Bob Dylan - Bob Links - Review - 09/08/98


September 8, 1998

Glenfield, New Zealand
North Shore Event Centre

Thanks to Rob Zorn for the following review:

A Dylan concert two nights in a row! I feel really privileged.

The rain held off this time, and entry to last night's gig went a lot 
more smoothly. It was the second show, an extra one scheduled when the 
first one sold out so quickly. Due to a mix up, we'd left buying tickets 
for this show too late. We ended up near the back on the mezzanine 
floor. A shame not to be close, but the benefit was a better overall 
view of the show. I think the sound was a little better up there too.

Patti came on again at about 8:05 and began a very different set to the 
one the night before. One of her opening comments referred to the 
baseball player (his name eludes me) who broke some record by hitting 61 
home runs. She said it probably doesn't mean much to us here in NZ, but 
with all the shit going on in the world, it was nice to know that some 
guy could go out and hit 61 homers. Fair enough. Her comment won her 
some applause, but tonight was not going to be as good a night for Patti 
as the one before had been.

Gone Again (A great version) opened her set and that was quickly 
followed by Dancing Barefoot. (You can tell I remembered my pen this 
time). The setlist was much different to Monday night's. but something 
wasn't quite gelling for Patti. She was good, no doubt about that, but 
the big crowd of devotees weren't there at her feet this time. Maybe it 
was because of it being the second show.

Beneath the Southern Cross was her third song. So far so good. Fourthly 
she said she wanted to play a new song that her and the band were still 
sorta working on. It was called "Grateful" and was a tribute to Jerry 
Garcia. She was charming as this began. Some quiet guitar and then she 
said, "Oh, shit!". She turned to the band and they started again. 8-9 
bars into the intro and it was, "Oh shit!" again. The band stopped. 
  "What do I do now?" she laughed.
  "Make it up, Patti!" someone yelled.
  "Okay," she replied, and off they went. It was a nice little song, but 
probably not one that a New Zealand audience, many who probably came to 
the second show because the first one was said to have rocked so hard, 
could relate to all that well.

Free Money. Good to see HORSES being represented, even if this is the 
worst track on the album imho. I would give three toes from my right 
foot to hear her do "Kimberly".

About a Boy. If this song really is for Kurt Cobain, then tonight was a 
real tribute night. It didn't go down well, and Patti gave us the 
extended version. The song is good in terms of art, but I think the 
audience wanted to rock, and couldn't relate to well to her slower 

Because the Night reclaimed a bit of territory for her, but it just 
wasn't there like it was the night before. Gone was the aggressive 
posturing, and she wasn't spitting on the stage nearly as much. :-) Lots 
of people dancing in the aisles now, a good sign on the whole.

Roc 'n' Roll Nigger. A great way to end a set. This was wild and loud, a 
real crowd pleaser. It seemed the roadie didn't have the guitar properly 
ready, he burst onto the stage when her solo was due, and she started it 
a bit late. The amp seemed to be playing up too, so she kicked it, let 
the guitar hang, and picked up the clarinet. Neato!!! This was really 
cool, lots of loud squealing, and she still pulled all the strings off 
her guitar for effect! The last stanza was sung on her knees, with heart 
and with lots of ad-libbed encouragement to New Zealanders to look after 
each other and not take any fucking shit.

Thank you Patti! 40 mins and it was great! I think she could do a longer 
set. I wish she would.


Maybe it's just me, but tonight was a real guitar night.

Interval was only about 20 mins again. Bucky is a sly fox. While the 
roadies are running around setting up, he happily comes out in his old 
clothes and sits at his guitar box. No one even recognises it's him. 
Then he goes back stage and comes out in his suit and bowler.

Anyway, the lights went down, the strobe started and Bob and the band 
came out to great roars. Bob was wearing a dark suit with light piping. 
He looks good again.

1. Maggie's Farm. Straight into the hard rock jamming. Bob's voice isn't 
mixed well, but I was more interested in the guitar jamming anyway, even 
if this song has become a theme song of mine of late. The dancers are 
into the aisles and down front immediately. Security are there right 
away like they wanna line all the dancers up and shoot 'em. They 
intimidate them all into sitting on the floor and the band plays on.

>From up the back, it was easier to see the light show as a whole. This 
was really something. 

2. Senor. Good solid stuff. Excellent guitar closing from Larry (I'm 
gonna rave about him in this review, so get ready). Soaring, crying 

3. Cold Irons Bound: The usual fair. Nicely done, good intro again, but 
pretty much the same as last night. Merely wonderful. Bob starting to 
experiment with the footwork now. He's searching the front rows. There's 
no crowd right at his feet yet, but he's looking for somebody...

One lone dancer, determined to cheat death and fate, is up again. I 
think it's a guy, but it could be a girl. Hard to tell from way back. 
Security tells him to sit. He sits. Security goes back to the barrier, 
and he's up again waving his arms around. Security returns. He sits, 
then he's up again. 

