MSG at House Of Blues, Chicago, USA

26th November 2001.

I just wanted to add a few comments.

I thought Michael's playing was fine, actually pretty good. The mistakes he made were from not remembering some notes to the beginning of Essence and coming back into Into The Arena too soon after the rhythm section feature in the middle part of the song. Nothing major. He looked like he'd been playing Survivor too long though.

The bass player and drummer were decent but Barry and Shane were missed. Those two are very talented and added a lot to previous shows. As for the singer, I liked Keith Slack more than Chris Logan. His voice (Logan) does not fare well during the high parts of songs (Attack of the Mad...). His voice even seemed tired by the end of the show - and this was only the first one! Wayne Findlay's rhythm guitar was heavy, especially on songs like Assault Attack.

The song selection was fine, although I would've liked to hear something like Let Sleeping Dogs Lie or Broken Promises. I'm glad they didn't do any UFO (Doctor Doctor not withstanding), hopefully we'll get to see the full band do that stuff.

Pete Way was another story. He was on something that turned him into a character worse than any in Spinal Tap. It did seem that Michael was tiring of his rantings as the Plot unraveled. It was somewhat embarrasing.

Still, I'd give the show a 6-7 out of 10. Not as good as 1999 or 1996 (missing Barry and Shane) but Michael can still play.


P.S. I didn't mean to slag on Chris Logan as much as I did. I forgot to mention that when he sang "his" MSG material it was very good. I think the Barden/Bonnet material is tough for anybody.

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