90 minutes of pure genuine rock/prog that is evidence of one of the most precise guitar players on the music scene.

The axeman combines in top form, a strong rock/blues language with utterly interesting melodic lines and incredibly incisive timing. The ethereal guitar work and delay loaded Sticks and Stones, finds its center of gravity with rhythmic dynamics and a melodic chorus that contrasts with the following prog metal intro of Barrage a Trois. Larson "changes skin" one more time working with the whammy bar in the evocative Burn Season opening, a little masterpiece that would seems to be a tribute to the visionary genius of Steve Vai.

A splendid live CD, also available on DVD...


By Matteo Roccia
- AXE Magazine (Italy)


Discography

Soundmind (PRCN-1009 CD 2011)

Rate of Change LIVE (PRCN-1008 DVD 2009)

Rate of Change LIVE (PRCN-1007 CD 2009)

Rate of Change (PRCN-1006 CD 2006)

Burn Season (PRCN-1005 CD 2004)

Rock Show (PRCN-1004 DVD 2003)

Suspension (PRCN-1003 CD 2001)

Travis Larson Band (PRCN-1001 CD 1998)

Photos

Bio

With six records and two full-length performance DVDs, the award-winning Travis Larson Band is firmly rooted as one of instrumental music’s premiere acts, having worked on record with Steve Lukather (Toto), Victor Wooten (Bela Fleck), Dave LaRue (Joe Satriani, John Petrucci, Dixie Dregs), Vinx (Sting, Herbie Hancock) and having shared live billing with Ted Nugent, UFO, Steve Morse (Deep Purple, Dixie Dregs), Ronnie Montrose, to name a few. Travis Larson Band's recent release Soundmind earned accolades as Guitar Player Magazine Editor's Top Three in 2011.

Comprised of Travis Larson (guitar), Jennifer Young (bass), and Dale Moon (drums), TLB’s complicated phrasing, impossible timing, and seamless flow cause some to suspect that the band must surely operate from only one, albeit enormous, brain.

Aided by endorsement relationships with Ernie Ball/MusicMan, Electro-Voice, Digitech, Markbass, DV Mark,Gretsch, and Sabian this tiny band with the big sound has found its way into the festivals, theaters, clubs and music stores across the nation, not to mention the traveling 53-foot tractor-trailer truck tours and music industry events. Well known for their live performances the Travis Larson Band delivers full throttle rock fusion that soars with originality and mercilessly hooks an audience like a freshly sharpened gaff through the unsuspecting brain of an Arctic Cod.