Adventures In the Freezer – An Audio Post

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , , on October 19th, 2009 by Mr.Miner
"Tweezer" 7.31 (G.Lucas)

"Tweezer" 7.31 (G.Lucas)

Here is some Monday morning music to start off the week. In the vein of last week’s “Ambient Evolution” mix, today, I have spliced together a series of groove-era “Tweezer” jams – from 1997 to 2000 – in a 78-minute escapade, “Adventures In The Freezer.” The focus of this mix is straight-up, nasty Phish grooves, with some jams excerpted and some getting their full spin. Give it a listen, I think you’ll enjoy. The setlist is below the player. Click the title to download an mp3 version; a lossless link is below.

Adventures In The Freezer

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/01-Adventures-In-The-Freezer.mp3]

Lossless Version < Link

Auburn Hills 12/6/97 > Austin 7/25/98 > Denver 11/17/97 > Fuji Rock 8/1/99 > Raleigh 12/16/99 > Vancouver 9/9/99 > Lakewood 6/24/00 > Christiania 7/1/98 > Hartford 11/26/97

Winged music note=====

Jams of the Day:

Runaway Jim > Strange Design” 11.29.97 II

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/2-01-Runaway-Jim_.mp3,http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/2-03-Strange-Design.mp3]

Got an hour? If you don’t, here’s some slammin’ funk grooves from Merriweather ’98.

Sneakin’ Sally” 8.8.98 I

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph1998-08-08d1t05.mp3]

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DOWNLOAD OF THE DAY:

11.29.97 The Centrum, Worcester, MA < Torrent

11.29.97 The Centrum, Worcester, MA < Megaupload

1997-11-29moCentered around the hour-long “Runaway Jymphony” of legend, here we have the middle night of Worcester ’97’s three-night stand. Love it or leave it, there’s no it’s an adventure!

I. The Wedge, Foam, Simple, The Man Who Stepped Into Yesterday > Avenu Malkenu > The Man Who Stepped Into Yesterday, The Sloth, Ginseng Sullivan, Saw it Again, Horn, Water in the Sky, David Bowie

II: Runaway Jim > Strange Design, Harry Hood, Prince Caspian, Suzy Greenberg

E: Buffalo Bill > Moby Dick > Fire

Source: Unknown

Tags: , ,

Weekend Nuggets: Lemonwheel

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , , on October 17th, 2009 by Mr.Miner

DOWNLOADS OF THE WEEKEND:

phish-lemonwheel-98-smallPhish pumped everyone up yesterday with some great announcements about Festival 8, as it sits just at arm’s reach, less than two weeks away! Let’s take a deep breath this weekend and reflect on a festival past – 1998’s Lemonwheel. Limestone’s second season-ending festival brought six sets of pure fire. At the end of Summer ’98, Phish began blending ambient jamming into their repertoire, incorporating this style heavily in 8.16’s “Ghost.” But Summer ’98 was all about the laid-back funk, and the gem of this weekend was the second set of 8.15, featuring the massive combo of “Gunbo > Sanity > Tweezer,” all following a big-tim, festi-sized “Reba.” Set II of night II is also particularly strong, boasting “Disease > Piper, Ghost, Fluffhead” at the beginning of the frame. Six sets of greatness – plus the Ambient Set – later, and Phish had thrown one of their best weekends of all time.

***

Entire Weekend – 8.15 / 8.16 & Soundcheck < Torrent

(This doesn’t include the 8.15’s Set IV. You can download that below.)

***

Lemonwheel Soundcheck < Megaupload

8.15.98 Lemonwheel, Limestone, ME < Megaupload

JcE1nLz7tayzad2wLReXXjQA_400I : Mike’s Song > Simple, Beauty of My Dreams, Roggae, Split Open and Melt, Poor Heart, The Moma Dance, The Divided Sky, Water in the Sky, Funky Bitch > Cities > Weekapaug Groove

II: The Wedge, Reba, Gumbo > Sanity > Tweezer > The Horse > Silent in the Morning, Chalk Dust Torture, Slave to the Traffic Light

III: NICU > David Bowie, Strange Design, Limb By Limb > Brian and Robert, Loving Cup

E: Halley’s Comet > Cavern, Tweezer Reprise

IV: Ambient Jam

Source: FOB > Schoeps CMC6/MK21 > Sonosax SX-M2 > Apogee AD-1000

***

8.16.98 Lemonwheel, Limestone, ME < Megaupload

Lemonwheel

Lemonwheel

I: Ginseng Sullivan, Bathtub Gin, Rift, Punch You In the Eye, Lawn Boy, Ya Mar, AC/DC Bag, Frankie Says, Birds of a Feather, Guyute, Possum

II: Down with Disease > Piper, Ghost, Fluffhead, When the Circus Comes, Wading in the Velvet Sea, Hold Your Head Up > Sexual Healing > Hold Your Head Up, Run Like an Antelope

III: Sabotage > Also Sprach Zarathustra > Wilson, The Mango Song, Character Zero, Bittersweet Motel, While My Guitar Gently Weeps

E: Harry Hood > Jam > Baby Elephant Walk

Source: FOB > Schoeps CMC6/MK21 > Sonosax SX-M2 > Apogee AD-1000

Winged music note=====

Jams of the Weekend: Lemonwheel

Gumbo > Sanity > Tweezer” 8.15 II

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph1998-08-15d3t03.mp3,http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph1998-08-15d3t04.mp3,http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph1998-08-15d3t05.mp3]

Arguably, the best chunk of the weekend.

Ambient Set” 8.15.98 IV

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph98-08-15d5t05_Ambient-jam.mp3]

One of the best hours of Phish music ever. (Download by clicking the orange title.)

=====

VIDEO OF THE WEEKEND:

“2001” 8.16.98 III (Part 1)

“2001” 8.16.98 III (Part 2)

Tags: , ,

Tour Stop: The Crown

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , on October 15th, 2009 by Mr.Miner
"The Crown" - Cincinati, OH

"The Crown" - Cincinati, OH

Looking past Festival 8, Phish will soon return to one of their Midwestern homes – “The Crown” (now called US Bank Arena) in Cincinnati, Ohio. Adding the arena to their routing in Fall ’98, Phish played four more shows there before pulling up short in 2004. The Crown doesn’t usually enter into discussions of classic Phish venues, yet, slowly but surely, that is exactly what it’s become.  Hosting one of four multi-night parties of Fall Tour ’09, The Crown will again glow with the aura of the Phish.

November 14, 1998

2.21.03 (Unknown)

2.21.03 (Unknown)

Fall ’98 contained a seven show Midwestern run that Phish’s capped off with their first performance at Cincinnati’s downtown venue. Coming off a stellar UIC run and stops in Grand Rapids, Michigan and Cleveland, the band arrived in southern Ohio for a Saturday night gig. The first half contained serious versions of “Reba” and “Tweezer,” balancing the night’s improvisational highlights between the two sets. Reversing their usual pattern, Phish opened the second half with a colossal “David Bowie,” rousing the crowd with its ominous complexity. Tactfully, the band juxtaposed “Bowie’s” ordered chaos with a tranquil splash into The Beatles’ “Something,” calming the opening storm.

The second-set “You Enjoy Myself” stands out as the other significant piece of improv from Phish’s virgin visit to Cincy’s central part of town. As the jam dropped, Trey looped a rhythm lick and then began narrating a solo atop his own groove. This innovative style brought an added layer to “YEM’s” textured funk. And for an encore, the band surprised everyone by debuting The Police’s “So Lonely,” a classic track off of their first album Outlandos d’Amour. All in all, Phish’s first visit to The Crown provided a whole lot of fun and some indelible highlights. The vibe of the arena provided an added bonus, as ushers were non-existent, allowing fans to dance wherever they wanted to – a factor contributing to all of the quality experiences had at The Crown over the years.

