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Rhyne McCormick - Live at the Capitol Theatre
Rhyne McCormick - Live at the Capitol Theatre
CD Review by Erin McIntosh on 6/7/2010   

Rhyne McCormick has recorded with the likes of local musical celebrities, The Badlees, and has produced with Tom “T-Bone” Edmonds, a vet in the music industry, with artists like Lenny Kravitz, Meat Loaf and The Rolling Stones notched on his belt, to name a few. However, on his fifth record, Live at The Capitol Theatre, McCormick decides to take the road less traveled and put out a live album. Without the acoustically-sound studio and seasoned professionals to mix each track, McCormick takes a chance and puts out an album that strips it all down and takes you to the heart of it all—straight to the music.

While recording live can be an intimidating venture for a lot of musicians, and it certainly isn’t something suggested for the new kid on the block, McCormick proves he has earned his right in the live album hall of fame with Live at the Capitol Theatre, just released this May, 2010. McCormick shared the stage in York, Pennslvania, for this five-song, extended play album with fellow musician Dave SanSoucie on backup guitar as well as Seth Ryan who lent some vocal harmonies for The Train Song, a moving song that was inspired by the loss of McCormick’s cousin to heroine.

McCormick successfully projects an “acoustic rock with a soul” feel on tracks like “Deeper,” written as a reminder that while misery might love company, sometimes you need to get out of the house, “dig a little deeper” and see the sunshine even in the midst of a storm. A song that McCormick rarely performs live, “Storm Runner,” is a standout song on the album as it has a beautifully sobering, almost melancholy, melody that immediately stirs up emotion before McCormick even breathes a word. SanSoucie’s delicate picking blended with McCormick’s deep, raw tone effectively tells the story of a man realizing that death is on the horizon and that, no matter how hard he tries, the storm keeps coming.

Each of Live’s five original tracks are written as though they were made to be performed no other way than by a man with his guitar, absent of all of the additional instrumentals that can enhance a song, though sometimes rob it of the heart and soul put into it when first written—when there was just a guy sitting in the basement with his guitar, strumming on his strings and scribbling lyrics on coffee stained, scrap paper. What Live at the Capitol Theatre does is take you into that basement with McCormick and expose you to all of the heart, soul and naked emotion that he put into each track, encouraging you that there really is still music out there that moves you. So, unless you prefer the tiresome tunes that tend to disgrace our airwaves, this album will drive you to McCormick’s next live performance, as after listening to it you will find that Live’s five songs really is just not enough.

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