Mid-Tour Momentum

11.21.09 (W.Rogell)

11.21.09 (W.Rogell)

Building off of an extensive Summer and Indio, and stepping indoors at just the right time, Phish is clearly getting their groove back. Their playing has oozed confidence and comfort, while characterized by precision and fire. When the band chooses to jam, they are doing it with a determined and patient creativity, and as we move on to the second two-thirds of tour, I’d imagine we’d begin to hear more open jamming. It would be nice to see the band focus on grooves and psychedelia a bit more than shredding rock and roll, but beggars can’t be choosers. Phish are definitely playing what they feel and playing it quite well. The most profound change in their dynamic since this fall tour started has been Mr. Trey Anastasio. While he may have been the slowest member of the band to regain his unbridled confidence, he has recently transformed into an absolute monster. Allowing his inhibitions to fall by the wayside, he has been shredding with an abandon unseen in years. Using meticulous lyrical phrasing amounting to guitar narratives, his sense of thematic jamming has returned in force, and it has effected the entire band.

11.20.09 (W.Rogell)

11.20.09 (W.Rogell)

The most compelling second-set improv thus far has stemmed from Detroit’s “Disease,” and Cincy’s “Rock n Roll” and Syracuse’s “Drowned”- the three vehicles they featured the most this summer. It seems like time to switch it up a bit from the rock-only set openers; time to drop in some darker and slower type-II springboards to open set two. How about opening up “A Song I Heard the Ocean Sing” or dropping another “Sand?” In the end, it doesn’t matter what songs they play, as long as they continue to evolve into more frequent psychedelia…Three of the central second set jams over the last two shows – “Rock and Roll,” “Drowned” and “Piper” have held a great similarity to each other – percussive grooves turned ambient space…The two dirtiest pieces of music thus far have ironically come in first sets – Detroit’s filthy, dripping “46 Days,” and Cincy’s evil “Split.” Now let’s see some of that type of improv stretched out under the spotlight of set two! As we turn the corner towards Philadelphia and Albany, two cities that have historically played host to legendary Phish, the band looks to build on the momentum from their opening leg as everyone moves towards Thanksgiving. And this year, we have a lot to be thankful for.

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833 Responses to “Mid-Tour Momentum”

  1. jay Says:

    damn. they had me at chalkdust 🙂

  2. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    yeah, I see that going well:

    BK: Well, mom, this guy I met on the internet wants to take me to Charlottesville for a concert.

    Mom: um…

    😉 BK, you should if you can.

  3. jay Says:

    phish completes me, llfa!

  4. voopa Says:

    Go Trey!

  5. Mr.Palmer Says:

    This could be the big nasty indoor Stealing Time we’ve been waiting for.

  6. beepaphone Says:

    It’s not creepy so long as said 40 year old is a Phish fan and not a Jonas Brothers fan

  7. sumodie Says:

    I’ve finally made some significant decisions today (totally unrelated to phish, but inspired by our community here) -and of course if I’m already in New York so with the Charlotte show on a Saturday…….

    My offer to brandon is related to the earlier discussions about bringing new peeps to shows. Looks like I’ll be bringing family or friends to Albany2, Portland, MSG3, and, maybe, just maybe, Charlottesville.

    And I’m going threaten to break my bro’s arm if he doesn’t get off his ass and come to Miami. I’ve been inviting him all year long too. He came all the way back from China to go to BC with me and my ex. He NEEDS more phish, imo. All work and no play….

  8. PBS Says:

    badass, sumodie…badass

  9. Kenny Powers Says:

    @ beep,

    NICE! glad something came out of it. nug for you, ticket for someone in search of one.

  10. sumodie Says:

    Yeah, I know, sending your kid off with some stranger off the net. However, my sumodie marks are all over here and the green board, plus my facebook, and there must be some other way to confirm that I’m only a deranged phish fan and not anything else.

    Will cover ticket too (or split with someone else, etc). No cost but food. And NO party favors too -duh!