December 3 & 4, 1999

2.21.03 (M.Hommes)

2.21.03 (M.Hommes)

Potentially due to this fan-friendly feel, Phish made The Crown a two-night stop along their climactic run of December ’99. Following a tour-opening blowout at The Palace in Auburn Hills, Phish moved south for a weekend stand in Cincy. Building momentum for Big Cypress throughout these shows, The Crown’s two nights brought more than a few “millennial” highlights, showcasing the band’s dissonant psychedelia. The first night, as usual, dove far deeper and darker, with the second set being the unquestionable gem of the weekend.

Opening with a ferocious “Sand,” Phish presented their first of many standout December ’99 versions that culminated at Big Cypress. Not slowing their creativity, the band followed the full-on, textured grooves with an incredibly exploratory “Limb By Limb” that certainly ranks among the best-ever. Moving beyond any conventional “Limb” jam into a section of deep ambient space while carrying melodic undertones, this version belongs in the record books – a truly transcendent piece of music. Phish closed out the set with a hugely aggressive “Piper” and a profound 20-minute “Hood” that dipped its ladle into ’99’s sonic ambiance as well. Composed of four significant pieces of standout improv with “Bug” as a breather in the middle, this set is among the best of December ’99.

2.22.03 (Unknown)

2.22.03 (Unknown)

The band came back Saturday night with a comparatively tame show that included only one standout jam – the second set “Split Open and Melt.” With their “millennial” sound peaking, Phish veered into a scintillating segment of psychedelic space-groove in one of the song’s best renditions of the year. The only other significant jam came in the blistering “Bowie” that closed the set. This Saturday-night-special catered to the weekend crowd with a lot of songs, and not a whole lot of improv. Even when they broke out a first set “Tweezer,” it remained quite contained with a simple build and peak. Nonetheless, the other-worldy “Split” defined this show, and provided another indelible memory at The Crown.

February 21 & 22, 2003

The next time Phish pulled into their Cincinnati home in February of 2003, the game had completely changed. Phish had taken their hiatus, and were now on their first tour since Fall ‘2000. As Phish regained their groove over this Winter tour, the Cincinnati weekend immediately stood out as the strongest nights of the tour up to that point. With another Friday / Saturday combo, The Crown instantly became a winter weekend destination for Phish fans across the nation. And when the band completed their fourth and fifth shows at The Crown, there were many outbound travelers leaving the city blissed out.

2.22.03 (Unknown)

2.22.03 (Unknown)

The first night boasted an exciting setlist from start to finish. Highlight jams in the opening frame included a massive mid-set “Disease” and the hottest “Antelope” that had reared its horns in the 2.0 era. But Phish upped the ante in the second set, as they came out with the tour’s first “Mike’s Song” – a raunchy 15-minute rendition that destroys anything the band has produced from the song in 2009. Without choosing a classic “Groove” connector, they instead used a monstrous segment of distorted music to segue into “Free;” a bombastic combo that almost blew the roof off the place.

After stopping off in “Waste,” the band continued the fireworks, crafting an intro to “2001” in which Trey quoted Bach as the band blasted into the first “2001” of tour – totally surreal stuff. Infusing the set with a consistent danceability, Phish let loose in a session of serious collaborative grooves that kept the venue bumping. The band already possessed tight communication – a far cry from their comeback run – as they sculpted a superb set. Merging celestial soundtracks, Phish moved from the peak of “2001” into the always-ethereal “Harry Hood,” completing a phenomenal segment of Phish. The set continued with “All Of These Dreams,” “Possum,” and ended with “Cavern.” No “Weekapaug?” A “Velvet Sea” encore left the vicious “Mike’s” hanging without a “Weekapaug ” – a very rare occurrence in Phish history. The Crown’s ’03 reunion had commenced, and as people dispersed to the downtown hotels, spirits soared.

2.22.03 (Unknown)

2.22.03 (Unknown)

A “Sloth” opener on Saturday gave an aggressive kick-start to the opening of the show, foreshadowing bigger things to come. A third-song “Piper” blossomed into a scorching piece of improv, making it seem like we were deep in the second set. The band carried the fast-paced jam into even quicker tempos, immersing themselves in an exploratory piece that organically, and seamlessly, wound up in a wild “Weekapaug,” closing out the “Groove” from the previous night! Believe it or not, this is the only time “Weekapaug” has ever appeared in a show without “Mike’s,” and this nugget of Phishiness pumped the already excited crowd into a frenzy. The band was clearly embarking on a very special show.

The second set of Saturday night’s affair still stands out as one of the best frames of the entire Winter ’03 tour, highlighted by a crack-like ‘Tube” jam, a centerpiece “Bathtub Gin” that broke electro-ambient ground, and a late-set “Bowie” that showcased the band’s intricate connectedness. With a distinct flow from start to finish, this five-song frame concluded with the reflective denouement of “Bug.” A “Suzy” encore put a fun cap on two very significant nights at The Crown.

To honor Phish’s history at The Crown and their upcoming visit, I have compiled “Miner’s Picks: The Crown,” totaling over five hours of Cincy jams. The links and track listing are below.

MINER’S PICKS: THE CROWN < Torrent

MINER’S PICKS: THE CROWN < Megaupload

image00911.14.1998

1.”Reba” I

2,3. “Tweezer > Moma” II

4, “David Bowie” II

5.”Something” II

6. “You Enjoy Myself” II

7,8. “So Lonely > Tweezer Reprise” E

12.3.99

9. “Slave to the Traffic Light” I

10. “Down With Disease” I

11. “Antelope” I

12. “Sand” II

13. “Limb By Limb” II

14. “Harry Hood” II

image00412.4.99

15. “Split Open and Melt” II

2.21.03

16,17. “Mike’s > Free” II

18,19. “2001 > Hood” II

2.22.03

20,21. “Piper > Weekapaug” I

22. “Tube” II

23. “Bathtub Gin” II

24. “David Bowie” II

(Note: I had to pull low bitrate versions of good sources for the post-hiatus stuff, since I only have the SBDs archived. My apologies.)

Winged music note=====

Jam of the Day:

Limb By Limb” 12.3.99 II

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/2-02-Limb-By-Limb.mp3]

Check it out.

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DOWNLOAD OF THE DAY:

11.14.98 The Crown, Cincinnati, OH < Torrent

11.14.98 The Crown, Cincinnati, OH < Megaupload

I: Funky Bitch, My Soul, Reba, Bouncing Around the Room, Tweezer > The Moma Dance, Sparkle, Character Zero

II: David Bowie, Something, Piper, Golgi Apparatus, Guyute, Hold Your Head Up > Sexual Healing > Hold Your Head Up, You Enjoy Myself, Julius, Hello My Baby

E: So Lonely* > Tweezer Reprise

*debut

Source: M.Gefell m210->Lunatec V2->AD1000->DAP-1 @48khz

Tags: ,

Five Other Possibilities

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , , , , , on October 15th, 2009 by Mr.Miner

Despite Ziggy Stardust being my personal choice for Phish’s musical costume, plenty of other engaging album choices still remain. Assuming Phish is working off their provided list, several defining records could still hold the golden ticket. While everyone has their own opinion of what could work and what certainly will not, I present to five other albums – in no particular order – that Phish could destroy.

***

Exile on Main Street – The Rolling Stones

exile_on_main_stHailed as one of the Stones finest accomplishments, their 1972 masterpiece blends the influences of blues, rock, country and soul to form a double-album considered among the best “studio” works of all time. During the recording process, nine years into their career as one of the biggest rock acts in the world, the Stones found themselves in financial straits, and decided to flee England to avoid paying income tax. The band drove to the French Riviera, setting up shop in the basement of Villa Nellcote, Keith Richard’s mansion by the sea. As they began recording in their makeshift studio, the band members were at the height of their drug and alcohol addictions, including Keith Richards’ notorious heroin habit. The combination of cramped quarters and intoxicated, unreliable band members created a frustrating dynamic for the band as they plugged away sporadically – usually in the middle of night – in all sorts of chemical states.

