Maybe Slug senses he's being lost in translation. "I've always been curious what you guys think that song is about," he says after "The Abusing of the Rib."
Someone answers inaudibly. "Snowboarding?" he laughs.
(This song, an Atmosphere cornerstone, doesn't send chills up my neck the way the recorded version does. It's one of the few places where the guitarist doesn't quite seem to know what to do with himself.)
Before the encore, Slug decides to get to know the crowd better. "Maybe we should talk for awhile," he says. He attempts to have a conversation with his audience. "Where did I grow up? About three miles south of where we're standing right now. My favorite Ghostface song?"
This goes on for 15 minutes, and turns out to be the truest connection of the evening.
DAY 8: TUESDAY
It's an all-ages crowd tonight, but I see something you won't find at most teen centers: a young man puffing on a fat stogie.
The band launches into "Cats Van" before Slug takes the stage, and he raps most of it from the crowd--a big entrance.
"No more of this Justin Timberlake screaming," he says to the front row once he's onstage. But these are Slug's kids. "You'll get to vote for me in about 20 years when I run for governor," he jokes.
"Mark my words," says a fan standing next to me. "In 10 years, this guy will be Dr. Dre."
I laugh. "I've already been waiting seven."