Boy. Man. I Saw It Again.

6.27.2010 - Merrriweather (Graham Lucas)

While Phish put together several flowing second sets during summer’s opening leg, one stood head and shoulders above the rest. In most frames of summer, even the better ones, Phish included slower segments, stops for air, and breaks from jamming. While these aspects don’t necessarily hurt sets, the lack of these factors can surely contribute to a top-notch offering. Concluding their tour’ s peak weekend, Phish stepped on stage at Merriweather for the eighth and final set, and spun the most impressive stanza of of 2010. Including choice bust-outs, exploratory improv, and impeccable craftsmanship, no other set of summer approaches the musical cohesion and flow of Merriweather’s Sunday night delight.

6.27.10 (G.Lucas)

While other halves may have brought higher peak moments, few maintained a similar molten flow, and none carried the thematic unity, non-stop action and utter Phishiness of the weekend’s closing showcase amidst the woods of Maryland. After playing the two most exciting shows of tour on the previous two-nights, Sunday could have gone either way – a reeled-in breather or a blowout that upstaged every other set of the weekend. And in move that resembled the Phish of lore, the band chose the latter.

As Phish stepped onto Merriweather’s deeply-recessed stage, dropping “Wilson” to spark their Mid-Atlantic finale, the Gamehendge opener didn’t indicate any particular direction, hiding the band’s intentions. But as they slipped into the first “Meatstick” of the year, and only the second of this era, the millennial anthem notably juiced the crowd, as Trey wrung emotion from his solo before leading the band into a murky bog of groove. Thickening by the moment, the rhythms began plotting their own liquid course into night, but Trey had other ideas. Coming in abruptly with the opening riff of “I Saw It Again,” he waved off his band mates who continued the bulbous groove, creating the only awkward moment of the set. Finally giving in to their front man, the band broke stride and began “Saw It Again,” a move that seemed odd at the time, but provided the creative impetus for the rest of the night. The elusive Phish-metal quest  became the dark thread, tying together the musical suite of the summer.

6.27.10 - Merriweather (Graham Lucas)

Digging into the piece’s sharp edge, Phish annihilated the rarity, tacking on a heavy and abstract, post-lyrical segment, where all band members continuously shrieked “I Saw It Again!” over evil textures. Indulging in their sinister brew, the band stretched out the piece, into a harrowing sculpture of dissonant psychedelia. Blending the song’s sonic residue and final screams  into the opening of “Piper,” the band stepped into one of the summer’s defining jams. As Trey sung the song’s initial round, he comically referenced the phrase “I Saw It Again” in rhythm with the climbing lyrics – a theme that would run throughout the set. But when Phish finally let loose, careening into “Piper’s” jam, a stunning piece of creativity was born.

6.27.10 (G.Lucas)

Connected with crazy glue and firing musical ideas like a sawed-off shotgun, Phish locked into, perhaps, the summer’s most jaw-dropping sequence. Without a clear, linear path, the band collectively navigated this jam like a ship bouncing in the white-waters of the open sea. Combining their dense musical style with an improvisational abandon seldom seen these days, the band took the audience for a maniacal magic carpet ride. Just as one member relented, another would introduce a new idea, furthering the aggressive odyssey without losing any sense of union. All four members connected profoundly in this break-neck chase, confirming their lasting ability to rewrite the cosmos on any given night. The electrifying piece ended naturally, descending into a slow groove drenched in ambient effect and harmonies, that soon morphed into the molasses of the long-awaited, second “Ghost” of tour.

6.27.10 (G.Lucas)

Within the composed breaks, Trey, congruently and comically, continued the set’s theme, fitting the lyrical quote “I Saw It Again” within the rhythm of other songs. Launching into the jam with multi-note runs over a deep pocket, Trey soon turned to the whale in some incredibly tasteful use of the summer tone. As the band  built a mountain of momentum, Red alternated tones, as the band wound up in shredding peak. With energy sky-high, Trey unleashed passionate leads over the driving foundation, carrying out the musical intensity. And in the surprise of the set, without letting on, Phish had built “Ghost” into The Rolling Stones’ classic “Jumping Jack Flash,” and all Trey did was step to the mic and begin to sing,  in as a segue that was as seamless as possible.

The band’s take on the Stones’ kept the set moving at a relentless pace, while providing a dark cover to go with an already menacing frame of music. Jamming off the song’s ending, Phish entered a distinct groove and began chanting ” I Saw It Again!”, returning to the song that started this tenacious summer marathon. Peaking the suite with a final gasp of guitar fury, the band calmly dripped into”Contact,” a piece inserted perfectly in its traditional post-psychedelia slot in the setlist. Gordon’s metaphorical, auto-comedy  also featured lyrical teases of “Saw It Again,” setting up a set-closer that could only be “You Enjoy Myself.”