The resulting work, however, has since been exalted as a trendsetting record of the gritty, drugged-out rock and roll scene that blossomed in the Seventies. “Exile” came first, spawning a generation of bad-boy imitators,  but no one did it quite like the Stones.  Some hail the mere fact that the Stones actually got “Exile” recorded as a miracle, as they were hardly in control of anything during this period. But what resulted was “Exile On Main Street,” the Stones tenth album, and  snapshot of ragged rock stars trying to keep it together. Perhaps Robert Greenfield, author of “Exile on Main St.: A Season in Hell with the Rolling Stones” said it best:

To say that the human toll exacted during the making of Exile on Main Street was extreme is an understatement of major proportions. But then even if you had tried to tell the denizens of Nellcote that far too many of them would, in the immortal words of Pete Townshend, die before they got old, no one would have listened. They were all too busy getting high.

***

London Calling – The Clash

London-callingIf Phish were to veer from classic rock, The Clash’s dynamic double-album, London Calling, would be an outstanding choice. The band’s third album, released in 1979, represented a shift in The Clash’s musical style, steering away from the classic punk sound, with  elements of ska, pop, soul, rockabilly and reggae. And unlike The Rolling Stones odyssey of “Exile,” The Clash recorded London Calling within a matter of weeks; many songs finished in one or two takes. “London Calling” was the Clash’s watershed album, transforming the scruffy British quartet into bona-fide rock stars.

Their musically diverse songs carried various political messages. Whether attacking fascism in “Clampdown, denouncing drug culture in “Hateful”, or commenting on political rebellion in “Spanish Bombs,” The Clash’s songs often carried serious meaning amidst their playful feel. “London Calling’s” copious grooves and dub rhythms could provide Festival 8 with a horn-laced, desert dance party with a grand finale of the infectious pop single, “Train In Vain.”

***

Hot Rats – Frank Zappa

zappa_frontThe quirky time signatures, sudden changes, and generally bizarre complexity that defined Phish’s early work can be largely traced directly to Frank Zappa. An iconoclast to the end, Zappa made music his own way – a style that Hot Rats illustrates with vibrancy. Released in 1969, and comprised of only six tracks, Zappa described the album as “a movie for your ears.” Departing from his shorter satirical songs and raunchy lyrics popularized with his band, The Mothers of Invention, Hot Rats focuses on longer, jazz-like instrumentals with extensive soloing – a format that sounds perfect for Phish.

Though the album’s opener, “Peaches en Regelia,” has been in Phish’s long-time repertoire, the overwhelming complexity of the record’s compositions makes me question its real chances. This summer Trey was still working on nailing the licks to “Sugar Shack,” and for this costume he’d have to pick up the nuances of 17-minute track “The Gumbo Variations,” among others. But given the proper time and attention, this album could make for a mind-numbing set. Just thinking about Phish playing “Willie the Pimp” makes my ears drool.

***

The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway – Genesis

The_Lamb_Lies_Down_on_Broadway-1aThis 1974 double concept album from Genesis could make a spectacular Halloween set, but with a ninety-minute running time “The Lamb” seems like a long shot. However, if Phish were to come out and nail the surreal tale of Rael, a juvenile delinquent in New York City who is swept underground to face his personal demons and split personality, the results would be astounding. Akin in structure to “The Wall,” “Lamb” is a theatrical rock opera that Genesis coupled with an elaborate stage show during their touring days for the album; a show that could translate to the stage in Indio. Peter Gabriel actually played the story’s protagonist, adding another potential layer of costume for Trey. If Phish took this route, they would certainly showcase hours upon hours of  meticulous preparation.

With little to no time for improvisation, Phish would likely play this psychedelic relic straight through. But within the album, the songs differ in feel from the groovy to the eerie to the spoken word. The first record boasts ten structured songs, but the second half contains nightmarish soundscapes as Rael descends into the underworld. Though many wouldn’t know what hit them, there would be a lot of new Genesis fans leaving Indio on November 2 if the band chose The Lamb Lies Down On Broadway.

***

Thriller – Michael Jackson

michael-jackson-thriller-coverWith Phish’s gallery of 99 albums, the talk of Michael Jackson’s masterpiece has faded to silence – and this could be exactly what Phish wants. Potentially a diversion to keep people preoccupied, the gallery has certainly kept the community’s heads spinning. But maybe – just maybe – this is all a smokescreen, and the band will come out and rock Jackson’s 1982 classic that fans have been pushing since 1995.

The most popular argument against “Thriller” is the wide range of dynamic vocals that fill the album, but if we start eliminating album choices because Phish aren’t the vocalists that their predeccessors were, we’d have to cross out quite a few. Could they reproduce Mick Jagger, David Bowie, Mick Jones, or even David Lee Roth? No – but that certainly hasn’t ruled out any of those albums, so I think “Thriller” must be legitamately considered. There could be a guest vocalist, Trey could “sing” with his guitar, or they could have another arrangement already in place. The bottom line is that this album would blow Indio apart – and what better subject matter for Halloween?! Just imagine the look of the crowd when Phish starts “Wanna’ Be Startin’ Something.” Now imagine the look of the crowd 20 minutes later after the disco-funk jam concludes. You know the songs; you get the picture. Just outside of his former Los Angeles home, and months after his passing, this could be Phish’s lasting tribute to the King of Pop.

Winged music note=====

Jam of the Day:

Down With Disease > Have Mercy > Disease” 11.12.94 II

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/Down-With-Disease-_.mp3,http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/Have-Mercy-_.mp3,http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/Down-With-Disease.mp3]

A historic chunk of improv from Kent St, Ohio during Fall ’94.

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DOWNLOAD OF THE DAY:

10.15.94 Oak Mountain Amphitheatre, Pelham, AL < Torrent

10.15.94 Oak Mountain Amphitheatre, Pelham, AL < Megaupload

phish-san-jose-94Everyone knows about Oak Mountain’s 1999 installment, but if we rewind five years from there, or fiftteen years from today, we find The Dave Matthews Band opening for Phish in their only other visit to the Alabama amphitheatre. After a classic first set and an adventurous second, the band invited their guests out to join them on “The Maker.” A southern nugget from Fall ’94.

I: Wilson, Sparkle, Simple > Maze, Glide, Reba, Down with Disease, Golgi Apparatus

II: Also Sprach Zarathustra > Runaway Jim, Halley’s Comet > Scent of a Mule, You Enjoy Myself > Catapult > You Enjoy Myself, Amazing Grace, Foreplay/Long Time*, Bouncing Around the Room, Suzy Greenberg

E: Drums** > The Maker***

*Acoustic, **w/ Carter Beauford on drums, ***w/ Dave Matthews Band, debut

Source: Audio Technica 822 > Sony D8

Tags: , , , , ,

The Case For Ziggy Stardust

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , , , on October 14th, 2009 by Mr.Miner

frontIn the compelling debate of what album Phish will play for Halloween, many ideas and theories have been posed as to which records would create an ideal musical costumes. After perusing many of the potential albums, there is really only one choice for me – David Bowie’s The Rise and Fall Ziggy Stardust and The Spiders From Mars. Encompassing themes of hope and love within a plot of rock and roll idolatry in an apocalyptic society, Ziggy Stardust is often hailed as the seminal concept album of the 1970s.

****

The History Behind Ziggy

Leeds, UK. June '73 (M.Rock)

Leeds, UK. June ’73 (M.Rock)

Ziggy Stardust was David Bowie’s alien savior, who brought a musical message of salvation via rock and roll, but eventually fell from grace due to the perils of rock and roll decadence. In Bowie’s own words:

Ziggy was my Martian messiah who twanged a guitar. He was a simplistic character. I saw him as very simple… Someone who was dropped down here, got brought down to our way of thinking and ended up destroying himself (1976). Ziggy Stardust…was very much Japanese Theatre meets American science fiction (1978).

