Feeling the Finger Lakes

CMAC Official Poster (Welker)

Reeling in their wide-open exploration of the past few shows, Phish sculpted two sets with distinctly different vibes, delivering a powerhouse performance in the serene surroundings of Canandaigua, New York on Tuesday night. With a laid back first set that matched the feeling of the cool, upstate evening, and a fiery second half, Phish unveiled many crowd favorites en route to a start-to-finish show that will be remembered, above all else, for its stellar “Mike’s Groove” and intimate environs. Upon walking into CMAC Performing Arts Center, the uniquely designed and miniature pavilion immediately gave the show a much cozier feel than the east coast blowouts of last weekend. Many thought this Tuesday night, out-of-the-way affair would explode in a jealousy-inducing show for those not in attendance, but in a very Phishy move, the band played a straight forward setlist loaded with Phish anthems, delivering two flowing sets of music without ever moving to into the stratosphere.

6.27.10 (G.Lucas)

An uncharacteristic “Possum”opener led off the second set in rocking fashion, prepping the crowd ready for a highlight-reel “Mike’s Groove.” Blasting into the inferno of “Mike’s,” the band entered the lair of the beast with intent to slay. Trey led the band through a series of explosive peaks with snarling leads and filthy volition, scripting a menacing musical tale. As Mike’s bass pulsated at the heart of the jam, the band carved a darker version that shied fr0m dance rhythms in favor of demonic vigor. Coming out of the composed ending of “Mike’s,” for the first time this summer, Phish chose “Simple” to bridge the “Groove,” pumping consistent energy into the set. Deconstructing the feel-good groove, the band entered sparse and melodic segment that gradually morphed into gorgeous ambient space. Briefly sounding like their course was set for “2001,” Page began a piano solo over the space-aged texture, artistically slipping into the night’s big surprise – “I Am the Walrus.”

6.24.10 (J.Thomas)

The transition from “Simple’s” ethereal excursion, and Phish’s take on The Beatles’ classic, worked perfectly, infusing the show with a massive surge of retro-enthusiasm. Feeding off the energy in the small pavilion, the band continued to build out of the song’s ending, getting into a ferocious piece of heavy psychedelia. With menacing walls of sonic dissonance, Phish got straight-up medieval on the piece, as “I Am The Walrus” grew into far more than a straight ahead cover. Bringing the song further out than John or Paul had ever imagined the band carried a harrowing intensity, bringing the entire venue on a sweltering mental roller coaster. Bringing the jam to a head, Phish created another summer highlight while sliding smoothly into “Weekapaug.” All tour long, “Weekapaugs” have outshone their “Mike’s” counterparts, and once again, this version overflowed with creativity, weighting the back end of the “Groove.” Connecting several segments of galloping, rhythmic exercise with scintillating guitar leads, Trey threw down fast-paced licks of all variety amidst this dynamic piece. Moving through a minimalist, percussive section, Trey never relented with his thematic leads, providing a cohesive plot to the entire jam.

6.27.10 (G.Lucas)

The band pushed “Weekapaug” out of the box and into an abstract, bass-led swamp before the jam disintegrated, unfinished, into “Limb By Limb.” This late second-set version evoked memories of Chicago’s placement; though the band didn’t seem to connect on this outing like they had throughout the set, and the piece ended before reaching an earnest peak. “Joy” filled the late-set ballad slot before Phish dropped into “Harry Hood” to punctuate the set’s improvisation. Picking up a notable pace right away, this version carried the direction and intent of old, moving gracefully and without hesitation, through a fluid, whole-band conversation. The band moved directly to the heart of the matter, side-stepping any meandering in this potent, well-phrased dosage of bliss. Bringing the show to a purifying peak, “Hood” hit the bulls-eye last night, leaving time for an anthemic afterthought of “Golgi.”

6.27.10 (G.Lucas)

That was the second set, but the first set felt a whole lot different. Combining choice songs and plenty of structured improv, Phish played a notably laid back set to match the first pleasant evening of summer tour. The pastoral setting of the Finger Lakes region breathed life into the jams of the first set, all adopting a similar musical inspiration. Illustrated most clearly in “Ocelot,” “Reba,” and “Bowie,” this frame was underlined by its improvisational placidity. Each of these central jams sprouted creative roots within this milieu, tying the set together thematically. Trey’s minimalist playing and tasteful whaling contributed to the contour of the opening frame, which took place all under blue-to-purple sky. “The Connection” set the tone for the mellow set whose feel was enhanced by the second “Curtis Loew” of tour – when’s the last time one could say that? “Undermind” was also infused with the laid-back style on display in this non-stop summer stanza.

As we prepare for the final four night run of June, look how far we’ve come. On the third and final Tuesday of tour, Canandaigua provided a lively evening of Phish that set table for the band’s long-anticipated southern run. Ending in Atlanta on the Fourth of July, the first leg of summer is quickly coming to a close, but with four more nights on tap, the adventure is hardly over.

Look out South, here comes the end of Phish tour.

