A Sinister Sunday

6.27.10 - Merriweather (Graham Lucas)

Phish concluded their transformative weekend on Sunday night with a dark, thematic set filled with shredding musicianship and exploratory jamming. Punctuating a four-night run that nobody will soon forget, Phish leapt into the fray with an igneous experiment that read “Saw It Again > Piper > Ghost > Jumping Jack Flash > Saw It Again.” Bookended by groove sessions, this psychedelic suite provided the core of the show, careening into uncharted territory with the new and improved Phish from Vermont.

Sparking the eighth set of the weekend with “Wilson,” the band cranked up the heat on an unbearably hot evening at Merriweather Post Pavilion, using Gamehendge as an energetic trampoline into the final frame. Potentially responding to an “up-fronter’s” sign, the band dropped into “Meatstick” out of left field, juicing the millennial anthem’s feel-good funk with emotive guitar leads and an out-of-character jaunt into a series of swamp grooves. As Trey, ripped a single chord, the band left the song’s progression for swanky dance rhythms that stretched seductively until Trey got another idea in his head. Once Red awkwardly ended a growing “Meatsick” with the opening riff of “Saw It Again,” the set flowed impeccably from here on out.

6.27.10 (G.Lucas)

Staging a sonic assault in “Saw It Again,” the band stretched the piece into thunderous sheets of sound and psychedelia while screaming the lyrics over the top of the evil soundtrack. Morphing into a significant piece of musical dramedy, the band continued shrieking the one-liner as they built a spacey segue into “Piper,” much like SPAC’s “Makisupa > Piper” transition from a week ago. And with “Piper” came the unquestionable creative and innovative highlight of the evening. Take the full-band crushing from “Oswego” ’99’s legendary version, and cross it with “Miami’s” crafty piece of musical density, and you’d come close to approximating the vibe of this stellar summer standout. Bombarding the crowd with a sawed-off shotgun of musical ideas, Phish exploded in an ever-morphing series of mini-jams. Without a tangible linear theme, the band took a jump off the deep end, going for the jugular in an experimental piece of roaring proportions. Transcending the uptempo rage-fest and avoiding generic percussive jamming of ’09, Phish wove through many creative portions of new-era music. This is one that needs to be heard to truly comprehend, as it reaches so many diverse places. In the jam’s denouement, the band broke into a groove that brought rhythmic resolution to the freight-train that had just demolished the venue. Moving the outro into a spacier texture, the band slid from their sprawling epic into the long-awaited second “Ghost” of summer.

6.27.10 (G.Lucas)

Left untouched since opening night in Chicago, the crowd was more than ready for the seminal late-90’s vehicle. This version shied from straight groove, as Trey began soloing early with notable nimbleness, and he simply never stopped. The whole band toyed with the changes of “I Saw It Again” throughout the “Ghost” jam, thematically uniting the non-stop sequence. Taking center stage, Trey slayed his leads as the band continued a driving groove beneath his display of fireworks. In an aural double-take, virtually nobody in the audience realized that Phish had sculpted “Ghost’s” jam directly into The Rolling Stones’ “Jumpin’ Jack Flash.” Trey simply stepped up and sung the lyrics over the existing pattern in the smoothest possible segue; the kind you don’t even realize is happening. Blowing out the end of the cover, the band began chanting “I Saw It Again” over an increasingly menacing texture, moving back into the song that started all this madness. In a fifty-minute period of maniacal music, Phish painted Sunday evening black, celebrating their new found confidence with a compelling trek into the underworld.

Official Merriweather Poster

Breaking out “Contact” for a light, late-set interlude, Phish capped the evening with a short but sweet “You Enjoy Myself”, featuring “Jumping Jack Flash” teases at the beginning and end of the jam. The lyrical reprise of “I Saw It Again” that surfaced throughout the set came out most creatively as Trey substituted “Boy,” and portions of the “Wassha Uffizi” lyrics, with “I Saw It Again,” all completely in rhythm and with hilarious intonation.

