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Furthur | 09.20.09 | Oakland
cliftonhanger
cliftonhanger
9/26/2009 05:08 AM

i agree that bobby needs to stop being a control freak. if they are hiring a jerry impersonator to play with them, then they need to let him sing jerry songs: FOTD and Terrepin for example. i still can't get into bobby singing terrepin or SOTM. let john sing then jerry tunes, let bobby sing the bobby tunes, and phil doesn't need to go hide in the back.

oldfartatplay
oldfartatplay
9/26/2009 07:25 AM

GOT to see some of this - can't handle warren singing and playing jerry's parts, not that i need a jerry clone, i just can't stand warren doing it.

AdkinsJ
AdkinsJ
9/26/2009 08:52 AM

Tourfan and others,

Show reviews are all over philzone.org. I wasn't there, but my good buddy, a terrific guitarist himself, was there and served as my "ace cub reporter."

Briefly, he felt that John was somewhat nervous during the first set Friday, but he became more and more comfortable throughout the run. Apparently the crowd gave him a huge ovation when he approached the mic for Althea an even greater response when it ended, which really loosened him up.

His guitar playing, tone, etc was mostly spot-on. Keep in mind that this guy has played much, much more Dead music (1600+ shows) over the last 12 years than the remaining Dead has...as my buddy said, it's like he's been sequestered away, studying in monastery for the last 12 years for this moment. It's not so much that he's looking to replicate Jerry, it's that he's trying to give to this music the guitar/voice that seems to fit best with it, and I'm sure that we all agree that would be very "Jerry-esque."

My buddy also felt that John's playing challenged Phil and especially Bobby to step up give it more than they have in a long time. They answered. Apparently Bobby seemed to be renewed. Bob has a way, when he's feeling the other guitar, of not looking at the player in the eyes, but subtly stepping towards him while he's doing his Bobby-bobbing like he's being pulled in with a tractor beam. My buddy said there were times when Bobby was pratically on top of John.

The rest of the band was solid and Russo was apparently an absolute stand-out, technically precise, not overbearing, but very, very energetic. The bands' collective love after Sunday's encore was evident and many felt that it was a sign that more of this Furthur project would turn up in the future.

Sorry I don't have more specifics like a song-by-song review of how it came off, but unfortunately I wasn't there. The upcoming Northeast run is a "can't miss", though.

Long live Jerry!

karrvingwaves
karrvingwaves
9/26/2009 10:21 AM

loving the fact they called down the ranks for John to come play with them. Thats like Johns dream come true probably. East coast love, i love it

chux7487
chux7487
9/26/2009 10:45 AM

must hear this. new phil song = boom. someone plz help i must hear this. dead4life

MCKILLA187
MCKILLA187
9/26/2009 12:07 PM

Id rather see Further than the Dead right now. talk shit if you wanna, but i wanna see what they can do

chux7487
chux7487
9/26/2009 02:15 PM

nice because neither of them are touring. praying for further tour, obviously not going to happen

chux7487
chux7487
9/26/2009 02:16 PM

but if there are any rumors please tell!!!! cub_nasty have you heard anything?

chux7487
chux7487
9/26/2009 02:34 PM

very sorry for the repeated posts -- on further.net it says the soundboards are available for free and gives a host of websites by which to download however the shows are no where to be found, any advice?

chux7487
chux7487
9/26/2009 02:53 PM

very sorry for the repeated posts -- on further.net it says the soundboards are available for free and gives a host of websites by which to download however the shows are no where to be found, any advice?

EBKeith
EBKeith
9/26/2009 04:35 PM

First off, I should admit that I am a salty old Deadhead. Since that terrible day in 1995, I have had a real love-hate relationship with the Boys. I always get to see old friends, make new friends and - let’s admit it - you can’t find a better environment in which to get “silly.” I know we are all lucky that these guys are still out there playing, but it rips my heart out when the music is sub-par.

With the exception of the Other Ones, I have seen all iterations of the post-Dead projects. For me, every other time I went, I left disappointed. Being from the East Coast, disappointed equals pissed off. After catching two bad shows in a row, coupled with the stupid Phil vs. Bobby thing that was going on at the time, I stayed away for a couple years.

Now, I know Fire is Mickey’s song to butcher, Joan Osborne arguably has talent, and Phil and Bobby have the right to sing any Jerry song they want, but I couldn’t bear to watch.

You grow up a little bit. You get over these things. You go back and have fun.

Occasionally, I have had to concentrate on keeping a positive attitude, but in each show the Boys have been able to produce, at least, a few of those moments. Those moments that reminded me why the Grateful Dead was my compass point for four years.

Slipknot becoming Franklin’s – China becoming Rider – Getting shown the light in Scarlet

The Furthur run at the Fox was full of these moments.

The Fox theatre has to be the best indoor venue anywhere. Beautifully renovated and friendily staffed. You can get a drink in less than five minutes, move around freely, and loose yourself in the crazy carpets and Arabian/Babylonian ornamentation of this classic 20’s movie house.

Having been once previously, I knew what I was getting into. A lot of folks at this run where there for the first time. Friday night, before the show even started, the energy was up with that “kid on Christmas morning” feeling that any music fan feels when they first get to run around the Fox.

Friday

So, the show starts off with a noodle fest. Phil and Bobby are out there, alone to start. Phil with his crazy new bass and Bobby with his beard. The pessimist in me is thinking – Hmm, Joe Russo recruited for this gig – Maybe we are in for some avant-garde, jazz driven experiment that is going to put me back on boycott. Well, the band took the stage, Phil dropped the bomb and we were off into the best Other One they have played since Jerry passed away.

