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Bob Dylan 990427 in Linz, Austria

From "Der Standard" (with thanks to Marion).

From "Oberösterreichischen Nachrichten" (with thanks to Marion).

Date: Sun, 2 May 1999 13:03:18 +0200 (MEST) From: Carsten Wohlfeld ( To: Cc: Subject: linz review Bob Dylan Linz, Austria April 27, 1999 Sporthalle A Review by Carsten Wohlfeld After a very relaxing day off in Uberlingen at the Lake Constance (thanks again to Tim and Regine for red wine 'n' sympathy) we all travelled on to Linz. Amazingly enough Christian didn't even get in trouble with the Austrian border guards and we all arrived way before the doors were opened at 5.45pm. Unfortuantely we neither have the time nor the patience to do a small sightseeing tour of the city, but from what we saw driving around it was okay without being special. The show at the - compared to Zurich - rather small venue (which was about 2/3 full) only started at 8.30pm though. Tim had hoped to get to hear "Friend Of The Devil" tonight and you can imagine the gigantic smile on his face when the opening song was indeed Friend Of The Devil (acoustic) Lovely performance, much better than Zurich's opener. Great backing vocals by Larry 'n' Bucky as well. Right from the start it was apparent that Bob was in an even better mood than in Switzerland two nights before. He smiled constantly and did this weird one-legged dance than I've never seen before. My Back Pages (acoustic) Another great choice, always very welcome. Too bad though that it was a very quick performance, cause I don't think he sang more than three out of the six verses. He ended with my favourite verse, though, the "equality" one followed by a long harp solo. It wasn't *that* special but better than the quickies we got recently. Masters Of War (acoustic) Great performance as usual. It might be somewhat diappointing that he plays it every single night, but rarely sounds a song this good nevertheless. It's All Over Now Baby Blue (acoustic) A repeat of the fast version we already got to hear in Zurich. The vocal delivery kinda reminded me of the classic version from the Madison Sqaure Garden Theater shows last year. Very nice indeed. Tangled Up In Blue (acoustic) was "Tangled", just a little longer and louder than usual with Bob playing all the solos himself. Bob: grinning, crowd: nuts It Ain't Me Babe (acoustic) Another song I can't stand anymore that sounded pretty good tonight. It had the long slow ending that always indicates that it's one of the better "Ain't Me Babes". When he sang the first verse he made this funny apologetic face, as if he was gonna say: "It Ain't Me Babe" and I'm really sorry for it... Before the song Tony had asked Bob if he wanted to play "4th Time Around", but obviously his Bobness wasn't in the mood. A pity, especially when you've heard the staggering performances from the spanish leg of the tour... oh well... Desolation Row (acoustic) Absolutely fucking amazing! Apart from the Madison Square Garden show in January '98 I never ever heard a better "Row". It also had the "Ophelia" verse, which just means that Bob was really into it. By this time I thought: If he follows this up with a half decent electric set, it's gonna be the best Bob show you've ever been too. And as you might know, I've seen a few! After the song he was striking some funny poses, as if he was to say: "Look at me, wasn't that fab?" Can't Wait Was a disappointment at the start of the electric part (see also my comments on that for the show in Zurich), even though it was much better sung this time. On all the song Bob's vocal delivery was really good and even his guitar playing was way above average. Not Dark Yet Another lovely performance, very much the same as in Zurich. Unfortunately it also meant that there was very little change to be expected for the electric set. And yup, they also followed it - again! - with: Stuck Inside Of Mobile With The Memphis Blues Again Which gave Bob another opportunity to flirt with the girls in the front row and to show that he hasn't lost anything of his charme. He actually had so much fun goofying around that he missed the first line of the "Mona" verse cause he was too far away from the microphone. She Belongs To Me Only "new" song to the electric set and a very "unnecessary" version, as Robert put it afterwards. It just went by without offering anything exciting. Band intros followed, funnily enough Bob said "and on LEADguitar...Larry Campbell", which I never heard him say before. Tonight it was especially ridiculous, cause Larry hadn't played a single solo up to this point. Highway 61 Revisited About three