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Bob Dylan 980614 in Bremen, Germany

       Address: Bürgerweide 1 
       Capacity: approx. 8,000 
       Showtime: 8 PM 

To: Date: Mon, 15 Jun 1998 13:17:22 +0000 Subject: Review - Bremen 14.6.98 From: (Gunter Valentin) Well, after a long hard ride from Hamburg to Bremen we finally arrived at the location at 6 pm - after sticking 2 hours in the frozen traffic. As most of the other reviewers of the Hamburg show I also was pretty disappointed by the performance there. Maybe it was the (cold) weather or something like that, but the band never seemed to be cooking though there were two huge gas heaters directed to Dylan to help him warm up... Anyway this is intented to be a review of the Bremen show - and believe me, it was so much better than two days before! Seems to be proof for Tim's theorie that shows after a day-off are always special in some way... We all had some guesses what might be the opening song tonight, as everybody noticed that the 'Mississippi-Watchtower' doesn't really work at least in slot 1, but nobody seemed to remember... # 1 LEOPARD SKIN PILLBOX HAT A really nice choice, this makes the audience dancing from the first second on as the rhythm is quite similar to RDW. They played it quite similar to those version that recently appeared before the encores, but it never reached the heights ot the 96 opening versions of that song including the harmonica solos... #2 MAN IN THE LONG BLACK COAT Ah, again Peggy.O on the cuesheet remained unplayed. What a pity! Ok, so please hold that one back 'till my next show in Paris! Bob was already in with his singing, delivering a grat rendition, one word soft and smooth, the next shouting out loud in a broken voice... Unbelieveable those sudden changes in his voice. He now seems to combine his 95 soft voice and 97 broken one. #3 COLD IRONS BOUND Puhh, Tough Mama vanished into the open airs of Hamburg - hopefully for a long time. CIB is so much better and was delivered in one of the best versions I've ever heard. Especially because of Bob's singing tonight which was Very special, as you know it's hard or even unpossible to describe you have to hear it. If you live in Europe - DON'T YOU DARE MISS IT!!! #4 YOU'RE A BIG GIRL NOW Wow, the next highlight of the show, I never thought I would like to have this one on my wish list and was a bit disappointed as I realized which song it was but tonight's rendition convinced me what a beautiful and emotional song it is. I even accepted again not to have heard 'Born in time'. Ah, btw a few words on Dylan's outfit tonight: He probably won for the first tine the Band-intern fashion contest tonight as Tony left his terrific purple suit in his wardrobe tonight;-). Bob wore as usual his black suit which came with a blue satin shirt which sparkled in all colors of the light show and a white well, not really a gambler's but a bowtie this time, together with all-white leather boots... #5 SILVIO Seems this one remains endlessly in the lists - and I don't regret it. It always rocks and causes heavy cheerings by the audience. As I noticed it came a bit slower tonight as usual, but I might be wrong... #6 JOHN BROWN Wow - another great highlight with Dylan solo for the first few lines then the band slowly tunes in (except for Tony who had some problems with his bass working nervously) until they reach the highpoint and are really rocking, then the next break and the same again. Dylan is even on this one grinning, dancing and making strange grimaces (what I completely missed at Hamburg two nights before). #7 GIRL OF THE NORTH COUNTRY I first thought it was 'Boots of Spanish leather' which had a welcomed and convincing comeback at Hamburg but I was wrong... Well, these two have quite similar tunes and arrangements. First and only harp solo tonight but a loud and beautiful one. #8 DON'T THINK TWICE Uptempo style. Got one of the biggest cheering from the audience which got nuts during Dylan's guitar and dancing solos. He changed his dance styla a bit and stepped faster. #9 TANGLED The band especially had fun playing this one. Tony was smiling broadly throughout the entire song, maybe because he noticed that three people in the VIP lounge on the balcony were going nuts and dancing wildly around... The only one who's looking a bit sad at the moment is Bucky? # 10 CAN'T WAIT was ok. Nothing special tonight