Review by Carsten Wohlfeld
I haven't reviewed a Dylan show on here in quite a while. What happened?
Well, the fall 2002 shows in the States were so awesome that I just
couldn't find the right words to say anything about them. I never have
been so excited about a string of Dylan shows before or after. But then
when Charlie Sexton left, it seemed as if nothing was the same anymore.
I can't say that I liked a single show in the years 2003-2005. Most shows
were (IMHO) just boring, something I never thought I'd say about Dylan.
I've seen great shows, bad shows, but the last couple of years I found
myself bored for the first time ever.
To be honest, if Gelsenkirchen's Amphitheater wasn't situated about 30
mins from my home, I don't think I would have attended this show, Dylan's
sole German gig this summer. In the end, I was glad I went. The setting
was just beautiful, an Amphitheater right by the canal. There was no
backdrop behind Dyland and the band, which meant that a) you could
actually watch the show from the other side of the canal for free and b)
you could "watch the river flow" while Bob was playing. Nice. Also one of
the few Dylan shows I remember that started and ended in broad daylight,
so virtually no lights on stage apart from the natural lighting.
On to the songs:
Came first as expected (feared) and it wasn't as energetic as Oberhausen '05
(my last show). I think it might have been the organ that mellowed things
out a little too much for my liking. Denny played a few very conservative solos,
which seemed to fit the arrangement pretty well. The highlight was the quite
rock n roll ending of the song
The Times They Are A-Changin'
I really have no clue why he always brings this back to the set after lengthy
absences right before he hits Germany. As per tradition, he did not manage
to finish the song without fucking up the lyrics and the organ sounded
absolutely horrific on this - like a Muzak or K-TEL version of a Bob Dylan song.
First harp solo, but it didn't go anywhere.
Down Along The Cove
No "Tweedle", what a relief. Even better, this reminded me a lot of the Flying
Burrito Borthers, very authentic country-rock arrangement. The organ sounded
cool (esp. in the quieter "breakdown" parts towards the end), Denny's solos
were spot on, and George's drumming was just perfect. We didn't get "River
Flow" despite being so close to the canal, but at least the "Riverboat Queen"
Wow. As some of the older people might remember, this is one of my favorite
Dylan songs ever. Not in a million years would I have expected to hear it tonight.
And quite a tremendous version it was too. Bob was really leaning into the lyrics
after a fantastic dramatic start from the band, his phrasing was very unusual, he
played some nice harp and towards the end, the band almost played reggae
during the quiter parts. Probably the closest to the 1978 sound this song ever
came in recent years. The first definite highlight.
Stuck Inside Of Mobile
Pretty cool intro to the song again, sadly Dylan's organ playing did not match the
great licks on the original. A wasted chance to revive that much talked about
"thin wild mercury music" sound. I'd say it was a good arrangement, but badly
executed. The harp solo at the end sounded funny and confused the band to
Wow. Wow. Wow. I haven't herad any recent mp3s, so this came as a surprise.
The song started just with Stu (who was virtually invisible musically throughout
the night, no solos whatsover) on acoustic and a prominent organ played by
Dylan. It took me quite a while to figure out what song this was! George played
a very relaxed shuffle beat and this was just eight full minutes of pure magic.
Denny did a copuple of solos, which, for a lack of a better descrition, had a
"spanish" feel to them. A bit "To Ramona"-ish, maybe. For the ending, the song
got louder and lounder and Denny played some dramatic rock and roll licks. Great,
I'll Be Your Baby Tonight
Sucked. Badly. The organ sounded like a circus instrument. I expected the clowns
to come on stage any second! Dylan was cracking up when he came to the line
"bring that bottle over here". He and the band (on autopilot) seemed to enjoy
themselves immensely during this song. God knowns why.
Honest With me
Sounded very generic, could have been about ten other songs too. Except for
the cool break near the end, this even seemed to be underrehearsed. Sad.
Mr Tambourine Man
Crap. Same lullaby version that bored me to death last year as well. Lyrics flubs,
too. Bob also put Donny on the spot by giving him the nod to play a solo when
the song was basically dead in the water and Donny had trouble to even find a
point to start his solo. Poor guy.
Highway 61 Revisited
Same as it always was. Best part: the organ solo / jam at the end. But that's 30
seconds of a six or seven minute song.
Now, here's a surprise! Hadn't heard this since my first ever Dylan show in 1991.
Started off with what is best described as a "church organ" intro/solo by Bob and
for a second I thought it would turn into "Make You Feel my Love". This was a
much better choice of course. Everybody in the band seemed very much into it!