minutes into the song Kemper wanted to end it and played the closing part, while the other four were still going on! To save the situation Larry put in a somewhat new and interesting solo. A couple of minutes later Bob turned around to Kemper (usually the sign that the song is about to end) and shook his head a if he was going to say: No, David, it's still not over!" - David almost fell of his chair laughing. Bob also couldn't remember the first line of the last verse, funnily enough. (encore) Love Sick Much better and more concentrated version than the night before. Also, the solo was a lot more energetic. Leopard Skin Pillbox Hat Longer and louder than usual with a lot of nice interplay between Bob and Larry. Then again... it was just "Pillbox", so nobody got over excited. Blowin' In The Wind (acoustic) It was there, and a graying guy next to me was close to tears. Not Fade Away Closed the show as expected (even though Tony tried to persuade Bob to do "Maggie") and was fun as always. It's interesting to see that Bob usually opens his song with a cover and closes it with one, too! Tonight it was even a Grateful Dead song at the start and one the Dead made famous at the end... The show lasted for about 100 minutes and was just about as enjoyable and good as Zurich. The crowd was *very* ethusastic and I'm sure that fired Bob and crew up a fair bit. In Zurich things improved during the electric set, tonight the acoustic set was a killer, but the second half of the show was kinda boring, cause it was basically a repeat of the night before. Still worth the money (and more). Many thanks to Robert aka Shelter for letting us stay at his place! See ya in Slovenia! -- carsten wohlfeld ( "i went to college - i got a fancy car - drop dead apartment - and now i'm a shining star / but she never made it / she's selling avon / but she had you" (nick saloman / mary lou lord)
Subject: belated musings on the Linz show, 27 April 1999 From: Christian Zeiser ( Date: 4 May 1999 10:19:36 -0700 So the normal life has me back on its lap, after ten days on the road and seven Dylan shows that were good in the worst and fantastic in the best cases. I'll try to recollect my thoughts on six of them, after already having sent a review on the show in Zurich. Anyway, Linz, Austria, 27 April 99: As usual, Dylan and the band came our pretty on time and went into Friend Of The Devil. The crowd was on their feet immediately, climbing over the chairs that were used to make the venue look fuller than it really was. The atmpshere in the venue was very intense and relaxed at the same time, a fine audience that consisted of people of all ages. The renditions during the acoustic set made it easy to forget the lack of setlist variation: each song was performed with great care. It's lovely to watch Dylan perform: he is both very relaxed and concentrated, clearly in good shape and mood. highlights of the acoustic set were (for me) Itęs All Over Now Baby Blue and Desolation Row, which is performed with a heavier beat than formerly and almost turned into a danceable song, weird as this may sound. The electric set started with Can't Wait once more. Somehow I think that this song should be featured later in the set. As an electric opener, it doesn't do a very good job - a more fast-paced number like one of the former show openers would fit in better and help get the second half really going. One of the highlights was Not Dark Yet. It took Dylan long to figure out a good live arrangement for this song, but now it reflects the dark and dramatic tension that is there on the studio recording. The line 'I was born here, and I'll die here' gains a very special meaning when sung on a concert stage, by the way. Again, it was *loud*, like at the Zurich show. Highway 61 Revisited rocked like hell, as did the final encore Not Fade Away (thanks to Bob for pulling this one out night after night, I just didn't get enough of it). So again the setlist could have been more interesting, but Linz was no doubt one of the two best performed shows of the ones I've seen recently. I don't like to compare shows usually, but Linz was so totally different from Zurich - where zurich was more of a party (and a fine one, too!), the performance in Linz was concentrated and deep, the audience being not as cheery as in Zurich, but a very animated and grateful one nevertheless. After two shows, I left Linz pretty exhausted but excited, looking forward for the things to come. .... to be continued .... Christian ------------------------------------------------------------------------- Christian Zeiser Hamburg, Germany

1999: January - February - March - April