Thursday, 29 October 2015

Only Passing Through - Two Nights With Bob Dylan at the Royal Albert Hall

Bob Dylan was on truly great form at the Royal Albert Hall in 2013 (here) and in 2015, at the same venue, the great man is still in fine fettle. In the interim he's dropped a few of his own compositions in favour of a 'Shadows in the Night' inspired selection scattered throughout the set, all of which drew deservedly rapturous applause from the audience. 'What'll I Do' is a simple little thing that usually gets to me, whoever's singing it. I made it through Bob's performance of the song unscathed on Friday, but let my guard down and felt the sting of tears at the same point in the set the following evening. 'The Night We Called It a Day' and its Saturday replacement, 'Where Are You', were both terrific too, as was 'Autumn Leaves', haunting and wounded on both nights.

Two years on and Dylan's own songs continue to receive generally solid readings, though lyrical tinkering has weakened 'Long and Wasted Years' and 'Spirit on the Water' has, for me, lost its momentum somewhat. Perhaps 'Spirit...' has retained its slot in the set solely for the final, audience galvanising, 'You Think I'm Over the Hill...' verse. In 2013 'Love Sick' was a gorgeous, breathtaking, midway point in the set, now it's a beefed up final encore, which allows the band, and us, to stretch out one last time before we head out into the night.

 'Love Sick'. Paris, 19th October 2015.

6 comments:

charity chic said...

Glad you enjoyed it Swede. Got a good write up in the Guardian

Old Pa's Corner said...

Looks as if these concerts were up to standard but feel from what you say did not match 2013, but I could be wrong of course. I will definately come over if there is a next time.

Singing Bear said...

Sounds like another fine couple of nights there. Having witnessed Cardiff last night, I'd say the 'Shadows' related songs are getting best of Bob's energies right now, though he is in good form all round. Will be submitting thoughts to Bob Links asap, if you're interested. Yes, it's always good when he's in town.

Ohmercy said...

Hot damn, Bob!
That man can sing! The pause towards the end- (I forget which line at the moment) was perfect- love his timing and delivery, as always.
His voice seems to be getting stronger and clearer over the last couple of years-
Thanks so much for this.
So glad you went

Ohmercy said...

Hot damn, Bob!
That man can sing! The pause towards the end- (I forget which line at the moment) was perfect- love his timing and delivery, as always.
His voice seems to be getting stronger and clearer over the last couple of years-
Thanks so much for this.
So glad you went

The Swede said...

Not quite up to 2013 for me, though possibly could have been with a refreshed selection of his own songs, delivered in his current voice.

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