, attached to 2000-09-23

Review by EducateFright

EducateFright Right, night 2 at Allstate. I didn't know the opening song, but its silly chorus (“Let's go, let's go, let's go downtown!”) somehow managed to get stuck in my head for MONTHS. The rest of the set was full of hard-hitters: quite a surprising choice of songs for the first half of the show. Song 3: Frankenstein! Gosh. Followed by Halley's! Halley's, however, was a distinctly relaxed affair (not necessarily a bad thing, of course). Stash was rather subdued as well; certainly nothing to write home about.
Set 2 opened up with a truly rockin' Birds, with Trey determinedly shredding like it was... well, the year 2000. Tweezer proved to be more exciting: at around 11:30, Trey began to repeatedly strum the same note, which made room for Mike and Fishman to step up and make things interesting. Trey might have advantageously employed this strategy much more in 2000... I'm reminded of the gun shop scene in Bittersweet Motel, in which Mike scolds Trey for playing “too many notes.” (On the other hand, 2000 also gave birth to the minimalist/ambient monster set 2 of 6/14... I guess you never can know for sure with this band, eh?)
Anyhow, FEFY – a real rarity by this time (played a whopping 3 times in 2000) – proved to be a real treat, boasting an inspired solo from Trey. The only shortcoming of this version: its ending sloppily came out of left field, right in the middle of the chord progression. Rather odd, really.
The red red worm was up to bat next. At about 5:30-6:00, Piper really accelerated. Bloody hell, this Piper was fast. Give it a listen, you'll find yourself wondering where all the speed came from. (Fishman, probably.) Yes, you're right, as far as I can tell. What the fuck got into him? If, up to this point, the show had seemed perhaps a bit low-key despite the song selection, Piper sure managed to stir things up. It might have ended at 13:00, at which point the jam evaporated into steam and dissipated... instead, we got a highly unusual (albeit short) bass solo from Mike, followed by a few minutes of that aforementioned ambient-infused goodness. Yep, I guess Trey took Mike's advice after all. Everyone was on the same page for Character Zero.
The Sleeping Monkey > Tweeprize encore was appropriate (most nights I'd actually take Sleeping Monkey over another Bold As Love). All-in-all, this show gets my stamp of approval. Better than night 1, and one of the better (not “BEST”) shows of year, I'd say.


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