Dave Matthews Band Concert Review: Favorite Tunes, Freshly Done
By THOMAS KINTNER | Special to the Courant
August 5, 2007
Tuesday night's Police show in East Hartford may have been this summer's local
buzz event, but multi-night stands by the Dave Matthews Band in front of full
houses at the Dodge Music Center in
are the reliable centerpiece of the outdoor concert season in
Saturday night, the steadily appealing act that has been anchoring the season
annually since the 1990s opened this year's stop in town with a fluid program
stacked with favorite tunes, and took enough turns and liberties with the
material to keep it fresh for an adoring sellout crowd.
The seven-piece band's manner is that of a jam band for listeners with
relatively short attentions spans, as it dips and swerves through tunes while
avoiding lengthy detours. An opener of "Best of What's Around" was typical of
the method, a generally compact delivery of a song in which Matthews' rhythm
acoustic guitar-playing and the crisp drum presence of
gave the song's eclectic
bob a backbone.
Fiddler Boyd Tinsley's contributions to early songs were laid back touches such
as his sawing across the mellow pulse of "One Sweet World," but his high-tone
contributions added frenetic energy to the rhythmic cadence of "Louisiana Bayou"
later in the show, and sparked with LeRoi Moore's plump saxophone trimming in
the lively "Grey Street."
Matthews leaned toward Peter Gabriel-style, softly rendered vocal intimacy as he
exhaled lyrics over Butch Taylor's
trickling piano line, but the show was mostly full of buoyant energy similar to
what was found in the hearty "#27" and the festive, engaging dance jam "You
Might Die Trying." The rock pulse of "Hunger for the Great Light" was fired up
by Matthews' ragged shout as it ascended to a cacophonous swell.
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