John Mellencamp

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Average User Rating 9.49
Total Reviews 1
Last Reviewed August 20th, 2006
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful:
Still Rocking
Venue/Date: ISU Hulman Center (Terre Haute, IN)
Concert Date:  
October 26th, 2007
Reviewer: aceshooter

      Venue Parking  
      Venue Security  
      Opening Band  
      Opening Song  
      Set List  
      Band Connection  
      Band Energy/Intensity/Showmanship  
      ConcertGoer Energy/Intensity  
      Sound Quality  
      Set and Lighting Design (SLD)  
      The Finish/Encore  

CONCERT REVIEW: Mellencamp delivers strong, fresh rock in Hulman Center tour stop

By Mark Bennett
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — For John Mellencamp, the safe route for the concert tour he kicked off Friday night in Terre Haute would be to play the hits, all of them.

Instead, this 56-year-old who exposed Hoosier rock ’n’ roll to the world, took risks with a music-starved Hulman Center crowd. Mellencamp proved his songwriting is edgy and sharp, and so is his band. To the dismay of many fans, he didn’t play favorites such as “Cherry Bomb,” “R.O.C.K. in the U.S.A.” and “Hurts So Good,” his Grammy-winning single, for cryin’ out loud. Ironically, some of his more diehard followers may have bought their tickets through his fan group, Club Cherry Bomb.

But for those understanding enough to postpone those sing-along anthems for the CD player on the ride home, Mellencamp’s renditions of new songs from his album, due to be released next summer, delivered some strong, fresh rock. His decision to leave room in his two-hour show for “If I Die Sudden,” “Troubled Land” and “Jena” was bold and refreshing, considering most have had plenty of opportunities to see Mellencamp perform his omissions, such as “Our Country,” which runs repeatedly on Chevy commercials between timeouts in NFL broadcasts.

Perhaps most special, though, was that Mellencamp looked and sounded like the Hoosier he is. During band mate Andy York’s guitar solo on “Crumblin’ Down,” Mellencamp yanked up the back of his jeans after dancing around the stage, causing a few grins in the crowd. Obviously, he’s not in the sagging pants crowd. But he truly linked himself with Terre Haute when he described driving here Friday afternoon from Bloomington, passing through the small Clay County town of Bowling Green. He imagined that village decades ago, when its residents would gather for events, harvests or festivals, packing the streets with people seeing grand days ahead for such a place. Then, he and the band broke into “Ghost Towns Along the Highway,” punctuated with images of small-town life displayed in a video collage behind them.
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