A Subtle Shift – Fall ’98

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , on January 31st, 2010 by Mr.Miner

12.4.09 (W.Rogell)

After a full year of concentrating almost exclusively on collaborative band grooves, Fall ’98 represented a shift towards a new style of play for Phish. Come the end of summer and beginning of fall, the band began to infuse layered “ambient” improv into their repertoire. Moving beyond rhythmic and melodic conventions, the band engaged in selfless, amorphous jamming that resulted in many sublime musical trips over the course of this month. Without any true lead, all members pushed and pulled at the sonic brew, growing an organic musical amoeba. Representing the next evolution in Phish’s sound, Fall ’98 offered a new flavor alternative to the chewy funk of summer.

Hallowen '98 Poster

Taking no time to introduce this new musical plane, the band kicked off  fall tour with an other-worldly ambient excursion of “Reba > Walk Away” at the Greek Theatre, leaving all in wonder of what had transpired. Moving directly to Las Vegas, the band cranked out one of the defining psychedelic opuses of their career in Halloween’s third set “Wolfman’s.” While some consider this a “polarizing” version, I consider it one of the most sacred treks the band has ever taken. Diving fearlessly into the void, Phish harnessed the other side in molding one of the eeriest passages of their career. Oozing with mind-bending energy and exploration, this still holds up as the deepest dive into the occult the band has ever taken on All Hallow’s Eve.

As they continued along the path of Fall, the band consistently included this type of playing in many jams. In Denver, this sound grew out of “Frankie Sez” into “Bowie.” At UIC, this ambient style underlined the most creative and cathartic jam of the run in “AC/DC Bag.” While Grand Rapid’s “Halley’s Comet” contained passages in this vein, Greenville’s “Wolfman’s” and Hampton’s “Simple” highlighted this amoeba-like psychedelia. And in Worcester’s three-night finale, the jam between “Weekapaug” and Antelope” moved through this territory, while the “Simple” of the tour’s finale explored the dark side of this improv. Blending passages and hints of this style throughout the tour, Phish’s evolving ambient playing became more ingrained in the norm.

6.18.09 (M.Stein)

When Phish returned in ’99, they would build on this ambient style, adding thicker layers of effects and dissonance, developing their “millennial” sound that evolved throughout the year. Fall ’98 represents a moment in time when Phish dynamically navigated the musical ground between  laid-back funk of summer and the searing psychedelia that lurked around the corner, leaving a legacy of excellent exploration along the way.

Below are five jams that chronicle the evolution of Phish’s ambient style of Fall ’98:


Reba > Walk Away > Simple” 10.29 II LA, CA

Starting with the first show of tour, Phish began to explore this new style of jamming.



Wolfman’s > Piper” 10.31 III Las Vegas, NV

One of the band’s career highlights, and a journey into places unimaginable.



AC/DC Bag” 11.7 II Chicago, IL

Overshadowed in the first show of UIC’s three-night stand, this “AC/DC Bag” holds up to anything from Fall ’98.



Simple” 11.21 II Hampton, VA

A gorgeous ambient excursion with all members working in sync to form a stunning piece of music.



Simple” 11.29 II Worcester, MA

If Hampton’s “Simple” sounded like an ascension into heaven, this version depicts a descent into Hades.



Jam of the Day:

Bathtub Gin” 2.14.03 I


Phish’s “Welcome Back” jam in the first set of Winter ’03.



6.23.95 Waterloo Village, Stanhope, NJ < Torrent

6.23.95 Waterloo Village, Stanhope, NJ < Megaupload

This nugget of Summer ’95 one goes out Mr. Bishop. Phish provided an excellent two set effort after fans endured a clusterfuck of traffic to get into the venue.

I: Simple, Chalk Dust Torture, Prince Caspian, Reba, Ginseng Sullivan, Free, Taste, You Enjoy Myself

II: Runaway Jim > The Lizards, The Wedge, Run Like an Antelope, Harpua* > Jam** > Llama**, Good Times Bad Times**

E: A Day in the Life

*Unfinished; with Abba’s Waterloo
**John Popper on harmonica

Source: AKG 460b > Sony D10 Pro II

Tags: ,

Weekend Nuggets: Reader Requests – Old School

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags on January 30th, 2010 by Mr.Miner

3.25.93 Civic Auditorium, Santa Cruz, CA < Torrent

3.25.93 Civic Auditorium, Santa Cruz, CA < Megaupload

Civic Auditorium, Santa Cruz, CA

This one goes out to Neemor!

