I've never written a review so bear with me, I'll do my best! I didn't miss a minute of the show, and I was right in the front (1st row). There was much more room up there than you would think! It was perfect. There seemed to be a lack of drunk, rude people that constantly dance erratically and fall into me every time they move and scream the choruses. That was another good sign. My only complaint was that it was hot as hell in there, but whattya gonna do? Now for the show.
The show started off minus the usual jam to open the show and started right at Bertha. Bertha was excellent, having Bobby jump around all wildly toward the middle of the tune, an obvious sign we were in for an energetic night. A powerful version this was. The segue between this and Jack Straw was short but good, and the Jack Straw started out beautifully and continued that way, in my opinion turning out better than 4-17-05.
Now I'm not a big fan of Bird Song, but this was a head-on version, pretty long, and Bobby's vocals in Bird Song, I must admit, seem very right for this song, and it is better than some of Jerry' songs he sings; vocally-wise anyways.
I always look at the past setlists of a tour and try to guess songs and where they'lll be, and I always amaze people. I'm good like that, HA. So needless to say I called Easy to Slip > Supplication, and I'm glad I did. Easy to Slip was good; it always seemed to me that there isn't really much to this song or something, but I do love it. The segue into Supplication was different than usual, I think, and the Supplication riff started out slower and a little different, then exploded into the usualy jams-n-stuff, and when Bobby sang it, I almost pissed myself I was so happy.
I had a feeling about Lazy River Road , right again, HA! Like Bird Song, Bobby vocals are amazing, his playing is beautiful in this song, all versions of it, and especially this show, and the background vocals are right-on and very mandatory for this particular tune.
Odessa is, well... Odessa. It's quite the rocker, and I can never decide if I like it, but I sure don't hate it! This version was over-the-top, but considering I don't listen to Odessa on a regular basis, I don't have much to compare it to, you know?
Now, Bury Me is a very "mysterious" sounding song, and I personally do not care for it, but I enjoyed it nonetheless. I can honestly say I think it was better than the Worcester MA (11-12-05), but's that about all I can say about that--not a fan. The segue into West L.A. is great, and it seems for a minute or two that Bobby is sort of teasing Bury Me Standing while jamming to West L.A., it was really cool. I did not like West LA too much before yesterday, but now I do. I can say that yesterday's show changed my perspective on West LA, much like Penn's Peak changed it about Oct Queen > Deep End, but not Even So (I still don't like it). I honestly expected "Eyes" to close the set, but beggers can't be chosers. West L.A seemed like an unusually pick for that slot.
After loosin my seemingly perfect spot in like the 3rd row against that middle closed off thing with the bars to lean on, I finally got to the extreme front and even had the things with the bars to lean my back on.... Priceless!! I even think Bobby spit on me once, eww.
KC Moan is a song I just started loving, I mean loving. It is beautifully vocalized by Bobby, and I love the song in general. A great version! At first MAMUncle@ sounded like Jack-A-Roe to me, but it wasn't. I was kind of dissapointed actually. But this was a killer version with a killer jam towards the end. I called Masterpiece@ early on as a prediction and was right. It was really good, nothing fantastic I remember about it, but not a single complaint here at all.
Now, I was hoping like hell to see "Jus' Like Mama said" after I saw it was played for the first time the other day. And I DID!! At first it sounded like Ramble on Rose, like sort of a teaser. It was a great song, and I have nothing to compare it to, but it sounded like they played it as much as "Easy Answers" or something. It didn't seem new. I have a feeling it will be one of those tunes that mostly everyone loves.
China Cat was a surprise to me in the middle of the set like that, and I was excited. (Called that one the day before!) And it was great. I Know You Rider was bangin! Man, was it ever powerful, and I didn't expect it to have such a monster of a jam in there, and the "sun will shine" and "headlight" parts wwere twice as powerful as when the Dead did that part. (Sorry Jerry, you did good, but Bobby did it better yesterday!) I was extremely satisfied, probably te best song of the night.
The "Stuff" was cool, although I spent most of it talking to my cohort and complaining to her about how my back was killing me and i was about to swallow my tongue cause it was 300 degrees in there and I was dehydrated! But it was cool, I remember it being weird at the end part.
I prayed that "Sugaree" wouldn't be played tonight, and I sort of called it too, and I was right. It was a really good version, and I don't hate it, but that's the song I heard the most out of all the shows.
After the jam, I laughed absolutely hysterically when Bobby put his hands by his shoulders and then did the thing with his hands to look like a bird, telling them obviously to prepare the Bird Song Reprise. It was great! I used to think this was a waste of a song spot, but I changed my mind. I loved every minute of it!
Two Djinn was unexpected for me. I was thinking Not Fade Away. (that's gonna be today's show, no doubt.) I absolutely adore Two Djinn! It was tied with 2-8-03 and 4-13-05, I cant think of which one's better, but there all are unbeatable in their own way. I called Ripple as the encore. Either that or "Johnny B Goode," I thought!
The encore was really peaceful but bouncy or something like that, I really enjoyed it, and though it was the pefect way to end the night and combined perfectly with the songs that were played.
I give this show a 8.5 outta 10, meaning I absolutely loved It. The reason I gave a little less was because some of the song choices were, in my opinion, a bit crappy (Bury, West, andSugaree only), but soundwise I go for a 10, and performance-wise 9.5, song choice 8.5.
The only problem I had at this show is there are a lot of unwelcome people in the lot. And they are annoying as hell, and they just take up space. The alley is too crowd after the show, but overall it's not bad at all venue-wise. 8.5 for the venue.
Thanks for listening.
Jeremy Karwaski (stealyerface), Jessup, PA
Bobby and the boys hit the Liberty City for two sold out shows and wasted no time in unleasing some energy breaking directly into a strong Bertha opener. Jack Straw was played next and that segued nicely into Bird Song. Long and spacey, but this one took some time to develop on the jam. They dropped right into Easy To Slip, and MK just seems to get better and better on this tune. After some ripping solos from Karan, the Dog segued into Supplication. This jam featured RatDog slowing things down and giving this song a reggae-style twist. Odessa burned brightly, and Lazy River Road was excellent. A well-played but somewhat routine Bury Me Standing gave way to another unbelievable RatDog rendition of West LA Fadeaway to close the first set.
Set 2, and a syrupy sweet KC Moan kicks things off. Mark Karan shined big-time on the ensuing Me and My Uncle. This was followed by a Masterpiece that was sung nicely by Bobby. At this point RatDog was just humming right along with a show that featured some really great interplay amongst the band members. Jus' Like Mama Said, a new RatDog original, sounded like a work-in-progress but showed some potential. This was followed by a fantastic China > Rider combo that brought the house down. Jeff Chimenti's soloing on Rider was superb! A spacey jam segued into Sugaree next. The band played really great on this, and I loved how Bobby really got into the vocals, but at this point Bob was getting a tad bit screechy vocally. The dude was really giving his all though. A Bird Song reprise and then BAM!, a nice intro piano solo from Jeff and were off into Two Djinn. And what a Djinn this was. At the end of this I was stunned with the power and passion RatDog performed this tune. Ripple gently sent us out into the cool Philadelphia evening. Another Philly triumph for RatDog!
Tyler Ainley, Royersford, PA