The best compliment I can give the Dinosaur Jr. reunion is that I no longer find its greatness unusual. After almost five years, it's no longer a surprise that they still sound this good, the way it was when I first saw them back in 2006. Rather than being a great post-reunion band, they're just a great band, no qualifier necessary.
Mascis still looks like an aging member of a Norwegian death metal band. His voice, usually a stoner drawl on record, sounds a lot more intense live (though still uniquely his). His amp setup on stage surrounds him; if you stood on the left wing of the Middle East you couldn't see him at all if you were too close to the front. Lou Barlow (whose latest project, the Missingmen, opened the show and left no impression) looks almost exactly the same as he did ten years ago when Sebadoh released their last album. He still attacks his bass like he's trying to punish it. They encored with their cover of "Just Like Heaven," allowing its sudden ending to close out the night. The only thing I could complain about was the extremely tall gentleman doing an Elaine Benes-esque dance about a yard in front of me for most of the evening. So it was another great Dinosaur Jr. show. Ho hum.
READ: Dueling Dinos, Night Two.PHOTOS: Dinosaur Jr., live at the Middle East.