Hannover, Germany

May 12, 2000


[Sven Lewandowski], [Wolfgang Strehl], [Jan Pöhlmann], [Carsten Wohlfeld]

Review by Sven Lewandowski

After perfoming at my former hometown on Monday (Stuttgart), Dylan now hit
my ´new´ hometown Hannover; but what could he offfer - only one day after
his remarkable performance at Colongne ? So I didn´t really expect that
much to happenŠ He once again opened with Roving Gambler and The Times
They Are A-Changin´ and so I wondered if he will continue to perforome The
TimesŠ as long as he get´s it right once. Today he remebered the lyrics
better but on the third verse his memory was gone and he stumbled through
the lines. Desolation row was much more convincing than in Stuttgart and
he sang very concentrated. This was also true for Tomorrow Is A Long Time
(smiles for Judith who knows about who I had to think when I heared this
song (by the way: for the first time)). Tangled Up In Blue was like it
always is: boring to me but welcomed by the audience. Ring Them Bells was
a surprise - of course - and the show´s higlight ! A rare and nice choice,
but to my opinion it sounded a little bit too sweet. Anyway it was a great
performance. The electric set started with Country Pie (once again). The
next song - Things Have Changed - is a good example for how tonight´s
performance differs from last night´s. Things Have Changed was well done
but at Colongne it was brilliantŠ I´ll Be Your Baby Tonight featured Larry
on acoustic guitar (at Stuttgart he used play pedal steel) and the song
was much better then on Monday. When the band started with the next song I
thought it would become Maggie´s Farm, but I was wrong and it developed in
Tombstone Blues. The beginning was not perfect but it became better and
better and ended as a great perfomance. Can´t Wait was also very good but
I think it was not as good as at Oberhausen. As the show went on Dylan
seemed to enjoy himself more and more, so that I wondered why the always
opens with acoustic songs; he seems to enjoy the electric ones much more !
The regular set ended with Leopard Skin Pill-Box Hat - like always. But
tonight there was an unexpected and unplaned surprise. Dylan once again
had problems with his guitar and so he put it aside and took his harp
instead. Although he was only playing few different tunes, witch he
repeated for quite a long time, it was fun and he got a big cheer as he
finished. The six encores where the usual ones, but they all souned good.
Especially Like A Rolling Stone is getting better and better.

So it was a very good show but not as exellent as the ³Köln Concert²
yesterday (but on the other hand the acoustic set was much better today).

So now as I´m leaving the tour I bid you farewell and see you again at

Sven Lewandowski

P.S.: Uta, meld´ Dich mal !?


Review by Wolfgang Strehl

it was probably one of the best cconserts i have ever heard. he was in a
fantastic mood. hold his electric guitar as if he was dancing with his
sweetheart. but he played superb. the whole band. he played harp at pill
box hat - if i kremembered that properly - because his guitar  broke or
something like that.

it was a prettyx nice stuation on the stage: dylan always together with
cambell, both throwing riffs to the other. both, tomorrow and it ain't me
babe fantastic. hard to find out what it is with ring them bells.
desolation row, the first time i heard him playing this, very good.

the audience was frantic. i didn't heard anybody, who was dissatisfied
with the concert. Dylan played exactly 2 hours. at the end he showed thumb
up to the audience. both completely bathed in sweat.

waitin for berlin and dresden.



Review by Jan Pöhlmann

It is not fair to compare unless one compares Dylan with Dylan (who else
should he be compared to anyway...?). This was an excellent show indeed -
also compared to many other shows that I have witnessed through the last
16 years. But I have also seen better ones.

Dylan came on stage looking grey, old and tired; only his professionalism
prevented him from really sounding thus. So the first four songs were
solid performances - but the singer wasn't on fire yet. This was obvious
when he seemed to have forgotten some lyrics of one of his most sung
songs, The Times They are a-Changin' - really odd. The audience didn't
seem to care or notice, so they kept on cheering & shouting fanatically,
which really changed Dylan's mood. To be precise: Ring Them Bells was the
turning point. He was really into the song - though he mixed up the lyrics
again at one point. But that was the last time it happened this evening.
After this, Dylan was ON. He even looked ten years younger: His eyes were
wide open, he smiled and the heat and the hard work gave his face a
healthy complexion. It was quite clear, that Dylan's own personal
favourite songs this evening, were the newer songs, which he performed
with much bigger enthusiasm than, say, songs like Tombstone Blues or Rainy
Day Women. So why Dylan still chose to play more old songs than new, must
remain his odd secret.

