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Review by MrPalmers1000DollarQ
Before I got to the second set, I read some of the reviews that were already on here and saw a few testimonies calling this Reba their favorite. I have to admit that I was immediately skeptical: there are a LOT of "best" Reba's out there, maybe only second to YEM in sheer quantity. But god damn, the more I listen to this one, the more I think y'all might be on to something. Though there isn't as much exploration in this version as some of the greats from '93 (8/16/93 is a fucking journey...), the dynamic play in this performance is mystical. The near-silent passage that kicks off the jam alone is worthy of an SBD release. Every single guy on that stage works his magic to its fullest extent on this one, and Trey's phrasing through the solo drives a compelling point. I'll be re-visiting this one frequently.
The debut of Simple is at once both completely sensible (how many Mike's -> Simple's have we seen?) and shocking. The typical formula is Mike's F# first jam, followed by a drop to the F second jam -> Simple and this is what I was expecting after seeing it on paper. Instead, the band rips the debut in F#, completely forgoing a Mike's Song jam. That said, "Simple" itself is performed not with the polished, organized, and blissful arrangement we all know it to bare, but almost in a Catapult-esque fashion where the whole band delivers frenzied vocals over a non-stop hard grooving jam. You could almost classify this as Mike's Song with Simple quotes. Very, very cool to hear after so many years of familiarity with its eventual delivery. When the band DOES finally drop into F, we get a stunning outro jam that gorgeously allows for -> O Mio Babbino. This should be required listening for Phans, if only for its istorical significance, and I'm kicking myself for not hearing it sooner.
Band closes with a fun Possum closer and Fire encore that get the audience involved with boxes of macaroni that serve as an additional percussive element. Even if you just pick out the meaty jam chart tunes from this show, you're in for a treat.