For my $, the best shows have several jams that show the boys are telepathically connected at a very high level. It also helps to play my favorite and most heard song, Piper in impressive fashion. Melt and Light will take a few more listenings to digest, but we all knew their majesty right away.
Surprises also helped to elevate this show. I never thought Steep/Swept Away could be so beautiful. Jamming on Party Time? A KDF reprise even better than Denver? Old staples like Hood and Yem sounded fresh again. The band moved to a level of patience and creativity night in and night out that I haven't seen since 98.
The scene also changed a lot on Sunday to make for a more enjoyable experience. Not to put anyone out, but I really enjoy being surrounded by people who share the same enthusiasm I do. Gone were the Saturday night talkers, drunks, shovers and bumpers. You could feel the positive, musically focused energy all over the venue. We are very fortunate people.
See you in Long Beach!