I guess they really had to concentrate to get the rare songs like "Senor" or
"Desolation Row" and "New Morning" right and that really helped improving the
songs. This wasn't perfect, but the vocal delivery was great and I just loved
every second of it
Another pleasant surprise, not much to say about it, but it was very nice all
around. Donny got his second solo of the night and it was very good (and very
You know this one. Only notable change: Since the backstage area was actually
miles away from the stage, the didn't even leave the stage after "Summer Days",
so there was actually no encore :-)
Like A Rolling Stone
Last year it sounded as if Dylan himself didn't even know why he was still playing it.
Tonight it sounded a whole lot better, some nice licks from Denny surely helped,
but it still sounded a bit tired. Standard band intro followed.
All Along the Watchtower
Dylan mumbled a few words before the first verse, but I couldn't understand
what he was saying. Something about "going back" or "coming back"? Maybe!
"Watchtower" was "Watchtower". Sounds more like Jimi every night, which is
good or bad, depeding which way you look at it. When Dylan repeated the first
verse at the end, he substituted the first line with the first line of the third verse.
Was it intentional? Since I haven't heard recent versions, I can't say. While they
did the last number, you could see the nightliner approaching and after the
formation at the end they were gone in a flash - after exactly 1 hour and 43
minutes on stage.
What can you say? The highs were very high, the lows were very low. I definitely
don't expect an average performance from Bob, but a bit more balance could
have turned a good show in Gelsenkirchen into a *really* great one.
Hope this is somewhat coherent, I had to type this up quickly.
Until next time,
Review by Tobias Freimüller
This was probably the nicest venue I’ve seen Bob: a small Amphitheater
located directly at a river (well, a canal actually) where ships drove by
from time to time, people were swimming, children floating around on their
rubber dinghys (what a great word!) – and at least hundred people
listening to the show from the other side of the water... From there we
could see and hear the second half of the soundcheck earlier too. Bob was
not there, and they played „Queen Jane“ several times, „Waiting for
you“, „Desolation row“ and „She belongs to me“. The venue was
filled quite nicely when we got in there. Bob and the Band showed up about
15 minutes late to start with
A somewhat shaky start, the sound was not perfect at the beginning but
improved during the song – and was very good after this. I really like
the new arrangement of „Maggies“. Bob noticed the people behind him at
the other shore when he strolled to his little harmonica/Oscar/Drink-table
for the first time. He pointed over to them speaking to the Steelguitar
Dennydonny. See – there are some people too...
THE TIMES THEY’RE A-CHANGIN`
was solid. Bob’s voice was very strong throughout the show, and he did
the first of several harmonica-solos that was pretty good, too. I now saw
a couple in their fourties sitting in front of us with the big
„Lyrics“-book on their lap! As soon as Bob started a song they would
look it up and read. Hilarious!
DOWN ALONG THE COVE
replaced the Tweedle brothers, what was a welcome change indeed.
Unfortunately they left out the signature riff they invented in Frankfurt
2003. So the song lost some of it’s power, that Stu played acoustic
guitar on this did not help much either. But again, Bob’s voice was
great, better than I heard him since, well, since 2001 maybe.
How often did he play this since Wetzlar last year? I’m too lazy to look
it up now, but not more than two times I think. Weird enough that he pulls
this one out again when I am around... And what a great version it was!
THE highlight of the night with Bob singing very carefully and despite the
mediocre „solo“ from the Electricguitar-Dennydonny at the end this was
easily the best „Senor“ I heard in years. It was not as good as the
spectecular violin-harmoica duet-version from Columbus 1999, but that one
will remain the best NET-Senor for me anyway. Another harmonica-solo
closed this one. Huge cheer from the audience.
STUCK INSIDE OF MOBILE
was the same as ever, a little boring but still played solid. If only Bob
would have thrown the two Dennydonnies into the canal right away. The
Steelguitar is WAY too much, and the other guy is playing even worse –
but I’ll come to that later. Yet another harmonica-solo here.
reads great on a setlist, but they still have not found a good arrangement
for this with the new Steelguitar-country sound. They audibly try to do
something different with this, and there were some nice parts in this but
this will take some more time obviously... Bob sang it very well, though.
