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Allman Brothers Band
Beacon Theatre 3-12-14

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The mid-week vibe is very different from a weekend vibe, and as a result the midweek Beacon shows can be delightfully laid-back affairs.  Tonight, not so much. It was Saturday night intensity from the get-go, one of the hottest, most smoldering shows of the run so far.

The first set was lean, taut, and torrid. “Leave My Blues At Home,” "Hot ‘Lanta," and “Woman Across the River” each got to the point immediately and were white hot; Gregg continues to be as present in the soloing as he’s been in years, and shone especially on "Hot ‘Lanta.” The Jukes Horns returned for the second night in a row midway through the set, turning the night into a soul revue. Wilson Pickett’s “I Found a Love” was pure gospel joy, with Gregg going to church on both vocals and organ. Eric Krasno sat in on “I Feel Like Breaking Up Somebody’s Home,” stepping forward at the end of the song to solo against an insistent, horn-fueled one-chord funk, which gave way to a 3-way guitar conversation as the band rode the pocket, then slammed hard into the closing riff. 

The second set began where the first left off and the intensity only accelerated. A raucous “Statesboro” featured some lovely Derek slide; On "Revival" the band again avoided the extended exploratory jamming, sitting hard on the riff through the jam section, incandescent; Warren was white hot.  "Trouble No More" was short, sweet and intense. The horns came back for "Into the Mystic,” a dreamy, brassy, sublime highlight.  And tonight's version of “Who To Believe" was one of the most kickass, in your face reads ever.

The set piece for the night was the "1983"/"Mountain Jam" suite introduced at last year's run. Warren played some seriously psychedelic guitars on the "1983" midsection, which decayed into a sparse chaos into which Derek injected some "Little Martha," while Butch laid down the timpani that flips over into "Mountain Jam." Derek buzzed and stung, Warren rocked your ass, and then a "Birdland" tease helped push the band back into the purple haze of "1983." Then after a bit they segued back, Derek cracking open the door to "Mountain Jam" by playing some lines that crossed "Third Stone From the Sun" with the "Mountain Jam" march section; then he pulled the band full on back into the homestretch of the song. Shimmering extended waves of joy emanated from the stage, pure payoff, the band and the crowd basking in it all; then Derek alit and soared like a dove as the band rocked gently beneath. Butch defiantly pounded out the final timpani, calling the band home.  It was all awesomely satisfying.

A great Saturday night show and it’s only Wednesday. Here's the set list:

Disc 1
1. Midnight Rider (3:25)
2. You Don’t Love Me (6:36)
3. Leave My Blues At Home (5:44)
4. Hot ‘Lanta (5:23)
5. Woman Across The River (8:35)
6. Egypt ((8:29)
7. I Found a Love (with The Jukes Horns; Duane Trucks, drums) (6:23)
8. Blind Willie McTell (with The Jukes Horns) (7:37)
9. Soulshine (with The Jukes Horns) (7:02)
10. Feel Like Breakin Up Somebody’s Home (with The Jukes Horns; Eric Krasno, guitar; Marc Quinones, drums; Bobby Allende, percussion) (11:23)

Disc 2
1. Statesboro Blues (4:47)
2. Revival (7:22)
3. Trouble No More (3:46)
4. Into The Mystic (with The Jukes Horns) (9:05)
5. Who To Believe (with The Jukes Horns; Marc Quinones, drums) (8:16)
6. Don’t Keep Me Wonderin’ (with The Jukes Horns; Duane Trucks, drums) (4:38)

Disc 3
1. 1983 (A Merman I Should Turn To Be) -> (7:38)
2. Mountain Jam -> (9:29)
3. 1983 -> (3:17)
4. Mountain Jam (7:18)
5. Southbound (with The Jukes Horns; Marc Quinones, drums; Bobby Allende, Percussion; Eric Krasno, guitar) (9:26)

SKU: CD813
Price: $27.00