Don't Call It a Nostalgia Act: The Wallflowers at Bowery Ballroom
  • WEDNESDAY, JULY 25, 2012

  • Posted by: Andrew Gruttadaro

Jakob Dylan walked onto the stage at the Bowery Ballroom probably trying not to look like his father but failing miserably -- it might've been the Cordobes hat, it might've just been his eyes. Even still, the generation-spanning crowd most likely wasn't seeing The Wallflowers to be reminded of Bob Dylan, they were there to be reminded of the late 90's. Jakob and the rest of the band -- which is still intact save for the drums, which are now played by original Red Hot Chili Pepper percussionist, Jack Irons -- skirted those hopes for nostalgia right off the bat, busting out "Devil's Waltz," a song from their upcoming album. The newer songs actually sounded vintage -- full, straight on roots rock, flush with warm organ pianos and electric guitars. Surprisingly, they haven't really lost whatever touch they had way back on Bringing Down the Horse.

After playing a second new song, Dylan promised that there'd be a few songs we'd recognize. The first was the New York ode "6th Avenue Heartache," a song that most of the audience enthusiastically sang along to. From there the set was mixed with newer songs and ones from The Wallflowers' back catalog. After a long set, Dylan introduced his lead guitarist, Stuart Mathis, and teased, "Stu's been toying with this new riff" which led to a song that most of us had been waiting all night for -- "One Headlight." I've never heard the Bowery Ballroom louder than it was last night during this chorus. Seriously. The Wallflowers came back on stage to play two more songs -- a cover of "(What's So Funny 'Bout) Peace, Love, and Understanding" and another oldie, "The Difference" -- before they bowed out for good. One thing was clear as we walked out onto Delancey Street -- The Wallflowers aren't even close to being washed up; they've got a whole lot left in the tank.

Hear one of their new songs, featuring The Clash's Mick Jones, below.

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