I’LL BE YOUR BABY TONIGHT
There are a few songs I’m getting tired of since ten years or so, and
this one is certainly one of them. Pretty fun version nonetheless, Bob
squeezed in an improvised sentence in here and there („and yes, I said:
I’ll be your baby...“) and had to laugh out loud during the „bring
that bottle over here“ part. Possibly because someone of the stage-crew
has just brought him another cup of his shocking-red drinks in just that
moment. But as Carsten said; The organ sounds extremely out of place
during this one, well, during a whole bunch of songs actually...
HONEST WITH ME
ugh – this would mean that we would get no „Cold Irons Bound“
tonight. I had really hoped for that one. „Honest“ was the same as
ever, only the signature riff was completely absent what made the whole
thing a little flat IMHO. It sounded as it was played by a underrehearsed
band in the end. Problem is, of course, the Electricguitar-Dennydonny who
plays so unbelieveable bad sometimes! He should have started a solo here
at one point and played: ...nothing. That made the whole band struggling
for a moment. Now you can say that it is better having him playing nothing
than having him playing some of his predictable Nightclubband-„solos“
– and you would be right in some way. Seriously: This guy would be
thrown out of every highschoolband. What Bob finds about him remains a
mystery to me.
MR TAMBOURINE MAN
The lowpoint of the night. I have no idea what Bob wanted to do with this
but he certainly failed. He mixed up the usual slow singing with the
Towson-staccato-style, completely forgot the words at one point and
together with the ho-hum-arrangement they play this nowadays this version
made people around us scratching their heads... Me too...
HIGHWAY 61 REVISITED
has lost most of the power it had last year, mainly because the
gangster-riff is gone that was so great and made this a highlight of every
show during the last Euro-tour. It was still good of course and got the
crowd in front of the stage going as it always does. After this one Bob
was suddenly going beserk at his organ and produced some wild riffs that
turned out to be the intro to
what was again a „Wetzlar revisited“ song for me, but I somehow like
this one. It makes no sense to play the beautiful piano parts on the organ
surely but that’s Bob’s will in the end I guess... The couple with
their „Lyrics“ had no luck in finding out what this was by the way.
had Bob singing really good yet another time. Of course many much more
welcomed alternatives went unplayed with this, but well – the crowd
is still somewhat enjoyable – as long as you manage not to think about
how Larry and Charlie could set the roof on fire with this. Remember
Charlie producing the barking sound when it comes to the „Dog“ line?
There was no formation after this, in fact they did not know what to do
anyway: they could not hide themselves behind the stage because of the
people on the other side of the canal, so the did not left the stage at
all and started
LIKE A ROLLING STONE
right away. Older women jumping up, older men dancing on the steps. This
is always great for the tourists, and they play it pretty good nowadays,
too, completely differnt from last year when this was a letdown very
often. Bob introduced the band (we were not „friends“ like last year
but „Ladies and Gentlemen“ this time) and said something about Tony
that I did not get really. „He’s from New Orleans, too, and he just
ALL ALONG THE WATCHTOWER
was strong and the tourists enjoyed it even more. Bob sang the strange
line „All along the watchtower, said the joker to the thief“ in the
repeated verse, but it did not matter really. People left quite satisfied
Very enjoyable show all in all, the nice atmosphere on a sunny sunday
evening did help, but I’m really impressed on how Bob’s voice has
recovered compared to 2002-2005. So, go out and see him this time around,
but don’t expect too much from this band... --
Review by Stefan Flach
The show was most beautifully located - in the back of the stage we
(Annika and me and everyone else) could survey the small Rhein-Herne-Kanal
on which many skippers and freighters sailed by, all of whose captains
looked surprised at the 4000+ concert attendants sitting in an
amphitheater that suddenly appeared to starboard. At the opposed side of
the river there were more hundreds of visitors - who preferred to watch
Dylan's back for free. The natural surrounding, especially the constant
slow flow of the river and the changing daylight, added some magnificent
transparency to the performances, as if they had been enabled to breathe
The current band could not be better. It's as simple as that. Denny
Freeman and Donnie Herron display a tremendous intuition and emphathy
regarding the melodic possibilities of songs, no matter how cautious and
distanced their stage appearance may seem. It's all about a certain
gestalt the band designs for the songs, and that they design it as a unit.
On "Forever Young" first Dylan, then Freeman, then Herron took turns in
biting their teeth into a strikingly simple and rhapsodic riff that was
nothing but a product of the moment. Starting with the second verse, the
whole version was tinted by it. Their playfulness was at the same time
light and exigent.
"Maggie's Farm" - and the show - started with some ironically wailing and
ailing vocals by Dylan that felt as if he had invented a new, minor vocal
key for the song.
