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The Black Crowes
A Concert Review

February 14, 1999

The Aragon Ballroom

Chicago, IL

A Review and Photos by
The Dude on the Right
Chris Robinson
There are times when I don't really like the Black Crowes. It's usually been when Chris Robinson and the boys of the band seem to find themselves in a sort of funk. Those are the times when the band really doesn't seem to be into the music, or maybe too much into the music, and they find themselves playing extended solos, not really connecting with the audience, and just seeming to be in their own little world. Their show on Sunday at the Aragon ballroom was nothing like this.

Opening with "Remedy," the Black Crowes continued for a two-hour session of a lot of old music combined with a few singles from their latest CD, "By Your Side," that, like the last time I saw them, which was way too long ago, just had me pretty impressed with the show that the band could put on.

 
Rich Robinson
Chris Robinson seemed energized. Dressed in a red, sparkly, glam outfit, Chris would spin around, make eye contact with the crowd, and just seemed to be having such a good old-time onstage that it transferred to the rest of the band. Songs like "Jealous Again," "Twice as Hard," and "She Talks Angels" sounded just as fresh as new songs like "Kickin' My Heart Around," and "Horsehead." I was happy to see guitar solos that were well-placed but not so long as to make you bored, or least me bored, and it was good to see the band was able to keep the crowd just as enthused during the new songs they probably haven't heard before, as well as with the songs the crowd knew and loved and have heard on the radio.

 
Eddie Harsch
Like I said before, Chris wasn't the only one who seem to be having a good time onstage. Audley Freed and Rich Robinson, sharing duties on guitar solos, bounced around, posed, and spotlighted their talent without going overboard, while Eddie Harsch on the keyboards, even stuck in his corner of the stage, was able to smile, groove, and have just as much fun as the rest of the band. Another welcome addition was the backup singer dudettes, making sure the high notes were hit, and just seeming to add to the fun onstage.

 
Audley Freed
What else can I say about the Black Crowes show that I haven't said before? I've seen them when they were in the funk, and I've seen them when they seem to connect on all cylinders, and I must say I enjoy the cylinders portions better than the funk portions. I had a little bit of apprehension going to the show, fearing they may be going back into that extended groove show that I didn't care for, that and the fact that I had to remember to tape the X-Files so I could find out what happened to Molder's sister (although I'm still kind of confused about the rebels, but, sorry, I digress,), but thank goodness for VCRs because the Black Crowes' show was a good comeback for me into the concert scene after a two-month hiatus.

Well, this time around I give the Black Crowes "Two 'Not in a Funk' Thumbs Up!" It was good to see them with the energy and confidence they had onstage, and that went directly to the crowd, who didn't seem to care that they weren't getting radio play, but just follow their band that played in Chicago for the first time nearly nine years ago and are usually better than the last time.

That's it for this one, I'm The Dude on The Right! L8R!

 

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