4.  Just Like a Woman. This was perfect. The crowd recognise it right 
away and respond with much enthusiasm. Bob is singing it like he means 
it. He's feeling it. The ache is there in the voice. I'm getting excited 

The first noodle of the night from Bob now, plucking away at those 
essential 2-4 notes. Good.

5. Can't Wait. Just as predicted, vocals pouring out with feeling, but 
it's not moving me tonight.

6. Silvio!!! YES!! Two nights in a row. Singing it strong again, singing 
it loud again. I couldn't contain my enthusiasm and can hardly convey it 
now. I didn't want it to end - the guitar work, the jamming. I was in 
another world, elevated to a higher plane, shown all the secrets of the 
universe..... and I didn't care. Just wanted to hear those guitars!!

I seen better days but tell me who 
haaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaas not!

Larry jams this song so well. His guitar riding so high above it all, 
and the guy is hardly moving on stage, then it descends and he hands 
over to Bob who takes the lead during the "duh dah, da-da-da duh"s.

There was the wonderful 32 bars of Space Jam in honour of the Grateful 
Dead, too. Folks this stuff was good beyond description. I would give my 
left arm to be able to play like Larry; of course then, I wouldn't be 
able to play like Larry.

6. To Ramona @: Bob sings this one in lovely, low, gentle, gravelly 
vocals, with the band bouncing away underneath in 3/4 time. Bucky's 
mandolin is lending a pleasing Mediterranean sound, and Bob is pulling 
off some great lead work here again; plucking away at the bones of the 
melody, Larry gently beside him lending quiet polish to the whole thing.

The lone dancer is back, with both arms waving free. Security manhandle 
him to the floor where he seems to agree to sit for a while.

7. Desolation Row @: Wonderful - long instrumental introduction, takes 
some time for me to recognise what it is. Very bouncy, very bluesy. Best 
version I've ever heard, and not a common one. This is really shaping up 
to be another great night.

The lone dancer is up again, and security don't see him this time. 
Somehow he's moved over to the side of the hall, but here he comes, 
doing the swim, and gliding along the front. he comes right up behind 
the central security chappie, who's looking the other way, and stands 
there wiggling and swimming like some ancient Egyptian on dope. 
Eventually the security man turns and sees "the swimmer". It's too much 
and two security chappies actually drag him away. Not sure where too. 
Maybe he's in some unmarked grave now, out behind the carpark bushes.

Meanwhile, Bob is the performing artist as Desolation Row finishes up. 
Vocals smooth, lilting, dropping, rising sharply at the end of lines. 
He's giving us Buddy Holly knee squats, and Bucky is giving us 
heartfelt, beautiful steel solos.

8. Tangled Up in Blue @: (Again). This was the song I forgot to mention 
in yesterday's review. It's a great song, but again, I knew it was 
coming, and the present version is good, but it's not growing or going 
anywhere. You are free to disagree.

Security come and encourage the stage rush again. Ironic, as the lone 
dancer was man-handled away only 10 minutes ago.

Bob's shuffling and noodling nicely all through TUIB. He's doing the 
twitch like only he can. I'm scared that any minute he's going to lurch 
into some Fred Astaire flip and actually break something. Sliding side 
steps, he's having fun. New abrupt ending, that I don't remember from 
Monday night, almost mid-noodle. Perhaps that's something new.

9. This Wheel's on Fire. This is a song that has always done little for 
me, but it was a pleasure to watch Once again Larry's guitar work is 
superb. I really enjoyed the "big sound" during the instrumental work, 
and the sudden switch to quietude for the verses.

10. I Shall Be Released. 16 bars of solo lead from Larry over a quiet 
Kemper drumbeat to introduce the song. Sweet vocals from Bob, punctuated 
by gurgling guitar ripples from Larry.

Bob introduced the band. Otherwise he spoke nary  a whisper all night.

11. 'Til I Fell in Love with You. Good stuff. Competent. Merely 
wonderful again. Bob's dancing is great to watch.


12. Love Sick: I recently heard someone describe the opening staccato 
guitar to this song as being like a lonely man creeping around his 
apartment. That's how it was last night. Great build up in intensity, 
screaming, audacious guitar work from Larry.

13. Rainy Day Women $12&35: Houselights come on, rousing all the old 
hippies, and me as well.  :-)The smell of burning grass permeates the 
air. Great jams, fun fun fun....

14. Blowin'' in the Wind @: After all these years, still sung with such 
feeling and conviction. The hippies (and me) greet this one with great 
enthusiasm too. Nice lead mandolin by Bucky, and very pleasing 
background harmonies by the whole band.

15 Highway 61 Revisited: The second highpoint of the show after Silvio. 

Larry, oh Larry. Bob, securing this guy was one of the best moves you 
ever made. Loud, wild, yet technically perfect. This, folks, is as good 
as live guitar work gets, and I'll stand on Eric's coffee table and say 
that [Eric Idle's coffee table, not Eric Clapton's :-)]. 

