April 2, 2007
Review by Lars Kjædegaard
The show was - a show. Five or six thousand people in a big hall, and
someone who might just be Bob Dylan and his band up there. Pretty run of
the mill stuff, much like any old blues rock band. Bob sang the songs, the
band played the music, and at the predictable moments - how does it feel -
the crowd sort of reacted. Tried to get up close, but never close enough
to actually establish that it was Dylan up there. It was a very casual and
routine presentation of Dylan. The sound was okay, and when everyone
applauded, it was just like watching YouTube. Next time, instead of taking
the family, I'll treat myself to a nice jazz guitar. Tomorrow is Hamburg.
And then some other place. Dylan is the best - his concert in Copenhagen
was, well, a little boring. It was probably great. Like being on Gare du
Nord and hearing announcements being made and feeling anxious to board a
train for Antwerp.
My disappointed review for Dylan's Forum show in Copenhagen har been
contradicted by others - which is good, I think. At least some folks had a
great night. My own disappointment had to do with the presentation of the
concert. I have seen Dylan in Forum three times previously, all three
times with seats. This time, the promotors had crammed 9,000 people in the
hall, each paying 530 Danish Kroner - a sum total of 4,770,000 Kroner -
that is, close to half a million dollars. Now, from the reviews and other
postings, it seems that only those fortunate to be pretty tall or
willing/able to fight for the front places, had the opportunity to see
what was going on onstage. I am the exact same height as Bob Dylan, and
despite wandering around the hall and trying to get just close enough to
see the band, I had no luck. In the end, I just joined my family standing
at the back, where any visual impression was out of the question. I'd
think that if you put on a concert that grosses almost half a million
dollars, you'd have the courtesy to make sure that a little more than ten
percent of the audience had the opportunity to see the band. That's what I
mean by a casual presentation of a genius performer. I have seen Dylan
twenty-odd times, and whereas the quality of the sound has been constantly
improved, the same can not be said of the infrastructure of the concert
experience. And in my opinion, it devalues the impact of the experience.
Ah well, next time, I'll know.
Review by Jesper Petersen
Being more than a casual fan of Bob's music nothing would be easier than
to proclaim the Copenhagen show to be the best of the 13 shows I have been
fortunate to attend so far. However, ordering Bob's live shows in such a
rigid fashion isn't really my cup of tea. I'd rather put it this way: any
expectations I had prior to the show were most certainly more than
fullfilled. Not only were we treated with quite a shake up in the setlist
compared to the Swedish and Norwegian shows, but we also got 5 songs from
Modern Times, Bob on guitar and a band that seemed well rehearsed and
better sounding than ever. Bob's voice have improved alot since last year
and personally, I even got songs throughout the show that I love so much
and yet hadn't expected him to play; Man In The Long Black Coat, Visions
Of Johanna and Desolation Row in particular. We got songs that I did
expect to play that were still overwhelming; Highway 61 and Summer Days
both had extended jams and even Like A Rolling Stone had it's moments
where it sounded fresh and new.
The stage lightning had been changed alot. During Stuck Inside Of Mobile
the top lights were entirely shut off, adding a very intimate atmosphere.
Previous concerts at the Forum venue have been numbered seats, but tonight
the floor was all general admission which added alot of energy. The band
was on fire, lots of interaction, smiles and laughing between Bob and
George, Bob and Donnie and between Tony and George and from my front row
position the crowd reactions were enthusiastic throughout to say the
It was one of those nights where once again, on the way home, I said to
myself that I was lucky to have been there and feel the dizziness from the
ride on his magic swirling ship.
Review by Jacob Gadd
Dylan most alive in! at least 10 years!
I must admit - I'm amazed.
Last nights concert was great. Not since 1996 in Christiania (Copenhagen)
I've seen Dylan such a good and joyful mood. The concert still rings in my
ears and in my eyes. I understand that the concert divided the critics in
the papers in two halfs. The ones who where disapointed (what did they
expect?) - and the ones that felt tat this was way beyond great. One
danish papers said two out of six stars, another said six out of six
stars. The show started with Tweedle Dee. Normally far from a favorite
number, but this time it seemed very right. Then we got "Man in the Long
Black Coat". Maybe not that much drama. But still a lot of feeling. An the
Copenhagen debute for the song. "Watching the River Flow" - Ok. The same
goes for "It's Alright, Ma". Then we had "When the Deal Goes Down". The
sound was fine. Dylans voice very clear. Great performance! By the end of
the song the spotlights quickly danced over the crowd. Did he needed to be
sure? The crowd had no trouble showing it's great joy of the song - and
maybe the joy and respect to Modern Times. "Highway 61 Revisited" just
rolled out in the most natural way. What can you say, but a beautiful
rock'n'roll contrast to move on - more or less with rocket speed - from
"When the Deal Goes Down".
