Aside from the dismal Here Comes Sunshine, this show was a solid 4 out of 5 stars. The other 15-20 times that I have seen the Dog, they have opened with their traditional segue jam; personally, I love that aspect. Very different than a lot of other musical acts these days and it brings a nice start to the evening. However, on this night, they started right out into an a capella chorus and then right into the song.... Ok, I can buy that, a different way to start the show than normal. I love these guys for their ability to mix it up, so I can buy that. But it was not good..... Mark was way off, Bobby looked confused and the sound system was all awry..... very sub par.
It didn't take long to fix though. By the time they ripped into one of my all time favorite songs, Big River, they were locked and loaded. Mark took off, very Jerry reminiscent, and they seemed to find their spot from there. The first set was highlighted with a very nice Brown Eyed Women and as always, a groove filled She Says. The folks in the audience really seemed to dig the last 4 songs, and who could blame them..... They were on!
The rest of the evening carried along the same intensity, but never increased, which is why I rate this show a 4. Don't get me wrong, the show was great, but it was much more laid back than normal. He's Gone was awesome, but I just can't get beyond Jerry singing that song. Bobby always gives it his all and I commend him for that.... Jerry is just still missed greatly. Standing on the Moon through Stones was a great close; Two Djinn is always tight and Stones was very different and again much appreciated for that very reason. All in all, I cannot complain with my experience. Bobby is Bobby and that is all that needs to be said.
Note to self...if attending the Capitol Center again, drink beforehand.....lines are too long, I mean way too long and you can't bring it to your seat. Minor point.
Paul Roberson, Manchester, NH
I never thought I'd see such a thunderous show, especially in little old Concord, NH, especially after the three-night run at the Beacon. But, I did! A very politically charged show, I thought, well schemed by the band in the capital city of the first in the nation primary. The Throwing Stones/Freedom reprise/Throwing Stones jam at the end was positively brilliant. A great vibe in the place all night. Bobby applauded the audience during the band's bows. Very cool. Jay Lane had the final say at the end, telling the audience what sounded like, "Thank you for coming to the House of Shock." Indeed! A shockingly good show. Great set list. Great performances. The total package.
Todd, Fairlee, VT
Okay......Bobby does know how to make up for a less than stellar first set. The 2 acoustic numbers were lacking a bit, but Man Smart, He's Gone, Two Djiin wrapped up a semi-lackluster evening. I saw Ratdog 4 times in '06, the last show @ Lowell, which was incredible! I need to see them when they come to the northeast, but I drove 160 miles to be unimpressed by one of the great touring bands (a la Dead Days)
Zach, Seal Harbor, ME
The entire experience was lavishly overwhelming.Discovering the history of the building,I knew this would be no ordinary show.And without fail, the boys delivered a show that was truely magical and mesmorizing. The intimacy was a privilage to share in!!! This band is exceptional and extraordinary,and they all look great!How awesome was it when Bob walked to the farthest point of the stage with M.K!!WOW! The essence of showmanship!!I'll be thrilled to see them here again.Not getting to spend enough time with them is the only complaint that could possibly be made!!Thank you guys.IN DOG WE TRUST
HEATHER, MANCHESTER NH
1st show of tour for us. Ran innto some older Dead family & some newer RatDog family here. So kool to see old friends. Scene was good,great Vibe. Inside was nice. Frnt row bal. seats. Did anyone else see the Bat during first set buzz Jeff?? Pretty Wild. During first set there was a huge BOOM from stage. could barely hear the band? Once fixed sounded fine again. Started out without a Jam right into Sunshine. Liked when Jay Was singing that he needed help during stuff. Bob & Mark jammin onto stage front was kool. Was a great show. Cant hear He's Gone enough. set list flowed well. Thanks RatDog & Crew great show
Richard Alberty, Vt
What i liked most about this show was just how much fun Bobby seemed to be having. I had seen him once before and he had really performed a large amount of grateful dead songs. This time around it seemed he felt confident enough to put out some newer songs such as City Girls and She Says, and although they where not the strongest of the night he and the band seemed rather pleased at the warm response. What pleased me most about the show was how relaxed and understanding the audience was and seemed to, well, understand what it took to separate a good show from great show. In my mind Bob works best in a relaxed non- rushed environment and the venue and crowd provided just such a feeling. In my mind he was really thanking us (when he applauded us) for coming out on a Monday night and making it fun for him.
To me the highest parts of the show where the groovin' Brown-Eyed Women (ratdog really excels at finding that fun little place and Mark mixed some very Jerry licks while making the song his own) Garcia's country anthem liberty (really fun to hear another version than the one on So Many Roads) and of course the politically charged Throwing stones (Bobby and Mark's walk out to the edge of stage will forever be remembered).
What really kept this from being a five star show was the sound system particularly during the first set, but the powerful delivery of Brown-Eyed Women really puts that out of mind. I don't know if this being overstated but i would buy the soundboard of the show just to get a hand of that song. RatDog really delivered there.
After seeing RatDog at Meadowbrook in '05 the band seems to be slowly getting better and better. In my mind RatDog has the potential to become a really great band and therefore a really great touring attraction. At this point let's just home that Mark gets better. Bob and co keep up the good work, you guy's could really become one of the standout bands of this era.
Sam, Lyme, NH