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Live in Chicago February, 2011

Review by Greg Olma

I’ll be honest with you, I did not know anything about Clutch before the show.  Many of my friends have been telling me about the band for years and I have been lazy in researching their music.  Even my editor, Gary Hill, is a fan and yet I remained ignorant until catching them support Motorhead on a recent tour.  Once I decided to see them live, I made sure that I did not educate myself with crappy, cell phone Youtube videos beforehand because I wanted to be able to judge them on the live setting and not on a small screen with poor quality sound.  It wasn’t until after the show that I did some research on Clutch due to their great performance.

It was helpful to me that I was able to see the set list.  Since I am new to the band, I would not have known song titles but based on that list, they managed to touch on many of their releases going back to their self titled album in 1995 all the way to 2007’s From Beale Street To Oblivion.  Some of the highlights for me were “Slow Hole To China,” “Texan Book Of The Dead,” and “Pure Rock Fury.”  Many of the other songs were great, also but the three mentioned previously shone the brightest.  As I get more familiar with their records, I’m sure that other tunes will start to stand out also.

Greg Olma
Greg Olma

If you are like me and are not familiar with Clutch, let me give you my take on the band.  They are a unique mixture of rock with elements of southern rock and Black Label Society.  Those are the things that I heard when I saw them perform but based on my research, they have a wealth of material that may draw other influences.  What I’m trying to say in all of this is, catch them next time they make it to your town.  Not only that, I recommend buying their tunes.  It’s not often I see a band for the first time and I walk away impressed.  I was lucky enough to finally get “schooled” in the music of Clutch and I am a better person for it.

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Greg Olma
This review is available in book format (hardcover and paperback) in Music Street Journal: 2011  Volume 2 at
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