Thanks to our "El Nino Winter" it was a pretty mild Feb. evening and a great night for a Todd show. The band started with an instrumental "Caravan" for the intro. Jesse Gress resembles Todd so much with his shades on it's eerie. Naturally that threw alot of us off for a second but then entered... our hero. Todd was suffering from an "infirmity" (nasty flu) which forced him to avoid any trademark falsettos. Nonetheless his ailment did nothing to impede his singing and performance on such highlights as "Can't Stop Running" and "Lost Horizon".
The crowd loved it when the band ground into "Hot Espresso". "Real Man" was met with cheers and loud applause -- as was the surprising acoustic Lennon tune "You've Got To Hide Your Love Away". Another nice surprise for me was hearing "Zen Archer" live for the first time. The sound was terrific, especially with the combined background vocals of Kasim, John and Jesse. The only exception would be Jesse's acoustic sound. You mostly heard the string "attack" or "tick" rather than the actual note(s) being played which made for more percussion than guitar. However his electric blues/jazz solo was terrific.
The show was a total of three sets and ended with the "lounge customers" slowly leaving the stage and a drunk falling asleep at the Tiki bar. Todd walks over and sprinkled something on the drunks head then walks off.
What a treat to have TR here in the cold/flat land of Ft. Wayne. My only regret is that I didn't have Kasim sign the cover art I designed of him for Lino Terlati's Italian fanzine. Oh well, it wasn't meant to be. If you have a chance to see this unusual 'tropical' tour I highly suggest you take the opportunity.