We all heard the Wheel coming starting in the opening jam. The transition from the Other One and the segue filled rest of the first set were masterfully done. It really seems like these guys worked on the songs and the transitions. It is possible that Joe Russo and the other “new guy” John Kadlecik are simply so good that they were able to jump in with both feet and absolutely kill it right off the bat. Whether they practiced a bunch or not, it sounded like they did.

They seemed to, consciously, come to points in songs and jams where “we traditionally go there, let’s try go here.” “Here” was repeatedly a great place. Music Never Stopped, in particular, produced some great new grooves, in and out. Joe and Jay looked like they play together all the time; Gelling with Phil and, with Jeff, filling out the thick percussion that gives these songs so much power. Yeah, I know – the ultimate Bobby set. Maybe, but I could not have been happier with how it rolled out.

The Bobby fest continued into the second set. Lost > Saint was great. Sailor was long gone before I started seeing the Grateful Dead so I love to hear the medley. Saint of Circumstance is just the epitome of summertime fun. I felt like I was twenty-one, dreadlocked and at RFK stadium. (’93, anyone?) John Kadlecik is really showing some chops. Althea might have been the highlight of what I consider the best night. He got the greatest crowd reaction when he stepped up to sing. We deserved. DSO does not sell out three and four night runs at the Fillmore for no reason.

Scarlet > Fire then, St. Stephen > the Eleven. Did that just happen? Who wrote this set? The beat rolled on through the second set. Well played, interesting arrangements, lots and lots of energy. I was sweating like a pig waiting for the encore. Friday was so good; I almost didn’t come back for the rest of the run for fear of spoiling that feeling. I walked out the door absolutely beaming.

Saturday

The set started off fun. Bertha into Good Lovin’ was a great choice to open. They moved into more serious material, and continued with the “new twist that works” theme with Estimated. I would have had someone else sing Friend of the Devil but whatever. Stranger was super funky and the highlight of Saturday. The rest of the set trucked right along. Short but sweet - a good ol’ Grateful Dead kinda set.

The second set continued strong with a Shakedown opener. I had gotten an “I’m spun, Help!” text from a buddy towards the end of the set break. Five seconds after they dropped into Shakedown, I got an “I’m wonderful now” follow up. I was wonderful too - Glad I was no longer on a rescue mission just boogein’ down where the Dead meet New Orleans.

Having gravitated to Widespread Panic since ’96, I was glad to see a dirty New Speedway - Probably the edgiest song from the GD vernacular. China > Rider – no comment needed. Playin’ > Eyes > Unbroken then Help > Slip > Franklins – I mean… C’mon. The obligatory Saturday Night capped off another great show.

Sunday

I woke up at like 6:30 on Sunday night after a much needed nap after a stressful but successful football day (Go Ravens!). Thank God the show was four quick Bart stops away. Did I mention that I like the Fox?

You gotta love the Bible songs on Sunday. Sampson was very strong. The sweat was flying off the drummers in short order. Again, whoever thought of Joe Russo for this band is a genius. Casey Jones went off. Very rare when I was seeing the Grateful Dead – (RFK ’92 anyone?) I really like the super amped up “fade out” that has emerged for this song. Interesting that with Pride of Cucamonga and Passenger we have two songs that were on the shelf soon after they were new. I never wondered why Pride was but thought Passenger would have been a cool bust out. We won’t even talk about “who should have sung what.”

The final set stayed interesting. Cumberland was prominent in my GD career and one of my favorites. Cool to see them work it in with some of that old, “forgotten” Grateful Dead material with Viola Lee Blues. Solomon’s was fun as well. Good new stuff in Cassidy and the jam into Dark Star. I’ll hold my opinion of the new Phil song until I’ve heard it again. Standard but good end with Uncle John’s and Sugar Mag. Cosmic Charlie ended the run on a good note.

For closing thoughts: Friday was the best night, followed by Saturday and then Sunday. Didn’t feel like a letdown, though. Great stuff every night. The Fox kicks ass.

John Kadlecik and Joe Russo were great additions to the usual players. Here’s to Phil and Bobby for being ballsy enough to bring John in – Let him sing more! If you are anywhere close to the shows they just announced, do yourself a favor and go.

Cheers,

KC

MCKILLA187
MCKILLA187
9/26/2009 10:03 PM

December 8 & 9

Hammerstein Ballroom

New York City, NY

Doors: 6:30 / Showtime: 8:00 PM

December 11

Chevrolet Theater @ Oakdale

Wallingford, CT

Doors: 6:30 / Showtime: 8:00 PM

December 12 & 13

Asbury Park Convention Hall

Asbury Park, NJ

Doors: 6:30 / Showtime: 8:00 PM

chux, theres a couple dates these are ones listed. not hardly a tour. more like a test run to see if it works. if its a sore dick you cant beat it

shakobe
shakobe
9/26/2009 10:30 PM

Great review KC. Missed Fri And Sat, I really wanted to know what the feel was. Glad it ripped, sucks I missed.

bundystheman
bundystheman
9/27/2009 12:33 AM

Shows are up for download on live music archive...

http://www.archive.org/search.php?query=collection%3AFurthur%20AND%20year%3A%222009%22

Putnameter
Putnameter
9/27/2009 12:55 PM

AWESOME review KC!!! I was really sad and let down to see that Jambase did not review this EPIC show. However, KC, I really enjoyed reading your review, keep 'em coming! Jambase is slippin, I might have to stick with Jambands.com......

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