Last night Phish underlined a set of seething music with their classic sense of comical creativity, illustrating, once again, that the band has arrived. Playing another flowing set flooded with modern ideas, Phish followed up their past two nights with yet another magnificent evening.With three straight nights of next-generation Phish, the band has redefined what it means to be a fan in 2010. Cranking out everything in their repertoire, from exploratory jamming to ornate compositions, and doing it like the maestros that they are, Phish has taken the second half of tour by storm. After this weekend, the south should take heed, as a musical cyclone is about to hit the region. With only a Tuesday stop in Canandaigua separating us from tour’s four-night finale, June will always be remembered as the month when the band began moving forward again. And the future has never looked brighter.

Set I Notes: The first set featured six summer bust outs, most notably, “Walfredo,” “Tela,” and Bob Marley’s “Mellow Mood.” Though everything was played quite well, the set picked up steam, in earnest, with another scorching “Bathtub Gin,” which, in turn, set the table for a closing “Antelope.” Before the two classic vehicles emerged, the set had translated as a somewhat choppy recital; but its ending salvaged the opening frame.

I: Walfredo, Mellow Mood, Stealing Time From the Faulty Plan, The Divided Sky, Tela, My Soul, Ginseng Sullivan, Sample in a Jar, Bathtub Gin, Brian and Robert, Run Like an Antelope

II: Wilson, Meatstick > Saw It Again > Piper* > Ghost* > Jumpin’ Jack Flash^ > Saw It Again > Contact*, You Enjoy Myself**

E: Fire*

*Saw It Again lyrical quotes
**Saw It Again quotes and Jumpin Jack Flash teases; Saw It Again and Surfin’ Bird quotes in vocal jam.
^ Phish debut

"Tela" - 6.27.10 (Graham Lucas)

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1,083 Responses to “A Sinister Sunday”

  1. fat bastard Says:

    except TAB’S instrumenal version of small axe. thats the goods

  2. Stupendous Says:

    hey guys!

    what a great phish music weekend we had!
    Def happy of what went down, it seems as if theyve hit the switch to the on
    position… BK hope u had a blast, and u got a tela, very special. I m sure your dad dug that one…i hope…
    lets make it a good week. whens the next show on tues?

  3. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    whew. I knew the first day back to work after my Phish->Avalon (with Camden teases) vacay was going to suck, but this is brutal. nothing like going from sandy beaches, cocktails, and phish to cubeland. ugh.

    anyway, glad to hear everyone’s enjoying this tour. I know the three I have caught thus far were all very enjoyable. especially Camden 1 for me, since I got to share that one with my two older brothers and a bunch of other folks in my extended crew. made it super special that neither of my brothers had seen phish in a looooong time. for one it had been since 4.25.90 (Notre Dame Stonehenge show). they’ve kind of changed a tad since that show in front of about 10-15 people. very apt that they played 20YL that night!

    won’t be on here much this week as I try to dig out from under the cavalcade of work I have on my plate, but can’t wait to keep reading about the great times everyone is having. only a few more to go in this leg!

  4. willowed Says:

    Welcome back TIII
    I go into the office at 12:00 p.m. today after a week and a half off.
    Not looking forward to it!!
    Viva La Phish

  5. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    oh yeah. forgot to thank willowed for the hospitality in Hartford. great putting more faces to fake names. thanks again, willowed!

  6. willowed Says:

    My pleasure brother!!

  7. llamalee Says:

    great two nights in MPP. i had the time of my life, literally left after the show and drove 9 hours back home and am at work loving life still. trey and fishman were in perfect sync this weekend something i’ve been waiting for and i feel fishman and mike were pushing trey this whole weekend with big red not missing a step

  8. Mr.Palmer Says:

    Nice B&R teases in the Antelope. Consistently shredding the Antelopes, nothing crazy, but energized for sure.

  9. BeantownBoy Says:

    Does anyone have a link to last night’s show?

    My work computer is not a fan of yawningdrone and I’m aching to hear that Ghost.

