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Jason and I were asking the question the other day… can any band sustain a gig over 3 hours? I am not sure. I have endured a handful, and I deliberately use the word endured, because it is just that… a real test. You have to have devotion. I think Wilco might be the only one I think I could happily see play their entire catalogue for me in one sitting. So in some respects I was both thankful and disappointed that Ween did not bust the 3hr mark last night.

Thankful in that there was a 3 or so song stretch just before the main set finished that felt like it went forever. I don’t mind a good jam, but I am not really one for keyboard solos. I was disappointed though because the encore was amazing and I came away complaining with a friend that “They didn’t play … and they didn’t play…!”. When a band plays 2hr 40 and you know there was more gold they could have played? That is not bad.

So how were Ween last night? Overall pretty great. It is not a whole gig I come away saying it is a gig of the year contender, but it certainly had heaps and heaps of great, hysterical moments and one of the best encores I have been part of in a while.

First things first… Dean Ween is a guitar god. If Ween was not his outlet, he would be placed on a pedestal. But since Ween alienate about 95% of the music community I don’t think he will ever get the kudos he deserves. But he was on show to the Boognish faithful last night (another reason to love Melbourne? We sold out 2 nights in a heartbeat as well as the Golden Plains festival this weekend. We know our music). But the whole band are great musicians. And how Gene Ween’s voice can flick between the styles is something for you to behold too.

So what were the highlights? For me it was easy. The Mollusk. Not just the song but the whole album. It got a big run last night (although no Mutilated Lips or Buckingham Green?!). It is easily my favourite Ween, so I was happy. But that was supplemented with a huge array of gold… Mister Won’t You Please Help My Pony, Voodoo Lady (obviously), Even If You Don’t, P!ss Up A Rope, Touch My Tooter, and it goes on. But then they hit the 2hr mark and they and I hit the wall. A 15 min jazz jam about then got the better of me. Have they lost it? I thought.

Nope. A brief break and it was the encore. I can’t recall the first couple, but it was a one-two of Booze Me Up and The Blarney Stone to finish. Both were GOLD. Sure there were some tracks I desperately wanted and didn’t get, but The Blarney Stone was utterly amazing… who else could have 1500 people singing a sea-shanty with their arms in the air? Only Ween, god bless ’em.

… muttler


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