Reviews
Logrono, Spain
Palacio de los Deportes de La Rioja

June 21, 2023

[Laurette Maillet], [Lothar Knatz]

Review by Laurette Maillet


From San Sebastian to Logrono. June 21st.
No day off but Logrono is not that far away ; three hours
on the bus.
We are four Bobcats, with Graham, Sarah(from Mexico) and 
Joseph (from UK) and I.
We all dispersed to check in different accomodations.
Sarah and Joseph will join me later around the venue. 
Well! Not the best ever. A sport arena in the middle 
of nowhere. 
The four buses are already parked. 
I spot three young kids with a sign "I love Bob Dylan". 
They are 15, musiciens, and want to meet Bob. I wish it 
could be possible. They have been spotted by security and 
I believe not for the best. Too bad. I feel sad for the kids.
[Later on I find them in the queue. They managed to get 
some cheap tickets. 
Great! Happy for them!]
Bob and the Band will arrive later by vans. We can hear the 
soundcheck. I Believe I hear some piano ??? And Joseph 
believes he recognizes "Truckin' ". Not sure.
Anyway. The show tonight though indoors will start at 9.30 pm.
I need a ticket. Rapidly a man comes to me and gives me one. 
Just like that!?.
The ticket says " invitation " and 0.
Mauro will explain later : he saw me in Alicante and promised 
himself to give me a ticket when possible. He was in Huesca 
with a friend and the tickets were exchanged for Logrono. His 
friend didn't want to come so he kept the promise to give me 
that ticket.
Fine. It's on the floor. And it's lucky for the venue is a 
stadium with terrible aspect :(
The seats are plastic and the ceiling really high. I wonder 
about the sound. They had a long afternoon soundcheck. 
Should be alright ??
They start 9.33pm.
First song sounds alright.
Bob sitting the two first songs.
Then up. He's wearing the black and white polka dots shirt. 
No harp on "Masterpiece".
 I really like "My own version of you". Great swing! Mauro 
 also enjoys it. 
"I'll be your Baby tonight" moves the public. With some 
"yeah! Yeah!" and clapping along.
From "Crossing the Rubicon" and on Bob seems to lose his 
energy. 
Mauro, next to me, is bored on "Key west" and asks me the 
name of the song ????
Some movement from the crowd. Fans leaving.
But then Bob spends time introducing the Band with funny 
remarks for Doug, Bob (Britt), Donnie and Tony. They all 
have a laugh.
"Gotta serve somebody" is average.
After "I've made up my mind to give myself to you" I see 
Donnie picking up his violin and without hesitation they 
swing into "Tweedle Dee and tweedle dum". I love it (and I 
know that will trouble some folks :( ). [As much as the fact 
that I never like "Key west".]
"Goodbye Jimmy Reed" is always good.
And the final "Every grain of sand" with a heartfull harp 
at the end.
Not a bad show all together but not the energy of 
San Sebastian 2.
During the entire show we could see thunder lightnings 
through the ceiling windows.
Lucky the show was indoors.
I say thanks to Mauro and walk the half hour under the 
rain to my crowded Hostel.
[We are on the path to Compostela.]
Thank you Joseph, Sarah, Graham for the company. We had fun.
Thanks Mauro for the Tix.
Thanks Bobby and the Band and the crew.
See you next in Barcelona!

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Review by Lothar Knatz


Logrono, in the middle of the Rioja vineyards, makes its debut 
on the Dylan map. The town of 150.000 situated on the banks of 
the Ebro has a nice historic district. The Dylan venue, Palacio 
de los Deportes, is an unembellished multipurpose hall. The 
maximum capacity of 1.700 is not completed, the crowd of 
little more than 1.200 are mostly locals, not many of the 
international Dylan followers on the simple blue plastic seats. 
I had business in Santander and came over to see Dylan again 
after the Magdeburg concert in 2022.

They entered the stage on time (21.30) with Watching the River 
Flow, minor problems with the sound were corrected quickly. 
Voice and sound were cristal clear then. The new drummer on 
the left side, Bob Britt in front next to Dylan, Tony behind 
the piano, and Donnie Herron and Dough Lancio close together 
on the right. In Magdeburg Dylan hides behind the piano during 
the whole show, this time you could watch the man at work. 
"When I Go Mine" seems to come even more late after "When You 
Go Your Way". His voice got sharp in the end of the verses of 
"False Prophet", and he arose from his music stool especially 
when he wanted more voice expression.

"When I Paint My Masterpiece" has a piano intro now, and when 
the soft rhythm section starts with Donnies violin floating 
above, the crowd started clapping. My first personal highlight 
was "My Own Version Of You", a song I didn't like too much in 
the past. The new arrangement starts with a guitar riff and 
the whole song got more dynamic. The fallen bass line is 
replaced by a dialogue between piano and guitar. And Britt is 
a creative and tastefull player! In general Dylans music now 
seems to be even more stripped down to the bone, got a strong 
base of Rhythm & Blues. And he let Bob Britt play solo, in 
duet with his own piano work. The whole concept sounds tight 
and strong. and the unorthodox drum style of Jerry Pentecost 
adds an archaic touch.

"I'll Be Your Baby Tonight" starts with a very tender slow 
piano intro, with passionate singing, and after the long 
intro the sharp guitar riff leds the song into a powerfull 
nightmare. "To Be Alone With You" follows a similiar concept, 
but doesn't finish in a violent inferno, it is more 
rhythmically developed. "I crossed The Rubicon" sounds 
perfectly in the blues scheme, and Britt and Dylan again 
moved the song forward in their dialogue. "Key West" comes 
along like a jazzy improvisation and they take this mood into 
a longer intro of "Gotta Serve Somebody", before the rhythm 
train accelerates. But it does not become a smooth train 
ride, its more rough and rowdy ways.

"I've Made Up My Mind" is for me still one of the more 
unimportant points in the concert although the arrangement 
has improved. I had hoped for "Not Fade Away" or "Truckin'", 
but we got "Tweedle Dee & Tweedle Dum". The boys obviously 
enjoyed it and make it a rough Rhythm & Blues ride, fully 
satisfactory. The finale starts with "Mother of Muses", 
Dylans prayer to the goddess of arts and inspiration, peace 
and wisdom. The rythm and blues patterns of "Good Bye Jimmy 
Read" are soon converted into a more free improvisation. And 
ultimately "Grain of Sand", another kind of prayer and hymn. 
At the end we got a wonderfull strong harmonica outro. The 
Band comes in front of the stage for the final applause, 
Dylan moving slow amd carefull. The crowd spend a long and 
warm applause.

The concert was very tight, like a monolithic block. And I 
hear Dylan say one sentence I heard from him never before. 
Somewhere in the middle between songs he said:"I love you". 
Believe it or not! I did not count my Dylan concerts. Last 
year I thought it would have been the last time,  Logrono 
was an unexpected extra benefit. No doubt, one to remember.

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page by Bill Pagel
billp61@boblinks.com

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