The Tralf, Buffalo, NY 7/2/11

Review by Roger Steel (Switch to

Shuffled up to Buffalo for what ended up being a great show. The Tralf was somewhat hard to find with an interior 2nd floor entrance and no signage out front. Kudos to security for preventing line-jumping of a few losers who didn't want to follow concert queue etiquette. The Tralf has a unique lay-out but offers a variety of different vantage points which I liked. Stage lighting was a bit of an issue though in that John and Jesse were in a dark shadowy corner of the stage and not easily seen.

The show started shortly after 8:00. Same exact set list and running order. Todd was in very good spirits which I've heard hasn't been the case in some of the other recent shows. He was having a lot of fun with the crowd, particularly over the song requests they were yelling out. Lighthearted "We're not taking requests" was uttered by Todd throughout the show. He also chided his tour itinerary, questioning why a logical next stop wouldn't be in Cleveland vs. all the way back to Oneonta, NY.

I understand that the band has been struggling with their timing at the start of songs. This show was no different but it almost seemed like they were doing it on purpose. Some of the missteps were so blatant that you had a hard time believing that a band that's played together for so long could be so off. It didn't detract from the show though. It was actually kind of fun and added a human element to what was an otherwise tight performance.

The show had more of a "With a Twist" feel to it than I expected. Todd sat for a good portion and played guitar on only a handful of songs. It was more laid back than we've experienced in recent Arena, Johnson and album tours but it was a good laid back though. There's a little bit of something for everyone in this show. "Determination" was a particular treat for me. "Hawking" killed as well but every song really did for that matter.

The appreciative but not overly boisterous crowd couldn't get enough at the end. A fan chorus of "Todd, Todd, Todd..." was loud and proud well after the house lights came up. There was a brief glimmer of hope that we'd be graced with one more song but it just wasn't to be. Todd gave us all he had in the two hours prior so can't imagine anyone leaving there disappointed. I certainly didn't.

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7/02/2011 - The Tralf - Buffalo, NY

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