Bob Dylan // Liverpool Echo Arena - 08/05/17

  • Review of Bob Dylan's live performance at Liverpool's Echo arena on 8th May 2017
  • Dylan's set was less than impressive, leaving many punters both underwhelmed and unhappy
  • Perhaps it's time for the legend to hang his (now-absent) harmonica up whilst his reputation is intact
  • £15 programmes aren't a laughing matter
Above: Dylan, live.

Above: Dylan, live.

Words by Nico

Monday 8th of May was a day I had been looking forward to for months. It was the day I was finally going to see a legend in the flesh, Bob Dylan. After queuing for tickets and shedding out an extortionate sum of seventy pounds per ticket, I was full of expectation. It was once in a lifetime chance; it was going to be worth it. It wasn't.

Fifteen minutes late, Dylan and his band entered the stage. After spending the first half an hour of so in awe of the fact that I was breathing the same oxygen as one of the original rock and roll stars, reality began to sink in. As the set went on, not only did every song sound EXACTLY the same, but Dylan decided to spend the whole concert playing new tracks, which were more blues than folk. The only ‘hit’ played was 'Blowin in The Wind', though in an unrecognisable, avant-garde style.

To add insult to injury, it was also seriously tough to make out a word that the guy was saying. There was no acknowledgement or address of the crowd, and Dylan didn't pick up a guitar or harmonica even once, choosing instead to spend the gig sat behind a piano.  For those in the cheaper seats, like myself, vision was restricted as a result. This for me, is just not Bob Dylan. Production was less than impressive – no screens meant it could have been any random geriatric off the streets of Liverpool performing as a poor Dylan tribute, and I would have been none the wiser.

All in all, it was a show with seemingly minimal effort involved that had people leaving early, likely feeling that they'd been cheated. That said, I don't reckon I was the only one wondering whether I could get a refund for my fifteen quid programme...