From the bands website bio we learn the following - Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad (GPGDS) is known for folding the aesthetics of the jam band scene into the structures of reggae. In the live setting, the band performs extended jams, while their previous studio albums have blended roots reggae with psychedelia (In These Times, 2012) or diverged from the genre completely, journeying into straight Americana (Country, 2012). On Steady, the band’s fourth studio album (and first on Easy Star Records), GPGDS has synthesised their approach by weaving traditional folk instrumentation into a foundation of reggae, with arrangements that let the reggae breathe in a non-traditional way. While Steady may not be the first record to find inspiration in both old time Appalachia and ‘70s Jamaica, it may be the best.
Giant Panda formed in 2001 in Rochester, New York. A mysteriously fertile area for developing the U.S. reggae scene, the city has ties going back to 1981 when Lee “Scratch” Perry recruited his entire backing band from Rochester. The Upstate NY region became early supporters of GPGDS, while its members were in high school and beginning college, playing weekly gigs to cut their teeth. In these formative years, Giant Panda began to explore their songs with an experimental approach that is stylistically akin to the Grateful Dead, while keeping their roots firmly planted in reggae rhythms and lyrical content. Around 2005 tapers began to notice and soon after one of the band’s first Colorado shows received homepage placement on the popular taper website Archive.org. Almost overnight GPGDS became a mainstay on the jam band festival circuit.
From 2005 – 2013 GPGDS’s three original members (drummer Chris O’Brian, guitarist-singer Dylan Savage, and bassist-singer James Searl) began a touring schedule averaging over 100 shows a year and performing throughout the U.S., Canada, and Jamaica. Their third lead singer, multi-instrumentalist Dan Keller, joined the group a few years back, while keyboardist Tony Gallicchio joined in 2013. Giant Panda’s continuous time on the road hardened the players into monster instrumentalists. Their attention to the studio in later years, along with a unique blending of reggae and rural American music solidified GPGDS as one of the region’s most beloved bands. Like their hometown, they manage to unify an intellectual and creative culture with a hard-working blue-collar past.
Sound Quality: Very good soundboard and live Mic's.
1. Whatever Costs
2. Wolf at the Door
3. Another Day - Missing You More - Pockets - Healing
5. Every Night? - Seasons Change
6. On The Moon
7. All Night Music
8. Next Best Explosion - Morning Song - All Day Working
9. Ok Ok
(10. Missing last song due to recorder power issue).
Website: Official - Here.
Comments: There are FLAC, Ogg Vorbis and mp3 files along with the streaming material over at the Internet Archive (here).