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Before the Frost... Until the Freeze

The Black Crowes

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Album Review

Revitalized by their 2008 reunion, the Black Crowes decided to take a genuine risk, recording a double-album's worth of new material in front of a live audience at Levon Helm's barn in upstate New York...and then release the second half, Until the Freeze, as a free download-only. To a certain extent, such formal experiments are where the Crowes can really stretch, as they're so devoted to rock & roll roots from Southern England to South Georgia, they can't add new wrinkles to old traditions. But that's not exactly right: they're willing to stretch until at least the late '70s, offering their spin on a Rolling Stones' disco on the album's first single, "I Ain't Hiding." As true as that may be, it's too snide and easy, and does a disservice to what the Crowes pull off with aplomb on this rather remarkable record, a record that has all the easy interplay of a road-tested band but none of the weariness. The Crowes play with muscle and grace, easing into the rustic ramble of "Appaloosa" or getting dirt underneath their fingernails on the stupendous opener "Good Morning Captain," a song that sets the keynote for the rest of the record both in its sturdy construction and enthusiastically ragged performance. More than anything, it's the kineticism that captivates, how the band deepens their already-strong songs with muscle and blood, sounding alive in a way that they never quite have in the studio. No longer young upstarts, they wear their years proudly on this terrific album, sounding like the veteran roadhounds they've always aspired to be.

Customer Reviews

Vintage Crowes

A lovely and vast collection of songs! This album was recorded 'live' in front of a small crowd over 5 nights and it sounds fantastic, the only way you can tell its a live recording is the cheers at the end of each song. Anyways I've always thought the Black Crowes sounded better live. Their Rolling Stones influence is really apparent on this album, from the rockier side of Before The Frost (tracks 1-11), especially Been a long Time and the Dance rock of I Aint Hiding (ala 'Miss you' Stones), to the acoustic and laid back Until The Freeze. My Favourite tracks are I Aint Hiding and Greenhorn, but I have no problem and enjoy listening to all the songs on this collection. Fantastic work!


This is pure blues rock n roll at its best. They never dissapoint! You'd be a fool to miss out on getting this album! Just Buy it.

A great treat

A great treat for all black crowes fans. This is a mixed bag with tunes from old style crowes with heavy and long guitar riffs such as the fantastic Been a long time (waiting on love) to the beautiful Aimless peacock. The new band line up have found their feet with all the live showes since Warpaint, which was great but hard to get into, better as tunes performed live. As they are approaching 20yrs as one of the greatest bands I hope they put out a few more albums and visit old blighty to rock and roll.


Formed: 1984 in Atlanta, GA

Genre: Rock

Years Active: '90s, '00s, '10s

At the time of their 1990 debut, the kind of rock & roll the Black Crowes specialized in was sorely out of style. Only Guns N' Roses came close to approximating a vintage Stones-style raunch, but they were too angry and jagged to pull it off completely. The Black Crowes, on the other hand, replicated that Stonesy swagger and Faces boogie perfectly. Vocalist Chris Robinson appropriated the sound and style of vintage Rod Stewart, while brother Rich Robinson fused Keith Richards' lean guitar attack...
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