4/4/2004 Setlist, Photos, and Reviews

RatDog

Sunday, April 4, 2004
Westbury Music Fair
Westbury, NY

Reviews

Well, where do I start ? Intimate would be an understatement. Felt like i was at a taping of a PBS show. There was a cool little light show going on behind the band which I assume belonged to the house. Sound was crystal everywhere I went. My vision was unclouded of most substances during the show, and damned if I wasn't bowled over with a WRS>Let it Grow opener. The ending jam with Mark flipping out with effects was too much, then..... Bertha ???!! C'mon boys, are we gonna leave it all on the stage tonight or what? Shade of Grey, I know that crowd of strangers.... Thank you for a real good time, and a wonderful reading of the best Ratdog blues original to date, Bury Me Standing, oh god-damned eternal tease, finally satisfied. Funky jam into Greatest Story Ever Told and then the headband, Rob Baracco runs on the stage beside Jeff, uh oh. A false start, a jam and then Help on the Way setting up a contemplative Slipknot to end the first set.
     Beer and good chat with old friends consumed the break and back into El Paso, a song I just can't get away from. Barry Sless takes the pedal steel on a Candyman that we may not have heard for over thirty years. Beautiful! Cold Rain and Snow with the real lyrics (not the recently fabricated ones). A resounding Half-Step with the boys really leaning into this one, and Bobby singing us across the Rio GRand-ee-oh and then some. Samson as strong as before his haircut, and bam! We're coming around into the Other One - full force. Drums with the apparently able-bodied guest, back into a short space which turns into Sugaree, the new fair-haired child on the circuit, well played and wonderful. Where can you go from here ? Bob knows. St. Stephen with an abbreviated William Tell Bridge that flows into Foolish Heart. Jerry is on Bob's shoulder at this point and together they bring it all home.
     The encore picks up the Slipknot thread and cleans up a shortened Franklin's Tower.
     I think the band really grooved on the tight venue and happy vibe permeating the show. I look forward to their tour of planetariums across North America this fall.

Rich Bobber, Free Raton, NM
     I hate to be a downer, but don't kill the messenger. I wouldn't be writing this if the review of this show already posted didn't claim that it was permeated with happy vibes.
     On the contrary, halfway through St. Steven, Bobby gave the hand signal for "zip it." Everyone in the band fell silent aside from Jay, who apparently didn't see the hand signal and kept on drumming. Bobby got pissed and gave him the finger. As if that wasn't enough, he proceeded to give the drum kit a swift hard kick, rocking it back toward Jay. The bassist did his best to hold back his laughter, and Jay did his best to not walk off the stage. The drum tech had to come out to replace the microphones.
     If you had your eyes closed you may have missed this moment, but it is the honest truth. I was hoping Bobby would apologize right there on stage, because he killed the vibe in the place, but no such luck.
     I forgive you, Bobby. Everyone has a bad day, but truth be told.
     Peace, Love, Light...

Eggie, Brooklyn, NY