And The Room Begins To Spin

3.7.08 (M.Walters)

3.8.09 (M.Walters)

Tucked away amidst a two-hour first set on Saturday at Hampton was one of the dark horse jams of the weekend.  With marathon setlists each night, some moments were inevitably lost in the extended fray- especially “Split Open and Melt.”  Representing the first real jam of the evening, the band took a daring ride down an abstract ally, creating a seething piece of music that was reminiscent of the band’s full on experimentation in ’94.  Leaving groove behind, the band attacked this jam vigorously, previewing the more open-ended excursions of the second set.


3.6.09 (W.Rogell)

Contributing to the early ’90s vibe that defined this first set- and the entire weekend- “Split Open” was the first piece of the night that really got the show going.  Immediately firing up the crowd, the band sat into the introductory grooves of the song.  As they approached the pre-jam break, that rush of anticipation grew tangible, knowing we were about to live the first “Split” in five years.  As we plunged below the water line, between beams to the gloom room, we were soon covered with seaweed and slime- and then it was time to melt.


3.8.09 (M.Walters)

Starting the jam at a brisk pace, the band wasted no time getting into the thick of things, characteristic of most all the shorter jams at Hampton.  Delving into the dense musical canvas, the band almost immediately guided the jam out into more abstract territory.  With Fishman playing a complex and grooveless beat, the other members began adding their interpretations of this experimental plane.  Trey focused primarily on wailing tonality and searing walls of sound, bringing the improv ever deeper with his work.  Mike played a continuous bassline that followed the jagged contours of the jam, while Page added blocked piano chords that anchored the far off jam to the song.

3.6.09 (W.Rogell)

3.6.09 (W.Rogell)

As the band got involved in twisting improv, one could have been fooled into thinking they were listening to a version from the mid-nineties.  Trey progressed into his dirtiest tone, playing more distinct phrases, as Fish worked over his cymbals like it was the last time he would ever play them.  Following this maddening path, the band came to a dissonant peak before pushing onwards through the sonic sludge.  At this point, Mike began pounding out a heavier, repetitive line, inviting the band to return to the song’s structure.  Within a minute, they had congealed and completed  “Split,” but the brevity of the jam certainly took nothing away from its quality.  A menacing portrait of the band’s 3.Old-school sound that painted the Hampton shows, this jam was a quick reminder of Phish’s ability to take a jam very far out in no time, and speed back to earth like a fiery comet.

3.6.09 (J.DiGiuseppe)

3.6.09 (J.DiGiuseppe)

As illustrated by this “Split,” the beauty of Hampton was that it was only the beginning.  Primarily, the band played concise, to the point jams as they got their sea legs back again.  Come mid-summer, shows will assume quite a different landscape.  And by the time summer ends, Hampton will exist as a mystical memory of the weekend when it all started to come back together again.


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rspage1In a very candid Rolling Stone article, Phish gave writer, David Fricke, further insight into their upcoming studio plans.  Very exciting was the fact that Phish already has 20 new songs and is prepared to start work on their next album in April.  Teaming up with Steve Lillywhite (Billy Breathes) again, look for a cohesive effort that moves beyond their previous albums.  Trey supported this assertion, saying, “I’m not convinced we’ve made a great record yet.”  Yes, the passion is back!  The article also gives you a look into the band’s dynamic during the break up and over the Hampton weekend.  Although the article is not online, someone scanned it in.  The three pages are below, click on the links and then click on the page to zoom in.  It’s a great read!

Rolling Stone: Page 1 < LINKS
Rolling Stone: Page 2
Rolling Stone: Page 3


8.13.93 The Murat Theatre, Indianapolis, IN SBD < LINKS BACK SOON

8.13.93 The Murat Theatre, Indianapolis, IN SBD < TORRENT LINK


The Murat Theatre, Indianapolis, IN

Continuing our week of ’93 downloads, they don’t come much more classic than this.  A second set of segue-mania features the fan favorite “Murat Gin” as well as incredibly dynamic playing throughout.  A definitive piece of August ’93, this SBD is a must for all collectors.