I: The Connection, Down with Disease, Sample in a Jar, Ocelot, Reba, Horn, Funky Bitch, Undermind, The Ballad of Curtis Loew, David Bowie

II: Possum, Mike’s Song > Simple > I Am The Walrus* > Weekapaug Groove, Limb By Limb, Joy, Harry Hood, Golgi Apparatus

E: First Tube

6.24.10 - Camden (Jeff Thomas)

Tags: ,

2,101 Responses to “Feeling the Finger Lakes”

  1. Jtran Says:

    You know you’re a Phish junkie when you are seriously considering setlist watching/streaming over hanging out with a girl. I think the girl wins out though.

    Set 1 looks fun, wish I got the Roses.

  2. poop goblin Says:

    that would be nice willowed

    Cinci was nice but I still think they need to nail a Split

  3. willowed Says:

    I have been married to that girl for 9 years.

    It’s like puting on a pair of old shoes.

  4. poop goblin Says:

    yeah I never judge a show by it’s paper setlist but tonight’s show def has that crowd pleaser southern rock n roll vibe

    of course the 2nd set could be a whole different ball game

  5. sumodie Says:

    I’m finally back on the Hood bandwagon thanks to the CMAC version -really fell in love with that song again

    Camden and nTelos Hoods were also sweet

  6. willowed Says:

    I know Miner liked the Camden Split (I think it was Camden) but it really was not that good
    Then again, Splits are like Pizza…even that bad ones are good

  7. poop goblin Says:

    yeah my girlfriend and I have been hanging out since summer tour 2000

    glad her ass is staying home for Atlanta

    gonna have to find some high school Phishy chicks down there

  8. punkmug Says:

    @Silly. Yes on both accounts. It sounds like there will be a decent BB crew at those two shows, I sure hope to meet more of you cats. Even though, I don’t comment much around here, everyone I have met has been top notch. ::takes another blueberry stout sip::

  9. VoidBoy Says:

    da da… Willowed… da da…

    I’ve been married (just asked the wife): response: 14 years… known her 21 years… met in college. Now have a nine MONTH old baby girl…

  10. SillyWilly Says:


    those high school phishies wont be able to hang with your cookies, man.

    that was supposed to ruin your plan, but the more I think about it….

  11. willowed Says:

    The Hartford Hood was beautiful too Sumo

  12. sumodie Says:

    @willowed:: thought I forgot a Hood -that one too

  13. willowed Says:

    Good for you Void…girls are the best…Congrats
    i have 3……
    Keegan 7 girl
    Brendan 5 boy
    Cassidy 2 girl

    The circuis is always in town at the willowed house….never a dull moment

  14. poop goblin Says:

    I really enjoyed the Blossom Hood also

  15. Phamily Berzerker Says:

    I like cavern as a set one closer

  16. willowed Says:

    hood has a new life in 3.0
    soft, sweet yet so menacing

  17. VoidBoy Says:


    Nice group of kids there. Don’t mean to “call you out” but just caught your post.

    Looking forward to our “4 day run”… this is going to be a nice weekend…

  18. SillyWilly Says:


    I agree.

    Haven’t met someone from the BB who wasn’t completely top shelf. It’s cool too, I’ve got to chill at 4 or 5 BBers homes, and everyone’s been really kind.

    scoped AW’s record collection which is great to see and even better to listen to with AW’s commentary.

    Cal and his girl are now two of my best friends in Wisco. and Cal has become my tour mentor.

    Have slept on Lastwaltzer and his girl’s couch after staying up til 4 in the morning talking politics/life/philosophy/music and then resuming the convo. for breakfast and another 4 or 5 hours of convo.

    just totally a cool space.

  19. punkmug Says:

    Blossom Hood is good. It benefits from from the tunes it’s sandwhiched between IMO though. That drop out of RnR still tingles me spine. One of my favorite memories of that show. Great stuff.

  20. willowed Says:

    Think Trey remembered all the words?
    He always botches that one (vocally that is)
    he remebered all of them in Hartford

  21. willowed Says:

    No worries at all Void…….never felt “called out” at all
    Hell….we’re freakin’ family around here!!

  22. pagesidehighschool Says:

    Wow! This is the set I’ve been waiting to see. I’d pay for this one, llama roses and time loves a hero, couch tour sucks some times

  23. willowed Says:

    But I should run and hang with the wife.

    I am really off now.

    love you guys.

    This place is special

    Can’t wait for my next run. Jones Beach,,,you cats better be there!

  24. punkmug Says:

    @Silly. Sweet. We need to hook up then. I’m living in MN but am from WI. (Superior). I make it to Madtown and Milwaukee a lot as I have in-laws in Milwaukee and my wife and I always love hitting the Great Dane or Ale Asylum when passing thru Madison.

    When Phish announces their Mpls fall tour opener. (::crosses fingers::) I will try to shelter as many of you all I can.

  25. sumodie Says:

    and no Hood at nTelos. So much for memory….

    Spun all of Camden 1 and half of Camden 2 today

    DWD just elevates my mood insanely! Realized today it is THE Phishy tune that most easily pierces into my soul and makes life feel so damned good

    Both first sets sounded great to these ears -even TTE

    The Rover sounded amazing too

Leave a Reply