Bob Dylan - Bob Links - Review - 04/30/99


Vienna, Austria

April 30, 1999


Review provided by Carsten Wohlfeld

After spending the day with Robert, Gunter, Tim and Regine doing some
Sightseeing in Vienna, eating a fab pizza and some delicious ice-cream we
arrived at the venue at 7.15pm. The Stadthalle is huge, probably has a capacity of
around 12,000 if there are seats on the floor like tonight, but it doesn’t
actually look (or sound) too bad. It was filled with around 8,000 Dylan fan,
mostly older people, due to the outrageously high ticket prices. The show
started at 7.50 with...

  Friend Of The Devil (acoustic)

which was as good as it ever was. I only wish that he’d do „Hazy Shade Of
Winter" tomorrow in Ischgl. It would make perfect sense: It’s a cover, the
last time he did it was at the probably  hottest show Bob played ever (in
France ‘92) and tomorrow will most definitely be the coldest one eer, an open
air in the snow.... butI’m only wishful thinking of course.

 Mr Tambourine Man (acoustic)

much better than two days ago as Bob remembered all the words. Huge
crowdpleaser as you’d expect.

 Masters Of War (acoustic)

very well received, well, better than the night before anyways and very
well done as usual.

 A Hard Rain’s A-Gonna Fall(acoustic)

Another song Bob could remember tonight. He actually repeated the
mistake-come-new arrangement with the „false start" chorus tonight.

 Tangled Up In Blue (acoustic)

same as it ever was. It was at this point when I bgan thinking about how
happy a little bit of change would make me. Of ourse he did a lot of songs he
didn’t do in Graz, but all the songs had featured in the set quite
frequently over the last ten days or so... no harp though.

 It’s All Over Now Baby Blue (acoustic)

was no exception to that rule, but it was nicely done and also thankfully
a bit slower than the days before. Still no harp though.

 Boots Of Spanish Leather (acoustic)

was one of two songs that *completely* made the night. Ist just gorgeous
every time he sings it and one of the few songs that band seems to play
perfectly each time they do it too. Very well received bythe crowd as well.
Anything but „Can’t Wait" as the opener of the electric set would’ve made me even
happier and luckily we got

 Cold Irons Bound

which is still far from being my favourite song, but it was a welcome
change nevertheless. They have a new backdrop with different colours that they
use now and the red curtains behind the band during this song looked like a
sunrise, very fitting for the first electric song, I thought. U2 used to use
it for their ‘87 opener „Where The Streets Have No Name", too, by the way.

 Make You Feel My Love

Seemed to be a strange choice for this slot, but oh well. At that point I
thought he played it now instead of it’s usual #11 slot to have an excuse to
torture us with „She Belongs To Me" later on, but hey, I was wrong!

 Stuck Inside Of Mobile With The Memphis Blues Again

Thanks to Tim and Regine who were among the first down at the front we
finally got the stage rush during this song and the show impoved immediately.
Bob finally started grinning and moving around more and seemed to reall enjoy
the presence of the people right at the rail. After the song Larry reached
for his semi-acoustic guitar and I’m sure they had „Not Dark Yet" on the
cuesheet (which I didn’t get to see). Then he went over to Tommy who handed him
his red Gibson, the one he usually uses on the older songs. But that still
wasn’t the right one and he finally had his Fender Tele in his hands, the
one he usually only plays during „Feel My Love". So it was already clear that
they would do a new(ish) song - or would do „Feel My Love" twice :-) And it
actually was 

 Tryin’ To Get To Heaven 

now with all band members on electric instruments. As soon as Bob started
singing Tony had this gigantic smile on his face, as if he was gonna say:
„Yes I know, you waited 20 months to hear this one live". So we got the second
ever live rendition of this song, which was very true to the recorded
version, carefully played and beautifully sung. I thought the „I’ve been all
around the world boys" line made even more sense on stage that on the album. The
only real difference to the studio version was the somewhat reggaefied
rhythms that Kemper and Campbell plyed. Sounded very nice though. Apparently
this was even a request, but I’ll leave it to Christian to explain that, cause
he was closer at the front. After the song Bob introduced his gang and they
went straight into...

 Highway 61 Revisited

which was very playful tonight and wasn’t only enjoyed by the crowd but
also by the band as well. 

 Not Dark Yet

When they came back again and Tony didn’t go over to Bucky with his
„speed-o-meter" I knew that they wouldn’t do „Love Sick" tonight. This was a very
welcome alternative I thought, one of the few, if not the only one in
Dylan’s catalog that has the same spooky feel to it as „Love Sick" but still is
equally as good. Hope he keeps it in this lot.

 Rainy Day Women # 12 & 35

I managed to see 13 shows in a row without „Rainy Day" and I’m very proud
of that fact. But as they say: All good things ave to come to an end... this
version was slow and - as far as i’m concerned - horrible.

 It Ain’t Me Babe (acoustic)

A nice version was followed by Bob’s only harp solo and what a good one it
was too Still nowhere near as amazing as the ones from 1995/96, but
probably the longest and best since his illness.

 Not Fade Away

was „Not Fade Away". 

 Like A Rolling Stone

faster and better than last night. Great way to end the show even though I
personally would enjoy an encore that wasn’t strictly greatest hist more
than the five star finale that reminds me of the Stones doing „Brown Sugar",
„It’s Only Rock N Roll", „Satisfaction" and „Jumpin’ Jack Flash" at the end
of every show in 1990. 

Anyways, it was a fun show, even though tonight the lack of real change in
the first part was *slightly* disappointing. The perfect „Boots" and lovely
„Heaven" alone were worth the admission fee several times over. It was - to
my knowledge - also the longest show Bob has played since 1995 or ‘96 (not
counting the Mercury Lounge warm up last summer). It lasted for well over
two hours. And the best aprt about it: After things got a little predictable
over the last few days, there’s no a lot of possibilitie for what might
happen at the „weird" show in Ischgl, on top  of the mountain. Stay tuned for
more from there! Goodnight!

carsten wohlfeld (
„i wish i was special - i’m just like you" (the cardigans)

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