8-5-01 - Saratoga Performing Arts Center, Saratoga Springs, NY

review submisions to me at dws@netspace.org or dws@gadiel.com

Date: Fri, 10 Aug 2001 17:11:20 -0400
From: Rick Renaud kratt@bellatlantic.net
To: dws@gadiel.com
Subject: FW: SPAC 8/5/01
As a long time fan of Trey Anastasio's music, and a frequent reader of show
reviews (hey, if I can't be there in person . . . ), I felt compelled to
write a quick review of the tour-closing SPAC show when I noticed there had
only been two submissions, so far.
If you're skimming for nuts and bolts, it was indeed a GREAT show. With Tony,
Grippo and the gang, Trey has certainly found a new setting from which he
can construct hypnotic grooves, soul-lifting melodies, and monster jams with
consistency and freshness. Just don't expect it on every tune.
I saw two shows this Tour--the "rehearsal" night at Higher Ground here in VT,
and the last night of the tour at SPAC. I enjoyed both shows very much--the
excitement of being in the room on the Fourth of July while Trey and Co.
popped the cherry on so many new tunes for their hometown crowd; and the
closure of hearing the final notes and cheers of what was clearly a
victorious new venture for Trey. I was thrilled and filled with optimism to
see the intense improvement the band achieved during the
however-many-shows-in between. In VT, the horns had been pretty loose, but
full of energy. That night, Jenifer's voice lacked confidence but showed
promise, and their dance was way cool, but a little forced. Regardless, I
still thought this was a band worth seeing.
At SPAC, there was very little looseness and no tension on Sunday night. Trey
let the band gain momentum in the first set, allowing himself mostly little
riffs and grooves instead of towering leads. They got tight in a hurry and
had the crowd on their toes without the crutch of Trey's axe leading every
tune. This tactic was a great play, for when Trey came out for the second
set, he artfully, gradually, then completely let the cat out of the bag. The
First Tube was, by my comparison, as big as anything I've ever seen Trey do
(and that goes back to 88'). From there on, the band's (not just Trey's) mojo
was at full throttle and SPAC became an glistening slick of dancing bodies,
shining horns, thundering rythyms and wicked licks. It made me glad deep
inside, because it was just so freakin good. Too good, I knew, for Trey to
just to leave it be at that. This band will be back, and I guarantee you that
the next tour will be close to providing two or so nights of music without
repeating songs. Trey is inspired to play in this environment. Having seen
songs like Divided Sky, Hood, etc develop over 14 years, it's exciting to
imagine what some of these songs might grow into.
So, there you have it. Good stuff.
One last thing: I miss Phish, I miss Jerry, I miss alot of things, but it is
the fool who focuses on what is missing and the wise person who focuses on
what simply is. Phish'll be back, and until then, go out and enjoy Trey
GB's groove and share your positive energy with our little tribe.
Now get back to work ;-)