Far more than a fictional character, Ziggy Stardust gave Bowie an alter ego, one which began to take over his reality. Beginning in 1972, Bowie began introducing himself at concerts as Ziggy Stardust and his band as The Spiders From Mars. Appearing in full costume and character, Bowie was Ziggy Stardust, and as his theatrical performances continued, he over-indulged in his on-stage character.

It was quite easy to become obsessed night and day with the character. I became Ziggy Stardust. David Bowie went totally out the window. Everybody was convincing me that I was a Messiah, especially on that first American tour (late-1972). I got hopelessly lost in the fantasy (1972)

Before long, Ziggy came off the stage, permeating Bowie’s everyday life. Appearing publicly in costume, the line between Bowie and Ziggy Stardust became dangerously blurred.

I thought I might as well take Ziggy to interviews as well. Why leave him on stage? Looking back it was completely absurd. It became very dangerous. I really did have doubts about my sanity. I can’t deny that the experience affected me in a very exaggerated and marked manner. I think I put myself very dangerously near the line. Not in physical sense but definitively in mental sense. I played mental games with myself to such an extent that I’m very relieved and happy to be back in Europe and feeling very well (1977).

Beverly Hills, CA -October '72 (M.Rock)

Beverly Hills 10/72 (M.Rock)

In two separate interviews in the early ’90s,  Bowie reflected on his period of mental instability as he battled – and basked in – his alter-ego. Ziggy had literally become an escape from himself and his every-day life; a place to hide from David Bowie.

I enjoyed the character so much and it was so much easier for me to live within that character that, along with the help of some chemical substances at the time, it became easier and easier for me to blur the lines between reality and the blessed creature that I created – my doppelganger. I wasn’t getting rid of him at all – in fact I was joining forces with him (1990).

There was a theory that one creates a doppelganger and then imbues that with all your faults and guilts and fears and then eventually you destroy him, hopefully destroying all your guilt, fear and paranoia. And I often feel that I was doing that unwittingly, creating an alternative ego that would take on everything that I was insecure about.  Ziggy served my purpose because I found it easier to function through him, although I probably put myself on a path of pure psychological damage by doing what I did.  But it felt like it was going to be easier living through an alternative self.  Of course the major problem was that I was blurring the lines between sanity and an insane figure, and finally did break the lines down in the mid-Seventies where I really couldn’t perceive the difference between the stage persona and myself (1993).

David Bowie / Ziggy Stardust

David Bowie / Ziggy Stardust

Looking further into Bowie’s analysis of this era, one can see parallels to the rock-idolatry and excesses that contributed to Trey’s downfall. After working his whole life to become a rock star, once Ziggy/Bowie/Trey attained his goal – well – what next? As Bowie describes Ziggy’s fate, he could easily be talking about Trey.

It was his own personality being unable to cope with the circumstances he found himself in which is being an almighty prophet-like superstar rocker.  He found he didn’t know what to do once he got it.  It’s an archetype really – the definitive rock n roll star. It often happens (1974).

Always cast outside of the rock and roll mainstream, Trey’s former demise followed a not-so-uncommon path. As was Ziggy’s fate, the decadence surrounding his rock and roll super-stardom brought him down; the fame, the parties, the ego, the glamour, the sex, and ultimately, the drugs. Like Ziggy’s finale, “Rock and Roll Suicide,” dark habits threatened the very survival of certain Phish members, forcing them to “break up the band,” following the fate of The Spiders From Mars. Bowie’s personal relationship to Ziggy Stardust mirrors Trey’s battle with his own rock and roll stardom and inner conflicts that brought each man to the brink.

****

Ziggy Stardust– The Album

Ziggy and The Spiders From Mars (Unk)

Ziggy and The Spiders From Mars (Unk)

For the elaborate theatrics and space-aged costumes alone, Ziggy Stardust would make a superb spectacle for the Halloween set. But beyond the glamorous show this album could provide, the music and lyrics of Bowie’s record fit perfectly with Phish’s place in time. The dreamy psychedelia of Ziggy Stardust seems made for Phish to play, incorporating all band members (and a few horns) in forming a tapestry of Bowie’s early ’70s sound. And the copious fade-outs on almost every track is an essential detail of the record, leaving the door wide open for Phish to improvise out of almost any song. With musical coherence, symbolic relevance, poignant lyrics, Ziggy Stardust is the perfect choice for Phish this year.

1. “Five Years”

We got five years, stuck on my eyes
Five years, what a surprise
We’ve got five years, my brain hurts a lot
Five years, that’s all we got

The album starts off with Ziggy singing a melancholy dirge for humanity, stating there are only five years left before the apocalypse.  Due to a lack of natural resources, the world is on the verge of perishing. In Bowie’s explanation of the song:

Ziggy was in a rock n roll band and the kids no longer want rock n roll. There’s no electricity to play it. Ziggy’s advisors tell him to collect news and sing it, cause there is no news. So Ziggy does this and there is terrible news (Rolling Stone, 1973).

The obvious Phishy reference in this song lies in the title “Five Years,” alluding to the past half-decade we lived without Phish in our lives. But now, like Ziggy and The Spiders, the band is back to save us from a degrading society with their universal musical messages.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/01-five-years.mp3]

2. “Soul Love”

Victoria Hall, Hanley, UK (P.Calvert)

Victoria Hall, Hanley, UK (P.Calvert)

This wistful song details various forms of love and their interrelation, including the highest form – “Soul Love.” Suggesting an overt spirituality, there are religious undertones to this song, asserting that “Soul Love” is embodied by every human, a central theme in Ziggy’s extra-terrestrial message. The beauty of the universe lies within everyone, there is still hope.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/02-soul-love.mp3]

3.”Moonage Daydream”

Phish would absolutely destroy this scorching song that has often been cited as the strongest track on the album. Recounting times they played the song live, Trevor Bolder, a member of The Spiders From Mars observed:

It really used to get the kids going. That would start the kids off. Every night you knew that “Moonage Daydream” was going to be the one that really lifted them. (1976)

This song introduces Ziggy Stardust – the Space Invader / Alien Messiah – who offers rock n roll salvation from earth’s imminent disaster outlined in “Five Years,” and a object for society’s religious worship evident in “Soul Love.” Its searing guitar lines and syncopated keyboard patterns lift off into wild sheets of sound, and could provide Phish with a serious launchpad for improvisation. In some ways congruent with Phish’s place as worshipped rock and roll superheros, “Moonage Daydream” details the seduction of rock stardom. If the first two slower tracks don’t get people going, “Moonage Daydream certainly would.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/03-moonage-daydream.mp3]

4. “Starman”

There’s a Starman waiting in the sky
He’d like to come and meet us
But he thinks he’d blow our minds
There’s a Starman waiting in the sky
He’s told us not to blow it
Cause he knows it’s all worthwhile

David Bowie / Ziggy (Unk)

David Bowie / Ziggy (Unk)

The only single off Ziggy Stardust, “Starman” tells the story of Ziggy’s origins as an “infinite being,” and details his message that hope and love can save the world before earth comes to an end. This, as Bowie explained “was the song that Ziggy wrote which inspired people to follow him…but he continued and then he was crushed by his own ego” (1974). Phish are the “Starmen” of our generation, enlightening us; showing us a different way of living amidst a war-torn, segmented world. Grandiose? Sure. Far fetched? Not so much.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/04-starman.mp3]

5. “Lady Stardust”

Bowie’s personal tale of rock and roll androgyny kicks off the B-side of the album. But for Phish, and specifically for Trey, the power of this ballad lies in the lyrics.

