A Gallery of Possibilities

The Invitation

The Invitation

With their ever-expanding use of technology coupled with their desire to hype up Festival 8, yesterday Phish posted a “gallery” of 99 outstanding albums as the splash page on their web site, introduced by a Festival 8 invitation with the simple instructions: “Phish – Play the Last Record Alive.” Much like the Save the Date map that preceded this haunted galleria, albums have already been “killed off,” with Medeski Martin & Wood’s Shack Man, Tom Petty’s Damn the Torpedoes, Huey Lewis’ and the News’ Sports, Talking Head’s Fear of Music, and Leonard Cohen’s I’m Your Man quickly getting the axe- literally. And much like the wild-goose chase of their Save the Date map, this list of albums could be just that.

Huey Lewis Is Dead - Or Is He?

Huey Lewis Is Dead - Or Is He?

With a list of 99 records, Phish put almost every Halloween suggestion ever made on the table and then some. The site includes many albums we all know, and most likely quite a few we don’t all know, giving us time to familiarize ourselves with some.  With a reputation of playing more obscure albums, some of the most popular recordings like, Led Zeppelin’s I or IV, The Grateful Dead’s American Beauty, Michael Jackson’s “Thriller,” and Jimi Hendrix’s “Are You Experienced?” or “Electric Ladyland” seem unlikely for Halloween. This gallery of possibilities also contains contemporary classics such as Radiohead’s Kid A, U2’s The Joshua Tree, Rage Against The Machine’s Evil Empire, Nirvana’s Nevermind, and Pearl Jam’s Ten. Although we’ve never seen Phish tackle a modern-day work in full, maybe this will be the year. In my gut, however, this also seems unlikely.

Anything Is Possible

Tom Petty Got the Axe

With defining albums of many genres and eras, along with several obscure gems, the gallery also hangs some records for humor of the imagination- see the offerings from Pork Tornado, Hall & Oates, Kiss, Metallica and Black Sabbath. (Some great albums, yes. Real possibilities, no.) At this point, it’s very difficult to take anything from Phish at face value, making me think this could be ploy to increase interest, boost lagging ticket sales, and divert attention from fall tour speculation.

But what is going to happen with this gallery? Are we going to know what the album is beforehand?! I seriously doubt it. At the same time, I don’t even want the possibilities narrowed to five- that would be incredibly anti-climactic, as the audience has traditionally known nothing about the bands’ musical costume when walking into the venue on Halloween night. While “The White Album” and Quadrophenia weren’t revealed until the set began, Remain In Light and Loaded were unveiled via “Phishbills” handed out as everyone entered the arena – but never has there been any level of knowledge before hand.  This album elimination is a clever idea, but I think they should stop at a certain number to maintain the suspense of the evening.  Is it going to be one of two options walking in?  That would be strange.

Anything Is Possible

Anything Is Possible...

Personally, I loved not knowing Remain In Light, and Loaded when Phish bust them out – it was like a genuine costume; a mystery to me. Each album had at least one song everyone knew (“Once In a Lifetime,” “Sweet Jane” and/or “Rock and Roll,” making it just familiar enough, but making the musical journey a genuine trip. Knowing the album well made for an entirely different – completely surreal – experience with Dark Side, but that was Dark Side.  While knowledge of the album note for note can bring enhanced appreciation, it can also carry preconceptions.  Would I like to know the album when they play it – for sure.  But I’m not gonna chase down every album on this list that I don’t know – and there are many – in the hopes of discovering the music that might transpire, though I’ll definitely download a few. Whether this gallery is a trick or a treat, Phish has certainly exposed us to a plethora of classic albums, a great resource in itself. And in the end, their choice is most likely on the screen right now – but who knows if it has been killed already? Halloween is all about the rising of the dead, is it not? With the masters of trickery at the helm, the suspense never ends.

Winged music note=====

Jam of the Day:

Wolfman’s > Lizards” 11.18.98 II


This set opening “Wolfman’s” highlights Phish’s ambient jamming they added to the mix during of Fall ’98. Moving out of the funk and into spacier textures, this little-known version kicked off a significant second set in Greenville, SC. The half-empty, brand-new arena was the perfect locale for a mid-week throwdown. (Note: Yesterday’s “Reba > Walk Away” is fixed.)



9.28.99 Oak Mountain Amp, Pelham, AL < Torrent

9.28.99 Oak Mountain Amp, Pelham, AL < Megaupload

Phish - Fall '99 (A. Foley)

Fall '99 (A. Foley)

On the topic of mid-week throwdowns, here we another that celebrated its ten-year anniversary just yesterday. After a rainy afternoon in the lot, Phish lit a fire inside the southern amphitheatre, bringing hot dance grooves right off the bat. Opening the show with”Wolfman’s,” “Sneakin’ Sally” and “Tube,” Phish set the plate with a hearty dose of funk. “Harry Hood” made a rare appearance as the first set closer, while “Tweezer > Makisupa” and a blowout “YEM” sealed the deal on a great evening in Alabama.