I: Chalk Dust Torture, Guelah Papyrus, It’s Ice, Possum, Bouncing Around the Room, Stash, Glide, Rift, Horn, Magilla, Run Like an Antelope

II: Axilla, The Curtain > Sample in a Jar, Uncle Pen, Colonel Forbin’s Ascent > Kung > Icculus > Fly Famous Mockingbird, The Wedge, Mike’s Song > I Am Hydrogen > Weekapaug Groove, Golgi Apparatus

E: My Sweet One, Big Ball Jam, Sweet Adeline*

*without microphones

Source: Unknown


12.28.90 The Marquee, NYC, NY – SBD < Torrent

12.28.90 The Marquee, NYC, NY – SBD < Megaupload

Phish - 1990

This one goes out to Corey!

I: Runaway Jim, Foam, Horn, Reba, Llama, Colonel Forbin’s Ascent > Fly Famous Mockingbird, Mike’s Song > I Am Hydrogen > Weekapaug Groove, Golgi Apparatus

II: The Landlady, Possum, The Squirming Coil > Tweezer > Manteca > Tweezer, The Oh Kee Pa Ceremony, My Sweet One, The Divided Sky, No Good Trying* > Hold Your Head Up*, Don’t Get Me Wrong*, Funky Bitch*

E: Bouncing Around the Room, Highway to Hell

*John Popper on harmonica.

Source: SBD


Jam of the Weekend:

Tweezer > Have Mercy” 7.17.99 I


Sunset at Oswego – day one.



“Disease” jam 12.31.09 III


“Demand > Seven Below” 12.31.09 I


Ten Tunes For Friday

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags on January 29th, 2010 by Mr.Miner

11.21.09 (W.Rogell)

Here’s another ten-pack to get you through the last day of the week. Click on any orange song title to download. Enjoy!


Down With Disease” 5.21.00 II, Radio City, NYC

The unquestionable highlight of the first Radio City show, this version provides a smoking example of early-2000 Phish. These were the first shows following Big Cypress, and were some of the most highly anticipated in the band’s history.



Piper” 12.8.99 II CCCC, Portland, ME

Throughout ’99, “Piper” transformed into a more earnest jam vehicle than its earlier incarnations. While the band took the song on many thrilling rides, this piece, from Portland, ME, provides a example of Phish swimming up a vastly different channel.



Walls > Carini” 2.14.03 II, The Forum, LA, CA

8.15.09 (K.Pusey)

After a lackluster comeback run at MSG and Hampton, this show brought Phish back into focus. This second set sequence represents the first stellar jam of the post-hiatus era, and there would be many more. Coming out like a different band than the tentative quartet who played through their much-hyped return, Phish seemed to latch onto an improvisational ethos early in this winter tour that would set their musical path of ’03. Featuring an outlandishly exploratory “Walls,” these 45 minutes are for keeps.



Tweezer” 8.6.96 II Red Rocks, CO

Taking it back Phish’s original four-night stand at Red Rocks, this monster version came as part of the classic “Curtain > Tweezer” combination. One of the unmistakable jams of the weekend, these smooth grooves build into a sublime quote of The Beatles’ “Norwegian Wood.”



Mango (jam)> Free” 9.17.00 II Merriweather, Columbia, MD

6.7.09 (D.Vann)

Drifting from “Mango’s” upbeat territory into a dark, millennial ambiance, Phish used this unlikely jam vehicle to ignite a phenomenal set-ending sequence. Gradually layering a dissonant soundscape far from reality, the band created the most menacing textures of the show. Bleeding into a hugely energetic “Free,” Phish capped this top-shelf Fall ’00 offering with gusto.



Yamar” 7.25.98 I  South Park Meadows, Austin, TX

Often overlooked in the first set, this “Yamar” transforms from an island paradise into a dark guitar narrative of lessons learned on a mythical battlefield.