  11. beepaphone Says:

    All this talk about Trey Bringing the Business Tone. He is, and it’s making sales. I’ve got 2 partial and 2 full fledged conversions notched onto my belt right now. It’s too easy. Bring ’em to the show and the boys will do the rest.

  12. beepaphone Says:

    Good Karma is headed your way, KP. Thanks a ton!

  13. jdub Says:

    well that looks like quite the 1st set, someone mentioned they were worried the fire wouldn’t make it to Albany, no worries, it’s just a bad dream.

    I’m feeling the crosseyed as well, BK has been hot as of late and seems like it fits at this point.

    @Somodie, nice move bro. You’ve got me thinking about making the run myself, if only I didn;t have two kids and my wife is letting me do 3 at MSG

  14. halcyon Says:

    what a 1st set…..can’t wait to grab this one….so psyched for fellow pt’ers and friends that are at this show….

    what a year this has been … so much to be thankful for…

  15. jdub Says:

    Let’s start a BK gets hosed at Char. fund.

  16. sumodie Says:

    @beepaphone: Exactly. One friend I might bring to Albany is much older than your average fan, but he had a blast as we rolled on the Hartford lawn in 2000. Was able to get seats right in front/beside Jon on today’s Albany re-release, thanks to someone here mentioning the re-release. He would finally get the full bore treatment on Saturday….

  17. sumodie Says:

    I know, Charlottesville is Saturday night after all…..and tour closer. And bringing Brandon would mean that I would have to be there too! Now where’d he go?

  18. Kenny Powers Says:

    i’ve been on the fence about Portland because i have to be at work in Boston at 7:00am the next day, and i’m hitting both Albanys and MSG 3. But each night after hearing about the shows, listening to the shows, seeing the pictures…i think i’m just gonna have to.

    i know peeps are probably like “dude, are you kidding? no brainer!” but i work in a hospital doing hands-in patient care with some seriously injured and ill people…so it’s not like i can hide in a cube all day and nurse my foggy head. but i’m old enough now that i should be able to contain myself on the third consecutive night and deal with the 3 hours of sleep. extra shot of espresso might help.

  19. halcyon Says:

    kp…..our jobs are different but for Festival 8…right after set 3 I drove to LAX…did not sleep flew to colorado did a 3 hour drive straight to work and worked a 10 hour night shift….

    For the gorge…after night 2 drove to seattle…did not sleep flew back to colorado drove 3 hours home to work an 8 hour night shift….

    so DO IT!!!!

    and drink coffee 😉

  20. sumodie Says:

    Don’t miss portland, KP. Small venue, great track record with phish, and gen adm floor, if you can get there.

    Bringing my parents and bro to CCCC means no gen adm for me -my absolute favorite place to be. But it’s about sharing in the groove. Would die if they busted out Wipe Out again (I dragged my folks to their first show in Worcester, 98. And they played Wipe Out that night, leaving me speechless -one of the few albums my mother owned (The Ventures!).

  21. oldskool Says:

    who is ready for Bug > Caspian in the heart of set II?? 🙁

    Just so we are clear, those are my two least favorite Phish songs and it would be a heated internal debate as to which one is worse.

  22. jdub Says:

    Making a last minute decision to go to a show knowing you are going to pay for it the next day only makes the experience better, as long as you are all in

  23. sumodie Says:

    I’m a Bug lover myself, as it has one of my fav phish lyrics: ‘Nothing I see can be taken from me’.

  24. Kenny Powers Says:

    exactly Sumodie, if i go it would be the smallest venue i’ve seen them at. i’ve seen the lion’s share of the shows in the Northeast going back to ’94 and managed to miss them at CCCC in ’95 and ’99.

    Was in college in upstate NY in ’95 and had just seen the epic 12.9.95 show in Albany, and couldn’t do Portland. In ’99 i was in Africa doing study abroad. So next Sunday would be kind of this elusive goal I wold achieve by finally seeing them at the quad C.

    i’m going. i’ll lay completely off the alcohol at the show, so i should be good for work the next day.

  25. jdub Says:

    Listen to your heart

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