November 26, 2019
Review by Jeff Dellin
When the ten night run was announced, there was hope in my mind that Bob
might play some special shows and mix the set list up a bit. Nah, I knew
the reality which did help my financial situation, since I did not buy 7
or 8 shows like I would have done in the '90s. Instead I settled for two
Tuesday shows, the first being last night.
My experience was top notch with a fabulous seat dead center row 3 on an
aisle in the loge. From the first song I knew right away that this show
was going to be different than the dozens and dozens I have seen over the
years and certainly different than the last couple years. Bob back on
guitar to open as expected but it was much more than a novelty, he was
playing and leaning in and jamming with the band again. I was trying to
remember the last time I saw Bob play guitar. Could it have been the
Tomorrow Is A Long Time in this very city in November 2008? Surely I have
seen him pick it up since then? Even if so, this for me was the first real
impression it made since that wonderful moment 11 years ago.
Most of the rest of the show soared and challenged. Highlights were:
Simple Twist Of Fate - I was challenged here making out the new lyrics
(some heard but quickly forgotten) but the song came off beautifully. When
I Paint My Masterpiece - I did remember one revamped lyric, something
like: "I saw them coming, I could read their faces like a book". Pay In
Blood - I could hear nearly every lyric clearly, excellent dramatic
version. Lenny Bruce - Of course, have been chasing this song since the
'80s. Girl From The North Country - Challenging version taking the folk
lilt and turning it into a Civil War Era-esque dirge. Loved it. Not Dark
Yet - The vocal effects, unlike anything I have seen him do before but
sung with purpose and passion. The Encores - Guitar playing on Thin Man
sent me back many years. Texas boy Charlie gave It Takes A Lot To laugh a
honest to goodness ZZ Top feel. Slinky and fun.
I enjoyed most of the rest of the show as well. The only song that sounded
the same as tours past was Soon After Midnight. Oddly it was exactly the
same arrangement (I think). I picked up some of the alternate lyrics to
Gotta Serve Somebody, something about "Hallucinating down the road".
I've loved going down the road with Bob Dylan. This trip was well worth
Review by Barry Gloffke
Night three for Bob and the Boys at the Beacon Theatre in New York City.
My fourth show on this tour. A warm evening for a late November night.
Tonight's show will feel similar to the Sunday show in that the first half
was not as powerful as the second half. Bob and the Band come out at least
15 minutes late again and tinker/tune their way to the start of a rough
version of THINGS HAVE CHANGED. Bob's voice was gruff and the sound seemed
to be uneven... drowning out Bob here and there a few times. IT AIN'T ME,
BABE featured some stellar work by Donnie and Bob and just a beautiful
sound overall from the Band. Bob's voice was still gruff, but he sounded
great on this take. HIGHWAY 61 REVISITED rocked as usual... I never tire
of this version. The first highlight for me was an exquisite and slinky
CAN'T WAIT. Sudden stops and starts has the house hollering. Next was a
fantastic delivery of WHEN I PAINT MY MASTERPIECE... gorgeous music, nice
piano and a really nice conclusion. A disappointing take on TRYIN' TO GET
TO HEAVEN followed. The bass was too loud in the mix, the guys seemed to
be off beat with each other, but there was some nice violin by Donnie.
MAKE YOU FEEL MY LOVE was next. Bob seemed to mumble a lot of his words,
but he laid down some nice harmonica and Donnie as usual made beautiful
use of the pedal steel. Funny thing about this song, was that my friend
Anthony, who is a big Billy Joel fan (don't ask) was with me tonight for
his first Dylan show. He is not a Dylan fan, but wanted to see him
nevertheless. So, with him being a Joel fan, I asked him after the show
what he thought about Bob's take tonight... he said he did not even
recognize it during the show! I guess it was pretty lousy.
But Bob turns on a dime, takes it up a notch, and delivers a driving,
harsh and powerful version of PAY IN BLOOD featuring building crescendos
and nice leads by Britt. The rest of the show follows suit. Beautiful
piano, violin and vocals on LENNY BRUCE. Drop kick killer blues for EARLY
ROMAN KINGS which is one of my favorites on the tour. Donnie again with
spectacular violin and Bob singing sweetly on GIRL FROM THE NORTH COUNTRY.
More stops and starts during NOT DARK YET... echo, spooky, eery... an
ethereal sound which I imagine was a combination of Bob's piano and
Donnie's pedal steel. Charlie kills it during THUNDER ON THE MOUNTAIN and
Tony/Matt drive this song home. A fantastic rendition of SOON AFTER
MIDNIGHT... again, an ethereal sound emanates from the stage, enveloping
the room in sonic magic. The finale once again is a rousing, almost
spiritual GOTTA SERVE SOMEBODY.
The crowd loves it. The Band exits for five minutes or so and reappears
for a blistering version of BALLD OF A THIN MAN. Never the master
guitarist, Bob nonetheless does some really splendid leads and the Band
soars to blow away heights. Great rocker. And the climax for the show is a
burning slow blues take of IT TAKES A LOT TO LAUGH, IT TAKES A TRAIN TO
CRY. Bob teases out the lines and the Band burns with intensity. Great
Once again nice to see Ed, Kathleen, Phil and a few others. See you
Bobcats on Wednesday. Don't you miss it!
Review by Larry K.
Our annual Bobsgiving reunion: Gary, Chuck, Angela and I were joined by
the Sarah, an Aussie newbie...Thai on 72nd and Bob at the Beacon.
Amazing how he reimagines his work and orchestrates the material. Now
it’s a Baroque/ Heavy Metal mutation at mostly high volume and
intensity. You’ll have to be the judge; some arrangements work better
than others...with moments of celestial magnificence, incredible
interplay, superior musicianship...highlights for me: Not Dark Yet (darker
than ever), Girl of the North Country, Ballad of a Thin Man (in a retro
arrangement), Things Have Changed (rumba beat)...new guitarists adds a
slashing counter to Charlie’s filigree...Bob’s piano has become a
leading element in the orchestration, and Donny’s violin is now
providing or completing the orchestral sound. Bob’s voice was somewhat
garbled from our balcony seats, but his delivery was forceful....credit to
Bob for challenging his audience and his band in creating brand-new music.
Review by Evan Bergman
went to the show last night. I have been to many ,many shows in many
different types of venues over the last 25 years including the Supper Club
shows. So about last night. Solid show with 5- or 6 gems. That in itself
makes going to see Dylan always worth the price of admission.But he keeps
the band on such a tight string that it never takes off like it could. I
keep trying to figure what gives him pleasure onstage. Of course the
cheers, how cam you ever not like that. Maybe, as he dreams what a song
should sound like and then make it happen is the pleasure. Maybe it's
playing on and playing on? Like a great blues guys I think he will just
keep playing until he doesn't. I think he once said something to the
effect , it doesn't matter if I play to 500, 5000, 50,000 I just keep
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