, attached to 2016-07-19

Review by pmc2kd

pmc2kd Night 2 at BCGA offered an even better performance then Monday. I thought the first night was a solid above average show, but this show certainly elevated to another level.

Chalkdust Torture (back in the leadoff spot) is always welcome and kicked the energy to 11 right away.

Free has me thinking we were in for a Saturday style rock show and contained the typically great work of Mike, with Trey finishing the job with a solid peaking solo.

Breath and Burning was a new one for me. It was decent, and it's always good to see Page get a chance in the spotlight for some nice work on the organ.

Theme felt strong, although not perfectly executed, and Trey's solo on this one always sends me to the mountaintop.

I was calling Cities as an opener, but it was more than welcome after the first four selections and felt pretty mellow with a nice relaxed outro jam.

Maze always sounds like the best version you've ever heard. This one did too. A great song in the live setting - more Page madness.

Wombat?! Little bustout here. Good call bookending the darkness of Maze with the funk of Cities and Wombat and I thought Trey played a nice solo. Everyone like's encouraging Fishman to grab the mic.

Back to the darkness with Split Open and Melt - the set was really flowing at this point. Melt felt pretty short but still managed to have the moment where you find yourself thinking about how they heck they are going to land out of the insanity. Good version and great placement just one song removed from a similarly evil Maze.

Sparkle was a nice reprieve and a welcome chance to catch my breath, although not played with 100% precision. I had just commented on the hope they'd bring some levity to the set a second before they kicked into this one.

Back down into the depths with ASIHTOS - more fine soloing from Trey (although I always cross my fingers they take this one cosmic).

Space Oddity was an incredible treat. I'm glad they have done this a few times (and I managed to catch it), because it is abundantly clear they practiced it a lot and boy does it show. Crowd was just eating this up. Really really cool.

Overall Set I: They had me thinking it would be a jukebox set with the first 4 tunes, but from Cities onward they put out a really really good set 1.
Highlights: Cities>Maze Wombat, Split Open and Melt, Space Oddity

Second set $$
Down with Disease is a reliable set II opener, and equally reliable in providing some good jamming. This version did not disappoint. Trey's type I solo had me feeling really fine and the band followed that up by navigating into some patient spaces culminating in one of those unbelievable noise peaks with Trey kicking in the tube screamers and trying to blow the roof off the place with his screeching. Powerful stuff.

Dropping Fuego here was actually a nice call, although I was thinking this would be a in the box version with Trey soaking up the adorations of the faithful. They surprised me here by taking a really neat approach to the end jam & after some more fine melodic work they took it down into the quiet space funk that reminded me of some shows from an older vintage. They came back strong into the theme after the master class in dynamics and interplay, which was a nice resolution on the opening two song stanza.

When the chunky Ghost cord kicked in I did a double take. How many heavy hitters can you fit in a set. Shades of the 1927 Yankees murderers row lineup here. Awesome version of Ghost with a funky dance jam section which set the table for a classic Trey cathartic hose jam.

Scents and Subtle Sounds was the set's breather...so yea, it's going to be one of those shows! This is a tremendous song, and this version was fairly compact but the jam was still really nice and it's just such a treat.

Light - the jamming continues! This was doesn't take too long to give us the goods and the manteca quote is never unwelcome. More fine jamming and another feather in the cap of this 3.0 vehicle.

->No Quarter with Page getting some more time in the spotlight working a nice piano solo into the Zep cover. I've been fortunate to catch this tune 3 times now, with the debut and SBIX versions being similarly satisfying. Great song, great placement, great energy. Trey annihilates and eviscerates.

Fluffhead is the victory lap - well earned - and the crowd responds in kind with a celebratory vibe (lots of hugs and high fives were being bandied about in my section). The song wasn't played perfectly, but that didn't limit the power of that final release and peak.

Set II: Pretty hard to argue that this setlist was close to perfection in construction and largely execution. Jamming all over the place, tons of heavy-weight tunes. People will be rightfully ecstatic about this one.
Highlights: The entire set.

Encore:
Bug - I heard Trey playing a slight variation on that big Bug riff in one of the earlier jams so I was sort of waiting for this to pop up. When it did in the encore slot I felt as though it was appropriate, take a minute, reflect on what happened and then some final fireworks...but wait....there's more...

First Tube is a fine way to end any show and this version reached a screaming peak with Jedi Trey doing his thing with the axe. A really great celebratory stamp on a fine show.

4.25/5 - This show creeps into the upper echelon of 3.0 shows and would go 10 rounds with many of the better shows from earlier eras. Only things keeping this from elite is perhaps a lack of a true Signature Jam or some deeper exploration in Set 1.

I for one am looking forward to a third night.


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