"YEM" 6.27.10 (G.Lucas)

Punctuating a night that touched the very essence of Phish, the band’s seminal opus presented the clear choice to end the night. And just as “Contact” ended, Trey counted off into “YEM.” As the band moved through the composed half with pristine playing, by the time “the note” hit, Phish had Merriweather on the verge of explosion. Jumping over the cliff and landing in the awaiting ocean of funk, Trey substituted his scream of “Boy!” with “I Saw It Again!”, threading the comedy through the entire second half. Then, as the band vamped over the “Wassha Uffizi” section, Trey stepped to the mic in one of the frozen, micro-moments of tour and sang, “Boy, man! I saw it agaaain!” Bringing an ear-to-ear grin to himself and every last person in the crowd,Trey’s last lyrical nod pumped  the show full of the type of energy only a set like this can; and the band and the crowd bounced upon the tramps together, preparing for the upcoming incineration. As Trey and Mike hit stage, the band inserted a crafty quote of “Jumping Jack Flash” into the onset of their infectious groove. Capping the night with a celebratory dance session, Phish moved from sparse funk into a rolling musical snowball, gathering force through a succinct, yet powerful, version. And they tactfully closed the jam with the same “Jumping Jack Flash” quote with which they had started, ending an evening that was soaked in spirit of Phish.

6.27.10 (G.Lucas)

Weaving their clever brand of humor into a non-stop set of scintillating improv, the band threw down their strongest musical statement of the early-summer within the cozy confines of Merriweather Post. Leaving the woods of Columbia that night, five shows remained after Phish had redefined their summer tour over the past four. Interestingly enough, however, the final stretch never reached the level of Merriweather, as the band favored straight-forward, rocking affairs. Highlights certainly bubbled throughout the South, but never a set like the one the band unleashed on the Sunday of tour’s most eventful run. Combining all aspects of the Phish experience into a ceaseless adventure, June 27  – set II stands alone as the shining star of tour.

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Jam of the Day:

Piper” 6.27.10 II

The centerpiece of tour’s most exciting set.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/07/ph2010-06-27t16.mp3]

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DOWNLOAD OF THE DAY:

6.27.2010 Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, MD < Torrent

6.27. 2010 Merriweather Post Pavilion, Columbia, MD < Megaupload

Official Merriweather Poster

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

*w/ “Saw It Again” lyrical teases

**Debut, The Rolling Stones

Source: Schoeps mk4v > KC5 > M222 > NT222 > Aeta PSP-3 > SD 722 (@24bit/96kHz)

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759 Responses to “Boy. Man. I Saw It Again.”

  1. Mr. Completely Says:

    well, except Stupendous who hasn’t heard the last 4!

    wait, did you move or are you visting.

    CO > FL

    IMO

  2. Stupendous Says:

    Corey
    thanks for the tips!
    I believe robear is in cali…
    I’m here because I broke up with
    my girl and that changes my living
    situation… Staying with a good friend
    in Longmont outside of boulder for now.
    Been here for 2 days… Loving it!
    Crossing Kansas was brutal…
    Drove from st Louis to Colorado
    on one day…. 12 hours in the car…
    Ugh

  3. Robear Says:

    maybe trey’s listening for the secret, searching for the sound,

    i’ll try not to be the preacher or the baying of his hounds.

    is there a show tonight? 🙂

  4. treark Says:

    Evening all. This may be a strange place and subject for a first post, but I’ve been lurking for a while and absolutely love this community and the discussions that get sparked here.

    To address the immediate availability of the shows (and pretty much everything else you could ever want to know about the band): I absolutely love the access and being able to listen to pretty much anything our guys have ever played on demand.

    However, when I was 15, and the internet was new, being a fan on the west coast was akin to being an archaeologist studying some strange new culture. I vividly remember seeing Budnick’s phishing manual for the first time and absolutely losing my mind over it. That book was my holy grail for a couple of years, I still have its poor battered, separated remains. I remember finding the fourth edition of the pharmer’s almanac in some head shop I was visiting in St. Louis and again, just going apeshit.

    Older heads at shows would pass down bits of information to us uninitiated folk, and it was like having access to ancient secret scrolls or something. I have often wondered what my relationship to the band and their music would be if I would not have had to hunt so hard in my formative years for every tiny scrap of knowledge. I can’t say for sure, but a lot of that air of mystery would not have existed for me, and that was certainly a large part of the attraction to these guys.

    Anyway, sorry for such a rambling first post, cheers everyone, hope you all have a good evening.