Reba” 10.18.94 II Memorial Gym, Nashville, TN

1994 and “Reba” go together like peanut butter and jelly; two peas in a pod. And here’s another reason why – a vintage rendition.



Round Room” 2.15.03 I Thomas and Mack, Las Vegas, NV

12.31.09 (W.Rogell)

Experimenting with the debut of their album’s title track, Phish gave us an early taste of ’03 psychedelia. This piece provides a glimpse into the ultra-textured, ambient improv that the band embraced throughout their comeback year. If one thing was true about ’03, the band never hesitated to jump into the void on a whim, and this was one of those excursions.




7.10.97 Espace Julien, Marseilles, FR < Torrent

7.10.97 Espace Julien, Marseilles, FR < Megaupload

Europe '97 T-Shirt

This dark-horse, jam-filled reader request from goes out to Bob the Brewer in Freeport, Maine, who used to blast this XLII while delivering pizzas back in the day. If you find yourself in Freeport, stop by Gritty McDuff’s Brewpub, “Where Phish on full volume makes the beer taste that much better!”

I: Dogs Stole Things, Limb By Limb, Ginseng Sullivan, Bathtub Gin, Llama* > Wading in the Velvet Sea > Jam, Olivia’s Pool

II: 2001 > Julius > Magilla, Ya Mar > Ghost > Take Me to the River* > Jam

E: Funky Bitch**

**Members of Son Seals Band

Source: Neumann TLM-170i (hyper setting) > Sonosax SX-M2 > HHB Portadat@48k > DAT



Posted in Uncategorized with the on January 27th, 2010 by Mr.Miner

Red Rocks - 7.31 (Photo: Wendy Rogell)


Jam of the Day:

Hood > Izabella” 7.9.98 II


A unique ending to the middle, and most adventurous, show of Barcelona’s three-night, tour-ending stand of Europe ’98.



5.16.94 Wiltern Theatre, Los Angeles, CA < Torrent

5.16.94 Wiltern Theatre, Los Angeles, CA < Megaupload

The Wiltern - Los Angeles, CA

A smoking “Antelope” highlights this Big Black Furry Set from Mars of this Spring ’94 west coast offering.

I: Buried Alive,  Poor Heart, Sample in a Jar, The Divided Sky, Axilla (Part II), Rift, Down with Disease, Bouncing Around the Room, Stash, Sweet Adeline*

II: Also Sprach Zarathustra > Run Like an Antelope > Big Black Furry Creature from Mars > Run Like an Antelope, Sparkle, It’s Ice, Julius, You Enjoy Myself, Big Black Furry Creature from Mars, Amazing Grace*, Big Black Furry Creature from Mars

E: Fee, Rocky Top

*without microphones

Source: (FOB) Schoeps MK4/CMC5 > Sony D10 Pro

Mike In March

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , , on January 27th, 2010 by Mr.Miner

Mike Gordon (D.Perrucci)

Those living in the east can add a short tour from Mike Gordon to the list of Phish-related events bombarding the area this winter. Just this week, Mike announced a mini 8-show, northeast run in March on the heels of Trey’s tour in February. Building on his band’s success over the past two years, Mike is staying true to his promise to make time for his solo project within the context of a new Phish. His role as a bandleader has clearly enhanced his chops, bringing game-changing bass playing to Phish during 2009. And one can expect more of the same in 2010.

Doubling as a bass player and band leader, Mike’s role bucks convention, allowing his melodic rhythms to drive the contour of the music. Backed by solid, yet not overwhelming musicians, his bouncing bass leads jump off the stage, devouring small clubs and theatres. It wouldn’t be a stretch to say that this more assertive style contributed to his central role in Phish jams during 2009. So beyond these eight individual evenings, this run will payoff come summertime as well. Mixing Green Sparrow originals with an eclectic array of covers, Mike’s setlists bring the element of surprise to his shows, while his band gets into more earnest improv than most solo projects.

