reCAP :: FURTHUR :: 2013.04.15
Written by: Charles Rosenberg
Photos by: Dino Perucci
Renewed? Reinvented? Rejuvenated? However you say it, FURTHUR rumbled into The Capitol Theatre for nine sold out shows and if their initial foray into the Grateful Dead's untainted musical heritage is any indication, it has never been better. Having experienced the Grateful Dead in '71 at The Cap, it is absolutely evident that Mr. Weir and Mr. Lesh are at an unparalleled level of musical creativity and strength.
With their backing cast consisting of Jeff Chimenti, keyboards; John Kadlecik, guitar; Joe Russo, drums; Sunshine Becker and Jeff Pehrson, vocals — a veritable powerhouse of telepathic tightness reigns over their groove.
The beauty of the intimacy of The Capitol Theatre and the palpable exchange of energy between the ecstatic crowd and the band is a virtual extension of what the Grateful Dead had accomplished for years. Commencing with "Truckin'", though both Mr. Weir and Mr. Lesh's vocals are not as strong as they once were, they are far from just going through the motions. The tune loped at cut time, the cadence giving the musicians ample room to stretch and establish direction. The set evolved into what their devotees have always claimed: When it's astonishing, it's absolutely transcendent. "Bertha" and "Friend of the Devil" let John Kadlecik loose, rendering originality and contemporary vigor to Dead staples.
And they were only warming up. Delving into an extended "Cumberland Blues" jam, the confluence and congruence of players were improvising and tossing runs that were exhilarating and breathtaking. Then "Candyman" had an ethereal guitar passage that summoned surreal channels of sight and sound. The Cap was alive and in full throttle with their state of the art projectors and wall to ceiling visuals.
The second set launched with a tumultuous "Shakedown Street," segueing into "St. Stephen" and later "All Along The Watchtower". As the night wore on, the band gathered more traction, elevated punch, and endless verve. "Goin' Down the Road (Feelin' Bad)" and "U.S. Blues" sealed what was certainly another legendary show at The Capitol Thwtre. It was Furthur in name, but make no mistake regarding the music and the intent: The Grateful Dead legacy has never sounded greater or more pertinent to the canon of rock and roll.
The Capitol Theatre Photo Gallery
Photos by: Dino Perucci[gallery columns="4"]