What a treat to see Tedeschi Trucks Band at College Street Music Hall in New Haven. First off, here’s to having a brand spanking new 2,000 seat venue in the heart of New Haven, born from the renovation of the old Palace Theater. One of the few remnants we could find from the Palace was on ceiling, directly above the GA section:
The layout is very easily navigated: coatcheck immediately as you enter, same with the loge and balcony stairways, bathrooms clearly marked, the bar and merch table come next, and the floor and GA sections are straight ahead. Just like an old theater, there are attendants readily available to guide you to your ticket location.
Thankfully unlike an old theater, the bar area was expansive with a multitude of drink choices (mixed, beer on tap, wines, everything). And there were even some drink specials which is rare for concert events.
Also, unlike an old theater or most venues… the bathrooms were extremely clean and had all the modern amenities. What I mean by ‘modern’ is they actually had soap and a way to dry your hands. Try finding that at some of the other dives in CT!
Oh yeah, there was a concert! The sound at College Street is updated as well. Even in the GA section directly up front, you weren’t blasted nor at a loss to hear (as the speaker clusters were perfectly placed and sometimes can be beyond the first few rows). And… if you needed to run to the front of the house to get a drink, the sound was throughout. There are even video monitors at the bar while you wait – They’ve got it figured out!
Tedeschi Trucks Band played close to a perfect set with selections from their entire catalog and a few choice covers. With a new album due to drop in January 2016, it could have just been a romp of the new as some bands tend to get tired of the old. Not the case here though as you can see.
Being an 11-piece band, some instruments and performances certainly could have gotten lost in the mix, but with the great sound (from their engineer and College Street) and the band’s dynamics, you could hear all the nuances. They spanned from playing on the lighter, jammier side to knocking through some of the harder blues-rock you’ll hear out there today. Tedeschi’s voice is so strong and Trucks licks are so juicy, they just leave you wanting more, even after clocking in at over 1.5 hours of music.
Tip: The general admission/standing tickets are definitely recommended as you are right up in the action while not being overcrowded. Don’t think squished up front at a Summer festival, but rather the thrill at a near capacity club show where you have room to breath.
We’ll need to give the actual loge or balcony seats a whirl at some point, just to get the full experience (let us know if you already have or do!). We’re looking forward to many more shows at College Street Music Hall and catching Tedeschi Trucks the next time they’re in town.
Tip: try and get to New Haven a couple hours ahead of shows at College Street to grab some cheap, metered parking on the Green and a bite to eat/drink in the area. Make it an entire night!
And… bring ear plugs just in case. It was welcomely louder than your average theatre!
-The Sweet and Sweaty