There was a time when the Stereophonics were the shit, duking it out with the likes of Blur, Oasis and Radiohead for the title of best British band. That they placed fourth in the battle hardly matters now, and almost a decade later they show that there's always a time and place for anthemic arena rock, fist-pumping power chords and singalong choruses. Rather than try to duplicate the new-wavy sounds of their current output, the trio smartly keep the sound consistently raw, and lead singer Kelly Jones hasn't sounded this inspired or dangerous since 97's Word Gets Around. It's a high-octane set of 20 songs that aims to grab you and not let go until the final cymbal has been struck. Sticking to the trio format rather than opting for guest appearances keeps the boys focused and energized, and while it may add up to a celebration of mediocrity, Live From Dakota nevertheless gets its point across loud and clear.