The Johnson set was a bit underwhelming, and some folks didn't appreciate it too much. Many probably were expecting some kind of Utopia redux. In truth, the band did sound a little unwarmed and under-rehearsed. Plus, the enormous hall and largely empty stage didn't lend very well to this type of raw blues. A blues bar on Austin's 6th street would probably make more sense.
The main event, on the other hand, was the best sounding, best lighting, best engineered AWATS show I've seen to date. Todd's voice was in top form. The band was nearly flawless in their execution. Todd did break a string early in the show and had to have his "Fool" replaced by a different guitar whose sound was not as sweet. But other than that minor glitch, everything else came off beautifully, especially the furious costume changes. Bobby Strickland did a superb job of riling up the normally reserved Brits during Cool Jerk, getting even the folks upstairs to stand up and dance. It was amusing to watch. The "Fool" also did re-appear for the final song, so all was well that ended well. Would be a shame not to have this show on DVD for posterity's sake.
The aftershow party in the upstairs bar area was a major highlight. Very relaxing and enjoyable. We got to meet fans from all over the world, some from as far away as Australia and Laos! The US contingent was pretty strong, but this time we were outnumbered by a large group of... Norwegians!
It was so nice hooking up with fellow Toddstockers as well as making new friends. The best part of the evening for me, however, was having Todd, Michele and the band autograph my original die-cut AWATS LP. How's THAT for a concert souvenir?