And he was alright, the band was altogether
Yes he was alright, the song went on forever
Yes he was awful nice
Really quite out of sight
And he sang all night long

Seemingly written for this exact occasion in Phish’s career, these lyrics would bring shivers to every fan in the desert when Trey (or Page) sang them.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/05-lady-stardust.mp3]

6.”Star”

This song details the Ziggy’s dreams of super-stardom with a more upbeat song. In the chorus, Bowie sang:

I could make a transformation as a rock n roll star
So inviting – so enticing to play the part
I could play the wild mutation as a rock n roll star

Fame and stardom allured both Bowie and Phish, dreaming of success while not compromising their art. In Phish’s modern era, however, “Star” would be a reflection on the band’s past inspiration as they fought for the big time – a glimpse back to the years of the early ’90s and the musical hunger that defined them.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/06-star.mp3]

7. “Hang On To Yourself”

Well come on, come on, we’ve really got a good thing going
Well come on, well come on, if you think we’re gonna make it
You better hang on to yourself

bloom73bThis song chronicles the height of fame for Ziggy Stardust with a rocking feel and melodic hooks. But as his popularity grew, so did his indulgences – hence the song’s title. Loosely parallel to the years of 2000-2004, this was the era that Phish barely hung on to themselves, battling the very temptations and indulgences as Bowie’s fictional rock-god. “Hang On To Yourself” leads naturally into the infectious album’s infectious title-track.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/07-hang-on-to-yourself.mp3]

7. “Ziggy Stardust”

A classic song in the annals of rock history, Ziggy’s title track would be the song that any Phish fan is guaranteed to know. And hearing Trey destroy the song’s signature guitar riff would be worth the price of admission on its own. The song, itself, details the rise and fall of Ziggy Stardust – a symbol of the ultimate rock god – as told by one of his band members.

Making love with his ego, Ziggy sucked up into his mind
Like a leper messiah
When the kids had killed the man, I had to break up the band

Alluding to several of rock’s fallen idols, “Ziggy Stardust” explains the character’s fate as an idolized rock star and, subsequently, a rock and roll tragedy. In the end they had to break up the band – sound familiar?

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/08-ziggy-stardust.mp3]

8.” Suffragette City”

1972 (Unknown)

1972 (Unknown)

One of Bowie’s favorite originals, this is the most rocking track on the album by a long shot. This song – like “Drowned,” “Crosseyed and Painless” and “Rock and Roll” – would be a heavy favorite for Phish to keep in their permanent rotation. Chronicling  Ziggy’s decadent over-indulgence, many fans theorize that this song should have came before “Ziggy Stardust,” as it sets up the star’s fall from glory. “Suffragette City” would also see a guest appearance from a horn section.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/09-suffergate-city.mp3]

9. “Rock N Roll Suicide”

This acoustic piece narrates the fate of Ziggy Stardust, and his final demise. Despite its somber ending, Bowie’s wife saw an uplifting message of unity in the song’s final chorus :

Just turn on with me and you’re not alone
Let’s turn on and be not alone
Gimme your hands cause you’re wonderful
Gimme your hands cause you’re wonderful
Oh gimme your hands

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/10-rock-nroll-suicide.mp3]

So...

When looked at as a holistic piece of art, strewn with congruences and parallels to Phish’s career as rock superstars, Ziggy Stardust emerges as an ideal fit for the band’s Halloween set. Imagine Trey dressed as Ziggy, and Mike, Page and Fish as The Spiders From Mars?! This album could take Phish’s musical costume to a whole new level. Strewn with symbolism, artistry, and musical theatrics, The Rise and Fall of Ziggy Stardust and The Spiders From Mars presents not only one of the most engaging musical choices for Festival 8, but one that holds plenty of significance as well.

(References – Rolling Stone, Blender, Pop Matters, The Ziggy Stardust Companion)

Winged music note=====

Jam of the Day:

Reba” 10.18.94 II SBD

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph94-10-18sbd.d2t04.mp3]

A soaring “Reba” from Nashville, TN in a year that redefined the song.

=====

DOWNLOAD OF THE DAY:

7.6.2000 Molson Amphitheatre, Toronto, ON < Torrent

7.6.2000 Molson Amphitheatre, Toronto, ON < Megaupload

2000-07-06moHere we have Phish’s second visit to the beautiful Molson Amphitheatre, right on Toronto’s waterfront. Standout versions of “Reba” and “YEM bookend the 90-mintue opening set. The second frame opens with a delicate jam bridging “Limb” and “2001,” and closes with the feel-good combo of “Hood,” “Loving Cup.”

I: Reba, Dogs Stole Things, Taste, Dog Faced Boy, Heavy Things > The Moma Dance, First Tube, I Didn’t Know, The Inlaw Josie Wales, Prince Caspian > Golgi Apparatus, You Enjoy Myself

II: Limb By Limb* > Also Sprach Zarathustra > Bug, Piper > Driver, Harry Hood, Loving Cup

E: The Squirming Coil

*Unfinished

Source: Unknown

Tags: , , ,

Ambient Evolution – An Audio Post

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , , , , on October 13th, 2009 by Mr.Miner
The Fox - 6.16 (B.Kisida)

The Fox - 6.16 (B.Kisida)

In an effort to switch things up, I decided to go with an “audio post” today. I often write about Phish’s ambient styles, and ever-evolving use of sound and layered psychedelia, so today I put together a mix that brings you on an audio tour through 1998, 1999, and 2000. Instead of focusing on songs or jams, I put a lens on ambient improv, creating an 80-minute “Trip Through the Late ’90s.” The jams evolve from a section of ’98, to a section of ’99, and concludes with a section of music from 2000. I will post a setlist once I figure it out, as I made the mix on the fly and it’s getting late out here. See if you notice an evolution through the years, or just kick back and space out. Enjoy! (As usual, click the orange track title to download the mix.)

A Trip Through the Late ’90s

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/01-A-Trip-Through-the-Late-90s.mp3]

Winged music note=====

Jam of the Day:

David Bowie” 10.12.94 II

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/Track-02-3.mp3]

The first serious Fall ’94 “Bowie.” There would be many more.

=====

DOWNLOAD OF THE DAY:

10.12.94 The Orpheum Theatre, Memphis, TN < Torrent

10.12.94 The Orpheum Theatre, Memphis, TN < Megaupload

phish-palumbo-94-miniThis show – Phish’s most recent October 12 offering – celebrates its fifteenth anniversary today. In only the fifth show of a 40+ gig tour, Phish boasted well-polished chops and masterful communication. A soaring second-song “Reba” led into this focused night of music that centered on the second set jams of “David Bowie” and “YEM,” and ” Harry Hood,” with “Bowie” taking the cake.

I: My Friend, My Friend, Reba, The Sloth, Poor Heart, Split Open and Melt, The Lizards, Guelah Papyrus, Julius, Sweet Adeline

II: Peaches en Regalia, David Bowie, Bouncing Around the Room, Scent of a Mule, You Enjoy Myself, Nellie Kane*, Foreplay/Long Time, Harry Hood, Sample in a Jar

E: Good Times Bad Times

*Acoustic

Source: Unknown

Tags: , , , ,

The Road Ahead

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , on October 11th, 2009 by Mr.Miner

After a whole lot of waiting, Phish finally dropped their fall tour dates last Friday, confirming many long-standing rumors and providing a couple surprises as well. The band will hit the road for 13 shows a little more than two weeks after Festival 8, starting in the Midwest on November 18, but remaining largely in the Northeast -here’s a preview.

header2The kick-off of Fall ’09 at Cobo Arena in Detroit, MI, though speculated upon, still surprised most fans. The iconic 12,191 seat venue was made famous by KISS in 1975 when they recorded their breakthrough album “Alive!”there. Having recently hosted a homecoming from the glam-rockers less than a month ago, Cobo Arena will host Phish before getting torn down later this year to expand Cobo Convention Center.

Cobo Hall - Detroit, MI

Cobo Arena - Detroit, MI

Following a rare-off day following the tour opener, the band hops south to Cincinnati for a two-night stand in the venue formerly known as “The Crown.” Phish has included The Crown on their tour docket consistently since Fall ’98, making these their sixth and seventh shows in the arena. Highlights from shows past include ’98’s “Bowie” and “YEM,” ’99’s “Sand,” “Limb,” and “Split,” and ’03’s “Bathtub Gin.” A building with a definite Phish-friendly legacy, this marks the band’s third twin-bill at The Crown; a Friday/Saturday combo that will certainly pull fans from all over the country.

