January 05, 2005
Magazine review of "Very Best Of.."
Colorado has always been proud of its unique and diverse musical climate,
and one of the finest bands to ever come out of the scene was Boulder's
The Samples. During the late 80's and early 90's, Sean Kelly and company
released some of the finest, and most environmentally friendly music around.
They even went to great lengths to create packaging for their CDs that
was more eco-conscious. Fusing rock, pop, and reggae together into a ultra-friendly
fusion of sound, the band was quick to find a unique niche. I can still
remember working at Sound Warehouse and selling copies of it as the new
Sting album. We turned a ton of people onto The Samples, and I'm glad
that we did, because this band has always been better than any solo Sting
record. I stand behind it.
This collection is a very comprehensive look at the first few years of
the Samples, including a few tracks (on the DVD) from various members'
solo outings of the early 90's. And let me assure you, there isn't a sleeper
in the bunch. From the very first eponymous release, which is well documented
here, to 1994's Autopilot, this is a supreme collection, excellent to
remind fans of why they loved the band so sincerely and to bring new fans
into the fold, as well. "Feel Us Shaking" is still as poignant
today as it was way back in the 80's - even more so in light of recent
world events. The Samples were always wearing their environmental conscience
on their sleeves, and there are a ton of world-support songs here. But
also included are some of those famous Sean Kelly love songs. My personal
favorite, "Little Silver Ring" is here, as is "Water Rush"
and "Only To You".
The included second disc is a DVD featuring five of the bands videos,
bonus downloadable MP3s, and some fine live recordings… as well
as the aforementioned solo tracks.
The W.A.R.? What are Records? Era of Samples music will always stand
as the classic example of what is possible from four bright young men
making conscious music. And this is without a doubt, the brightest of
the bunch. Never again will the world see the chemistry that existed between
Sean, Jeep, Andy and Al… back before the drug problems, the attitude
problems, and the infighting. This is classic Samples. Pure. Fresh. Perfect.
Music Guide has their say..
Chronicling The Samples first five years, this best of counts seventeen
of the Colorado outfit's finest early numbers. Steered by Sean Kelly,
the Jam Band movement's answer to Sting, this compilation launches with
what still may be the group's most memorable tune, "Feel Us Shaking,"
an expansive, reggae-tinged homage to environmentalism. A similar vibe
permeates "My Town" and "Waited Up," tunes that almost
measure up to the set-opener. Glistening, damn near inspirational numbers
like "Little Silver Ring" and "Did You Ever Look So Nice"
prove what a fine pop band the group became, even if the mainstream music
world wasn't listening. An important reminder that before Dave Matthews
and Big Head Todd & The Monsters, The Samples were out there paving
the way as far as underground college rock bands go. For some, this is
an enjoyable bit of nostalgia -- housing a bonus DVD with four videos,
a documentary and additional audio tracks -- but for those looking to
catch up, this is an exhilarating place to start.
Daily Camera's "Boulder@Night" section reviews "VBO"
SAMPLES - Very Best Of The Samples: 1989-1994 (What Are Records?)
...The Samples are often wrongly remembered as the band that started Boulder's
fascination with world beat-infused noodly jam rock; Very Best Of tells
a different story. The reggae beats that added life to early tunes such
as "My Town" and "Waited Up" were more Police than
Leftover Salmon, and by the time the Samples released albums such as 1992's
No Room and 1993's Last Drag (and songs such as "14th and Euclid,"
"Did You Ever Look So Nice" and "Water Rush") it had
evolved into a thoughtful pop band that, had its timing been different,
could have given groups such as Counting Crows or Dave Matthews Band a
run for their money. A bonus DVD includes four videos,
the "Ten Wheels" documentary and additional audio tracks, including
solo work from former Samples Jeep and Andy Sheldon.
Best Of" gets high marks from JamBands, spins on RadioIo Jam and
positive reviews of The Samples' "Very Best Of" CD/DVD are coming
in - here's a great piece by JamBands.com.
You can also hear songs from the new album on radioio.com's Radio
Jam and Eclectic
Version of "My Town" posted on-line for "Very Best Of"
to a production error, the incorrect version of the song "My Town"
is featured on the first batch of "Very Best Of The Samples: 1989-1994."
Not to worry. We posted the correct version on a secret web page. The
"Very Best Of.." DVD contains a link to this page. The song
is posted in both MP3 and AIFF formats.
Samples Message Board
here to share your thoughts on the new "Very Best Of: 1989-1994"
I-Tunes EP coming September 14th
out I-Tunes on September 14th for an exclusive 4 song EP, featuring "Always
Out of Reach," a previously unreleased song from the 1989 "Blue
Septemeber 7th, 2004
to our brand-new Samples site
Be sure to check out the discography section, for a complete listing of
all Samples and Samples related recordings, including a large sampling
of MP3s, and check back for more info on the upcoming audio / video collection,
"Very Best Of The Samples"