8 Live Albums Worth Checking Out

1. Bob Dylan: The Bootleg Series, Vol. 4: Live 1966

This was an incredible two-disk album recorded live in London the year after Dylan scandalously started performing with an electric guitar and band. The first half of the album is Dylan playing solo with just an acoustic guitar, and the second half played electrically with Dylan’s band, The Hawks (who later become The Band). While both sides are full of ballads sung soulfully by Dylan, the varied approval of the audience is evident on each side of the album; the acoustic set is received by a respectfully silent crowd, whereas the electric set is met with the disapproval of the crowd, who thought Dylan was selling himself out for going electric.

Notable songs include: Like a Rolling Stone (listen to this on the CD to hear the infamous “Judas!” shout from the crowd), One Too Many Mornings, Ballad of a Thin Man, and Visions of Johanna.

2. Cage the Elephant: Live from The Vic in Chicago

An explosive, grungy performance of several fan favourites from their first three albums.

Notable songs include: Aberdeen, Rubber Ball, and Ain’t No Rest for the Wicked.

3. City and Colour: Guide Me Back Home (Live)

Recorded at various shows across Canada to promote Dallas Green’s new album, If I Should Go Before You.

Notable songs include: Lover Come Back, Forgive Me/Two Coins, and Silver and Gold.

4. The Glorious Sons: Little Prison City (Live at Rogers K-Rock Centre)

During their concert here in Kingston just last year, these hometown heroes performed hits from both their first and second album, as well as a few previews of some unreleased gems.

Notable songs include Gordie, One Church Town, and I Want Ya.

5. The Band: The Last Waltz

This was The Band’s last performance ever, performed with several of their musical contemporaries, including Bob Dylan, Eric Clapton, Joni Mitchell, Ronnie Wood, and Neil Young.

Notable songs include: I Shall Be Released, The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down and The Weight.

6. U2: The Joshua Tree (Super Deluxe)

While this might not be an entirely live album, it does have several bonus live songs in honour of the Joshua Tree’s 40th anniversary, all of which are definitely worth the listen. Fans of U2’s documentary, Rattle, and Hum, will be excited to find that several of their performances in the movie made it onto this album.

Notable songs include: Running to Stand Still (Live), Where the Streets Have No Name (Live), Sunday Bloody Sunday (Live), and Exit/Gloria (Live)

7. 5 Seconds of Summer: Meet You There Tour (Live)

If your guilty pleasure is like mine– listening to a good boy band– you’ll love this live recording of 5SOS in London, England. The boys in the band are energetic throughout the whole show; this is reflected in the crowd, who you can hear singing along with the band in every song. Though most of the album’s music is from 5SOS’s third album, they’ve included a few songs from their first two albums for fans that have followed 5SOS from the very beginning.

Notable songs include Valentine, Youngblood, and She’s Kinda Hot.

8. Vance Joy: Live at the Red Rocks Amphitheatre

A live show in Colorado featuring favourites from Vance Joy’s first two albums.

Notable songs include Riptide, Like Gold, and Fire and the Flood.