The setlist was the same as Pittsburgh. It was my first chance to hear any of the material from “Bananas” live and I must say I was quite impressed with how good “Silver Tongue” sounded. I suspect when the new album comes out they’ll jettison all the “Bananas” material (except possibly “Contact Lost”) although I think this song is worthy to stick around a few more years.
It seemed to me that Don’s organ and keyboards were too low in the mix early on. I thought perhaps the fact that Steve’s amps were pointed right at me was altering my sense of the full band’s sound, but Don kept motioning for more volume during the middle section of “Woman From Tokyo.” They finally got the sound right and Don came through loud and clear during the remainder of the set.
The highlight of the show for me was “Perfect Strangers.” Don really had the Hammond roaring during the intro and the whole band played brilliantly. “The Well Dressed Guitar” and “Space Truckin'” were outstanding. The band really seemed to enjoy themselves, and when “Hush” came around it seemed like the set had just flown by. (Incidentally, Ian Gillan introduced “Hush” as a song that was “written exactly 5000 years ago on stone tablets.”)
I think Ian Gillan actually looks and sounds better now than he did 10 years ago, maybe even 20 years ago. “Strange Kind of Woman” was the only time he seemed a bit off on the high notes, and he let out plenty of powerful screams during the show. The longer, thicker hair seems to suit him too. His only real mistake was attempting to introduce “Contact Lost” before “Demon’s Eye” but Paicey quickly corrected him. The entire band played great, and it was certainly worth the 570 miles I drove to see the show!
review: Matthew A. Turnage, CPA