Date: Mon, 6 Aug 2001 19:45:11 -0700 From: Howie howierosenthal@home.com Subject: Trey @ SPAC 8-05-01 I just got home after seeing Trey last night in Saratoga Springs. First of all a quick comment on the venue. One of my friends made the comment as we pulled into the parking lot (not the main venue lot but one of the smaller nearby lots in the park) that "this is the nicest parking lot we've ever been too!!!". And he was right, the SPAC is right in the middle of a State park and is surrounded by flowing streams, trees and natural grassy areas, making it a great place to spend an afternoon. As showtime neared we entered the venue around 6:30. I was sitting on the lawns but they have these great video screens that give you a close up look if you're interested. "Big" Jim Burrell opened the show and he was really good, but most people just kind of listened rather than danced to the tunes. Trey came on around 8:15 and immediately set the pace with a blistering Last Tube. I remember looking at my buddy after this and saying "I think he's trying to kill me tonight" as the sweat poured off me on a hot steamy August night. The band did not relent at all through the first set as they moved through the tunes that have become well known this summer: Cayman Review, Burlap Sack & Pumps, Flock Of Words, Alive Again and a shit kickin' set closer Moesha. This is a super fun happy Trey summer dance tune, that makes you shake everything you have. Second set began with a great combo of Money Love & Change->Plasma. These two flowed perfectly into each other and continued the deep groove of the first set. Set II continued on with the highlight for me being the absolutely perfectly timed Ooh Child. As anyone who has seen Trey this summer knows, he really seems so happy to be out on the road with his band playing these new tunes. The mood was so positive and the lyrics too Ooh Child summed up that positive vibe so well. The set closed with a high energy Push On Till the Day featuring the now customary sword dance with Jen that once again highlights trey's general mood this summer. Overall I thoroughly enjoyed this show. I went there not expecting to see Phish, and looking forward to seeing Trey and his band. I danced all night long and left with a super happy feeling all over me. It's hard to put into words the feeling I had afterwards. I tried to explain to my friends that everytime I'm in the same room (or venue) with Trey he makes me happy :) Last night was no exception. This band is different than Phish. To compare them is pointless, so I will not. They are a fun, high energy band that rewarded me for the effort I made to go and see them. I hope Trey and the rest of the band continue to progress and make more of this sweet music together.
Date: Mon, 06 Aug 2001 11:38:01 -0400 From: Michael Libertucci fahttucci@hotmail.com To: dws@gadiel.com Subject: SPAC Review 8-5-01 What a show!!!! I have been lucky enough to catch three shows this tour, PNC, Jones Beach, and my hometown show SPAC. After leaving PNC I wasn't real happy with my decision to catch three shows. I was a little disappointed at what I had saw. I went to Jones Beach the next week with an open mind and how quicky it was blown away. Jones Beach was a tremendous show and Mike Gordon just capped it off. Well after a days rest and a long ride home to Saratoga from NYC it was time for Mr Anastasio to take the stage again. All day long in the parking lot rumors were floating that the boys were there, and they were gonna play. I even called my buddy who works concessions at SPAC to ask about the soundcheck, the first thing he told me was that they were all there and they soundchecked. This made me even more psyched for the show. I made my way in around 7, and found my seat and checked out the UBB. They were really good. When Trey came on the stage at SPAC for the first time since 1995, the place erupted. The vibe inside the venue adn on the stage was so full of energy and happiness. It was such a great place to be on Sunday night. Well now for the music. The first set completely blew me away right from the start. A raging Last Tube started the assault and led into Caymans which is another extremely fun tune. All of this music led up to what I think is the most beautiful song Trey has ever composed, Flock Of Words. He sings this song with so much emotion and feeling. For all the people wanting Phish to come back, I think I want them to wait. I haven't seen Trey play and act with so much feeling in a long long time. Such excitement by the entire band to be playing music together. After Flock of Words came Burlap Sack and Pumps, and then the highlight of the first set Moesha. This was my second Moesha and I have heard it on several tapes. This particular one blew up, Trey kept building and building, it almost started to remind me of the jam part of Chalkdust. It was amazing and the rest of the band more or less stood and watched a master at work. They set ended on this note and I was very grateful because my legs couldn't quite handle anymore. Second set started where the first one finished, Money Love and Change>Plasma. Great song and great groove out of it. Definetely becoming one of my favorites. Highlites of the second set was the roaring First Tube, and the absolutely beautiful OOh Child. I think Trey felt the happiness in the vibe because this song fit it perfect. It created such a great mood in teh audience. They closed the show with a show stopping Push on till THe Day which sent the band into the encore raging. Finally the moment that everyone was waiting for, will they be there. NOOOOOOOOOOOOOO!!! It was the best decision of the night to bring anybody out, this night was the Trey Anastasio Bands night, and boy were they shining. The band ended with a fun and highly energetic Mozambique which closed the tour in great fashion. Overall my general opinions of the tour and show I saw were all positive. I hope that Trey keeps bringing this band close to me so I have the opportunity to shake my bones like I did last night all over again. Great Show, Great Band, Great Night!!!!!!!!!!!!
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