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Permalink Posted by mgouker on , attached to 2010-08-05
mgoukerTour openers can be sloppy, but this one is definitely more solid than usual. The first set is played pretty close to the lines. The only standouts (for me) in the first set are a good “The Divided Sky” and the kickass “Antelope” at the end – thoroughly enjoyable.

The second set starts off strong with a nice DWD>Free – a part of the show that has worked real for a while now. This sounds really nice here and (hmmm.... let me turn this up). “Alaska” is another safe choice, a song that the band plays really well, but is not very risky. “Get Back on the Train” is full of nice melodic Trey soloing and beautiful sinuous interweaving by Mike. This is tasty indeed. I am liking how this set evolves. “Maze” is a ringer for me – I love the song and it always seems to kindle high energies from the band and the audience. Coming so late in the show, it seems clear that their reserves are high. It's a band that loves to be playing together again. Lucky them! Lucky us!

By the end of the jam, Trey's guitar is tearing through the seams of the celestial void and we are getting some major hosings. This is a nicely executed Type I jam that bodes well, especially – as I mentioned – so late in the set. What's going to top that? The next song “Joy” is a wonderful, pretty mellow ballad that I really love – lovely, serene lyrics delivered in a naked voice (quavering on the album) with a powerful refrain that is inclusive. Still, coming after that “Maze” though... hmmm.

Well, I didn't really want to stop raging quite yet. I'm getting those first painful pangs of The Impending END of the show and this is one I would like to see keep going. There is nothing special about the jam. It dies and we hear Tweezer's rumble that fades and comes back omnipotent and unforgiving. “Tweezer” is not the crazy jam vehicle it once was, but is still to be respected because after all, who knows? This “Tweezer” is rocking and full of high-speed stiletto chops (especially Trey). Short, no meandering, but incisive. I like this a lot and now there is a good chance for a Tweezer Reprise closer (or two – I'm sure we must be still one short in the Tweezer Accounting, not counting interest). I like it how it fades into “Fluffhead”. That's pretty.

OK, so many nice Fluffheads, but in general these are always generally strong, demanding precision and supreme dynamic control and are thus a good litmus test of the band's state. This is a nice start to Fluff's Travels. The band is really neat here – important for “The Chase”. This is excellent all the way, through and through. The band sounds great – no question at all. I'm listening to the LP version now. Very yummy! Page, especially, sounds awesome here. I like the voices in “Bundle of Joy” - they are definitely having some fun! Great buildup! Boom!!! OK, this is awesome, really joyful and well-played. After some stage banter about Magic Wood, we get a great Loving Cup (this one's like an exclamation point for the night) and Tweezer Reprise. A Good Show I think.
Score: 1

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