Red Hot Chili Peppers - Off the Map (2001) Review
(More customer reviews)I wasn't sure what to expect from a RHCP's live performance with John Frusciante back in the lineup. By far my favorite guitar player they've had, I didn't know if he could still play after his drug abuse problems in the years away from the band. Their "Californication" did little to alleviate those fears, his playing and soloing being so sparse and sort of un-practiced sounding. Don't get me wrong. "Californication" is a great album but it's much different from the chops galore "Blood Sugar Sex Magic". (And I don't mean that as a slam-BSSM is a masterwork in no small part due to Frusciante's intricate, interweaving lines throughout).
"Off the Map" put all my doubts to bed. Frusciante plays his [behind] off. Just check out "If You Have to Ask". Shredding, but he's so much more than than just a shredder. Something magical happens when his Strat, through a Wah, hits a Marshall. It's the tone for sure and then his note selection and use of space that really sets him apart from "shredders". I had read recently in a guitar magazine interview that he's trying to change his style, henceforth the new, sparse approach he's used on the last two albums. It's pretty funny to watch actually. When they play the new songs his playing shifts dramatically to the new style he's developing.
And don't let me forget Chad Smith and Flea. They are powerhouses here. Flea's gone from slapmaster (oh, he can still slap!) to improvisor and it suits him well. Chad is like a rock holding John and Flea's improvisations together.
This is a fun and inspiring dvd. The only reason I don't give it a 5 star review is because it does falter here and there. But that's what you get when your live show isn't prerecorded canned [stuff] and you take musical risks. That where the fun happens with these guys.
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Off the Map is the first concert home video since 1991 from one of rock's greatest live experiences, the Red Hot Chili Peppers. Off the Map is also the band's first concert DVD--the only way to witness the funk-funk-rockmetal-rap musical orgy of one of today's most popular bands. Songs: Around The World, Give It Away, Usually Just a T-Shirt #3, Scar Tissue, Suck My Kiss, If You Have to Ask, Subterranean Homesick Blues, Otherside, Blackeyed Blonde, Pea, Blood Sugar Sex Magik, Easily, What Is Soul?, Fire, Californication, Right On Time, Under The Bridge, Me And My Friends.