Another case of the Northeast getting the goods, the eight shows will essentially move up and down 1-95, veering off for only a couple shows. The dates are as follows:

3/05 – Revolution Hall, Troy, NY
3/06 – Toad’s Place, New Haven, CT
3/07 – Sherman Theatre, Stroudsburg, PA
3/09 – Rams Head Live!, Baltimore, MD
3/11 – Jefferson Theatre, Charlottesville, VA
3/12 – Theatre of the Living Arts, Philadelphia, PA
3/13 – Pearl Street, Northampton, MA
3/14 – Lebanon Opera House, Lebanon, NH


Jam of the Day:

Tweezer > Sparkle” 12.1.96 II


A Lew Alcindor-esque performance in UCLA’s Pauly Pavilion during the tail end of Fall ’96.



7.5.1994 Congress Center, Ottawa, ON < Torrent

7.5.1994 Congress Center, Ottawa, ON < Megaupload

Ottawa, Ontario

This dark-horse reader request from north of the border goes out to Jack G. This show features two colossal bustouts from the late 80’s, including the first “Cities” of the decade.

I: Rift, Sample in a Jar, The Curtain > Letter to Jimmy Page^, If I Could, Uncle Pen, Stash, Esther, Down with Disease, Sweet Adeline**

II: Punch You In the Eye, Sparkle, Bathtub Gin > Lifeboy, Cities^^, You Enjoy Myself > The Great Gig in the Sky > Hold Your Head Up, Ginseng Sullivan*, My Sweet One*, Amazing Grace**, Golgi Apparatus

E: Good Times Bad Times

^1st since 6/19/88 (745 shows), ^^1st since 9/13/88 (710 shows)

*Acoustic; without microphones
**Without microphones.

Source: AKG461 > Oade Custom Pre-Amp >DAT @48khz

(taped by Kevin Shapiro) Rift was cut on the DAT master, and the DSBD source of the track is patched in. No other DSBD tracks of this show are known to circulate.

Tags: , ,

Opening Day?

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , on January 26th, 2010 by Mr.Miner

Wrigley's Iconic Sign

After kicking off Summer ’09 at Fenway Park, rumors swirl about Phish taking on another national baseball shrine this summer in Chicago’s Wrigley Field. Potentially starting an opening day tradition of their own, Phish may play Wrigley before Deer Creek’s rumored tour-opening stand of summer. With a capacity of 41,118, around the same as Fenway, Wrigley would provide a larger than life start to Phish 2010. Distinctly understated with an intimate, old-school vibe, more likening a minor league park than more modern superstructures, Wrigley would be a fabulous place to throw out summer’s opening pitch.

The only drawback of these stadium spectacles is the urgency of a field ticket. Designed for watching home runs and double-plays, not listening to music, the actual stands don’t necessarily provide the concert experience one might be looking for. At Fenway last May, many fans complained that between the distance and the wind, the music couldn’t truly be enjoyed from many spots in the park. Yet, on the field, the sound boomed far louder and dance space was easy to cop in front of the Green Monster. At Wrigley, the iconic brick and ivy would provide a historic backdrop for an sure-to-be entertaining show.

The Ivy of Wrigley Field

As Phish continues to consider unique stages for their tour docket, fans continue to enjoy the variety of venues. Despite some of the sound issues at Fenway, one would be hard pressed to find anybody who didn’t have a great time in Boston, and the situation would no doubt repeat itself at the little ballpark on Addison. If the band adopts the home field of the Cubs, perhaps Phish could infuse some of greatness into the the 2010 season for the north sides lovable losers. (Though that didn’t work out so well for the Red Sox last year.)

Before too long, pitchers and catchers will report for spring training, kicking off the 2010 season. And with baseball comes summer, and with summer, comes Phish tour; two of Americas indelible institutions. And with the band moving forward again, these two summer pastimes will run parallel for yet another summer this year. And its all only five short months away!

Wrigley Field


Jam of the Day:

AC/DC Bag > Ghost” 11.7.98 II


Perhaps the most outstanding improv of a steallar three-night UIC stand.



9.22.00 Allstate Arena, Chicago, IL < Torrent

9.22.00 Allstate Arena, Chicago, IL < Megaupload

This reader request fits with today’s Chicago theme, and goes out to Brien K! This one is a great two-set affair from the Fall of 2000 – Enjoy!

