Top 10 Live Albums of 2020

2020 has proven to be a strong year for blue rock. Not only did 2020 provide several high quality studio releases, but it also featured many top notch live albums. The staff of Blues Rock Review got together to vote for the Top 10 Live Albums of 2020.

10. David Grissom: Trio (Live) 2020

“Grissom shows all the nuances of the guitar sound, handling perfectly the attack and muting of the strings, and bringing to the listener a pleasurable experience of blues rock. It’s not only about technique or tone, but it’s also the feeling and precision that Grissom effortlessly spreads with his guitar. “Crosscut Saw” and Albert King’s “Don’t Lose Your Cool” definitely received a new outlook with Grissom’s hands.” – Marcel Innocentini

(Buy: Amazon | Amazon UK)


9. Ben Poole Trio: Live ’19

“Ben Poole’s newest album captures the essence of powerful live performances. Recorded at Old Schoolhouse in Barnsley, The Half Moon in South London, and Bootleggers in Kendal, Live ‘19 is a thrilling listening experience. The songs are all hits off Poole’s albums Anytime You Need Me and Time Has Come. With Wayne Proctor on drums, Steve Amadeo on bass, and Ben Poole on guitar, each song is a delight.” – Sabrina Tian

(Buy: Amazon | Amazon UK)


8. Josh Smith: Live At The Spud

“Smith is not only a huge guitar player, he is that rare kind of musician that pushes far beyond the boundaries of a style or instrument. In Live At The Spud, Smith explores non-usual guitar sounds, different scales, peaked rhythms, and unexpected riffs, putting the blues at a higher level. It isn’t easy to believe that there were only three musicians involved in the record. Songs like “How Long” and “Letting You Go” prove that Smith is a master blues rock guitar player and songwriter.” – Marcel Innocentini

(Buy: Amazon | Amazon UK)


7. Gary Moore: Live From London

“Gary Moore’s Live From London was recorded just 14 months prior to his death. The concert took place at Islington Academy and features scorching blues guitar. A special treat for longtime fans and new listeners.” – Pete Francis

(Buy: Amazon | Amazon UK)


6. Sari Schorr: Live In Europe

“The album is composed of twelve powerful and raw performances that showcase Schorr’s talent and stunning stage presence. The natural sound of each track makes the album all the more impressive and moving, setting Schorr apart from overproduced music scenes of the twenty-first century. Live In Europe captures the excitement of going to show downtown on a Friday night with your best friends. Each song is candid and equally moving.” Sabrina Tian

(Buy: Amazon | Amazon UK)


5. Dirty Streets: Rough and Tumble

“Whereas most outfits would love to emerge from the studio with a final mix as precise and vibrant as Rough and Tumble, Dirty Streets manage to accomplish the feat live from the stage. Great soulful vocals, a stellar rhythm duo, and a plethora of guitar tones only scratch the surface of why this album succeeds. In the end, the fact that the band recorded it live may become incidental. To call Rough and Tumble an album that is both tight and loose may be oxymoronic on its face, but it works here.” – Willie Witten

(Buy: Amazon | Amazon UK)


4. Justin Saladino Band: JSB Live

JSB Live is a gathering of songs that were shaped and polished on the road, upon numerous stages. Saladino shows with JSB Live, that he’s got a soul musician inside him. It’s unique the way that he notches and carves the songs, mixing blues, rock, soul, and R&B.” – Marcel Innocentini

(Buy: Amazon | Amazon UK)


3. Albert Castiglia: Wild and Free

Wild and Free is everything a great live album should be: relentless emotion executed to perfection, yet not too perfectly. Castiglia is an exciting, underrated musician. Wild and Free presents ridiculously talented musicians hardly able to contain their abilities within the confines of a song. By the time it’s over, you’ll be out of breath but also probably ready to dive right back into the album.” – Steven Ovadia

(Buy: Amazon | Amazon UK)


2. Rory Gallagher: Check Shirt Wizard – Live In ’77

Check Shirt Wizard – Live in ‘77, a compilation of four European shows, won’t change Gallagher’s stature in the eyes of the public at large, but it does serve as a strong reminder of just what made him so great.” – Steven Ovadia

(Buy: Amazon | Amazon UK)


1. Kenny Wayne Shepherd Band: Straight To You Live

“Shepherd and company share an outstanding two-hour set from Leverkusen, Germany, reminding listeners that the crew remains one of the premier acts in blues rock. Expertly produced, the recording finds the live-in-concert sweet spot that eludes so many other attempts at capturing a performance faithfully, without sacrificing quality.” – Willie Witten

(Buy: Amazon | Amazon UK)

You might also like: Top 20 Albums of 2020

2 thoughts on “Top 10 Live Albums of 2020

  • December 19, 2020 at 8:25 am
    Permalink

    Hi,
    I released 2 independent albums this year, a studio one and a live one, would you like to review them ? Ticket to Memphis and live in Moscow , many thanks

    Reply

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