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August 10, Reno, NV - Reno Hilton Amphitheater

by LB

The Reno Hilton's enormous marquee flashed pictures of the Pretenders and the B-52's. It was totally cool, until it came time for them to show a big plate of slimey looking food again, but hey, images of the bands were back around soon enough.

When the band came out on stage, Chrissie spoke of her concern with getting a suntan from standing on the stage.

They played against a backdrop of azure which darkened into a beautiful shade of cobalt, and, finally, coal. A few wandering pristine white clouds passed by early in the show.

During Message Of Love, some guy came running up from the side, vaulted the barrier and leapt up to grab the top edge of the stage that was at least 7 feet high. He nearly got onstage before the security was able to pull him down by one of his feet. This guy was built like a wrestler and moved like a gymnast. I've never seen a human being move so much muscular bulk so effortlessly and I can still see the whole thing in my head in slow motion. It was FRIGHTENING. Chrissie was noticeably disturbed by it, keeping an eye one him while security struggled to get him under control. She moved to the far side of the stage, near Adam, but kept playing. It looked like Andy was ready to give the guy one fierce kick if he'd gotten an inch closer to getting up on the stage. Once he was pulled down, Chrissie traded a line in the song for, "Take it easy" and didn't look at him any more as they tried to remove the guy and he tried desperately to get her attention.

Again the set list was very much the same as it has been, only this time Chrissie said they were going to try something different and she wasn't sure how it was going to turn out. Actually, everyone in the band seemed to be confused as to what was going to happen. Martin stood up to leave so Andy put his bass down and did leave. Chrissie looked at Martin like she was concerned that he was going to leave also. She said something to him, but I guess he didn't hear and he left the stage, leaving Zeb, Chrissie, and Adam out there alone. I think Chrissie then said something to Adam and they started Rabo de Nube. About midway through the song, Adam left as Zeb went into Hymn To Her. We'd been in the sun all day and were hot, tired, and not really in the mood to hear Hymn To Her. I turned to Taunia and asked her if she wanted to sit down for the rest of the song, which she did because she was feeling a little lightheaded. We didn't have our butts in the seats for 5 seconds when Chrissie turned away from the microphone to yell backstage, "They sat down!" and indicated for the guys to come back out. She sang maybe one verse of Hymn To Her, then ended it. Then she pointed at us and told the audience, "I've got a couple of girls here who've been to every show on the tour. They've seen it all and I get embarrassed if I don't change the set list." Then she looked at us, shook her head and said, "You're out of your minds" and, smiling, added, "But we're worth it..." This caused people to approach us after the show to ask if we'd really been to every show on the tour.

After Thin Line, she asked the audience, "Do you guys live up here? It's really beautiful here. We're all thinking about relocating to the desert. Or maybe we'll just send Martin out there by himself."

I think it was before My City Was Gone, she introduced Andy, saying, "From the North of England, where all great musicians come from... of course there's always an exception... on bass guitar, Andy Hobson!"

When Adam introduced Chrissie, he said, "The best rhythm guitarist, the best singer, from Akron, Ohio..." and Chrissie stepped up to her microphone and said, "That's the exception!" and Adam finished, "We have... Chrissie Hynde!" Then Chrissie said, "We have a laugh!"

Another time she asked the audience, "Do you feel lucky tonight? Remember, the percentage always wins... or something like that." She must have been getting some gambling lessons earlier inside the Hilton's casino.

Martin had fun with insects - He was tapping on the drums and Chrissie asked, "Martin, what are you doing?" He said, "I'm making the flies dance" and continued on for awhile.

The band really let it rip that night. I remember Chrissie telling the mostly sitting audience, "That's right, you just sit there and relax because we're gonna get you. Take it easy for now, it's coming..." They did, too - by the end of the show, the whole crowd was up dancing and singing. Chain Gang was the song that raised the most voices, everyone singing along. During the Mystery Achievement intro, when she was doing her B's dances, she included a chorus girl can-can move, kicking one leg up in the air, then the other while holding up a make-believe skirt.

It was a damn good night.

(And before you ask, we only saw 10 shows on the tour. Tried for 12, but sadly, two were cancelled.)

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