The (more or less) "new" songs:
Ring Them Bells was sung with an old vicar's serenity.
Things Have Changed was sung with perfect-timed precision and really
heartfelt. Can't Wait was a highlight of this evening. A very, very slow
version and a lecture in the building up and relieving of tensions. Love
Sick was sung with passion and it had wonderful melodic and powerful
instrumental parts.

Some of the older songs:
Tomorrow Is a Long Time almost made me cry.
Roving Gambler made my woman cry.
Desolation Row had a nice slow rocking rythm, wich suited the songs
mockery perfectly. Country Pie was a nice trading off of guitar licks
between the stage's three guitarists. A well chosen opener for the
electric part. I'll be Your Baby Tonight: A sure highlight of the night.
It is incredibly how Dylan can turn this ordinary love song into such an
impressive statement of longing & lust just by the very special way he
sings it and by the way his body speaks. Blowing in the Wind had a strange
new melody. The refrain was sung with Cambell and Sexton, who really were
shouting. Like a Rolling Stone was really rolling and rocking; irony all
over Dylan's face and body. This was true performance art. It ain't me
Babe was a lesson in sophisticated guitar techniques. This was a song
where I needed a chair to sit down to watch closely.

The band
- did a great job of course. But it is funny to see how Charlie Sexton is
changing the chemistry in the band. Between songs, Dylan talks a lot to
the old memebers, Cambell and Garnier. When they talk, Sexton moves
closer, but Dylan hardly ever looks at him. His placement on stage is a
symbol of his situation: He is the outsider.

All in all: A great show but it seems to me that the gravitation of time
is making it harder for Dylan to really reach the high level of output.
But he did indeed reach it tonight. I would be grateful still, even if he
did not. Things have changed and age is no excuse, it is an explanation,
an unavoidable fact, no offence but an honour. Thank you, mr. Dylan;
thanks for all. 

Jan Pöhlmann

Comments or questions concerning this or other european Dylan shows
between 1984 and 2000: 


Review by Carsten Wohlfeld

It was a weird day, as this show seemed to be the last many of people who
followed Bob around from Zurich were able to attend. Only the purists went
on to Lund and the tourists returned home, at least till next week.  It
was a general admission show, so people actually queued up for the first
time since the show in Switzerland. Personally, I was convinced that the
acoustic set would be tonight’s highlight, since the Cologne show had such
a poor acoustic set and a very enjoyable electric set to follow. The same
thing had happened last year, with a bad acoustic set in Slovenia and a
great electric set and and amazing acoustic opening and a quite boring
electric second half to follow the next day in Graz. Anyways, so far, I
was only wishful thinking. The venue was an ugly sportshall of the worst
kind, with seats on either side of the venue and general admission on the
floor. It was smaller than I’d been told before as well. I guess it hold
about 4,500 people and even though it didn’t look like it at first it came
close to a sellout when Bob took the stage at 8.15

 Roving Gambler (acoustic)

Sounded a bit tired, not as “togehter” as it was on the first few nights
of the tour. Bob was mumbling and Larry (who seemed to have a great time
throughout the evening, playing gorgeous solos and smiling a lot) and
Charlie seemed to have problems to follow their leader on backing vocals.

 Times They Are A Changin’ (acoustic)

Why on earth he would want to play “Times” at four consecutive shows is
just beyond me, especially since he forgot the words yet again. Just goes
to show that he wasn’t fully concentrating on the performance, I guess.
Then again, if he doesn’t put his heart into it, why play the song in the
first place. The tourists liked it though.

 Desolation Row (acoustic)

Made up for the slow start. Nice rock ‘n’ roll-ish riff from Larry at the
start (with the new arrangment the full band only kicks in after the first
verse) and Bobs singing was just perfect. To add to it, he sang three
verses I never heard him do before live (even though I heard “Desolation”
close to 30 times before). Larry’s soling was very good and inventive as
well.Great stuff! It was only the warmu-up for what was to follow

 Tomorrow Is A Long Time (acoustic)

was THE highlight of the show and one of my alltime favorite Bob 
performances. Again, the band only joined Bob and Larry after a lenghty
intro and to add to Bob’s gorgeous vocal delivery, Larry contributed a
very fine harmony vocal as well. I had to talk my friend Gunter into
addeding this show (he had planned to quit after Cologne) and as this is
one of his favorite songs, it was fun to look over to where he was
standing and seeing him smile, too.

