Bob Dylan – Viareggio 2010 (Highway HW-003/04)

Viareggio 2010 (Highway HW-003/04)

Cittadella Del Carnevale, Viareggio, Italy – June 16th, 2010

Disc 1 (53:09):  Introduction, Rainy Day Women #12 & 35, Señor (Tales Of Yankee Power), Stuck Inside Of Mobile With The Memphis Blues Again, Just Like A Woman, Rollin’ And Tumblin’, Shelter From The Storm, Honest With Me, Man In The Long Black Coat

Disc 2 (62:16):  High Water, Desolation Row, Highway 61 Revisited, Not Dark Yet, Thunder On The Mountain, Ballad Of A Thin Man, audience, Like A Rolling Stone, band introduction, Blowin’ In The Wind

Bob Dylan’s European tour in the summer 2010 focused mainly upon playing venues in cities around the Mediterranean sea.  With this unique itinerary, he played in for the first time in places like Zagreb, Croatia and Skopje, Macedonia in in other cities like Athens, Greece, for the first time in almost twenty years.

Among the new places was Viareggio, which is situation between Lucca and Genoa on the west coast of Italy.  Of course the audience is well familiar with the music and are extremely loving and enthusiastic.  Several times throughout the evening shouts of “I love you, Bob” can heard, much to Dylan’s delight. 

Highway utilize a very good to excellent stereo audience recording of the entire concert.  Unlike many Dylan releases, this contains no bonus tracks.  Since Dylan’s shows have been reaching almost two hours in length, there’s really no need for extra material.  Viareggio 2010 also benefits from having one of the strongest setlists from the tour. 

The tape begins with the introduction leading into “Rainy Day Women #12 & 35.”  Dylan starts off on keyboard but switches to guitar in the middle, making a sloppy transition which slows down the song.  He struggles a bit with the guitar and adds some power chords to and arrangement that has traded its racousness for deliberation.

“Señor (Tales Of Yankee Power)” makes its tour debut (and would be played only one more time).  It retains its doom-laden arrangement and turns into one of the more powerful pieces of the night and is followed by two more stage favorites, “Stuck Inside Of Mobile With The Memphis Blues Again” and “Just Like A Woman.” 

“Rollin’ And Tumblin'” is another one of the more energetic numbers even though drummer George Recile tries a hard arena rock beat several times though-out the piece.  “Shelter From The Storm” is given a dynamic arrangement, used to bring out the frustration and desperation of the narrator.  

“Man In A Long Black Coat” is another surprise in the set.  Not often played, the audience give it a tremendous ovation at the song’s end.  The latter half of the set have rather interesting performances of “Desolation Row” and “Not Dark Yet.”  He favors a country flavor for both and “Not Dark Yet” is heavy on the pedal steel guitar in the arrangement. 

“Ballad Of A Thin Man” closes the performance and two encores, “Like A Rolling Stone” and “Blowin’ In The Wind” are played.  Viareggio 2010 is certainly a great show to have and a wonderfully entertaining recording.  The paper used on Highway looks like thing photograph stock which warps easily.  This would have been a great Tambourine Man Records release with the care they take in the presentation. 

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