You don't see too many kids' music acts with a live album. Trout Fishing In America has, with the release of My Best Day (2006) today, two. That fact speaks to Trout's longevity (30 years as a duo and 7 family recordings in addition to other recordings for adults) and their popularity as a live act.
My Best Day is a Greatest Hits collection to an extent. Long-time favorites such as the calypso-styled "My Hair Had a Party Last Night" mingle with new favorites such as "Alien In My Nose" (an absolutely disgusting track -- your 7-year-olds will love it). While those songs (and others) show off Ezra Idlet's and Keith Grimwood's sillier side, slightly straighter songs such as the sweet "Fill It Up" and "Alberta Postcard" fit more squarely in a folk-pop tradition that would sound great at any folk festival, kids-associated or not. The two new songs, "I've Got A Friend (and He Won't Be Quiet)" and "My Pants Fell Down," are pretty good additions to the Trout canon -- I particularly liked "My Pants Fell Down" (the title says it all, and, yes, your 7-year-olds will love it). Both the new songs (and "Alien" and the title track) were written in songwriting workshops with kids.
Having said all that, the banter and interaction that would be lots of fun if you were actually at the concert gets to be a bit repetitive if you're listening to the CD. "Simon Says" gets tiresome; the jokes, amusing on first or second hearing, are no longer funny the fifth or sixth time around. Perhaps the upcoming DVD of the concert (recorded in Febrary 2006) will make you feel more like you're at the concert (and, therefore, not so weary of the between-song stuff).
Kids ages 5 through 10 will most appreciate the album. You can listen to Trout's music by going here and clicking on "Launch Trout Radio" or going to the usual online suspects to hear clips from the new CD.
If you're a Trout fan, you'll enjoy this CD (unless of course they left off your favorite track). If you're not a Trout fan, you won't enjoy this CD -- there's nothing to convert you. If you're not sure about Trout, this is a decent place to start as it does pick tracks from throughout their family music career. My Best Day is, for better and occasionally worse, a good representation of a Trout Fishing in America concert.