  10. El Duderino Says:

    “Trey has it early and it’s gonna be smooth but he jumps the gun . Maybe the enthusiasm of almost nailing it caught him, anyway”

    or maybe he lost count what measure he was on…

  11. BrandonKayda Says:

    Beantown

    shoot me an email at bkayda at gmail dot com

    (sorry)

  12. joe Says:

    @garrettc. If you are still reading, take the headphones off maybe a half an hour before you think you should when waiting for your plane. Awesome reward from Phish for you after the travel saga of the other day.

    I was fighting the feeling of being jealous that I hit the 3 shows before the 4 show blow out but then I remembered that I had a fucking blast those days and that I hope I got to put some positive vibes in the ever building energy snowball that is building. So, you all are welcome!

  13. jdub Says:

    What about hoodstream @Beantown.

  14. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    these last 3 shows are making me very, very depressed about not being able to make tomorrow’s show bleh

  15. BeantownBoy Says:

    @ BK

    Message sent.

    Thanks.

  16. BeantownBoy Says:

    @ JDub

    Good idea, unfortunately the work has a pretty good firewall that blocks all streaming media sites.

  17. Mr.Palmer Says:

    @ Joe- we are all in this together…..sharin in the groove!

  18. c0wfunk Says:

    quick check in miner covered it all pretty well saw it again fest was insane (also goes along w/ the deja vu theme from saturday night) the second set was just menacing hilarious phish that keeps coming atcha..

    A few things I’d add – my first lawn show since alpine 04 and damn what a different world. Some real festival professional types all around us made for a super fun summer lawn vibe.

    Sunset divided sky was impeccable and the vibe was flowing. Tub and Antelope were indeed great.

    Check out the YEM vocal jam for the “bird is the word” teases as well as the saw it again fun.

    can’t wait til atl this weekend has been a blast and the boys are gonna just take the ball and keep running, you can see from here.

    Glad everyone is now getting what they need from the shows it seems. The boys look SO happy. watched a lot of video screen last night and the closeups were fantastic.

    I saw it again!!!!

    love trey’s closing “we’ll .. see you again!!”

  19. Ootek1 Says:

    Last night was indeed sick. How about a little love for the first set? After the stressed out, party vibe of Saturday, Sunday arrived with a lighter crowd on the lawn, a more live-and-let-live vibe amongst the (definitely older) crowd, and a band that could relax from the get go and ease in. And ease in they did, starting with Walfredo and the instrument trade, then a very mellow Mellow Mood, a slight step up in energy to Stealing Time, and another step up with Divided Sky. It was a slow build of sunny day music that got more boisterous as the sky startted ot darken, and it just phlowed beautifully. With a first set like that, you knew they would bring it hard core in set 2, and they did. With the exception of the incredibly jarring and awkward transition from Meat Stick to I Saw It Again, this set was sheer brilliance.

    Great weekend of shows, and a great night last night. Wasn’t even that hot by the time the show started. : )

  20. jdub Says:

    CMAC should provide the exclamation point on their surge before settling in for the final four blowout. After building the intensity for four straight days I am left wondering if they come out and lay down a dense tapestry of sonic mind meld after the raging rockers they just threw down.

  21. c0wfunk Says:

    I for one heard the stones cover coming as soon as the riff came but I thought it was “satisfaction” until the lyrics came. Jumpin jack flash was a real high point, what a great choice and so smoothly performed.

  22. tela'smuff Says:

    listenening to MPP night 1. this 2nd set is redic.

    It’s clear to me know that Mike is w/o question the band leader on jams. He is the one making things happen, when they happen. Blossom #Line, Camden CDT, MPP RnR. I’ll give the MPP Tweez to Trey though.

    Just a different band these last 4 shows. If my wife could get on board, there is no question I’d be making the southern run. Damn compromise!

  23. zzyzx Says:

    My wife is telling me to look for last second Atlanta plane tickets but they’re insane and I don’t think I’d be able to find concert tix for under $100 each to Atlanta.

    4.5 weeks until the Greek… just wait for that.

  24. joe Says:

    my days off this week are Tuesday and Wednesday….how far from Boston to Canandaigua?

  25. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    @joe, probably about 7 hours

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