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07/25/2009 The Tragically Hip (Rochester, NY @ The Highland Bowl)

By Eric | July 27, 2009 9:30 pm

The Hip in my very own backyard. Almost literally, as the Highland Bowl is almost like having the band play in your yard with 3500 of your closest friends! I had raced over to Tom’s place just in time to catch the van-cab with the crew (saved me from trying to find a parking spot!) and we waited a whole 5 minutes in line I think before getting in. We got about five rows back from the barrier, laughing and joking with the people around us. Good people around us too. Right around the 7 o’clock hour, the Hip came out to the strains of The Depression Suite. The fans were into it from the get-go, but soon after the start of the show, we got to find out who was *really* into it. Why? The rain! It had been forecast, but it held off for the first six songs or so. As New Orleans Is Sinking got going, so did the rain. By the time that had ended and It’s A Good Life… started, we were in a full-on torrential downpour. (Check the videos below!) Which mattered not to neither the die-hards down front (we were standing in four inches of water the whole night) nor the band, especially Gordie, who came out into the rain with his guitar to essentially join us. He commented on the weather throughout the night, in fact, and I think drawing some inspiration from it. This was followed by a WATS song that I didn’t hear at Artpark, The Exact Feeling. The rain did nothing to curtail the volume of the singing along during Meridian and Love Is A First, which closed out the first set. By this time, the rain had pretty much subsided, so we just got to stand soaked for the rest of the show. I don’t think anyone really cared at that point.

Twist My Arm

New Orleans Is Sinking

It’s A Good Life… Part 1

It’s A Good Life… Part 2

Another shot of It’s a good Life…

100th Meridian

The boys came back out, and I got to see a song that in my previous 7 shows I hadn’t seen; Thompson Girl! And acoustically! Other highlights of set #2 were hearing Gus again, as I’d seen it on the IBE tour and not since, and also Courage, simply because it’s a favorite of mine. “If you gotta go, you go now, or else you have to stay all night”, Gordie reminded us at one point, and stay most of us did. We’d wormed our way down to two or three rows back from the barrier due to people leaving, and the view was fantastic. With rare exception, the crowd around us was fantastic as well. To say nothing of the band. The encore was almost the same as my Saturday Artpark show, with Struggle and Little Bones.

Wheat Kings

The Last Recluse

Now The Struggle Has a Name

Little Bones

It’s been said elsewhere that the setlist on this night was nothing to write home about, and save for Thompson Girl (personally), they’d be right, but this night was not about the setlist, and way more about the fans, the band, and the elements. And how they all came together to transform an already great Hip show into something even better. A shared experience, and a show where years from now, you can look back and say, “I was there for that!”

I only took one picture before my phone got wet:
thehip_07-25-09

But flickr user literarymind has a few good ones!
the tragically hip

First Set
01: The Depression Suite
02: In View
03: Giftshop
04: Ahead By A Century
05: Twist My Arm
06: Morning Moon
07: New Orleans Is Sinking
08: It’s A Good Life If You Don’t Weaken
09: The Exact Feeling
10: At The 100th Meridian
11: Love Is A First

Second Set
01: Thompson Girl (Acoustic)
02: Coffee Girl (Acoustic)
03: Wheat Kings (Acoustic)
04: Spring Time In Vienna (?)
05: Bobcaygeon
06: Nautical Disaster
07: Gus: The Polar Bear From Central Park
08: The Last Recluse
09: Courage
10: Frozen In My Tracks
11: My Music At Work
12: Blow At High Dough

Encore
13: Now The Struggle Has A Name
14: Little Bones

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