On "The Times They Are a-Changin'" George Recile's drumming was harder
than usual, so that the song turned into a complaisant rocker.
"Desolation Row" must have been the worst vocal performance by Dylan I
ever witnessed in person. It was as if he was trying to retell ambitious
jokes while obviously lacking any sense of humour (and misquoting each and
every punchline). He seemed to be going through the motions, but in an
embarrassing, anchorless way, and misplaced almost every single word. The
organ was strongly unnerving, too.
"I'll Be Your Baby Tonight", which followed "Desolation Row", then
immediately reminded of the simple fact that each song has specific
melodic factors that are more or less beneficial for Dylan's current vocal
capabilities. What was used as a weapon to massacre "Desolation Row"
worked splendidly on "Baby Tonight". Each of Dylan's committed and playful
growls betrayed the songŽs original demands - by expanding them. It's
remarkable that though both Dylan's and the band's general approach to the
songs seems to be more "professional" than in recent years (to mellow the
common reproach of them being stiff and uniform), there is something
strikingly savage about the way single words, single syllables, single
riffs and licks abruptly strike like lightnings. A challending quality
that will require further investigation.
"Senor (Tales of Yankee Power)", the surprise song in the # 4 slot (which
seems to be reserved for quieter tunes by now), was a waterfall of
theatrical enhancements of the lyric's very own drama. It rightly received
the evening's first huge cheer by the audience.
The marvelously grave and slow intro to "New Morning" gains incredibly
much by Dylan's organ playing. It works as a mere ornament to the rocking
hymn of anticipation that follows, but in such an utterly lovely and
moving way that it changes the whole feel of the song. The equally
dramatic "outro" (the closing bracket), focussing on the prominent two
minor chords of the bridge, then makes for a monumental, unforgettable
halt to the performance.
On a "Summer Days" that proved each and every of the song's merits (about
which we use to forget so easily), Dylan flubbed the finishing line ("I
know a place where there's still somethin' goin' on" had a coughing
laughter in place of "on"), which was immediately corrected by the band as
they added an impromptu and highly effective flourish that ended the song.
Everyone, including Dylan, smiled widely.
"Tambourine Man" saw some glorious and outraging vocal mannerisms which at
times felt stilted but never arbitrary. The last verse and chorus were
amazingly intense and "open-handed" - in a stylized way.
"Stuck Inside of Mobile" was - not for the first time in recent years -
the only dispensable song of the evening. It was as non-existent as if
they hadn't played it at all, or even more so.
"Down Along the Cove" originally has got three verses; by the time of its
rewrite in 2003 it gained three more - this evening it felt as if it had
ten. Dylan seemed utterly dedicated to extend the song as much as he
could, even by singing verses twice - so that we got tons of "little
bundles of joy" and "River Queens", which was hilarious and anarchic. His
singing of "Lord have mercy, baby, they're gonna knock you when you're up,
They're gonna kick you when you're down" seemed to have come straight out
of a rap song at one point.
Overall the sound at the show was excellent, as was the sound mix. During
the sung parts of a firecracking "Watchtower" we could hear Dylan actually
breathing, and every syllable sounded as if he was singing right in our
ears. The alteration of immensely loud and highly intimate segments of the
song has never been more striking.
"Highway 61 Revisited" came along like an old acquaintance of mine I
hadn't seen in a while, nor thought about in the meantime, but whom I was
instantly pleased to meet again. "He" (this song's a he, right?) was all
his former self again, trampling across the venue like a gently impolite
"Honest with Me" is Dylan's late hard rock song for grown-ups; it again
convinced me that no other band is able to treat it as appropriately as
this one - as an uncompromising, abrasive and deadpan statement of
emotional disarray. It was straight, anything but beautiful and utterly
convicing. One lout of a song. "Cold Irons Bound" is adorned in
Donnie Herron was Dylan's preferred dialogue partner of the evening.
Between every or every second song they were seen chatting.
For once there was no pause between "Summer Days" and "Like a Rolling
Stone". As the band was about to wander off, Dylan went and talked to
them, and they got back to their instruments.
When the show was over and they had left the stage, we could see Dylan
walking slowly down a pier alongside the river; the water glintered around
his bowed head, he looked both calm and pensive. If there is one single
image of the evening I'd like to preserve, it's this one.
The band was dressed in matching sandy suits. Everyone except Herron was
wearing a hat.
