St. Paul, MN - October 29, 2006

From our view in the 23rd row, the show really took off after the first five
songs. At first, we had settled for our seats in the middle of the floor,
but as showtime neared, we opted to check out the view from the side of the
stage, up in the stadium seating. We stayed there at first, but once Maggies
started, it was evident the sound over there was awful. Anyone who only saw
and heard the show from up there didn't get the full experience, or even
half the experience. During the instrumental break at the end of Maggies, we bolted back to our
floor seats. A night of watching tiny Bob between heads, but we could hear
the music, and that was the important thing. She Belongs to Me and When the Deal Goes Down were well done, but Bob
fumbled through a lot of It's alright ma. He attempted to mumble words, then
just pulled back and didn't sing about half of an entire verse. On a side note, I yelled "Let's go, Bob!" after the second song and Bob said
audibly from the stage "Yeah....let's go." Doubt it was a reply to me, but
it was funny to hear him say it, regardless. A very nice and uniquely phrased Simple Twist got the crowd excited. Bob had
one of the biggest upsings ever on the first verse, then came back with some
nice rap-like phrasing. Download this version when you get the chance. I'm
looking forward to hearing it again on the boot, some funny stuff. Overall,
a stronger version than the two I saw on the ballpark tour this summer. I
was 0-for-22 on Simple Twist, and now have gotten it three straight shows. Rollin and Tumblin followed, meaning I got to hear Bob sing young lazy slut,
damn and sons of bitches in one night. The band sounded kind of muddy and
Bob's singing wasn't sharp like it was on Deal and Nettie Moore, but hearing
a song for the first time is always a thrill. Masters of War kept the arena in a similar state. This version didn't build
up as much as the spring in Sun City. As usual, the crowd responded to the
political stuff. The biggest crowd pleaser of the night came up next with the familiar intro
of Tangled. I didn't notice any of the self duet stuff from Chicago, but a
good version. Don't think twice was next and was better than the version I heard this
summer, but once again not as sharp as the spring in Sun City. For proof
that Bob can still sing in a melodic fashion, check out the second verse of
this performance when you get the boot. Ended with the long, building
harmonica solo, which got the crowd excited. Highway 61 kept the energy
going, as usual. Expecting Workingman's Blues, I was a little surprised to hear the start of
Nettie Moore. This version was outstanding, the performance of the night for
me. I would have never believed Bob could still treat a vocal with this kind
of care. Got a big ovation at the end. Summer Days closed the set. I noticed there's now a part at the end of the
song where the band stops playing and lets Bob belt out a line, then jumps
back in. I think it was the last "Summer days and the summer nights are
gone." Bob left the stage, comes back and busts into Thunder on the Mountain. Very
cool song to hear and Bob really dug into the words rapid-fire style. Almost
no break between songs before the band launched into Like a Rolling Stone,
which had a little different phrasing than usual. Bob stretched out a few
more words than usual. Band intros: Bob said "Going to introduce my band now, It's as good of time
as any." Something like that. He then said "One of us was born over in St.
Joseph's hospital. See if you can guess which one..." Then some chopped up phrasing on Watchtower and we called it a night. A fun
show, with the highlights being Deal, a rap-style Simple Twist, the second
verse of Don't Think Twice, and Nettie Moore.
Review Location: 
Xcel Center, St. Paul, MN
Review Date: 
Sunday, October 29, 2006
Review Author: 
Matt Steichen