War Memorial - Syracuse, NY

War Memorial - Syracuse, NY

From Cincy, Phish will stop in Syracuse, NY for an intimate Sunday night at the 8,000-seat Onondaga War Memorial. A staple of the ABA and AHL circuits, Phish visited the under-sized venue during their hallowed month of November of ’94. Coincidentally, KISS is the only major rock act that routinely stopped at the venue better known for minor league sports and professional wrestling events. This one should be exciting! Following another day off, we bounce down to Philly to begin the highly anticipated east coast blowout. This high-key run starts with Phish’s first visit to the new-school Wachovia Center – across the street from The Spectrum. Philadelphia Phish never disappoints; and after a glorious past at The Spectrum, expect the band to christen their new Philly home in fine style.

Times-Union Center - Albany, NY

Times-Union Center - Albany, NY

Only taking one day off on Thanksgiving Day, Phish will start working off their turkey the very next night, starting a third two-night stand at “Knickerbocker Arena” in Albany. Another historic haunt that has been violated by corporate sponsorship, this building has hosted many classic nights of Phish dating back to the historic 12/9/95 gig that included one of the top “YEMs” ever. The site of two tour-ending stands in the falls of ’97 and ’99, these upcoming shows will be Phish’s tenth and eleventh on Pearl St. Albany has always blended well with Phish, and this post-holiday stop looks to follow in that tradition.

CCCC - Portland, ME

CCCC - Portland, ME

The very next night, instead of making an expected stop in Worcester, MA, Phish surprised everyone by announcing a trip north to Portland, ME ‘s universally-loved Cumberland County Civic Center. Beginning with their first solo gig on 12.30.93, the 9,000 person room hosted five shows through ’99 and some truly epic Phish. A phenomenal room for a show, this Sunday night affair deserves a circle on everyone’s calendar.

MSG - NYC, NY

MSG - NYC, NY

With two days to rest-up and relax, Phish finally returns to Madison Square Garden. Arguably the greatest Phish venue in the land, the band hasn’t stepped foot in the 34th St. mecca since their first comeback on 12/31/02. These three nights at The Garden – December 2,3, and 4 – are the “no-brainer,” “Get-Your-Ass-There-At-All-Costs” shows of the tour. In a building where Phish has dropped many career-defining nights of music, the prodigal band shall return for three more monster-sized shows laced with big-city psychedelia.  And to cap off the tour, Phish flies south to Charlottesville, VA – home of their Red Light Management – in a move reminiscent of Winter ’03’s Greensboro finale. This year’s ending installment takes place in John Paul Jones Arena, University of Virginia’s brand-new basketball facility that opened in 2006 and holds over 15,000. This show not only concludes the tour, but also tops Phish’s only four-night run of Fall ’09. Though the tour is a relatively quick jaunt, almost every show will be a high-profile affair with more than a few guaranteed throw-downs. And when Phish steps indoors, the entire game changes; so watch out!

***

11.18.09 Cobo Arena, Detroit, MI
11.20.09 U.S. Bank Arena, Cincinnati, OH
11.21.09 U.S. Bank Arena, Cincinnati, OH
11.22.09 War Memorial at Oncenter , Syracuse, NY
11.24.09 Wachovia Center, Philadelphia, PA
11.25.09 Wachovia Center, Philadelphia, PA
11.27.09 Times Union Center, Albany, NY
11.28.09 Times Union Center, Albany, NY
11.29.09 Cumberland County Civic Center, Portland, ME
12.02.09 Madison Square Garden , New York, NY
12.03.09 Madison Square Garden, New York, NY
12.04.09 Madison Square Garden, New York, NY
12.05.09 John Paul Jones Arena, Charlottesville, VA

The  ticket “lottery” is officially underway. The ticket request period will end this Friday, October 16th at 5:00pm EST.

Tickets go on sale to the public beginning Friday, October 23rd, with additional dates going on sale Saturday, October 24th. For full show and ticketing information, please visit Phish.com.

Winged music note=====

Jam of the Day:

Bathtub Gin > 2001 > YEM” 12.2.99 II

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/Phish1999-12-02d2t03.mp3,http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/Phish1999-12-02d2t04.mp3,http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/Phish1999-12-02d2t05.mp3]

A sparkling section of improv from Phish’s first show of December ’99 at The Palace in Auburn Hills, MI.

=====

DOWNLOAD OF THE DAY:

12.2.99 The Palace, Auburn Hills, MI < Torrent

12.2.99 The Palace, Auburn Hills, MI < Megaupload

The Palace - Auburn Hills, MI

The Palace - Auburn Hills, MI

Here is another tour-opener from the Motown area. This one got going quickly with highlight versions of “Antelope” and “Free” in the first frame, and heated up in earnest after the break with the smoking segment of “Bathtub > 2001 > YEM.”

I: Runaway Jim, Farmhouse, Heavy Things, Roggae, Run Like an Antelope, Wading in the Velvet Sea, Poor Heart, Sample in a Jar, Free, The Squirming Coil

II: Boogie On Reggae Woman, Gotta Jibboo, Bathtub Gin > Also Sprach Zarathustra >You Enjoy Myself > Little Drummer Boy

E: Bold As Love

Source: B&K 4023’s > V2 > D8 @ 44.1

Tags: ,

Weekend Nuggets: New Year’s Eve 1998

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , , on October 10th, 2009 by Mr.Miner
Official New Year's Run Poster - 1998

1998 New Year's Run Poster

DOWNLOADS OF THE WEEKEND:

After playing three out of four Holiday Run shows at The Garden in 1997, Phish decided to make it four of a kind in 1998. Staging an entire New Years’ Run in a single venue for the first time ever, the band chose the largest stage on which to do it. The peak of a incredible year of Phish, these four nights showcased the diverse jamming styles that defined the year. From groove-based improv to ambient jams, this show presented a microcosm of 1998. As a bonus re-post, I am including my favorite show from the run – 12.28 – an odyssey through darkness that included the inter-galactic warfare of “Carini > Wolfman’s.” With three MSG dates just announced, I can hardly wait to get back inside the greatest arena on earth. Here are some memories to tide you over.

12.31.98 Madison Square Garden, NYC, NY < Torrent

12.31.98 Madison Square Garden, NYC, NY < Megaupload

1998-12-31moI: 1999* > Mike’s Song > I Am Hydrogen > Weekapaug Groove, Ghost > Ha Ha Ha, Cavern

II: NICU, Character Zero, Tweezer > Cities > Wading in the Velvet Sea, Run Like an Antelope, Frankenstein

III: Runaway Jim > Auld Lang Syne > Simple,  Harry Hood, Tweezer Reprise, Llama

E: While My Guitar Gently Weeps

*Phish debut.

Notes: Prince’s 1999 included dancers on stage and synchronized steps from Trey and Mike, who wound up lying on the stage with the dancers surrounding them. Weekapaug and Runaway Jim subsequently featured 1999 teases. For this show, the Holiday Run dancers’ costumes included a devil, a prostitute, and a pimp. The band jammed Runaway Jim until just before the New Year. The dancers reappeared throughout the crowd and handed out thousands of glowrings to the fans just before a grand balloon drop and pyrotechnics display at midnight. The band counted the crowd into the New Year before busting into Auld Lang Syne.

Source: Schoeps CMC641 > Lunatec V2 > Apogee AD1000 > DAT

***

12.28.98 Madison Square Garden, NYC, NY < Torrent

12.28.98 Madison Square Garden, NYC, NY < Megaupload

1998-12-28moI: Axilla, Stash, Farmhouse, Taste, Sleep*, Albuquerque*, Driver*,  Tube, Golgi Apparatus, Good Times Bad Times

II: Carini > Wolfman’s Brother, Birds of a Feather, When the Circus Comes, Quinn the Eskimo > David Bowie

E: Been Caught Stealin’

*Acoustic.

