Darien Lake was the correct venue for a Dave Mathews concert. Picture all day tailgating combined with a 50 acre theme park. How could one go wrong by not attending a show of this magnitude at Western New York’s finest theme park. Not to mention the on site hotel and campgrounds for anyone looking to stay the night.
Now for the reality. In order to have a quick exit from the concert, we decided to park in the furthest section which happens to be 100 yards from where we came in. The punishment for that decision was a 10 minute walk in the pouring rain. We opted to go umbrella-less because they were confiscating them at the gates. The temperature for June 17 was in the brisk 50’s. Cold and damp with a light breeze, not to mention the lack of hot chocolate at any of the service stands. They did however serve coffee if you are willing to wait 15 -20 minutes due to the high demand. Don’t forget, this is an outdoor venue with a covered tent area with seats and a grass standing room only (uncovered behind the seats).
The only thing that offset the cold and rain was the performance. The big buzz in the air was Tim Reynolds on guitar. A legend to DMB fans everywhere, Tim’s guitar playing was just outstanding. Amazingly enough, almost every tune incorporated some sort solo involving a guitar, electric violin, sax, trumpet or Dave himself in his unorthodox free styling in that blues sort of way. On top of it were some great covers of PINK FLOYD “Money” and The Beatles “Money- That’s What I Want”. These were both over the top and very refreshing. His 10 minutes plus versions of “Two Step” and “Crush” were huge successes.
If you are not a DMB fan I believe you would still enjoy this show. The music and vocals are cd comparable as far as sound is concerned, but all the tunes were tweaked to give you that “this is a concert performance feel”. I’d say he received a standing ovation except for the fact nobody sat the entire show.