Release Date: July 22, 2003
Reviewed by Scott Olivenbaum
Call it skate rock, call it stoner rock, whatever. Fu Manchu’s brand of music is a soundtrack to a good time. Their thick chords, smooth bass lines, solid percussion and halting, yet powerful, vocals have come together time and time again for over a decade. After nine full-length studio albums, the California quartet has released a double live album called Go For It…Live!
Recorded during a 2002 tour, Go For It contains 22 songs from across the band’s discography, it provides a retrospective of their underrated career. Fu Manchu is a band that gained much success within their own geographic area and virtually none outside of it. The one song that managed to get national airplay, “Squash That Fly”, is included on the release.
Other songs that made the cut were classic Fu tracks like “Wurkin”, “Ojo Rojo” and “Regal Begal”. They also threw in their cover of Blue Oyster Cult’s “Godzilla” and, to end the second disc, “Saturn III”, a eight minute Gov’t Mule-like heavy handed rock track that was unexpected yet highly enjoyable.
This release is better looked at as a good overview of the band, rather than live album. As a live album it is a bit weak. There is little interaction with the crowd and there is not much extra energy or changes from the original album versions of the songs. The recording and mixing are pretty top notch, although the crowd is unheard from during several long stretches.
Taken for what it is, this release will probably not win over many new fans. But, for long time followers of the LA natives it is a must purchase and for those just getting into the band, Go For It…Live! provides a solid retrospective of their career to date.