Setlist: Bob Mould — Fillmore, San Francisco, 01 Nov 1996

Wishing Well
Hoover Dam
Needle Hits E
Your Favorite Thing
Fort Knox, King Solomon
Can't Help You Any More
If I Can't Change Your Mind
Panama City Motel
Explode And Make Up
Hardly Getting Over It
Poison Years
Sinners And Their Repentances
Lonely Afternoon
Roll Over And Die
See A Little Light
Celebrated Summer

Egøverride*
Makes No Sense At All* [aborted]
Makes No Sense At All

Thumbtack

Solo acoustic show except (*) solo electric

Thanks to Mark Weygandt, from whose website (now defunct) this information was retrieved, along with the informal show reviews and comments below, which were originally posted to the Sugar internet mailing list:

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From: Billy Hawes

Wow, I can't believe over 12 hours have passed, and no one has posted a
review of the Bob show last night. I guess I'll have to be the first, then...

If I could sum it up in one word, it would be: "DAMN!" This was my first
time seeing Bob in solo format (I'd seen him in '92 and '94 with Sugar), so
I really didn't have anything to compare this show to. But I've never seen a
one-man performance of such intensity. He came on stage, and asked the
audience to bear with him as he had a really bad cold. Actually, I thought
his voice sounded GREAT, and aside from maybe a little reluctance on Bob's
part to reach for a few of the higher notes, he seemed to be singing in top
form.

Set-wise, there were no major deviations from the lists that have been
posted here from other shows... he skipped "Can't Fight It", which seems to
have become one of his live favorites lately, but he did throw in IICCYM,
"See A Little Light", and closed with a great version of "Thumbtack."

Highlights include: A completely CHILLING version of "Poison Years."
Snarling, scathing vocals... Bob put everything he had into this one. The
audience was going nuts before the song was 3/4 over, and Bob appeared
visibly shaken afterwards... had to put his head down and take several deep
breaths before continuing. Staggering. Worth the price of admission alone.
"Hardly Getting Over It"... this was never one of my favorite Bob/Husker
tunes, but hearing it in solo format gave me a new perspective on it. Very
good. Other underrated tunes like "Needle Hits E" and "Lonely Afternoon"
sound refreshingly good in the solo format as well. Also, got a great
limited-edition Fillmore poster for the show on the way out.

Bob had a moderate case of the tuning problems mentioned in other posts, but
tonight the problems weren't limited to his 12-string. He brought out his
electric for the Encore, and somehow broke not one, but TWO strings into
"Egoverride". After laughing about this briefly, he started into "Makes No
Sense.." using his 4 remaining strings. A few bars into it he laughs and
says, "Fuck this!" then tosses the Strat over his shoulder. He finished the
encore with his acoustic.

Mark Eitzel was great as the opener. Great sense of humor this guy has, and
good songs, too... he seemed a little uncertain as he came out onstage with
his guitar, but fell into his own quickly, reacting to comments by audience
members between (and sometimes during) his songs with quick little barbs,
and even gave us a few lessons in Folk Singing 101. But by the end of his
set the crowd was hooked, though, and for a second I thought he might get an
encore. The crowd was yelling so loud for Eitzel to come back that the poor
guy onstage trying to read the 'coming soon' list was rendered pretty much
inaudible.

It was great getting to meet the other list folks before the show. Pig and
the Whistle was a great choice for a spot. I may stop by there again before
or after the Robin Hitchcock/Billy Bragg show next Friday, if I have time.
It was nice being able to put faces to the email addresses ;-) Thanks go out
to Sylvia for helping to arrange this thing. My friend Jenifer who came
along says she's always pleased seeing what a diverse crowd of people Bob's
fans are, and thought that we list people were pretty representative of that.

