The Meters, Fiyo at the Fillmore Volume 1

John Morthland

By John Morthland

on 04.22.11 in Reviews

Before they mutated into the Neville Brothers, the Meters were the hometown answer to Booker T and the MGs — a tightly-knit quartet anchored by organ (Art Neville). With hissing hi-hats and razor-sharp drumming under slashing guitar and chunky organ, the Meters trimmed the music down to its funky essentials while creating complex instrumentals (like "Cissy Strut") that were still danceable. (Later attempts at vocalizing only undercut the sound.) This recent live set, with Neville and bassist George Porter remaining from the original four and Brian Stoltz joining on guitar and David Batiste Jr. on drums, updates their style credibly, with sass and added keyboard textures.