St Augustine Amphitheatre is within sniffing distance of the ocean,
and the 7 pm start time had the narcotic sun slanting a dappled dose
across the sold-out 4,000 seat bowl.
Shakedown had been free of hassles- vending, a full-on electric band, the usual kind parade-
saw a bumper sticker that said "Jerry would have loved this band."
14 vertical cabinets flew on each side of the stage, along with 6 stacked bass bins each side,
and the sound was far fatter and more coherent than other mainstream shows here.
Set list is below- the first set was good, and the second was on another level altogether.
As usual, the setlist doesn't tell the whole story;
The younger band-members have been fully assimilated.
Chimenti got several ovations, and Kadlecik showed some remarkable bursts of speed
and emotion right out of the gate- check minutes 6-8 of Jack Straw;
Set two began with a showcase of the dare-I-say
"professional" team singing that this band sports, mostly-
the addition of two vocalists and Weir's relinquishment of most JG tunes to JK
has upgraded vocal competence noticeably, despite Phil-
Mountain Song is from the Planet Earth Rock'n Roll Orchestra out-takes,
where Lesh played bass on 1.3.71- Kantner released a version-
the "gonna make the mountain be my home" chorus stole over us
just as the cool breeze arrived- so good I almost forgot-
and the singalongs eventually gave way to the punishing main event-
Help On the Way/ Slipknot/PITB/Franklin's Tower/PITB reprise.
The Brokedown Palace set us down easy.
Hambone Sparklewell hereby bestows his Seal of Approvalhood-
Phil and Bob drive these youngsters through this rich songbook like
the ancient sun and rain drive new flowers through our garden.
PS The plasma holography light show left me cold-
gimme a hippie squeezing amoebic slides of bubbly oil and red dye #7 anytime