IMO though. # 11 MAKE YOU FEEL MY LOVE A great song performed live. As almost everyone pointed out, so much better live than on the album. People thought it was 'Simple twist' first and were surprised when Dylan started singing. Here again especially tight and soft. # 12 WATCHING THE RIVER FLOW Aha. A small surprise today. WTRF replacing 'Highway 61'. Also a rocker in its new uptempo country arrangment. Woulb be nice to hear a regurlar change of this one with 61... # 13 TILL I FELL IN LOVE One of my favourite live tracks from TooM. I always love to hear it. Not as rocking and burning as the version, a bit slower, but Dylan was shouting his lungs out: 'til I fell in looooooooooooove with you...'. (encores) # 14 KNOCKIN ON HEAVEN'S DOOR Hey - the absolute highlight of tonight's show. Acoustic of course again and with so beautiful background vocals by Bucky and Larry. People looked confused trying to find the hidden female coir on stage;-). A new very nice ending with Bob repeating several times the 'just like so many times before'-part of the chorus and the 'female choir' singing the 'uuuuuuh-uuuuuuuh''s. Just beautiful. Even Dylan was surprised that it worked so well laughing and joking with Tony probably about the voices of his background singers. # 15 LOVE SICK # 16 RAINY DAY WOMEN # 17 BLOWIN IN THE WIND All other encores as usual at the recent shows. All in all probably the best show I heard during that tour, together with Rostock. A great time to all those who will have the chance to see him during the next weeks in the UK. And see you again in Paris!? Really great to meet all of my friends during the last days! Gunter
Subject: June 14, 1998 - Bremen, Germany - a review From: Carsten Wohlfeld ( Date: 15 Jun 1998 03:43:00 +0100 Bob Dylan Bremen, Germany, June 14, 1998 Stadthalle A review by Carsten Wohlfeld Well, I guess we all had high hopes for this show, especially since friday's performance in Hamburg was so plain baaaad. Fortunately saturday was a day off, a chance not only for us, but also for Bob to relax and watch Nigeria beat Spain 3:2 in the soccer world championships. Well, to make it short, tonight Bob definitely delivered the goods. This was without the doubt one of the most exciting shows in Europe so far, even coming close to Leipzig and Rostock. Bob didn't smile much all night, but his singing was mazingly good and the song selection was quite excellent as well. He still manged to find a nummber of new mini-riffs to add to various songs, and also did plenty of knee-bending, which made Lary and Tony smile alot. He and the band came out at precisely 8.30pm to igonore the cuesheet's alternates "Watchtower" and "Everything's Broken" to lauch into: > Leopard-Skin Pillbox Hat Average version actually, with Bob's vocals being buried deep in the mix. Nice to see that he keeps changing the songs in the #1 slot. After the horrid "Watchtower" in Hamburg it was clearly time for a change, too. > Man In the Long Black Coat "Peggy-O" was on the cuesheet but went unplayed (sorry, Gunter :-)), and neither was "Lay Lady Lay" played (sorry, Uta :-)), but this version was a million times better than the one he did in Sweden a few days back, mostly due to his very concentrated singing, very passionate, very sweet. > Cold Irons Bound Made a return to the number 3 slot as expected and sounded even more powerful than usual with Larry finding some interesting new bits in his guitar part. The feedback intro was looooong today, cause David wanted to have some fun... he simply started the song very late. Bob looked kinda puzzled, but Tony was cracking up. Larry took all the solos on this song tonight and did a great job. > You're A Big Girl Now Back to sweet and sensitive mode for this song, not one of my favourites, but as long as it's done as nicely as this, I surely won't complain. Bob messed up his guitar solo, but that was the only minor fuckup. > Silvio So much better than Hamburg, in fact one of the best versions of the whole tour. Really cooking with lots of great Larry/Bob interplay. > John Brown (acoustic) Wow!!! Words fail me to describe the greatness of this version. Basically the arrangement Bob played in New York in January, but whereas five months ago the band seems unsure what the hell they were doing, the delivered what has to be the definitive version of this song. The first verse was Bob alone with his acoustic guitar, no