I: Lengthwise > Llama, Makisupa Policeman > Foam, Stash, Ginseng Sullivan > Fluffhead, My Mind’s Got a Mind of its Own, Horn, David Bowie

II: Buried Alive > Rift, Bathtub Gin > Ya Mar, Mike’s Song > Lifeboy, Oh Kee Pa Ceremony > Suzy Greenberg

E: Amazing Grace, Highway to Hell*



“Mexican Cousin” 3.7.09 –  Photo: Spencer Short

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243 Responses to “And The Room Begins To Spin”

  1. hairy pood Says:

    piper at the gates of dawn and the division bell

  2. Davey Says:

    My vote goes for Animals. Pigs (3 different ones) is epic. Ha ha charade you are.

  3. SOAM Says:

    Final Cut

  4. vtsnowboarder802 Says:

    -Mr. completely: ditto on MMW. I am also burnt out on them, but whenever I see them, I prefer to be on balcony just so I can watch that crazy man work.

    lovin today’s download…

  5. R1 Says:

    you’re putting division bell up there hairy pood? really?

  6. Little Buddy Says:

    @ Chalkdustin

    When I first started doing tour we drove beaters and rarely got a hotel room. Slept in the car, on the ground, and occasionally in a tent at a camp site. You’ll be fine. There will be so many others doing the same thing and like Full Tour/ Full Tour Announced/Whole Tour says, its so easy to meet cool peeps you might have a better adventure without a plan than having rooms all set up for yourself. These days I’m too old and crabby for post-show adventures, so my wife and I set up our hotels way in advance and spend way to much money making sure that there is a hot tub and pool, but I’ve seen at least 100 shows with no clue where I was going or what I was doing afterward, and many times I was on my own. You might find yourself a cool rider to share the gas expenses with too.

    Cowfunk: There was a little shakedown at Hampton in the way back lot, but before the show, not after. The only thing I saw out there after the show was dudes getting busted by the cops for god knows what. I even saw a kid try to run only to subsequently get chased down by an undercover cop who had his gun out. The girls I was with got totally freaked out at that… When I got back to my car there were undercover cops shining their flashlights into the back of my Volvo wagon. We had a fun conversation…

  7. Mr. Completely Says:

    early floyd albums all have good songs (summer ’68, Free Four) but are inconsistent. so is Final Cut which is mostly very slow but has awesome stuff on it (Not Not John, Gunners dream). Everything after that is Pink Fraud: sorry. Love Gilmour, but no.

    In between, from Meddle through The Wall, is just all good. Picking a favorite is like picking fave Phish song or Dylan album, there is no wrong answer. I listen to Meddle most cause it has fully developed Floyd sound but isn’t fully cynical and depressing yet.

    You all have the live @BBC from ’70 (I think) with debuts of Echoes et al and the epic Fat Old Sun? If not I will dig that up and post it tomorrow.

    No love for Syd’s solo albums? Represent!

  8. Frankie Says:

    @ Davey
    No problem! Red Rocks bound! 😀

  9. Frankie Says:

    @ Davey
    No problem man! Red Rocks bound! 😀

  10. Davey Says:

    ^ Sweet.

    My girl and and I are headed for a hotspring to get my lithium after yesterdays bum-fest. I’ll talk to you all when I get back. Happy trails and let’s pray for the lottery Frankie.

  11. Mr. Completely Says:

    I will keep repeating this refrain until I leave for the shows: if you are car camping at the Gorge you will want to come prepared. That place in August is no fucking joke: it will work you over and beat you down. Especially afternoon of the second day.

    @Little Buddy I’m with you. I used to wing it and for younger folks who are on the road for adventure I think that is an awesome way to go. When I was doing full tours I would usually try to set up hotels once a week or so just to guarantee myself shower and decent sleep, but I couldn’t always afford it and it always worked out ok.