Notes: For the first show of the Holiday Run, the stage was decorated with flowers and sculptures. During the encore, parts of the set began to grow and sprout leaves. This stage setup was used for this show only, and disappeared for the rest of the run. Before Sleep, Fishman’s drum kit was moved to allow the crew to roll out a small mini-stage with a scaled-down drum set and a baby grand piano. Trey and Mike sat on stools and both played acoustic guitars. This acoustic set-up was used for Sleep, Albuquerque, and Driver. During the Wolfman’s jam, three people in inchworm-like costumes came on stage and danced for the rest of the set.

Source: Schoeps CMC641 > Lunatec V2 > Apogee AD1000 > DAT

=====

header2

11.18.09 Cobo Arena, Detroit, MI
11.20.09 U.S. Bank Arena, Cincinnati, OH
11.21.09 U.S. Bank Arena, Cincinnati, OH
11.22.09 War Memorial at Oncenter , Syracuse, NY
11.24.09 Wachovia Center, Philadelphia, PA
11.25.09 Wachovia Center, Philadelphia, PA
11.27.09 Times Union Center, Albany, NY
11.28.09 Times Union Center, Albany, NY
11.29.09 Cumberland County Civic Center, Portland, ME
12.02.09 Madison Square Garden , New York, NY
12.03.09 Madison Square Garden, New York, NY
12.04.09 Madison Square Garden, New York, NY
12.05.09 John Paul Jones Arena, Charlottesville, VA

The  ticket “lottery” is officially underway!  The ticket request period will end Friday, October 16th at 5:00pm EST.

Tickets go on sale to the public beginning Friday, October 23rd, with additional dates going on sale Saturday, October 24th. For full show and ticketing information, please visit Phish.com.

Winged music note=====

Jams of the Weekend: 12.31.98

Ghost > Ha Ha Ha” I

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph1998-12-31d1t05.mp3,http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph1998-12-31d1t06.mp3]

Tweezer > Cities” II

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph1998-12-31d2t03.mp3,http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph1998-12-31d2t04.mp3]

Two of the most significant jams from a New Year’s Eve extravaganza in New York City.

=====

VIDEO OF THE WEEKEND:

“Mike’s Song” 12.31.95 MSG, NYC Pt. 1

“Mike’s “Pt. 2

Tags: , ,

Step Into Space

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , on October 9th, 2009 by Mr.Miner
(A.Foley)

Albany ’99 (A.Foley)

A tour that started in Vancouver exactly one month earlier, had traversed the nation moving down the west coast, across the south and back up the east coast. We had made it to Albany on October 9 for the final two-night stand of tour. Boasting many fine shows along the way, Phish returned to their home turf of the Northeast to close another tour in the friendly confines of “Knickerbocker” Arena. Fall ’99 saw Phish experiment with sound in a different direction, favoring abstract dissonance and amorphous spacescapes. Following a trend that began during summer, their jams became increasingly layered, veering from the groove and calm ambient playing of ’98 to more aggressive, distortion-based textures and artistic sound sculptures. Phish displayed these trends in droves this night on this next-to-last night in Albany.

Albany '99 Pollock

Albany ’99 Pollock

The first set had its own space-excursion, as a straight-forward “Ghost” grew outwards in scope, then seamlessly merged into a primordial soup that suggested “My Left Toe.” In the middle of the first set, Phish set their controls for the heart of the sun, morphing from a fast-paced rock-groove into a slower arrhythmic pattern that suggested a voyage to the other side. Page layered walls of sound that supported the jam, while Fishman flowed with all sorts of polyrhythms. A magnificent showcase of one of the band’s current foci, they wasted no time merging with the infinite. Deep into space exploration, Trey looped one pattern while adding others; Fish played a shimmering ever-shifting beat; Page’s favored sound over melody; and Mike blended his notes in a non-linear pattern. The band took a high dive into celestial sludge before emerging with the heavy opening of “Free,” back in the era when “Free” was still a legitimate piece of improv. The thick groove showcased Trey’s classic “millennial” style, moving from searing sheets of resounding terror into growling leads. With the end of tour within reach, Phish rejected complacency in favor of cerebral creativity – good to the last drop.

Fall '99 (Unk)

Fall ’99 (Unknown)

Phish stepped back into the cosmic realm at the beginning of the second set, combining “Limb By Limb” and “2001” into 35 minutes of millennial madness. Slaughtering the typically complex “Limb” jam with super-glued communication. Just before the band collectively peaked, they descended from their melodic heights into a darker, rhythmic milieu.  Fish kept the polyrhythms flying at lightning speed, as Trey and Mike’s dark interplay led the band down the road less traveled. Creating an abstract sonic brew, Phish embarked on a distinctly ’99-esque segment of improv that the band absolutely annihilated – you can hear the response from the crowd on tape.  Effortlessly re-merging with “Limb’s” cathartic theme, the band – and specifically Trey – smashed the peak of the jam to smithereens, leaving approximately 17,500 jaws firmly lying on the arena floor.

Fall '99 (Unk)

Fall ’99 (Unknown)

Trey joined Fish’s ending drum solo, and as the song formally ended, Trey continued his pattern over a blanket-like ambiance that the rest of the band instantly created.  Oozing back into a quiet jam that suggesting “Limb’s” rhythmic structure, Phish began to build a spacescape whose intensity and stature grew with each passing moment. Entering a gorgeous plane, Fishman faded his drum beat in, the lights came up, and the arena lifted off into the tour’s last “2001.”  Leaving the laid back grooves in the summer amphitheatres, this version took off with a faster pace and an enhanced zest. After joining the dance party with a series of choppy funk licks and leads, and once the the band locked into some full-on grooves, Trey left his axe behind, hopping onto his mini keyboard. He immediately complemented Page’s Rhodes with staccato patterns he might play on guitar. Mike and Fish pulsated consistently, never coming apart, providing the adhesive for the top-layer experiments.

1999-10-09moTrying all his tricks, Trey used his keyboard proficiently and enhanced the groove with an array of sounds and effects. But once the band passed through the song’s first theme, he stuck to his guitar. Mike’s super-sized bass patterns dominated the second half of the piece, as Trey and Page wrapped slick melodies around them. Thumping throughout the arena, his diverse lines led the band away from clap-able rhythms into alternate grooves during this “2001” marathon that lasted almost 20 minutes.

Segueing into “Disease,” Phish’s space-camp ended for the evening, as they closed the show with the energetic anthem followed by “Simple” and “Loving Cup.”  But our galactic treks in both sets comprised the enduring memories from this night in Albany ten years ago.

Winged music note=====

Jams of the Day: 10.9.99

Ghost  > Free” I

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/I-04-Ghost-My-Left-Toe-.mp3,http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/I-05-Free.mp3]

Limb By Limb > 2001 > Disease” II

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/II-01-Limb-by-Limb-.mp3,http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/II-02-2001-.mp3,http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/II-03-Down-With-Disease-.mp3]

=====

DOWNLOAD OF THE DAY:

10.9.99 “Knickerbocker” Arena, Albany, NY < Torrent

10.9.99 “Knickerbocker” Arena, Albany, NY < Megaupload

The "Knick" Today

The “Knick” Today

This is the typically darker and more exploratory first night of Phish’s two-night finale to Fall ’99. Getting to some spaced-out jams, the band showcased their abstract millennial sound that grew throughout the tour.  A great setlist with great playing – good stuff all around.

