Widespread Panic at Ascend Ampitheater 9/6/15 Review

September 6, 2015
Ascend Amphitheater
Nashville, TN

By Matt Wickstrom

Widespread Panic came out all cylinders firing on the final night on their Nashville run on Labor Day weekend, playing hits both old and new, and even teasing a cover of a classic 1980s hit.

After starting the previous night’s show with “Holden Oversoul”, Panic opened up night two in Nashville with Bloodkin cover “Can’t Get High”, followed by the night’s first lengthy jam, a “Chilly Water” > “Mr. Soul” > “Chilly Water” combination that set the tone for what would be a night of extended, free-flowing musical euphoria. “Lets Get The Show on the Road” followed, before transitioning to the space jams of “Bear’s Gone Fishin'” and rockin’ honky tonk of “Ribs and Whiskey”. “Steven’s Cat”, a cut off Panic’s upcoming album Street Dogs, made an appearance later in the set, featuring rhythmic beats that intertwined effortlessly with front man John Bell’s melodies. A “Big Wooly Mammoth” > “Love Tractor” pairing closed out an action-packed first set, to an eruption of applause from the capacity crowd at the beautiful Ascend Amphitheater.

After a lengthy set break, Panic took the stage one last time for the weekend’s final set. Set two started with a few of Panic’s older tunes in succession. The “Little Kin” > “Machine” > “Barstools and Dreamers” opening to the set featured a heavy dose of melt-your-face riffs from bassist Dave Schools and guitarist Jimmy Herring, before leading into “Angels Don’t Sing the Blues”, a song Panic debuted back on July 4 in San Antonio, and have only performed three times since then. After “Angels Don’t Sing the Blues”, Panic welcomed Nashville-based pianist Fish Michie to the stage for “Ride Me High” > “Arlene”. After Michie left the stage, Panic continued a seemingly endless jam with > “Junior” > “Bowlegged Woman” >  “Fishwater”. Near the end of “Fishwater”, Widespread Panic bassist Schools and keyboardist JoJo Hermann led the way on a tease of Queen’s 1980 hit “Another One Bites the Dust”, before transitioning back to “Fishwater” to close the set out. The tease likely was to pay homage to late Queen front-man Freddie Mercury, whose 69th birthday would’ve been September 5.

Panic closed out their Nashville run with a three song encore which included “May Your Glass be Filled”, “Travelin’ Light”, and “North”, sending the packed house of fans home satisfied.

Setlist (via PanicStream)

Set One: Can’t Get High, Chilly Water > Mr Soul > Chilly Water, Let’s Get The Show On The Road, Bear’s Gone Fishin’, Ribs & Whiskey, Steven’s Cat, Big Wooly Mammoth > Love Tractor

Set Two: Lil Kin > Machine > Barstools & Dreamers*, Angels Don’t Sing The Blues, Ride Me High** > Arlene** > Junior > Bowlegged Woman > Fishwater***

Encore: May Your Glass Be Filled, Travelin’ Light > North

* w/ Thank You (Falettinme Be Mice Elf Agin) rap
** w/ Fish Michie on keys
*** w/ Another One Bites The Dust tease

2 Replies to “Widespread Panic at Ascend Ampitheater 9/6/15 Review”

  1. 2nd show? Welcome to the dark side, hah.. Small correction, “Big Wooly Mammoth,” not “Mama.” Did you throw Jojo a lighter, so he could “burn this city down??!”

    1. Thanks for the kind words Austin. I can’t believe I messed up the song name there. Thanks for pointing it out.

      I can’t wait to make to to more shows. Saw them for the first time back in July at Forecastle. Opened with “Climb to Safety” and also covered “Riders on the Storm”. I plan on making it to both their Halloween and new years runs this year as well.

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