I don't want to say I am a seasoned veteran since I know there are a lot more seasoned folks than me out there and on this board. Apparently, I have been listening a little longer than you, however, as I became enthralled at "Three Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest," and then went backwards to see what I had been missing out on. Anyhow, I thought I would give a friendly chime-in as I was also at the Strathmore last night. What a fabulous place! And I was lucky enough to have had a ridiculously great seat so I got to see everything up close.
I thoroughly enjoyed the show. I had a blast. Don't get me wrong. I love Jeff Coffin. He is super-talented and wicked exciting. But, so too is Howard Levy - - as I witnessed last night. To me, hearing the original Flecktones was a special treat. It was something I never thought I would have the opportunity to see. True, it was different than hearing Jeff wail on the sax(es), but I found the tunes to be intricate, fun and groovy.
I am not calling you a heretic. I wouldn't do that. I think the difference between our experiences boils down to something you raised: being familiar with the older Flecktones' tunes. By no means could I name everything on the set list as they played it, but I was familiar with a majority of the songs from listening to them over the years, and, I admit, from the past couple weeks listening to the early Flecktones stuff to gear up for last night. I mean - - hearing/seeing "Sinister Minister," "Sunset Road," Flight of the Cosmic Hippo," and, even, "Michelle" performed by the original Flecktones was pretty darn cool. It was old school, and there was something really, really special about that, I thought.
Get this, Jeff is joining them again in December, as you probably know. And, they are playing almost every day next month. If you can catch them again, perhaps you'll have fun comparing the shows and, at the very least, you'll get your Jeff fix!
Last, I think the less interaction you mentioned must be the result of being tired. Their schedule just seems crazy!
Oh, yeah, what did you think of Bela's solo? A little "Throw Down Your Heart Action." That was cool.