I: Down with Disease, Meat* > Poor Heart,Wilson, Slave to the Traffic Light, Dogs Stole Things, Bathtub Gin, Heavy Things, You Enjoy Myself

II: Tube, Reba, Ghost > The Wedge, When the Circus Comes, Meatstick, Run Like an Antelope

E: Bold As Love


Source: Unknown

Tags: ,

Monday, Monday…

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , on January 25th, 2010 by Mr.Miner

The Gorge 8.7 (G.Lucas)


Jams of the Day: Tokyo – 6.10.00 I





Two hefty chunks of improv from the first set of Zepp Tokyo.



6.10.00 Zepp, Tokyo, JP < Torrent

6.10.00 Zepp, Tokyo, JP < Megaupload

Zepp - Tokyo, JP

An improvisationally heavy show takes us out of the gate this week. “Disease,” “Piper,” “Sand,” and “Bathtub” all highlight this under-the-radar Japan offering.

I: Down with Disease, Sample in a Jar, Piper, Lawn Boy, Guyute

II: Heavy Things, Sand, Sparkle, My Soul, Bathtub Gin > Twist, Albuquerque, Wading in the Velvet Sea, Loving Cup

E: The Inlaw Josie Wales, Limb By Limb\

Source: Unknown

Tags: ,

Weekend Nuggets: Reader’s Requests

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags on January 23rd, 2010 by Mr.Miner


11.13.94 Warner Theatre, Erie, PA < Torrent

11.13.94 Warner Theatre, Erie, PA < Megaupload

This smoking November ’94 offering goes out to Mitch! Look out for an absolutely ripping”Antelope!”

Warner Theatre - Erie, PA

I: Wilson, Sparkle, Simple, Reba, Axilla (Part II), It’s Ice > The Vibration of Life > The Horse > Silent in the Morning, Run Like an Antelope

II: Suzy Greenberg, The Divided Sky, The Lizards, Tweezer, The Mango Song, Big Black Furry Creature from Mars, Amazing Grace, The Squirming Coil

E: Funky Bitch, Tweezer Reprise

Source: Unknown


6.17.94 Eagles Ballroom, Milwaukee, WI < Torrent

6.17.94 Eagles Ballroom, Milwaukee, WI < Megaupload

The classic “OJ Show” goes out to Ben!

Eagles Ballroom - Milwaukee, WI

I: Runaway Jim, Foam, Glide, Split Open and Melt, If I Could, Punch You In the Eye, Bathtub Gin > Scent of a Mule, Cavern

II: Also Sprach Zarathustra > Sample in a Jar, Poor Heart, Mike’s Song > Simple > Mike’s Song > I Am Hydrogen > Weekapaug Groove, Harpua > Kung > Harpua, Sparkle, Big Ball Jam, Julius, Frankenstein

E: Sleeping Monkey, Rocky Top

Source: [DAUD/OTS] AKG 460b/ck61 > AKG B-18 Phantom Power > Sony D-10 Pro II @ 48khz


Jam of the Weekend:

Birds > If I Only Had A Brain > Caspian” 7.8.99 II


Another outstanding jam from the summer of ’99.



“Black Eyed-Katy” 12.5.97 Cleveland, OH I


“Scents and Subtle Sounds jam” 7.19.03 I Alpine Valley, WI


Ten Tunes for Friday

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags on January 21st, 2010 by Mr.Miner
12.30.09 (W.Rogell)

12.30.09 (W.Rogell)

To take you through this Friday, I have created a ten-song playlist that you can listen to on the site and download. Click each individual orange track title to download the song; take all or some, it’s up to you. Enjoy!


Ghost” 8.16.98 II Lemonwheel, Limestone, ME

Phish’s 1998 ambient experimentation began to emerge at their summer-emding festival. Taking a step away from pure-funk, the band started to infuse a more amorphous quality to their music, a development you can hear in its genesis via this “Ghost.” Phish capped a summer of decidedly funky episodes something distinctly different.



