Prog-jammers Umphrey’s McGee’s first tour of 2012 reached the Midwest this weekend for performances at the LC Pavilion in Columbus, Ohio on Friday and at The Fillmore in Detroit last night. At each show the band unveiled a new classic rock cover that they had never played before – the Blue Oyster Cult 1981 hit Burnin’ For You in Columbus and the fitting Detroit Rock City by KISS in Motown.
Friday night’s performance also featured the first UM version of Red by King Crimson since October 8, 2009. Umphrey’s first started playing the Robert Fripp-penned instrumental at a Vegoose Late Night show in Las Vegas in 2005 and Red was performed along with King Crimson guitarist Adrian Belew at three out of the four gigs at which he guested in March 2007. Red was inserted in the middle of Nemo to form Friday’s encore.
Last night at The Fillmore, Umphrey’s welcomed Nicholas Gerlach of opening band Twin Cats on sax for their second-ever cover of Maneater by Hall & Oates. UM first performed Maneater on Dec. 30, 2011 with Jeff Coffin. Earlier this year, guitarist Brendan Bayliss and bassist Ryan Stasik tackled a more swampy version of Maneater with John Oates as part of The Omega Moos’ set on Jam Cruise 10. Detroit Rock City (crappy video here) was debuted to start the encore and led into the finish of a Nothing Too Fancy that was started during the first set. The Midwest Run and the first full tour of 2012 ends tonight for Umphrey’s at The Canopy Club in Urbana, Ill. While the show is sold out, you can watch a webcast live (or the archived version any time for the next six month) for $9.99 through iClips.