- Number of Discs: 2
- Released: June 5, 2000
- Label: Intuition
JazzTimes - 11/00, p.71
"...Exhibits a surprising amount of flexibility....maintaining a high skill level while exploring some unusual contexts, like Ornette Coleman's 'Happy House'..."
Tracks on Disc 1:
- 1.Dr. Demento
- 2.Moby Dick
- 3.Swamp Stomp
- 4.Cranial Jam
- 5.Happy House
- 7.First Thing This Morning
- 8.The Perfect Date
- 9.It's Jungle Out There - (studio, bonus track)
Tracks on Disc 2:
- 1.The Drum Also Waltzes
- 2.Take Eight
- 3.Listen Up!
- 5.Do You Read Me?
- 6.Over and Out
- 7.MR. PC
- 8.Soulful Drums - (studio, bonus track)
Vital Information: Tom Coster (accordion, Hammond B-3 organ, Korg Trinity synthesizer); Frank Gambale (guitar); Baron Browne (bass); Steve Smith (drums).
Engineers include: Robert M. Biles, Kevin Chalfant, Doug McClement.
Recorded live from March-June 1999 and at Neverland Studio, Marin County, California in October 1999. Includes liner notes by Steve Smith.
Personnel: Frank Gambale (guitar); Tom Coster (accordion); Steve Smith (drums).
Recording information: Tour (1998-1999).
Photographer: Alex Solca.
Despite the neo-classicism in jazz of the '80s and '90s, fusion (more correctly electric jazz) is still a hit among rabid fans of Vital Information around the world. This live two-disc set is a spectacular document of the group that originally started as drummer Steve Smith's side project while he was still a member of Journey. As this collection well illustrates, Vital Information has become a bastion of powerful contemporary jazz.
Recorded during its 1998-99 tour in support of the equally exciting WHERE WE COME FROM, this set finds the quartet expanding upon the group concept it began exploring on its previous studio efforts. Although the chops often fly with wild abandon, it is evident that the group has meshed into a firm unit capable of great swathes of expression, a mammoth dynamic range, and a deeply funky groove. Smith is the star, of course, capable of frenzied solos and complex time signature grooves that defy the laws of mathematics.