    You will definitely meet more people and have more wacky fun shit happen if you just go for it. Just be smart and don’t get UC’d or custied.

    Now hotel is not optional since I am taking a kid to the Gorge, but I’d be doing it anyway. My wife and I aren’t too old to get down after the show, but we ARE too old to do it in the backseat of a car.

  12. Los Says:

    My vote is for animals

  13. Wilson Says:

    That RS article is much appreciated. It really moved me.
    I’m really pulling for Trey. hte man brought much joy into my life, and I think for that, we all returned the favor by expecting SO much form the man. He and I also share a birthday, so he truly is THE man. 😉

  14. Wilson Says:

    god i botched that post. we could seriously use an edit function.

  15. Ryan Schloffel Says:

    Rolling Stone made Trey look like a junkie without any sense to control his urges, and his last quote in the story says everything RS was trying to get across…and wtf with the trampolines caption? every story has to have an angle, but c’mon. Seems like the story was more about Trey coming off his addiction rather than the boys being back…any thoughts?

    Also, I’m still looking for the Fox show from 93 or 94 that I heard about the other day with sweet versions of Tweezer and YEM…checked etree, but no luck….any help?

  16. SOAM Says:

    I was rather taken aback by the Fishman comment about “I gonna buy it if n’t leave Phish

  17. SOAM Says:


  18. Wilson Says:

    my “other” guitar hero is Keith Richards, so …

  19. guyforget Says:

    yeah, that was a suprising revelation. i do think trey has more willpower from reading that biography on JG. that guy was just a fragile human being.

  20. c0wfunk Says:

    Had the good fortune of working stage crew at an mmw show a few years back- medeskis keycorner is a vintage keys museum.. He’s amazing but the band hasn’t evolved enough to keep my attention.

  21. Mr. Completely Says:

    I thought it was a pretty positive if off-the-shelf article. And it sounds like Trey maybe was in fact a junkie without any sense to control his urges. That’s pretty much the definition of every serious addict I’ve ever been around – and that’s a lot. I have been close friends with several very serious cocaine and/or heroin addicts. The last quote was something Trey said, RS didn’t make him say it, what’s the problem?

    The tramps photo quote was lame tho.

    Well put @ Wilson – I am also pulling for him. That’s exactly how it feels. As lifelong Deadhead I already got to watch the “Iconic Guitar Player I’m Emotionally Invested In Kills Himself With Drugs Over Long Tragic Period Of Slow Decline” movie and I have no interest in a sequel.

    Kudos to Trey and all the other people in the Phish scene who have cleaned themselves up to Get Back On The Train. Beating a serious addiction is a major accomplishment. Anyone who has done it deserves praise and support.

    O and hey you younger ppl are getting the takeaway message on this right? “powder drugs are bad, mmmmkay?” no joke. I party like a fucking fiend to this day and have in the past partaken of literally everything, I am not a fucking school counselor or your dad or some shit. Party your ass off. Have fun. But steer clear of that shit: it will fuck you up.

  22. SOAM Says:

    it also revealed imo-that it was trey and page vs. Mike and fish in regards to the future of the band-we are talking alot of money and families so lose some illusions here-get down to the nitty gritty so to speak.

    bottom line it’s on and trey has always rambled a little…they are probably enjoying peoples interest after being away for so long

  23. guyforget Says:

    SOAM, what’s up with you today man. you’re not your usual abrasive self, but are quite sentimental!! Just busting your chops a little dude! 🙂

  24. Mr. Completely Says:

    @c0wfunk exactly, well said

    also @guyforget – fragile is right – a wounded heart from day 1 – its what made him so powerful but it killed him in the end

    and yes as pure and unreformed deadhead I agree that makes Trey stronger. if he stays clean. good for him; good for all of us.

  25. SOAM Says:

    still hung over from Tues-still when I listen to Pizza Tapes – I am just in awe of the fat man and his attitude.- fuckin guy was chill , funny, talented and vulnerable-sounds like a human being to me

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