Photo by Andrew Scott Blackstein
On Saturday night, Joe Russo’s Almost Dead performed their summer kick-off at Westville Music Bowl in New Haven, Conn. The band delivered two ambitious music sets, complete with illustrious takes on Grateful Dead favorites, heavy jam sections and the perfect amount of heat to keep the crowd stoked.
Saturday night got underway with a massive jam that prefaced the Tom Hamilton, Scott Metzger led “Man Smart, Woman Smarter.” The tune carried a clear political message that nodded towards the ongoing discussions in Washington regarding the future of Roe v. Wade. Then, the band jammed their way into “Tennessee Jed,” which featured an exquisite keys solo by Marco Benevento. Next, they noodled their way into a sweet take on “Cassidy” off Bobby Weir’s solo debut Ace, ahead of “My Brother Esau” and set closer “Sugaree.”
Joe Russo’s Almost Dead delivered a jammed-out rendition of Jerry Garcia’s “Bird Song” before concert get-down and fan-favorite “Playing in the Band” for their second set openers. Next, Russo showed off his skills on the kit by taking on the drummer’s epic “King Solomon’s Marbles,” which initially appeared on the Dead’s 1975 LP, Blues For Allah. The tune also featured Benevento’s substantial keyboard expertise.
The second set continued with a heartfelt and jam-heavy take on Garcia’s “Mission in the Rain,” which appeared on his 1976 LP, Reflections. Next, the band performed the Dead’s 1987 single “Touch of Grey,” which later appeared on In the Dark. The latter half of the set featured a well-greased take on “Saint of Circumstance,” before the band busted out a cover of Radio Head’s “The Bends.” The song was last performed by Joe Russo’s Almost Dead on Aug. 16, 2018, at Red Rocks Amphitheatre in Morrison, Colo.
The ensemble finished the set with a fitting “One More Saturday Night” before delivering the evening’s encore, a gratifying take on “Ripple.” Following last night’s concert, Joe Russo’s Almost Dead will travel to Redondo Beach, Calif., to perform at BeachLife Festival later today.
See Joe Russo’s Almost Dead’s tour dates here.
Joe Russo’s Almost Dead
Westville Music Bowl– New Haven, Conn.
May 14, 2022
Set I: Man Smart, Woman Smarter, Tennessee Jed, Cassidy, My Brother Esau, Sugaree
Set II: Bird Song, Playing in the Band, King Solomon’s Marbles, Mission in the Rain, Touch of Grey, Saint of Circumstance, The Bends, One More Saturday Night
Setlist via Setlist.FM