I have seen you in concert since 1975. There was a gap here and there, but I managed to get out to see you 3 times in the last 2 years. (Philly, Red Bank, New Brunswick). But probably 15+ concerts in all.
We are all getting older, and sometimes have to fall back on what we do best. Last night - (taking in to consideration the VH1 presence) was probably the most amorphous, for lack of a better word, I have ever seen you. It was painfully uncomfortable as a Todd fan to see that whole arrangement. Ethel was an extremely talented group, and probably would have been great if they stayed on stage all night with Todd and Joe, if they did not overpower them in the decibel department.
But Todd - I don't know, but stick to your strengths. You should be a little in "The Bottom Line" years mode with some "Wollman Rink" years thrown in. Those were the best years for everyone. I know rolling back and nostalgia is probably not your thing - but try kicking back, and giving your fans what they really come to see you for : great clean guitar, unsurpassed style of vocals, great piano, great wit, and basically the uniqueness of being Todd. I definitely did not see that at the State Theater last night. There was NO flow. We got sold out to VH1? It was like you were under surveillance (are you sure Rumsfeld or Chaney didn't get to you for well deserved comments you made in the past).
And as far as sloppiness, it works for Todd when things are working - but they weren't working - so it got embarrassing for everyone. I would have like to hear the Song of The Viking , by the way - hell, I'd like to hear Lord Chancellor's Nightmare or LP's worth of tunes for that matter. We need the basics, the threads of songs that made Todd part of our musical culture. Maybe Jesse Grass and/or a solid band at times (but not that Liar tour stuff) boy, that was hard to take, like I said we're all getting older. If I knew whet I was getting into last night - I would have returned my tickets beforehand at the box office.
Todd you are one of the few geniuses of our time, you are Zappa Status...a genius. Think about what your true fans want when they buy a ticket to see you. perform.