------------------------

From: wiley

Best moment of the evening? Probably Poison Years. Damn fine rendition
thereof, draining to the point that at the end of the song Bob slumped
forward into the mic, letting it occupy his eye socked for support.
Ouch.
Unfortunately, it was a "new string night", and those little suckers
were terribly unruly. Retuning went on nearly every time between songs
(I seem to recall only one stretch of three songs that was
uninterrupted), and as the night went on Bob got progressively more
pissed at the distraction. As (bad) luck would have it, as soon as he
brought out the strat (at which the crowd predictably went a touch wild)
and tore into Egoverride two strings bit the dust (D and highE, for you
completists). He gamely tried to forge ahead with Makes No Sense At All,
but four strings weren't cutting it, so he tossed (and I do mean tossed)
the strat aside and finished the set on the twelve-string, but not
before making dire threats to the existence of both guitars. As he left
to loud applause he shot the audience a "Your kind, but *I* thought it
was less than perfect" semi-smile. Which was really unfortunate, because
he had started the night in a fairly chipper mood. He was just kicking a
cold and had slept for 14 hours the night before and was joking about
the fact he was now going to work for 90 minutes. Work it indeed turned
out to be.
Don't get me wrong, the show was good. Bob *fought* those strings every
step of the way, and several songs served as outlets for the frustration
(Poison Years? Possibly).
Eitzel was great. The crowd would have been more than happy with another
two or three from him (I'd have sat through another hour without a
whimper, but I'm a fan). He mocked himself. He mocked his music. He
mocked us. Hula Girl (off United Kingdom) was my highlight for his set.
Fun stuff. He and Bob make a good pairing as performers. Both REALLY get
into the act of the song, to an almost scary degree (eyes rolling up,
spit flying, song taking over). It's always great to see even one person
go that deep into the music, and two in one night? And free apples at
the door?

--------------------------

From: pk

So I finally saw Bob live.  My first show.  I feel as if something is
completed now that was not, like a first fuck after years of making out.
There isn't much I can say about his performing that hasn't already been
said.

I heard no effects of the cold he had in his voice.  Despite the cold, and
limping when he walks, he seemed to come out in a good upbeat mood.  This
turned sour as the show went on, though, because of constant string
trouble.  The Yamaha had fresh strings and he had to tune them after every
second song.  The Strat's strings started breaking like dry spaghetti as
soon as he made a few chords on it.  He muttered and cursed and threatened
to destroy both guitars and observed that some nights you just can't win
for losing.  He didn't chat with the crowd and paid no attention to
requests.  But he wouldn't let any of it slow him down.  Cold chewing up
his throat?  So what, fuck the cold, it's going to be made irrelevant by
sheer willpower.

Sylvia got the setlist, I didn't, but it was similar to most posted here,
but heavy on Workbook songs and lighter on Du songs than average.  Nothing
from Copper Blue except Hoover Dam, a few from FU:EL.  A couple of less
usual ones near the end, including a very intense "Lonely Afternoon", and
a fairly rare one near the end that I can't remember offhand without
seeing the setlist.  And "Makes No Sense At All" as an encore.  That one
he started on the Strat, but after 20 seconds or so the string breakage
made it hopeless -- he went "Oh FUCK this!" and yanked the cord out and
tossed the Strat onto the floor behind him like he was throwing an old TV
set out of the back of a truck at the city dump.  It was okay, the Strat
was turned down too quiet anyways.  It sounded more like a sizzle than a
roar.  On the whole, though, the sound was quite good.  Anyone who taped
it could probably get something pretty clear, by boot standards.

The standout part of the evening was "Explode And Make Up" followed
closely (but not in a medley) with "Hardly Getting Over It", climaxing
with a terrific ass-kicking "Poison Years".  He was PANTING after
finishing that song.  There is no second-place contender, "Poison Years"
was IT.

He ended with "Thumbtack", and I wish I'd seen some of those legendary
early performances of it... by now it's just another song he plays.

The crowd was big and enthusiastic, and they dug Mark Eitzel.  He didn't
get any of the cold shoulder treatment that can make opening-act-hood suck
so horribly sometimes even for great players.  He could have done a one
song encore no problem, but didn't.  Eitzel played some intense songs
intensely, but his set was no more than 35 minutes and he kept doing
little joking banter routines to ingratiate himself with the crowd, as if
he didn't trust his songs to carry the show -- occasionally he would slip
into this at a time when it really detracted from the intensity of a song,
as if he wanted on the one hand to express his emotions full force but on
the other hand also wanted to kind of laugh them off.  The contrast with
Bob was dramatic... it drove home that a big part of Bob's intensity and
"holding nothing back" is that he has TOTAL confidence in his music.

Eitzel was joking around about his playing, giving deadpan fake lessons
on traditional playing styles -- "You'll notice that I strum UP AND DOWN,
that's a folk technique" -- and I responded, partly out of a bit of
frustration, by requesting "On Top Of Old Smokey".  (Yes, that was me.  My
one micro-contribution to the evening's entertainment.)


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