I: Punch You In the Eye, Wilson, Guyute, Ghost > My Left Toe > Free, Sparkle, Possum

II: Limb By Limb > Also Sprach Zarathustra*> Down with Disease > Wading in the Velvet Sea, Simple, Loving Cup

E: Slave to the Traffic Light

*Trey on keys for part of jam

Source: Unknown

Tags: ,

The Starting Nine

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , on October 7th, 2009 by Mr.Miner

sp_phish_gambleWith October upon us, and the baseball postseason underway, fans across the nation – from New York to Colorado to Los Angeles – begin to hang on every pitch of every inning. For the next month, right through Indio, the playoffs will be a passionate subplot to many of our days and nights. People have often likened Phish and baseball fans, two statistically-obsessed subcultures within our society. When the game or show is on, everything else is off, as we seek a unique feeling only attained when our heroes really work collectively. Accessing very different parts of our selves, being a fan of baseball and a fan of Phish, can be incredibly compulsive and complementary habits, eating up significant chunks of time. But few things engage me more than these two pastimes. Combining them for just a day, I present to you Phish’s starting post-season lineup.  You can download the nine selections below.

1. Tube

A lead-off hitter needs to get going quickly and have speed to get around the bases. Not placed here for power, “Tube” gets on base early and often. Known to steal bases and use its funk to kick start the team’s offense, “Tube” plays the role of a lead-off hitter perfectly. A short shot of groove sets the table for the bigger jams, “Tube’s” crack-like dance rhythms reach base almost every time. Chula Vista’s first set version from ’99 works quite nicely as an illustration.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph1999-09-18d1t06.mp3]

2. Bathtub Gin

4198_1152308280374_1007653377_30464754_3849393_n-2Batting second, “Bathtub Gin,” a solid hitter who specializes in lacing doubles in the gap. Boasting both power and speed, “Gin” fits well in the second position. Rarely coming up empty, and sometimes going huge, “Gin” has the type of steady mid-range jamming that embodies the qualities of a great number-two hitter. Here is an overlooked version from The Palace in ’97 that segues into “Foam.”

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph97-12-06d1t4.mp3,http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph97-12-06d1t5.mp3]

3. Ghost

The three slot usually goes to the best hitter on the team, and since its ’97 debut, there has been no more consistent jam vehicle than “Ghost.” Evolving stylistically with the band,”Ghost” has proven to also be one of the most versatile pieces in their repertoire. A true five-tool player, “Ghost” can go anywhere at anytime, capable of groove, spacescapes, gnarling rock, ambient, and melodic textures. If translated to baseball stats, we are talking .300, 30, and 100 year in and year out. And “Ghost” will get plenty of pitches to hit because look who’s hitting next. This dark-horse version from Portland Meadows in ’99 illustrates the song’s versatility.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/2-01-Track-01.mp3]

4. Tweezer

The ultimate cleanup hitter, “Tweezer” is the Babe Ruth of Phish songs, swatting jams out of the park with a 42 ounce bat like it’s a toothpick. If there are ducks on the pond, “Tweezer” will clean the base paths almost every time.  Protecting “Ghost” with its intimidating psychedelia, no opposing pitcher wants to face “Tweezer” with the lead on the line. Having been groomed for this position since i’s youth, “Tweezer” ascended to its rightful spot in the order a long time ago and doesn’t seem to have signs of giving it up. These days, when I think “Tweezer,” I think Red Rocks.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/08/Phish2009-07-31d2t04.mp3]

5. Down With Disease

phish20baseball-400-x-585-1Giving opposing pitchers no rest, “Down With Disease” holds down the coveted five spot. Reserved for a powerhouse that rarely strikes out, “Disease” fits the description perfectly. One of Phish’s favorite vehicles, when that fuzzy bass intro emerges, it sounds like a hanging curveball just waiting to be clobbered. “Disease” is a crafty veteran who can get the job done in more ways than one, but most often its with diverse and creative improv. Not necessarily a 40 home run hitter, “Disease” has made the All-Star team every year since 1996. Here is the incredibly cathartic version from 12.30.03 in Miami.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph2003-12-30d2t09.mp3]

6. David Bowie

This aging veteran has lost a step in its old age, but “Bowie” can still close sets with the best of them. No longer the psychedelic monstrosity of ’94 and ’95, the song still possesses power and legacy. I’m an AL fan, so “Bowie” will fill our designated hitter slot. Sometimes a defensive liability in the outfield due to older legs and aching knees, “Bowie” still has the potential to come through in the clutch every time it steps to the plate. Here is one from the glory days – 6.18.94’s Mind Left Bowie.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph1994-06-18d2t02.mp3]

7. Stash

Another versatile player, “Stash” slides into the seven hole, illustrating the top to bottom consistency of Phish’s line-up. “Stash” boasted an explosive summer of 2009, and goes into the playoffs as hot as any song.  After stellar nights in Colorado, Washington, and Connecticut, “Stash’s” confidence is peaking. Providing spark in the bottom third of the lineup, “Stash” is a versatile hitter who can spray the ball to all fields, slapping 10-minute singles or 20-minute home runs. Here is the foreboding version from Hartford this summer that hasn’t gotten enough props.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/phish2009-08-14_mk4_1644_d1t09.mp3]

phishfenway18. Split Open and Melt

As we get towards the bottom of the lineup, “Split” boasts an ominous presence for any pitcher. Just when they think there might be a gap in the offense, this scary hitter steps to the plate. Drawing a lot of walks due to its intimidation, “Split” has the highest on-base percentage of any number eight hitter in the league. Capable of legging it out via groove, more often than not “Split’s” outward psychedelia is it’s biggest offensive weapon. Here is an all-time favorite from Niagara Falls ’95.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/ph95-12-07d2t02.mp3]

9. Run Like An Antelope

Rounding out the staring lineup, and acting as the “second lead-off” hitter is “Antelope.” With the quickest speed on the team, its ability to reach base on infield singles, and to reach third on routine doubles, astounds all opposing teams. If “Antelope” gets to first, it might as well be on third, boasting the highest single-season stolen base total since Rickey Henderson. And don’t be surprised to see some power in his bat, “Antelope” has made a living by popping dingers at the end of any given set. Here is a scorcher from La Mesa ’94.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2009/10/Track-09.mp3]

**

“Miner’s Starting Lineup” < Torrent

“Miner’s Starting Lineup” < Megaupload

1. “Tube” 9.18.99 Chula Vista, CA

2. “Bathtub Gin > Foam” 12.6.97 Auburn Hills, MI

3. “Ghost” 9.12.99 Portland, OR

4. “Tweezer” 7.31.09 Morrison, CO

5. “Down With Disease” 12.30.03 Miami, FL

6. “David Bowie” 6.18.94 Chicago, IL

7. “Stash” 8.14.09 Hartford, CT

8. “Split” 12.7.95 Niagara Falls, NY

9. “Antelope” 12.9.94 La Mesa, AZ

=====

DOWNLOAD OF THE DAY:

7.26.91 Georgia Theatre, Athens, GA < Torrent

7.26.91 Georgia Theatre, Athens, GA < Megaupload

phish-summertour-91Here is a return to the Summer of ’91 and Phish’s standout run with The Giant Country Horns. This second-to-last show of the Horns’ run showcases a well-practiced band whose communication transformed Phish’s music into a a sort of prog-rock fusion for a fortnight. The Aquarium Rescue Unit opened this show as the band co-billed their run though the South, switching headlining slots.

I: Chalk Dust Torture, Reba, My Sweet One, Foam, Suzy Greenberg, Cavern, The Man Who Stepped Into Yesterday > Avenu Malkenu > The Man Who Stepped Into Yesterday, Buried Alive, Bouncing Around the Room, The Landlady, Golgi Apparatus

II: Stash, Dinner and a Movie, You Enjoy Myself, Flat Fee, Funky Bitch, The Squirming Coil, Tweezer, Sweet Adeline, The Lizards* > Tweezer Reprise

E: Lawn Boy, Frankenstein, Split Open and Melt

w/ The Giant Country Horns

* Happy Birthday dedication to Chris Kuroda

Source: Shure 57 > Casio D7 > SPDIF

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