I: Wolfman’s Brother, Sneakin’ Sally through the Alley, Tube, Ginseng Sullivan > Roggae, Maze, Wading in the Velvet Sea, Harry Hood

II: Farmhouse, Heavy Things, First Tube, Tweezer > Makisupa Policeman, Chalk Dust Torture, You Enjoy Myself

E Halley’s Comet > Tweezer Reprise

Source: Schoeps CMC 641 > Apogee AD-1000 > DA-P1

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380 Responses to “A Gallery of Possibilities”

  1. SJC Says:

    Gordo in 10″ platforms breathing fire. Now we’re talkin.

  2. Mr.Miner Says:

    Kiss? God I hope not….lol

  3. Mr. Completely Says:

    I thought kiss was no chance until I thought about the costumes…then I thought maybe…

    but in the end, I think it would be funny for about a song and a half, then just silly and a wasted opportunity

    hilarious image though

  4. SJC Says:

    God I hope not is right.

  5. joe Says:

    caught the ziggy stardust live movie on vh1 classic when I got home from work last night. some nice stretched out spacey songs that fit right into the phish style. (although only half from the movie are from the album of the same name) Plus, they could wear crazy outfits too. Not sure I’d like to see Trey dressed as Ziggy though. Side note: Mick Ronson was pretty badass.

  6. Chuck D Says:

    turd on the run…. great song name

  7. bearito Says:

    Kiss is actually playing in New Orleans Halloween weekend at the Voodoo Music Festival. I’m not upset that I’m missing it to go to 8.

  8. Mr. Completely Says:

    Ziggy Stardust would be a golden pick for sure

    it’s one of those albums like Loaded or Remain in Light that a lot more people have heard of than have actually listened to it, especially among a phish type crowd

    only problem is how great Bowies vocals are, but whatever

    would be a great choice from among the front runners for sure

  9. bearito Says:

    Trey would have to sport some Stiletto’s. Weird.

  10. Mr.Miner Says:

    I’ve thought Ziggy in previous years

  11. bearito Says:

    Fishman could open it up singing Five Years. Vacuum in hand.

  12. bearito Says:

    Then a guest sax player would be introduced for Soul Love. That would be righteous!

  13. Looking For Owls? Says:

    This Wolfman’s (.)(.)’s

  14. Mr. Completely Says:

    i could use some owls

    thanks for asking

    really lightened the tension

  15. GuitarPicker420! Says:

    Miner – you are absolutely in for a treat. Let it Loose is probably my favorite ballad of all time. Ventilator Blues would be mind-melting to see Phish play. Giant Country horns for the whole thing. Ripping guitar solos.

  16. William H. Bonney Says:

    Based on the massive size of the festival setting, the choice will have to match up to the event. Why not stage The Wall, talk about amazing production. Not likely but would be more fun than Exile. If I could pick stones record would Their Satanic Majesties Request. Basement Tapes or Electric Lady Land most likely in IMO. Not sure how Lady Land is mainstream hendrix not sure that exists other than a greatest hit mix which most casual fans have. Just imagine 1983 a merman I should turn to be….so down and down and down we go……….

  17. Looking For Owls? Says:

    Mr. C, dig on your efforts, will be getting a shirt from you real soon.

  18. William H. Bonney Says:

    Too bad they didn’t use the original artwork for the lady land cover.

  19. EL Duderino Says:

    If it turns out to be Electric Ladyland I will kick myself for the rest of my life for not going!!!! The others I think I could deal with a little better but not EL

  20. Mr. Completely Says:

    thx Owl-man!

    Ladyland…yeah. Voodoo Chile, with and without (Slight return)…1983, one of my alltime favorite bits of psychedelia for sure…

    been awhile since I spun that. tonight, then.

  21. EL Duderino Says:

    I still think T-Rex Electric Warrior would be best suited for the band.

  22. EL Duderino Says:

    Blind Faith would be my second choice after EL and before EW

  23. Lycanthropist Says:

    I think Jimi would be a good fit for halloween.. maybe a little predicitable, but pretty much everyone would get behind it and [Phish] could tear it up.

  24. Mr. Completely Says:

    I just listened to Blind Faith a couple weeks ago for the first time in years

    some real good songs on there but more uneven than I remembered (IMO)

    hard to know what to do with the high vocal parts, but vox are trouble for many albums so again whatever

    I wouldn’t expect them to do that album but it’d be a good call if they did

  25. GuitarPicker420! Says:

    Back in 1995, I was praying for Electric Ladyland. And the Gods Made Love to open it up. Of course a massive Watchtower. Moon Turn The Tides, and my personal favorite, Burning of the Midnight Lamp.

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