A few weeks back I posted a thread about the Waybacks and Wilders in Minneapolis - as it turned out, my wife and I were able to make a pitstop in our old home on the way to a wedding in Duluth, MN - The Wilders were, as always, excellent. If you have not seen this group, do it - they have a great show with great music. Here is the weird experience mentioned in the title of the thread. When the Waybacks came on it seemed like they were pissed at the crowd. I was stone cold sober so this was not an altered perception. For those that have seen the waybacks, you know that the group tends to be sarcastic and self-effacing during the tuning, but this night the satire seemed mean spirited. For example, after the last song, Stevie Coyle snidely said "ok, we are going to go into that small room, you will clap and cheer, and then in two minutes we will come back and play one more song." In addition, their set was under one hour - not as short as some of the GD's 1990's era first sets, but nonetheless, very short. Anyway, I guess my point is not to slam the waybacks because they are something special, I am just curious to see if any of you have had similiar experiences - in this case, there was probably some weird inter-band shit going on and it spilled into the performance.
I think I've said elsewhere--I saw both bands at Merlefest a couple of times. Steve (from the Waybacks) seems to have that sense of humour that's not quite funny. He tries to be sarcastic in a funny way, but it just doesn't come out as funny. And if you don't hear it right, it comes across as annoying. This reminds me a lot of Phil and his sense of humour. A lot of the stuff that Phil said back in the day seemed to have this tinge to it.
But yes, both bands are excellent and it sucks when you can feel that negative vibe coming from the band. When I saw them, I was next to the stage taking pictures and they were all smiles, laughing it up, etc. I guess your experience was just an off-day for them.