On the soundcheck before the show we heard the band run through
"Desolation Row", "Queen Jane Approximately", "Waitin' for You" and "Tough
Review by Joop Bekkema
In the nicest venue I have ever been to, the wonderful amphitheater near
the canal in Gelsenkirchen, Dylan performed a good show, but he did this
without the support of a decent band. Bob Dylan is magic, with ANY band he
is capable of striking the audience and put down a good show. Not only the
regular visitors , but also the many spectators at the other side of the
canal applauded after each of the sixteen songs. This, Bob Dylan, and all
the ships and other things that drifted by made this evening something
special. The band however had very little contribution to this magical
tour. Every song that was interrupted for an instrumental part ( Maggie's
farm, Down along the cove, Honest with me, Highway 61 and especially
Summer Days), lacked the guitarsolos's that fit in there. If you choose
to get rid of these solo's then don't interrupt these songs. Because it is
painfully clear that Kimball and Freeman are only capable of producing no
more than average and very, very simple riffs. Not very promisings for his
new album Modern Times, but as a friend wrote to me, a director like
Daniel Lanois is very capable in having bandmembers fill in certain sounds
and music. In the end everything sounds pretty good , as Oh Mercy proved.
Let's hope for the best. For me, it is all mystery what Stu Kimball is
doing all night. He has a guitar, but nobody hears him. More or less the
same with Freeman. One solo near the end in Like a rolling stone is all I
could note Of course, there is more than guitarsolo's, but when your band
consists of three guitarplayers and a bassguitarplayer, the meker of that
band (Dylan?) sends out a clear message: Guitar Rules. Well, not in this
band. These guitars are just simple rythm instruments. Apart from that, it
seemed that this band was together for the first time. I'll be your baby
tonight was a joke, Mr. Tambourine Man was totally unpredictable and at
the beginning of New Morning the band did not know where to begin. This
song became the surprise of the evening though. Dylan was in great shape.
With a very strong delivery of Senor, a breathtaking Desolation Row, and
an incredible Forever Young. For me New Morning was superb, and I think
Down along the cove is a very good and usefull song. Too many
crowdpleasers like Times, Tambourine, H 61 and Like a rolling stone and
only Recile and Garnier in shape made this concert good but not above
As far as I'm concerned, LAR and Watchtower can rest in peace.
Let's hope for more interesting stelists and for better guitarists. Bring
back Freddy (?), or let Tommy Morrongielo play instead of preparing the
Review by Michaël Moors
The only German date on this tour brought Dylan and his band to
Gelsenkirchen to play in a sort of replica Roman amphitheatre, lying
across a canal in the green surroundings of the town.
The all open, sun-drowned stage was bordered by the water, with no
background wall, only plenty of green with Swifts chasing insects in the
Around 20.15 the immaculately dressed Bob and band set foot on stage.
Bob noticed the people that had gathered on the other side of the canal
opposite the stage and greated them.
As the concert started it immediately became obvious that Bob's vocals
had no need of a warming up this time. His voice was real clear and
strong from the very first lines of the opener Maggie's Farm and
throughout the show.The band sounded professional and confident but
added less to the whole of it than last year, it was entirely Bobs great
singing that made for the character of the show. Given the proceedings
of the current tour so far, tonight's setlist was rather surprising,
including songs as Señor, Desolation Row, Forever Young and
particularily New Morning. In terms of performance Señor could be
considered the highlight of the evening. Bob's good mood was hearable
throughout the songs and especially during the singing of I'll Be Your
Baby Tonight. As there was no backstage area the main set quickly was
followed by the standard encores Like A Rolling Stone and All Along The
When the show was over Bob came downstairs as if nothing special had
happened, "as if he had just left his summer-house after having put
aside his rake", as a friend of mine pointed. Some guys were lying in
the water with surfboards and kayak, facing the place were the
tourbusses were parked. Bob and band walked along the crowd real close
on their way to the busses with Bob nodding to some of the nearest
people, a lovely picture. Barely a few minutes later the busses started
and the caravan quickly was out of sight.
Thank you Bob and all of you.
Review by Markus Prieur
Was the Bob Dylan concert in Gelsenkirchen worth "comin' down the road for
a country mile or two"? In our case it was about 130 miles, coming down
from Amsterdam, where my wife and I stayed for a night after flying in
from Cork. We had a Gelsenkirchen show on TV already in Amsterdam,
featuring a very good goal keeper from Portugal, and many sour faces from
England. Driving into Gelsenkirchen last Sunday we saw way too many German
flags on houses, cars, and bikes, but luckily that has changed by now too,
thanks to some talented Italians. But this review is not about soccer, but
about my 56th Bob Dylan concert, which took place in one of the finest
venues I can recall, a modern amphitheater located directly at a canal
(Rhein-Herne-Kanal), where boats, and kids and dogs run free.
