The Allman Brothers Band: Syria Mosque: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, January 17, 1971 (Allman Brothers Band Recording Company) - review | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Wednesday, June 19th, 2024  

The Allman Brothers Band

Syria Mosque: Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, January 17, 1971

Allman Brothers Band Recording Company

May 30, 2023 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

With this recording of The Allman Brothers Band at the Syria Mosque in Pittsburgh on 1/17/71, those involved with the band’s legacy continue their fantastic job at preserving ABB live shows with spectacular sound and precision. This set, originally released on CD in 2022, is now available on beautiful “steel gray” vinyl, in double LP fashion that sounds as terrific as it looks.

By 1971, the band’s sets varied little in terms of content (“Statesboro Blues,” “Trouble No More,” “Don’t Keep me Wonderin’,” “In Memory of Elizabeth Reed,” Midnight Rider,” You Don’t Love Me,” and “Whipping Post” here) but the band sounds as vibrant as ever. Occurring exactly nine months to the day before the band’s last show ever, this Pittsburgh performance finds ABB following an opening set from Taj Mahal, beginning its own performance, after some lauding words for the master, with its version of “Statesboro Blues,” which Mahal himself recorded three years prior.

It doesn’t take long for the band to settle into its inimitable groove. Unlike the recording of the band’s final show nine months later, recorded on a hand held cassette by a journalist who was to conduct an interview after the show (this last show was released as The Final Note in 2020), Syria Mosque sounds perfectly crisp and clear.

After the band whip through the first half of its performance, the second LP of this set finds it stretching out, as sides three and four consist of one piece each, an epic 14-minute version of “You Don’t Love Me” that breaks mid-performance for some stellar extended guitar interplay between Duane Allman and Dickey Betts, and a fiery 20-minute take on “Whipping Post.”

The Allman Brothers Band may not have established the same reputation for releasing spates of live shows as a band like Grateful Dead has, but Syria Mosque provides solid proof that much more would be welcome. (

Author rating: 8/10

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Average reader rating: 4/10


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