October 24, 2007
Comments by Chuck Samson
Seemed to me it took the band quite a few songs to get clicking. By the
time they got to "High Water", they were, finally, scintillating. The
arena was about a third full and the audience predominantly passive.
Ticket prices seemed high for a campus venue and it showed. The
remarkable highlight of the evening, for me, was Elvis Costello's
rendition of "Not Fade Away". We had driven through Clear Lake on our way
down from Minneapolis this morning and had Buddy Holly on our mind. Elvis'
guitarmanship was exhilirating.
Review by Nic Arp
It's been a couple of years since I've seen Dylan. What struck me about
his current show, assuming this Iowa City date was representative of the
tour in general, is how much space he's creating in his music nowadays.
He's often lapsed into a too-loud-too-fast blur, with him mumbling over
the top, punctuated by moments of lucidity. Last night, though, his
songs settled into a groove and gave him room to really work the lyrics,
play with the phrasing. The traditional big rave-ups like Highway 61,
Summer Days, and LARS had far more subtlety and nuance than in past
tours. Ain't Talking was gorgeous. And to close the show with a slow,
almost psychedelic Masters of War, rather than a gratuitous wind-up
rocker, was powerful and poignant.
I'm sure as shows on this tour go, it was forgettable. But I was very
pleasantly surprised by Dylan's show and the sense of craftsmanship and
purpose he had.
Elvis Costello was awesome. What a huge presence for just a guy with a
guitar. Allison into Man Out of Time was beautiful, Not Fade Away into
What's So Funny rocked, and his song about the war widow was poignant. I
didn't expect him to be as totally riveting as he was. If only I'd been
lucky enough to catch him and Bob doing a song together-oh, well, I'll
relish the recordings.
Amos Lee had a couple of songs that really piqued my attention. A lot of
it all sounded the same, but the first song (maybe called Tell Me The
Truth, Sir) and Raised By a Wolf were good songs.
A great night here in Iowa City, I thought.
Review by Liz Goldberg
Two short years ago, I discovered Bob Dylan. Up till then my life simple
and serene. Now-you could describe me as a raging Bob Fan(atic)-waiting
and watching for the next Bob-bit to come along to complete the complex
puzzle of this enigmatic artistic genius of whom-evidently-no other
human really knows or is willing to divulge. With this challenge, my
life's goal is to discover the what why and how of him, see him, hear
him, read about him and speculate with the rest of the
fanatical world who are hungry for him.
The 2007 tour brought no Bob to me in Minnesota so...as a dutiful fan I
went to him. Iowa City being the closest to Minnesota, I set out doe-eyed
and hopeful for a life changing event. The Venue situated dead center in
the middle of the great Midwest-Corn Country!
The Carver-Hawkeye Arena, is a small but intimate sports arena and of the
8000 tickets-half were sold. Of those 4000 seats sold (venue staffer told
me)- ALL the high buck seats were crammed, these being on the floor of the
venue which was jam packed up to the front of the stage. Unsold were the
corner high altitude seats. Amazingly, most of the fans were youngins -
even in the hot seats.
Amos Lee and Elvis Costello gave a fabulous show-Elvis was the highlight
with great tunes and a warm acoustic performance. Bob and the band
stepped on stage and began with Rainy Day Women. The sound from the stage
immediately assaulted your senses like a jack hammer-It was horrific. With
a calliope of disjointed instruments all playing separate tunes, all off
key..like a garbage truck a thousand of em. I was seated front stage right
and close to a speaker and on top of that, this was a sports arena-not an
acoustically oriented concert hall.
Bob dressed sharp in his black hat and black suit appeared to me tired,
pale and unenthusiastic. His voice growled with the repetitious
"speak-sing-" which seemed even more pronounce tonight, but...he was
terrific and I loved it-in all its worn down glory. he bobbed at bit here
and there and at one point-turned his head to the side and spit onto the
A low point-Masters of War as a dark funeral dirge within a new
arrangement-not my favorite rendition-but was interesting. Tangled up
in Blue, Highway 61, Thunder on the Mountain and LARS helped energize the
audience a bit. The concert in general was lack luster, but its a chance
anyone takes when watching an artist who has given 2000+ concerts, is 66
and one can only imagine the life style that one lives as a NeverEnding
Performer. Only a hard core fan would have left this concert feeling full
and satisfied and,...I was stuffed! Not a great concert to be sure but
inconsequential-I am a fan and grateful to be a part of his history, every
performance he gives is a gift never to be repeated. Nothing lasts forever.
Dylan IS an amazing artist who is still creating and-a fascinating human.
A genus and Yes a legend...and I will remain a steadfast fan until-one of
Review by Ken Gratton
This was my third Bob show the first being in 96. Cheryl and I traveled
down from Dubuque with our new friends Stu and Mary. First off, I though
Amos Lee was a really good warmup act, and we enjoyed him and his band
a lot. Then came Elvis C. He was really good and seemed to enjoy himself
as well. He got the crowd going pretty good. I was a shame it was not a
full house maybe only 5,000. The sound was really clear and clean, much
better than previous shows I have seen. Bob's voice was clear and strong,
you could actually understand the words. We were in the 8th row center.
That was great. I had never been that close before and it was really worth
the extra cost of the ticket. A good mix of older and newer songs. For me
the highlight was "Honest with Me". I liked it live a lot. Desolation Row
was great too. Rearranged and very cool. I think Bob can go on forever.
It was a great show
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