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Customer reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
Format: Audio CD|Change
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Showing 1-10 of 24 reviews(Verified Purchases). See all 32 reviews
VINE VOICEon October 30, 2012
I really dig the indigo Girls, and have for a long time. I have two other live sets from them, the nearly perfect 1200 Curfews, and the flawed but enjoyable "Back on the Bus". So I wasn't sure that I needed another live set, and I held off for a while from buying this. Silly me. Staring down the Brilliant Dream is a really enjoyable selection of the best live versions of some of their best songs. Sound is uniformly good, and they really did choose tracks that add something to the understanding of their work, whether it is an original arrangement, an especially hot guitar solo, a sweet piano backing, new harmonies--all of these versions are worth hearing and having for the serious indigo girls fan. While I wouldn't usually recommend a live album as the best entry point for the IG's, this definitely would give a lot of breadth to someone who is just looking to understand what their particular brand of magic is all about. A lot of fun, and a good listen.
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on May 14, 2015
I have most of the Indigo Girls catalog, and honestly I didn't realize this was a "Best OF" - I just knew I didn't have it, so imagine my surprise at a double cd set that was reasonably priced and that was the BEST OF TOUR RECORDINGS! So HAPPY!!!! Many years ago I saw these ladies in concert and it really puts me back there when I listen to the audience. I love these renditions/interpretations that they recorded and I heartily recommend this compilation.

Now I just have to decide what stays on my iPhone and what gets replaced with some of these songs. Decisions Decisions!
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on August 27, 2010
This is basically "Retrospective" meets "Poseidon and the Bitter Bug" live. Which is to say, it's awesome. Indigo Girls have been touring with phenomenal openers for the past few years, and those guests shine on this album in some key spots (particularly on "Kid Fears" and "Rock and Roll Heaven's Gate"). If, like me, you became hooked on Brandi Carlile or 3/5 Human after hearing them open for Amy and Emily, buy this album. You'll love it.

That said, it's not particularly adventurous or unique. Since Amy and Emily sound pretty much the same live and recorded, the highlight of "1200 curfews" and Indigo Girls live shows, I think, are the amazing covers that make you love a favorite song in a completely new way (evidence: "Tangled Up in Blue" and "Uncle John's Band" and the chill-inducing acoustic "American Tune"). Out of the 31 songs on this album, only one is a cover. It's a GREAT one, but I would have loved a few more surprises that you can't get on any other album.
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on June 30, 2010
How do they do it? After a few live albums and DVDs (including the amazing "1200 Curfews"), the Indigo Girls deliver another gift to their fans.

"Staring Down the Brilliant Dream," like "1200 Curfews," isn't a coherent concert, nor is it meant to be. Instead, it's a collection of live recordings, each chosen for its particular energy, and man, does it connect. We get the passionate arena rock of "Go" and "Tether," two tracks that really need a stage to come alive; we get the plaintive melodies of "Come on Home" and "Moment of Forgiveness" (which really shimmers as a ballad); we get the inspired country folk of "Ozilline" and "Watershed"; we even get some choice covers and great guest appearances.

The Girls have been playing together for 25 years; we could forgive them if they went through the motions now and then. In fact, some of their recent studio cuts have been missing that spirit that made the Girls gel; while their harmonies and interplay remained strong, they have at times sounded less like a band and more like professionals backing each other's solo material. But "Brilliant Dream" is the work of a band who loves to sing and play together. Listen, for example, to Amy and Emily spiral around each other in "Fill it Up Again" - this is the most joyfully coherent the Girls have sounded in years. And while they've each grown technically proficient, both as writers and performers, there's never a sense of slick professionalism. These songs were chosen for obviously personal reasons, and both Amy and Emily sing like they're genuinely trying to communicate, which gives true resonance to songs you may have glossed over.

Listening to the artistic and emotional growth of the Indigo Girls over the years has been a true pleasure. "Staring Down the Brilliant Dream" is nothing less than a gift, a reward for being a fan. Those of us who never miss their shows understand how deeply they connect in concert, even when they're not at their happiest; it's a wonder that a recording can capture that feeling so perfectly. Well done, girls.
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on June 24, 2012
Just saw them for the "Beauty Queen Sister" tour and they are still going strong, their backing band, "The Shadow Boxers," also the opened for them and It sounds to me like they were backing on this album too, you can hear them chime in on several of the tracks. This may be the best live album I've ever heard, the sound is clean and crisp and the audience participation was not intrusive. As another reviewer said they sound more like a big choir kicking in at just the right spots.
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on December 7, 2015
This is a great live performance (musicianship, singing, recording, production quality all top notch) which includes many of their best-loved hits. If you buy one Indigo Girls album, it should be this one!
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on August 18, 2010
My first introduction to Indigo Girls was 1200 Curfews, and I was a little nervous to purchase this new live album just because Curfews was such a great mix...I wasn't sure Staring Down The Brilliant Dream would live up to it. I was wrong! What a great compilation. They've pulled out some older songs and made them new again for me, as well as adding some great ones from Poseidon and the Bitter Bug. Love it! I've listened to it many times already, hearing it in a different way each time.
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on September 28, 2010
"Staring Down the Brilliant Dream" is the best live album up to date by IG. The songs collected on the two discs span from the late 80's to their latest studio album. Guest artists who appear on more than a few songs really breathe new life into favorite standards like "Closer to Fine" and "Kid Fears". As usual, IG includes tracks that aren't found on previous CD's. The CD booklets contain insightful narration by Amy or Emily for each song. Love it!
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on February 15, 2014
Love the Indigo Girls music. I've been a fan for over 20 years. This album is a toe-tapping, sing along & feels like they're playing in my living room. A must have album for any IG fan.
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on February 12, 2014
I purchased this as a gift for my wife and she really likes it, along with most other music made by them. The Cd has a nice mix of their past and newer songs when it was released. A good piece to listen to and add to your collection.
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