Live at Montreaux 1982 & 1985

This double album—recorded years apart on "Blues Night" at the Montreaux Jazz Festival in Switzerland (and consisting mostly of previously unreleased material)—is testimony to what the l

This double album—recorded years apart on "Blues Night" at the Montreaux Jazz Festival in Switzerland (and consisting mostly of previously unreleased material)—is testimony to what the late Stevie Ray Vaughan and his rhythm section, Double Trouble, did best: ripping it up live. The set's first disc (recorded in 1982) sounds exactly like what it was: Vaughan and Double Trouble ably playing and trying hard to please an audience largely unfamiliar with the act. The set's second disc (from 1985) features the guitar hero and company as headliners, with the confidence in that position yielding more risk and reward, as the audience responds enthusiastically. Two songs—the Vaughan standards "Pride and Joy" and "Texas Flood"—appear on both albums, seemingly making for redundancy. But the contrast between the performances serves as an apt reminder of how rewardingly Vaughan and Double Trouble's blues-rock evolved.—CH