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Bob Dylan @ K-Rock Centre, Kingston, November 15/2008


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[blurb]Bob Dylan @ K-Rock Centre, Kingston Ontario, Saturday November 15/2008

Review by David Ball


[color:gray]Photo courtesy of Chris Morris (aka skelter)

Bob Dylan's generally entertaining sold-out show at the new K-Rock Centre was one of the final Ontario stops on his cross-Canada tour and should ease some of the unpleasant memories still lingering from when I saw him in Kingston back in 1989 in support of his Oh Mercy album. It remains one of the worst concerts I've ever seen. [/blurb]Saturday’s concert shared a few similarities with the '89 debacle, specifically Dylan was hard to understand (which is no surprise) and the sound was pretty spotty (surprising given the newness of the venue). But whatever punch the limp sound-system lacked didn't get in the way of some really solid playing from Dylan and his crack band.

Decked-out in a western suit-jacket and white cowboy hat, Dylan and company ploughed through an eclectic two-hour set scattered with newer tracks, classics and rarities, doing a fairly decent job of keeping things interesting and decidedly bluesy.

Dylan looked to be having a good time fronting his five-piece band on hits “Maggie’s Farm†and “Just Like a Womanâ€, but his later era songs actually came off better. The excellent rockabilly “Tweedle Dee & Tweedle Dum†from 2001’s Love & Death and equally great “Things Have Changed†from 1997 overshadowed what was to come. Dylan’s rapid-fire monotone mutterings and his unwillingness - or inability - to sing with any sort of melody rendered most of his most famous songs like "Stuck Inside of Mobile with the Memphis Blues Again" and "Highway 61 Revisited" nearly unrecognizable.

Dylan is an acquired taste to be sure, especially this older challenging organ-playing Dylan and I was pleasantly surprised when fans that neatly packed the floor rarely chose to sit. Instead most cheered, danced and/or sang along even if Dylan’s reworked songs were impossible to follow, so the all-ages Kingston crowd definitely deserves a medal for effort. Perhaps the audience good-cheer had more to do with the legend simply gracing a Kingston stage or even Canadian politeness in general rather than the quality of the overall performance, but loud applause repeatedly filled the hockey arena so what the hell do I know?

The two-song encore gave the night a decent passing grade. Though iconic "Like a Rolling Stone" and a rocking "All Along the Watchtower" found Dylan undermining his famous lyrics by frequently missing his mark especially on the choruses, the band generated lots of instrumental fireworks and they are two of the greatest songs ever written, so hearing them in person is still pretty rousing no matter how detached they sounded.

Dylan's career has been on a critical and commercial upswing since the early 90's and I was hoping that this in-the-flesh Dylan would be more like the coherent gravely-voiced version heard on his very accessible latter studio albums. However, I'm glad that Saturday's concert has replaced some of that 19 year-old Oh Mercy reek festering in the back of my brain. *** (out of 5)

November 18/08

K-Rock setlist:

Maggie's Farm

Lay, Lady, Lay

Things Have Changed

Spirit On The Water

Tweedle Dee & Tweedle Dum

Just Like a Woman

The Levee's Gonna Break

Make You Feel My Love

Stuck Inside of Mobile With the Memphis Blues Again

Ballad of Hollis Brown

Honest With Me

The Lonesome Death of Hattie Carroll

Highway 61 Revisited

Nettie Moore

Thunder On The Mountain


Like a Rolling Stone

All Along the Watchtower

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Bob Dylan

K-Rock Centre

Kingston, Ontario

November 15, 2008

Disc 1:

01. intro

02. Maggie's Farm

03. Lay, Lady, Lay

04. Things Have Changed

05. Spirit On The Water

06. Tweedle Dee & Tweedle Dum

07. Just Like A Woman

08. The Levee's Gonna Break

09. Make You Feel My Love

10. Stuck Inside Of Mobile With The Memphis Blues Again

11. Ballad Of Hollis Brown

12. Honest With Me

Disc 2:

01. The Lonesome Death Of Hattie Carroll

02. Highway 61 Revisited

03. Nettie Moore

04. Thunder On The Mountain

05. -encore break-

06. Like A Rolling Stone

07. band intros

08. All Along The Watchtower

Band Members

Bob Dylan - vocals, keyboard, guitar, harp

Denny Freeman - guitar

Donnie Herron - violin, banjo, mandolin, pedal steel, lap steel

Stu Kimball - guitar

Tony Garnier - bass

George Recile - drums


First five songs without Denny Freeman

source: soomlos

4th row left of center

neumann km140's > sound devices mixpre > edirol r-09hr (24/44.1)

edirol r-09hr > usb > hdd > audacity > cd wave > flac


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Category: Bob Dylan (2007/2008)

Size: 566.78 MB (594,314,703 bytes)

Uploaded: 2008-11-17 05:40:23 (1 day ago)

Uploaded by: starlight88

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that was a fun show, i was front row. definatley had a hard time understanding him at times. i got super excited when he picked up the guitar after first song. i think he put it away halfway through the second song. definatley need to listen to the tapes again.

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