Larry, no Tony, no Bucky, no David, no nothing. Halfway through Bob had this funny expression on his face as if he was going to say: "Oh my goodness this is sooooo good and we're doing it in friggin' BREMEN. You people simply don't deserve this..." And of course he was right. This was definitely a version I'll tell people about in years to come. > Girl Of The North Country (acoustic) Sounded very similar to friday's "Boots" of course, but was very nicely done. Bob on harp at the end, even though it was a rather flat solo. > Don't Think Twice It's All Right (acoustic) Kind of a surprise to hear this one so early in the set. Bob nearly forgot the lyrics to the first verse, but got better closer to the end. Huge crowdpleaser of course. The band had tons of fun playing it as well. > Tangled Up In Blue (acoustic) Yet another new verse instead of "lucky just to be employed", even though I couldn't figure it out (will leave that to Ben T.). Very interesting/ strange phrasing. Bob stressed the middle of every line for the first half, then changing to Caruso mode and singing the song like an operasinger, well, he attempted it anyways. Tony nearly fell over cause he was laughing so hard!!! > Can't Wait Average version, with lots of minor mistakes, but the song (and especially the live arrangment) is so strong it hardly did matter. Still a highlight for most people. > Make You Feel My Love Well, it's the only song in the set that sounds *exactly* the same every night, so please refer to my previous reviews for more detailed comments. > Watching The River Flow I don't remember it very clearly, but I think Bob said "The next one is for our special friend Josh Nelson. I'm sure you'll enjoy it".... seriously, I know Josh hates this song, but to most people it's still fun to hear. Not as good as at "Rock am Ring" though. After the song, Bob quickly introduced the band and then launched into: > 'Til I Fell In Love With You YES! First show without "Highway 61" since the New York City run in January, if my memory serves me well. Nice to hear this one again, and it was every bit as good as friday's performance. Then they were gone. > > (encores) > Knockin' On Heaven's Door (acoustic) It's so funny to see Larry and Bucky to the "female backing vocals" to this song and after the nice "oooo" intro a pretty nice version of this song followed. The interesting bit was the end (and improved or rather: improvised?) ending: the band got quieter and quieter while Bob repeatedly sang "just like so many times before", similar to the Boston 1/24/98 with Van Morrison. After they ended Bob turned to Tony and bursted into laughter. I guess it was more improvised than improved anyways. Interesting to see it go back to acoustic after the electric version from "Rock Am Ring". Two different arrangements during the same tour, a rarity. > Love Sick While Bucky already started the spooky intro, Bob said a few sentences that were hard to understand, maybe it was "thanks ev'rybody, just like so many times before", which would've been ultra silly I guess, but maybe it was something completely different. The tapes will tell. "Love Sick" was okay, but nothing special. > Rainy Day Women Nos. 12 & 35 No surprise of course, but interesting to see it come back after just one night's rest. Pretty hot version too. Bob's first solo was what I regonized as the melody of "Spider And The Fly", a 1965 Rolling Stones b- side. I dunno if it was really that, or if maybe the Stones took it from an old Blues song themselves, but Bob certainly had fun playing the little melody, then turned to Tony and both smiled. I guess it must've been some kind of inside joke. > Blowin' In The Wind (acoustic) Not the best version they've done on this tour, but still nice to hear with Larry and Bucky on backing vocals during the chorus. As I said earlier, a very good show, a million times better than the dreadful show in Hamburg, lots of new songs, lots of changes to the setlist (he skipped "Bound", "Highway" and "Rainy Day" in just two nights!) and a show that makes you rush home to check the tour guide on Bill Pagel's page and then buy tickets for all the remaining shows... I'll be at tomorrow's double headlining show with Van the Man, so expect another review soon. Thanks for your time and good night. carsten wohlfeld -- "what once you called home is a minefield" (damon & naomi)

June 1998 Setlists Tour