The best live albums bring something new to songs that have been heard only in a studio incarnation, new performances that transcend the recorded versions and connect with striking immediacy. By that standard, Okonokos, My Morning Jacket's first concert set, is a stunning success. An able followup to last year's critical breakthrough, Z, the new release continues along the tangent that has taken the band members from swampy Southern retro rock origins to the enigmatic, atmospheric sound that defines their recent outlay, spread over two discs. The album is a riveting encapsulation of their past catalogue, one that retraces the bandmates' hollow-eyed ambiance and dark deliberation and charges them with an urgency previously hinted at in the group's studio sets.
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