Bob Dylan - Bob Links - Review - 04/13/97

Wayne, New Jersey

April 13, 1997

William Patterson College Rec Center

Review provided by  John D. Baldwin

	Fine show, consistently good from beginning to end, though I'll 
make a point next time of catching Bob at a venue that has seats!  
Standing for an entire concert has a funny way of muting one's 
enthusiasm.  However, it's a measure of the total commitment Bob put 
into this performance, as well as of the man's enormous skill and 
professionalism, that the audience demonstrated much *more* energy and 
*more* enthusiasm at the end of the evening than at the beginning. 
	You Ain't Goin' Nowhere - Dylan and the band gave this song a 
very attractive full-scale country treatment. 
	Silvio - I've never cared for this song, but I have to admit 
that it is most effective as a showstopper in live performance.  The 
problem with it is what is wrong, for me, with his concert rockers in 
general: they tend to become a relentless wall of sound, with only the 
occasional nifty interplay between the musicians to relieve the sense of 
	Friend of the Devil - A miraculous performance. As I told a 
friend who was in attendance, the music seemed to be woven from spun 
gold.  When I heard that Dylan was covering this song, I assumed that he 
would do it as the Dead had done it in the studio: as a lighthearted, 
uptempo number.  Who else but Dylan could make it so contemplative and 
majestic?  Larry Campbell provided excellent fiddle accompaniment, and 
Bob's voice somehow found profundities in this seeming humble song that 
I would never have suspected were there.
	Masters of War - A strong, impassioned version.
	Tangled Up in Blue - I've seen Dylan do this in an electric 
version at Roseland, but it seemed to me that the acoustic version here 
rocked just as hard.  An absolutely wonderful rendition of a great song. 
	Hard Rain - Musically, my favorite live version of this song is 
the one from the first leg of the Rolling Thunder tour.  But in terms of 
communicating the meaning of the lyrics, this was my favorite.  His 
diction was exceptionally clean and precise throughout and he sang very 
carefully, as if the sentiments still meant a great deal to him. 

	Another triumph in the career of the man who, I am more and more 
inclined to believe, is the world's greatest living entertainer.

John D. Baldwin

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