Widespread Panic Don't Tell The Band

As their first album for new label Sanctuary, and seventh studio album overall, Don't Tell The Band is like something of a rebirth for Athens, GA, jam band Widespread Panic. Recorded at home with long-time producer John Keane, the collection is arguably Widespread Panic's most concise and focused album. Perhaps a little harder hitting than their past few studio releases (1997's Bombs And Butterflies and 1999's 'Til The Medicine Takes), the 12 tracks contained within find the band writing songs that have been trimmed of excessive solos, instead concentrating on the actual song structures and pulling out some great hooks. Songs like "Imitation Leather Shoes," the wonderful piano led "Sometimes" and the heavy Hammond/wah-wah guitar funk of "Thought Sausage" prove that the band can be as formidable in the studio as they are on the live stage - no small feat for a band that has made their name on their impressive live shows alone. Early copies of the record also come with a bonus CD that features five live tracks recorded during 2000, so make sure to snap this one up sooner rather than later. (Sanctuary)