Free” 12.15.99 II MCI Center, Washington, DC

Towards the end of, arguably, “Free’s” most exploratory year, Phish threw down a defining version of the song in the middle of the second set in Washington, DC. Showcasing some of Trey’s most creative work on his late ’99 keyboard, he hopped off guitar for a good portion of this jam playing sparse, yet engaging hooks. Then he slung his axe back over his shoulder and took this jam to the top; an upper-echelon version by anyone’s standard.


12.29.09 (W.Rogell)


Split” 11.6.98 I Kohl Center, Madison, WI

This well-known version of “Split” is famous for one reason – an insanely tight groove session. Absolutely locked together, the band shredded this first set closer to pieces. Not experimental, but staying on a driving course of menacing momentum, this version provided the jaw-dropping moment of the evening. Mike has called this jam one of his favorite moments from Fall ’98.



Wolfman’s Brother” 11.13.98 I CSU, Cleveland, OH

An oft forgotten version buried in a lackluster show, this “Wolfman’s” is – straight up – the bees knees. Boasting addictive dino-funk and a pronounced “Mind Left Body” segment, this dark horse is a personal go-to version. Enjoy reacquainting yourselves with one of the hottest versions around.



Reba” 12.29.09 I AAA, Miami, FL

A simply sublime version of  “Reba,” soars gently through musical peaks and valleys on a stellar flight above a blissful sea of awareness. A dynamic mixture of delicate playing and liquid grooves, this jam rolls like water gently over a river bed.



12.30.09 (W.Rogell)

Scents and Subtle Sounds” Deer Creek 7.23.03 Deer Creek I

…And sometimes Phish opens with twenty-minute jams; gotta love ’03. One of three extended “Scents” during this summer tour, the band began their third and final night at Deer Creek with one of the song’s defining performances. As the song finally dropped at MSG last fall, here’s to some more summer explorations of post-hiatus’ most interstellar vehicle. (Apologies for the low bit rate on this track.)



Waves” 8.2.03 II Limestone, ME

Another post-hiatus song that often stretched into psychedelic excursions, none were more profound than this twenty-minute odyssey in Limestone. With some of the most ambient psychedelia of the weekend, this jam helped define the glorious festival – IT.



Tweezer” 6.24.00 I Lakewood, Atlanta, GA

A classic through and through, this “Tweezer” passes through some serious swamp funk on the way to a completely different and triumphant jam.


12.31.09 (W.Rogell)


Ramble On > Slave” 8.12.98 I Vernon Downs, NY

This gorgeous combination of songs peaked the first set of Vernon Downs with majesty. Laying out “Ramble On’s” melody in the peak of “Slave,” Trey combined these two pieces masterfully. A piece of aural reverie, this sequence held up as a Summer ’98 highlighht after an extensive tour.


Archive Additions

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags on January 21st, 2010 by Mr.Miner

Archive Page

As of today, there are  25 new shows in the The Phish Thoughts Audio Archive. In addition to adding all of Fall ’09 and Miami ’09 to the archive, with the help of Jon Gollatz, I have added some of post hiatus’ best shows to archive as well. Below are a list of shows that you will now find only a click away. Cheers and happy downloading!


2/14 The Great Western Forum, LA, CA

2/15 & 2/16 Thomas and Mack Center, Las Vegas, NV

2/18 Pepsi Center, Denver, CO

2/20 Allstate Arena, Chicago, IL

2/21 & 2/22 The Crown, Cincinatti, OH

2/28 Nassau Coliseum, Uniondale, NY


6/16 & 6/20 SPAC, Saratoga Springs, NY


Complete Fall Tour and New Year’s Run


Jam of the Day:

Ghost” > Lifeboy 8.2.98 II


Summer ’98, baby; Deer Creek style.



2.28.03 Nassau Coliseum, Uniondale, NY < Megaupload

One of the most memorable nights of the post-hiatus era. (Torrent not available.)

Nassau Coliseum - Uniondale, NY

I: Birds of a Feather, Destiny Unbound, Horn, Bathtub Gin, Sleep, Back on the Train, Bouncing Around the Room, Walls of the Cave

II: Tweezer > Soul Shakedown Party > David Bowie, Round Room, Harry Hood

E: Contact, Mexican Cousin, Tweezer Reprise

Source: Unknown