Underneath the sky of blue, we could see Bob Dylan and his band perform
from our second row positions, with green trees located on the other side
of the canal behind Bob’s head and hat, and the sky above those trees
behind the heads of the band members. For the last two songs if the show I
went halfway up the half circle of the seating area, to get a full view,
with the canal behind the band, and the onlookers sitting behind the canal
on the green grass on the shore. Not a bad way to start our yearly week in
our native Germany visiting friends and relatives. Having seen both the
shows in Kilkenny and Cork a week earlier, I was not expecting many rare
or new songs for this year or tour, until I heard the band sound check,
which included three songs I had never heard live before, but none of
which made it into the show (Tough Mama, Queen Jane, and Waiting For You).
The fourth song sound checked made it however into the set as song number
six, ‘Desolation Row’, as gem which I had not seen since Dublin 2003. This
Gelsenkirchen version (only the second one in 2006, after the mighty fine
Jackson, Mississippi version, which I had heard on a recording) had this
year’s brilliant organic treatment, featured Donnie on mandolin, and was
sung very focused by Bob. It included six verses, plus four instrumental
ones (instr. / postcards / Cinderella / moon / Ophelia / instr. / across /
instr. / letter / instr.). I cherished every second of it. But this was
only one of ten songs not seen by me in Cork a week earlier (and only one
of those ten, H61, I had seen in Kilkenny), which leaves only the opener,
‘Maggie’s Farm’, ‘Memphis Blues’, and the three closing songs as every
night occurrences for me.
‘Memphis Blues’ had some nice organ playing, and featured Bob on harp.
Some of the other songs of the wonderful show included harp as well, for
example song number two, ‘Times’, and song number nine, ‘Tambourine’, and
also song number twelve, one of the biggest surprises of the night, the
first 2006 appearance of ‘Forever Young’, a song which I had heard last in
Dublin 2005, where it last was sung; but I also saw the previous German
performance of this song in Düsseldorf 2003 . Both of them had been extra
encores, but in Gelsenkirchen it preceded the closing trio of songs, which
showed Bob and the band in great form, smiling and rocking along. But
before that big finish there were some wonderful nuggets to behold in the
main set, starting with song number three, ‘Down Along The Cove’, a jumbo
jet of a song, which I had seen already in this form in Frankfurt, Düsseldorf,
and Erfurt (and these are just the German performances I have seen).
Hugely enjoyable stuff, as was song number seven, ‘Baby Tonight’.
The most interesting songs of the night however were two more first of the
year appearances, the first of which, ‘Señor’, was even more surprising
being performed by Dylan as the fourth song, as it usually appears as song
number two. It featured once more fine vocals and another strong harp solo
by Bob, and was performed for the 10th time in my native Germany during
the "never ending tour". Somehow my wife and I seem to be present more
often than not when this nugget gets presented on German soil. We saw both
German appearances of this gem in 1995 (Aschaffenburg in March and
Dortmund in July), both in 1998 (Nürburgring and Essen), and both in 2005
(Wetzlar and Erfurt). Only the three German appearances in 2003 we did not
see. But since we also saw performances in Brussels 1996, Manchester 2002,
and Dublin 2005, I am happy to say that the fine Gelsenkirchen version was
our 10th ‘Señor’.
The other new for this year event was song number eleven, a wonderful
“organic” ‘New Morning’, the slow long intro of which sounded quite
different with Bob on organ than it did on the piano versions from last
year. I had witnessed already one of the 17 European performances of it in
1991, but the appearance of "New Morning" I had seen in Wetzlar last fall
was the first one in Europe since then. I had seen it once more in Dublin
last November, but I did not mind at all hearing this one again in
Gelsenkirchen, “underneath the sky of blue”. For songs like these and as
long as Dylan keeps on creating performing art as fine and enjoyable as
this Sunday show it is definitely worth "comin' down the road for a
country mile or two", no matter if it is the road to Kilkenny, to Cork, or
to Gelsenkirchen. After all, in the arena of live entertainment for me
Dylans concerts alone can generally be described (to borrow his own words
from his ‘Theme Time Radio Hour’) as “consequential, meaningful, weighty,
basic, essential, and fundamental”.
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