The Counting Crows are an amazing band. They’ve got it all: smooth vocals, meaningful lyrics, beautiful music, and a singer with dreadlocks named Adam. Boy, I wish I had a singer with dreadlocks named Adam!
Disk one was recorded for VH1 storytellers. The first song, Round Here, is one of the most beautiful songs that Counting Crows have and I predict ever will put out. It’s an amazingly written song about a girl named Maria and a small town where “we all look the same.” Round Here only has Adam’s singing and a single acoustic song. Have You Seen Me Lately? is another beautiful song talking about how he hears himself on the radio and simultaneously it begins to rain. It has a beautiful section with descriptive colors, “give a blue rain, give me a black sky, give me your green eyes.”
Angels of the Silences is the first song on this disk that uses a guitar and percussion .It also features an accordion. “All my innocence is just wasted on dead end dreaming” is a beautiful line. Catapult has a banjo and a beautiful piano introduction. “I wanna be the light that just burns out your eyes”. Catapult is a meaningful song, but it sounds slightly too upbeat for the words. Mr. Jones is another amazing song, of Round Here attributes. “I don’t believe in anything, I don’t wanna be someone to believe, you should not believe in me.” Just close your eyes when you listen to this song, it’s phenomenal. Rain King is another astounding song. “I belong in the service of the queen, I belong anywhere but in between.” It expresses the belief that people should get the best. Mercury is a song about someone who “changes suddenly, she’s like mercury.” It has many diverse music styles.
Ghost Train is an exceptionally beautiful song. It’s a little off the songs in the first half of the album, but has an extremely well-written melody and an ambiance of sophistication. Anna Begins has a beautiful instrumental introduction. It’s a song about his friend named Anna who wants to make sure that they aren’t wrong. “Every time she sneezes I think it’s love.” Never Go To New York City is the bonus track. It features a beautiful brass and saxophone accompaniment to Adam’s voice and the piano.
Disc Two was recorded for MTV Live From the 10 spot.
Recovering the Satellites is a beautiful song. It encompasses great vocals and lyrics. “You’re everybody’s satellite, but I wish that you were mine.” Angels of the Silences is very different from the disc one version. It is more energetic and upbeat. The Counting Crows change the format of the song often, the melody and instrumental parts are shifted around quite often. Rain King is also different, but in a more favorable way. It features better melodic instrument parts and a more fun version of the lyrics. Sullivan Street has an interesting piano part and electric guitar. It’s extremely refreshing to hear such a wide variety of instruments. It also has good lyrics. “I’m almost drowning in her sea” . Children in Bloom has really good lyrics, like all of the Crow’s music, and it has a cool echoing part in the end. It is also extremely energetic.
Have You Seen Me Lately? was again changed. It is not as good as the first disc’s version, and sounds immensely different. Instead of having a slightly melancholy sound, it’s very happy and upbeat, mostly because of the lack of acoustic guitar. Raining In Baltimore has an amazing mix of accordion and piano which makes a very hopeful sound. Round Here sounds out of place when the electric guitar plays in place of the acoustic. It sounds slightly forced, but the lyrics are the highlight because they can never screw them up. I’m Not Sleeping is an okay track. It has average lyrics, but it finally has an appropriate sound for the lyrics of the track.
A Murder of One is an amazing track. It has really good lyrics and a beautifully upbeat sound. It also has good background vocals and a very enthusiastic crowd. Some of the lyrics are taken from a nursery rhyme. A Long December shows the widely shared state of depression in the winter. It is one of the most expressive and beautiful songs on this album, and is Adam’s voice at its best. Walkaways is an extremely short song that marks the end of the album.
A Long December
Have You Seen Me Lately?
Angels of the Silences
The Counting Crows are primarily a live band, and they show their excellence in this album. It is a compilation of amazing lyrics and expressive vocals. They can be amazingly moving on acoustic tracks and uplifting on the electric ones. I would recommend this album to anyone who enjoys the Counting Crows or just live music, because it’s a masterpiece.