  5. Stupendous Says:

    The plan is to find job and place to live
    in boulder area within 6 months or so…
    Well see…
    Dying to find some good bane 😉

  6. Mr. Completely Says:

    “Crossing Kansas was brutal…
    Drove from st Louis to Colorado
    on one day…. 12 hours in the car…”

    been there my man

    sucks big sweaty donkey balls

    but you’re on the better side of it now

  7. Mr. Completely Says:

    jobs are always the tough part in a town like Boulder

    best of luck to you

    the green should come before long I bet

  8. Stupendous Says:

    I missed u guys!
    I’ll try and post/read more often now…
    C big floppy donkey dick and balls indeed…
    Had a good friend with me along for the ride.
    She was a trooper and we had a great time
    we did Orlando to atl to Nashville to
    st Louis to Colorado… Very nice trip

  9. Stupendous Says:

    Thanks C!

  10. Corey Says:

    ^Seeing those mountains rise up from the flat flat flat friggin landscape…
    Yeah, what Mr. C said, the better side is where you’re at. KS is tough. Hope you saw some beautiful sun flower fields though. Slight redeeming quality to that drive through the plains (sorry, all you plainsters out there)…

    Job=harder than bane out in CO, me thinks.

    D’oh, Mr. C’s got the trigger finger tonight…what he said.

    Sorry about the relationship woes. However, the freedom that comes with that sort of break is nearly unparallelled. Play the field, play the field…

  11. Stupendous Says:

    Word.
    I might have to end up moving to Denver
    not too worried about it right now…
    Playing it by ear. Boulder is full of beautiful
    women! Amen.

  12. halcyon Says:

    Stupendous….

    Welcome to CO!

    Lots going on out here all of the time! Westword, The Onion, and Boulder Weekly are your friends! Bane is plentiful if you find the right peeps! Soak in the mtns and scenery. They do a soul good! Music scene is great, plus there are plenty of musicians in your neck of the woods.

    Check out Mtn Sun and Southern Sun!

    Re: Job Search Times are tough everywhere. I would suggest spreading wings and searching from Denver to Ft Collins. Vestas wind systems (largest wind power manufacturer in the world) is hiring.

  13. Stupendous Says:

    Halcy!!!
    My brother from a different mother!
    Forgot u were here!!!!
    I’m a graphic designer, so I’m hoping to
    start networking and doing freelance.
    Super exited about the music scene!
    Already there’s a show at the fox on Saturday
    that I want to go see… Juana Molina
    have been into her for a while now…
    Thanks for the warm welcome!
    You all are beautiful people, happy to
    be back!

  14. halcyon Says:

    Yeah Stup….

    You will do alright out here. Colorado is good livin. Good people out here. Great weather, music, outdoors, food, beer, etc etc. We will have to get together some point down the line.

  15. Stupendous Says:

    For sure halcy
    really wanted to meet at the gorge,
    but it didn’t happen. Are u in Denver?

  16. halcyon Says:

    I am in the mtns….about 2.5 – 3 from you. Right in between Vail and Glenwood Springs. We are in Denver enough. We have a membership at the Museum of Contemporary Art, and are always heading down that way for one reason or another, especially to hit up the asian supermarkets when we cook Thai Food.

    Out for now, but welcome!

  17. PBS Says:

    Spun the Blossom BDTNL for a serious listen. From 10′ mark on, I the most original piece of music from the tour to these ears.

    At one point, I felt my subconscious overlaying the lyrics to No Quarter…not a quote or a tease, just an ominous feeling overwhelmed me amidst the murk…and out came the words…

    Close the doors, put out the light
    You know they won’t be home tonight
    The snow falls hard and don’t you know
    The winds of Thor are blowing cold…

    What a tour. Night all.

  18. BrandonKayda Says:

    Anybody up?

  19. Prince Nabby Says:

    Good Evening All!

    @ Mr C — I have a quick question for you. I’m trying to import for the first disc of your funk mix, What it Is, into iTunes, and it recognizes each track as a separate album. Is there some simple way of making them all part of one album so I don’t clutter up iTunes or my iPod? Sorry if this is a dumb question, but I’m about to take an 18 hour flight, and I want to make sure I have all my mp3 ducks in a row. Thanks!

    PS: Seriously awesome collection, too! Muchos gracias!

  20. voidboy Says:

    Still just lurking in the shadows these days… work is brutal. Can’t find the time these days… except now of course. Hope the BBer’s been having a blast…

  21. BrandonKayda Says:

    Hey Void!

    What’s up man?

  22. BrandonKayda Says:

    @Prince Nabby

    Highlight all of the tunes on the playlist/compilation
    Right click
    Hit “Get info”
    Go to the “Album” slot and type in “What It Is” or whatever you want the album to be called

  23. voidboy Says:

    Hey BK! What is happening… you still there?

  24. voidboy Says:

    Spinning a little “Gin” from 7/3 right now… I love this stuff.

    How were your shows? You caught some sweet dates right then. Everything started to heat up. Espescially the second night, no?

  25. BrandonKayda Says:

    Hey Void!

    I’ve been doing good – played some music with a friend today I haven’t seen in awhile. It was pretty fun. Other than that haven’t been doing much at all since I got back from Ohio last Wednesday.

    Yourself?

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