AND then came "Visions of Johanna". I laughed of pure hapiness. Yet
another new arrangement. I swear it is great. From time to time I wondered
why he had to bring that electric organ to the stage. Tonight during
"Visions", it became quite clear to me. The man him self is with no doubt
a genius in music. Greatly supported by his not at-all-boring and suitable
well disciplined 5-piece band. By the end of the song I truelly consider
to leave the concert to avoid destroying the most positive/heavenly
impression I had during "Visions". It was indeed worth the ticket. From
now on everything more was just to be considered as bonus on the top.
After "Rollin' and Thumblin'" he served "Desolation Row". In yeat another
slightly new arrangement. By the end of the song I felt the same "wouw..!"
as with "Visions of Johanna". And having them both on the same night -
what more could one ask for?
"Spirit on the Water". A bit more than just: nice experience it live.
"Stuck inside of Mobile" - Normally I have found it boring due to the
Rolling Thunder version. Last night I just got carried away. Again the
clearance and present of his voice did the trick. "Nettie Moore" -
Beautiful performance "...I'm in a Cowboy Band" and the first many rows
gave a big warm "Uuh" back to the singer. "Summer Days" - Great
Rock'n'Roll. That must be exactly how you grandfather felt seeing Bill
Haley? "Like a Rolling Stone"!! "Thunder on the Mountain"!! and finally
"All Along the Watchtower"!!! By the end Dylan faced the crowd in the
middle/front of his band. No one else could stand like him to recieve the
great, great applause from the crowd.
Not since july 1996, I have left a Dylan concert in such an impressed and
In a Bob-context, the concert in Forum must be some of the greatest.
People that do not know the spectrum of Dylan should have the kindness not
play music critics - please.
A danish news paper called him a genius as a consequence of last nights
concert. If Dylan is not, who is?
Review by Anders Høg Hansen
These days Bob Dylan sounds, when he is good,a bit like a creature from
another planet. The rules of his phrasing, spitting and crooning seems
to belong a song book that once disappeared from an ancient library. If
you compare with other singers who can be said to have a 'limited voice'
too or in some other ways lack 'classical singing skills', it is -
particularly in the ballady songs - quite well what he achieved last
Visions of Johanna and Nettie Moore were my highlights. One of my
companions last night made a remark about Modern Times when he played
When The Deal Goes Down: "us who don't understand Dylan, like that" (her
first Dylan concert, and probably her last)
The slower and calmer songs exposed his voice and put more demands on
his phrasing and variation - and he passed that test. Forum is not a
voice friendly arena. This place should be demolished as the
scatters/Lenin bed&breakfast Youth House were, recently, and instead
they should have kept the Youth House - and brought Dylan there!
In the uptempo songs things were now and then a bit uninteresting. Here
it is not really his otherworldly singing or a particular inventive,
fresh arrangement that brings the joy, if any, but a sort of average
good swing. You tap your feet in the floor and you drink your pint and
have at best a rockin' good time.
As another companion noted, he however managed to blend blues with a
swing in some of them - as in for example Summer Days. But in several
cases the band and Dylan seem to proceed in the same manner. Tweedle Dee
was really Tweedle 'Dumb'. Sounds like he is taking the piss - and so
was Rollin' and Tumblin' - massive yawn! Why do some songs as acoustic
ensemble and some just on piano? Maybe another night...
But in general a good concert. A lot of good and clear harp and a
'voice' - an organ from the Galaxy X - where the syllables and phrasing
surprises in slower songs came to me like a guiliotine slicing the older
young man's heart to pieces.
Anders Høg Hansen
Review by Thomas Gregersen
First the good news: Dylan and the band were far better than last year at
Roskilde Festival - more involved in the music and playing for nearly two
hours. I had a great time, hearing the great songs - old and new - and
Dylan's fine lyrics. Especially Rollin' and Tumblin and Thunder on the
Mountain were swinging as hell and Spirit on the Water was emotionally
Then let's be objective. The performance was rather poor measured by
normal musically standards. In the old songs Dylan still reads the lyrics
out in a rather boring manner instead of singing the melodies. And nearly
all of the music was based on ordinary blues and roll-&-roll riffs. Mostly
the guitar solos were not really solos but repetitions of the melody line
and some standard guitar riffs. Dylan's harp was without expression and
his playing on the keyboard was rather ridiculous.
But we all loved it - didn't we?
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