O.A.R. ‘Live on Red Rocks' (Black Rock Recorded Music)
The big jam band sounds of O.A.R. echo majestically off of the fire-colored outcroppings of Colorado's Red Rock Amphitheatre on the band's superb CD and DVD sets, “Live on Red Rocks,” recorded on July 15 during their “Summer Crush” tour.
Lead singer and rhythm guitarist Marc Roberge fronts one of the tightest live bands at work these days, backed by stoic, stinging lead guitarist Richard On, sax-blaster Jerry DePizzo and the thundering rhythm section of bassist Benj Gershman and drummer Chris Culos, among other supporting players.
With the extra texture of trombone and trumpet, the band mightily rolls out reggae-infused songs such as “Dangerous Connection,” “Woke Up an Uncle,” “The Last Time,” “To Zion Goes I” and “Delicate Few,” while the audience sings lovingly along.
There's also a magnificent delivery of their anthemic pop-rock crowd-pleaser “Shattered (Turn the Car Around” and everybody's playing-cards-with-the-devil favorite, “A Crazy Game of Poker.”
The DVD includes an engaging documentary on this smart, inventive Maryland band called “Standing on a Burning Hot Sun.” Lots of fun.
— Gene Triplett