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Bob Dylan 980712 in Frauenfeld, Switzerland

Subject: Review Frauenfeld 12 July 98 (long)
From: Christian Ter-Nedden (cternedden@DATACOMM.CH)
Date: Sun, 12 Jul 1998 22:21:41 +0100

I hate festivals but what can you do when Dylan finally comes within reach?
(Montreux was too far away and too expensive for me).
The Out in the Green festival is one large stage and a lot of tents on a
dusty, flat, and hot army training ground-cum-horse race track. A terrible
Dylan was scheduled to appear on 1730, play until 7 and leave the stage to
Joe Cocker and some huge TV screen for the World Cup final broadcast at
Before Dylan, there's Joaquim Cortes, a Flamenco dancer with his huge band.
After him, a few people wipe the stage clean - it must be very dusty up
there and somebody in the audience reckons that Dylan's lungs wouldn't like

By the way, German Swiss tabloid SONNTAGSBLICK reported that Dylan wanted
yoghurt, milk, and "Rice Dream", a drink made of rice extracts, water, oil
and flavours (YUM-MY ;-) ) and no alcohol whatsoever.

Punctually at 1730, it's "Ladies & Gentlemen, please welcome Columbia
Recording Artist Bob Dylan!" and they come on stage.
Dylan wears white: White, rather tight pants with silver piping, a belt
with a huge buckle, Western style. White shirt, half unbuttoned so that you
can see his reddening chest. Over that, a white light blazer with
Western-style ornaments.
But the weirdest things are his huge black sunglasses which remind me of
Bono's in his MacPhisto period.
Everybody except Dylan and Campbell wears a hat. David Kemper's is white.
Bucky has bleached blonde hair and a goatee.

Leopard Skin Pill-Box Hat is spot on. Loud, hard rocking from the word go,
with Dylan sneering and shouting the lyrics. The audience is enjoying it.
Bob doesn't move much, his face beneath the huge glasses is expressionless.

Senor. I've been wanting to hear this live for a long time. It's a very
nice rendition, with Dylan singing clearly and soulfully. He plays a nice
solo, too.
I don't think many in the audience know this - there are a lot of teenagers
around who haven't got a clue who Dylan is.

Cold Irons Bound. This is much more powerful and punchy than on the record.
Dylan is visibly enjoying himself, soloing, prancing around a little bit.
His guitar playing is really patchy tonight, sometimes he's just losing it
totally and the band is grinning all the time while he's trying to get back
in synch with them.

I'll Be Your Baby Tonight. Nice groove, Bob lightens up a bit and struts
and prances some more. Not a very remarkable performance of a not very
remarkable song.

Can't Wait. Spooky. Swampy jungley groove. Dylan sneers even more. So far
there hasn't been a lot of tenderness in this show. This - as all the TOOM
songs played tonight - is much better live than on the record.
People have been shouting for Silvio even before Can't Wait, Larry grins,
and here it comes.

Silvio. Bob really lets go on this one. He struts like a circus horse fresh
out of retirement (sorry, but this is exactly what came to my mind when I
saw this!).

As expected, the acoustic set begins after this.

Don't Think Twice It's Alright. Flawed. Bob hardly ever gets his solo right
but continues regardless. Everybody's grinning, particularly Tony Garnier.
Then Dylan picks up a harp and a holder, drops the guitar and plays a brief
and not very inspired solo. It's a pity because the band is great on this
The audience loves it anyway.

Tangled up in Blue. Bob plays a whole lot better here. The Delacroix line
is changed as has been noticed here before. Smiles all around, even Dylan
grins from time to time. It occurs to me that it's amazing how much he
seems to enjoy playing again (particularly compared to Zurich 1991, when I
first saw him live) and considering that he must have had a terrible time
rushing from Spain to northeastern Switzerland in this short time.

Forever Young. Very beautiful with the background vocals. Best song tonight
in terms of Bob's singing. Soulful and bittersweet. I loved it.

Stuck Inside of Mobile. Never liked that song very much but it's great
seeing Bob having fun performing it, strutting and posing as a rock star
throughout. And I noticed some great phrasing, too. ("Stu-uh-ck").

I Shall Be Released. Similar to Forever Young but not as well sung. Still
very nice indeed. Bob stumbles in the last stanza. The intro by Larry is
great, and so are the background vocals.

Highway 61 Revisited. The audience really loves this rocker, and Bob is
fully aware of it. His eyebrows move under the glasses (it's such a pity
you can't see his eyes). He grins a lot now. Extended jamming and
strutting. Suddenly, Bob seems almost as young to me as he was when he
wrote it (mind you, that was six years before I was born). After this, he
briefly introduces the band. Nothing spectacular.

Bob & band bow and leave. They return immediately for the encores:

Love Sick. Excellent. A lot better live than on TOOM or the tapes I've got.
More punch, too. The groove is hypnotic, the lyrics are clearly
intelligible. All in all, a very nice surprise - I didn't think this would
be that fascinating.

Rainy Day Women Nos. 12 & 35. The last opportunity tonight for Electric Bob
to get into Guitar Hero mode. He does a lot of weird, Dylanoid moves with
his head. Again, this is hard rock.

Blowin' in the Wind. Another very pleasant surprise in that I didn't think
this would be so beautiful. A Montreux reviewer said about Blowin' that it
sounded as if Bob had just written it. That's true. A new, haunting tune,
and he sings the lyrics as though he had never sung them live and wanted to
make sure everybody got it.

All in all, a nice, solid show but I've seen better (Konstanz 1996 or the
three concerts in France 1994 come to mind). He was probably a bit tired
and deserves a break.

Thanks for reading.

Christian Ter-Nedden, Zurich, Switzerland,
Personal Homepage:

Subject: Re: Frauenfeld 12 July 98 Setlist From: Carsten Wohlfeld ( Date: 13 Jul 1998 08:55:00 +0100 On 12.07.98, cternedden@DATACOMM.CH wrote: > 1. Leopard Skin Pill-Box Hat > 2. Senor > 3. Cold Irons Bound > 4. I'll Be Your Baby Tonight > 5. Can't Wait > 6. Silvio > 7. @ Don't Think Twice, It's Alright (with harp) > 8. @ Tangled up in Blue > 9. @ Forever Young > 10. Stuck Inside of Mobile > 11. I Shall Be Released > 12. Highway 61 Revisited > > 13. Love Sick > 14. Rainy Day Women Nos. 12 & 35 > 15. @ Blowin' in the Wind if you compare this and last night's setlist from Escalarre in Spain... they have to be the most similar ones Bob played on two consecutive nights since Berkeley in May 1992. They are exactly the same with one exception: In addition to the adbove "Cocaine Blues" was played in Spain". I guess after cahnging around the set so much at the beginning of the tour Bob got bored with it at the end. Or is that Tony? I'd really like to see the cuesheets for these shows. Wonder if there was a chance for the shows to develop in diferent directions at all. Carsten Oh btw, Bob did 99 different songs in Europe alone, which should make a total of 104 in total for 1998 and it's only July. In all of 1997 he played a total of 101 songs if my memory serves me well. Also, "Like A Rolling Stone" was on the cuesheet for a dozen times or so (many times without an alternative) in Europe and wasn't played one single time, which is a bit odd I think. -- carsten wohlfeld "man cannot be too careful in the choice of his enemies" (oscar wilde)

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