16. Forever Young @: Beautiful, loving, gentle. Intense noodling from 
Bob, a nod over the shoulder to Kemper, and quick and sudden descent 
into the closing bars of the song, and it was all over.

It was a terrific night, as good as the night before.

Next stop is back home in Wellington, Thursday night - that's Wednesday 
for most of you. 4th row centre seats.

Sorry this has been such a long review.

I'd love to say: "See you there," but for most of you suckers that's 
impossible. :-) Heh Heh, now you know how it feels. I'm gonna revel in 
it while I can.

Rob Zorn


Thanks to Carsten Wohlfeld for the following review:

Patti Smith amazes me. I was convinced that her shows in Townsville and
Wollongong have been the the best two concerts I've seen in my whole life.
Tonight she was better. MUCH better in fact. She opened with "Gone Again"
dedicated to Akira Kurosawa and then played a show that completely blew me away:
"Dancing Barefoot", "Southern Cross", a brand spanking new song for Jerry
Garcia called "Grateful" had had a funny false start when Patti got the chords
wrong and wasn't perfect the second time they played it either. It is,
however, one of the sweetest pop songs Patti has ever written. "Because The
Night" followed as well as - yes - "Free Money". Now THAT was a hell of a
performance. I've never seen anybody put as much energy in just one single song as
Lenny Kaye put into this one. If there's a tape of this show, it has my
name on it :-) And as if that wasn't enough they closed with "Rock And Roll
Nigger" again, the best version on this tour, too... Patti played the Clarinet
at the end with her left hand while ripping the strings off of her guitar
with the right. It was quite a sight. And the end Lenny was holding his guitar
like a baseball bat, aiming at his amp. But no, he didn't smash it. It was
obvious, that Bob would have to play a show like Wollongong now to top this,
sdaly, he didn't. It wasn't as bad as the first night, but still veeery

> Maggie's Farm

A song designed to jump start the show, but nobody got up and it wasn't
just the tight security that prevented the stagerush (it eventually happened
during "Tangled"), but it was simply Bob's pale performance that got nobody
really excited.

> Senor

Good choice cause this is a song where they just can't do wrong. Even on
an off night this still sounds great and indeed it did.

> Cold Irons Bound


> Just Like A Woman 

A crowd pleaser without a doubt but since he played so many terrific
version of this one lately it was sad to hear a below average rendition tonight.

> Can't Wait

Much better than the night before, mostly cause the band worked extra hard
on this one. Bob's singing was rather low in the mix all night or maybe
they used the standard mixing and he just sang quieter and not as clearly as he
usually does these days.

> Silvio

was "silvio".

> To Ramona (acoustic)

Polka time! I get sick when I hear David's drums on this one alone even
though I always liked Bob's solo rendition. So it's hard for me to judge, but
most people thought this was one of the few highlights of the night. From
here on the set went downhill

> Desolation Row (acoustic)

People around me were close to tears when he started it, but he just threw
it away. He simply didn't care. A shame.

> Tangled Up In Blue (acoustic)

was "Tangled".

> This Wheel's On Fire

Was nice to hear but not the usual show stopper. Bob played around with
the phrasing alot which was fun to hear but he just confused Larry and Bucky
and they sounded pretty out of tune and shape on the joined choruses.

> I Shall Be Released

This could've been a wonderful duet (Patti and Oliver were watching Bob's
whole set from the side of the stage), but Bob decided to sing it all on his
own... okay version with a messed up intro. They never get it right, I
wonder what they are trying to do there. It always sounded perfect in the G.E.
days and when JJ first played it in 1991. Band intros followed.

> 'Til I Fell In Love With You

was "Til I Fell..." Bob tried to connect with the audience all night,
moved around a lot more than the night before even smiled occasionally, but the
magic that often shines through was completely missing.

> (encore)

> Love Sick

Even on an average night this is pretty good. Probably it's simply one of
the best ten songs Bob has ever written...

> Rainy Day Women Nos. 12 & 35

And now all together: " Everybody must get cloned"...

> Blowin' In The Wind (acoustic)

He encore are so predictable, it hurts! I can understand that he's not
changing the set for the few people that follow him around, but at least for a
second night in the same city he should mix up the set a little bit, don't
you agree?

> Highway 61 Revisited


> Forever Young (acoustic)

After they had messed up the ending completely (actually Bob had signaled
that the song was about to end and when he band was almost on  their way
backstage he started it again at half speed adding two more choruses) this was
an average version that many in the crowd loved to death. As usual.

All in all the show was not as disappointing as the first night but even
many of the locals who waited six years for these shows didn't really like it
all that much. Almost everybody was well impressed by Patti though... Makes
me wonder what Wellington will be like. I'll keep you posted! Thanks for

carsten wohlfeld
"your girlfriend can leave you but the rolling stones are there forever"
(alan mcgee)

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