 Tangled Up In Blue (acoustic)

was much better than in Cologne and even featured a long and rather 
good Bob solo at the end as well. Still didn’t made me totally happy, but
then again, after so many shows there are very few things that will. One
of the very, very few songs I still hadn’t heard, but desperately wanted
to catch live at a show was “Ring Them Bells”, so imagine how happy I was
when Tony (after talking to Bob for a few seconds) turned around to Tony
and said the three magic words...

 Ring Them Bells (acoustic)

First European performance of this song since Differdange ‘96 and only the
fifth or so over the ast five years. Bob’s singing maybe could’ve been a
little better on the verses, but he was in fine form for the choruses (or
is it the bridges, I never figured that out, I’m sure you know what part I
mean though). Larry on pedal steel.

 Country Pie

was long, better an more fun than the previous nights and even though they
messed up the ending a little bit, this was probably the best version on
this tour apart from Zürich.

 Things Have Changed

Didn’t come close to the Cologne version, but was still a very welcome
change from the usual routine.... Then Larry grabbed his acoustic guitar
and I was convinced that “Memphis Blues Again” as about to follow, but
instead they tortured us with yet another unnecessary weirdo version of

 I’ll Be Your Baby Tonight

which sounded even worse than with Larry on pedal steel and even 
though Bob played a fine solo and seemed to have fun playing the song
directly to somebody in the front row it was still the lowpoint of the
show for me.

 Tombstone Blues

Sounded remarkably like “River Flow” when they started it and was a bit
too slow for my liking. The funny thing about it is: Every time Bob hits
Brussels, he’ll do “I Don’t Believe In You” and the people there must
think he does it every night. The last time he did “Tombstone Blues” in
Germany was (if I’m not mistaken) in 1995 in - Hannover!

 Can’t Wait

Yet another rendition of the new bluesy arrangement. The one night’s rest
reall did the song good, as it was a much better version than Oberhausen,
and Bob and the band seemed to concentrate on their playing more than two
nights ago. Band intros followed as did

 Leopard Skin Pillbox Hat

The weird things about this version was that Bob guitar apparently went
out of tune after the first verse, so he took it off, grabbed a harmonica
and finished the song without guitar, but played harmonica after almost
every line and a fine and very long end solo, too, kinda reminiscent of
“Most Likely To Go Your Way” in Zürich 1991.

 Love Sick

Standing a bit more in the back than usual I got to hear the proper PA
sound for the first time on the tour and it was this song especially that
seemed to improve soundwise. Larry still had tons of fun and his solo was
even better than usual.

 Like A Rolling Stone

Sounded as good as it does every night these days and Charlie seemed to
concentrate more on his solo tonight and so we didn’t get his “Pete
Townsend windmill” impersonation that we got to see in Oberhausen a few
days ago.

 IT Ain’t Me Babe (acoustic)

Usually my mind and ears just switch off when Bob starts this song, 
because I’ve heard it one (or ten) times too many (and yes, I know this is
a rather sad confession to make), but sometimes you just listen to the
words and realize again what a fucking amazing song it is after all. Bob
put in one of his supercool “BABE!!!!” endings (eyes wide open) as well...
a really enjoyable rendition!

 Not Fade Away

Seemed to be above average as well, probably because Larry was still in
fine form.

 Blowin‘ In The Wind (acoustic)

Seemed to have a slighty different intro (Bob seemed to have started it
rather than David), but maybe that was just the crowded cheering so loud.
We got the usual rendition, no harp and a surprising last chorus, well,
surprising for Larry at least, who didn’t make it to the microphone in

 Rainy Day Women Nos. 12 & 35

Good clean fun to end the show. This time we got only the two verses he’s
been singing for years now, and he replaced the last verse he sang at the
beginning of the European tour with an extended solo. Then his two hours
were over, the lights came on, everybody who didn’t smoke crack before the
show went home very happy as it really was a mighty fine show, with a
great balance between the hits and the surprises and even though the
acoustic set was better than the electric second half, the change wasn’t
as daramtic as in Cologne the night before. Not only Gunter was very happy
that he didn't’quit after Cologne. It was a good show to end the first
part of my own little tour and I’m really looking forward to seeing Bob
again next week! See ya!

Carsten Wohlfeld 
"join the working class school of expressionism! kick a 
ball or play a guitar! a hungry man makes a better 
fighter!" (ed ball)


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