So I just got to Telluride – what a freaking paradise! Following another outstanding Phish show, containing the most transcendental jam we’ve heard since the day Phish stepped back onto the stage – and a smooth day of travel – the arrival in this mountain town could not feel more magical. Phish opened the western week of their tour with the most eventful and creative three-night run of this era; shows flooded with relaxed musical exploration excursions. Exercising a collaborative patience that we’ve been waiting for in their jamming, Phish blew up the Bay Area with a third night of mystical music on Saturday night.
Concluding the stand with a night focused far more on psychedelia than the previous night’s top-notch offering, Phish used their intricate communication to craft a deep trek into the band’s rejuvenated soul. Plain and simple, “Light” blossomed into the most impressive exploration we’ve seen since the band stepped back on stage in 2009. With a stunning journey into the heart of the unknown, the band proved their intention, beyond a shadow of a doubt, to confront new musical frontiers on a nightly basis. In nothing short of a revelation, Phish sculpted the jam of 2010; a cohesive and directed escapade into the source of it all. Playing a piece so spiritual that it truly needs no qualification of era, the communication between the entire band during this jam was simply astounding. And the way that Mike and Trey responded to each other throughout brought a new level of modern mastery. Phish transformed into cosmic juggernauts in front of our eyes, donning their Jedi robes and summoning the force like never before in this era. Bottom line – the progression continued with an improvisational showcase that immediately set a new bar for the band.
One-upping themselves for three consecutive nights, Phish provided completely different vibes during the final two shows of the stand, but jamming their way throughout. As the band emerged from their newest epic, leaving the crowd floored, they oozed into “Twenty Years Later.” Resolving the extended darkness, the band rolled into a most spectacular “Harry Hood.” Applying their patient playing to the ethereal piece, Phish resulted with an emotive classic that stood as majestic resolution to the musical depths they had reached.
At this point, the second stanza already had proved its worth in full, but the action was hardly over. A gorgeous “Theme” left the crowd in a summer bliss before getting a shot of adrenaline with a late-set “2001.” The crystalline space-grooves wove through the packed amphitheatre as Phish continued to crush the beautifully flowing set. Releasing into a boisterous “Suzie” jam, the band felt the excessive flow of the collective experience, and restarted the funk after the song’s conclusion. Raging The Greek with contagious energy, Phish orchestrated their crowd like personal marionettes. Concluding Berkeley’s final show with “Slave” – fitting the intricate playing of the set perfectly – the band exclaimed their virtuosity with a superior rendition that signified the triumph of an amazing three-night return to the west coast.
The first set, though not as high-fueled as the previous night’s, contained a phenomenal “Reba” that immediately jumped into the upper-echelon, if not the top, of all of 3.0 versions. In addition to smoking daytime “Jibboo,” “46 Days > Tube” brought the weight to the set’s second half. I’d go into more detail about the first set, but I’m fading right now and need to call it a night. In short, things have transformed once again over the course of The Greek, boding quite well for the next two nights in the heart of the Rockies. This is gonna’ be special.
I: AC/DC Bag , Foam, Gotta Jibboo, Reba, Sleep Again, Army of One, Poor Heart, 46 Days > Tube, Character Zero
II: Wilson > Light > Twenty Years Later, Harry Hood, Theme From the Bottom, Also Sprach Zarathustra > Suzy Greenberg, Slave to the Traffic Light
E: The Lizards, First Tube
Note: Telluride is on the verge of explosion with the quaint mountain town about to transform into an over-sizeed Phish playland. Due to the 24-hour nature of this event, I’m taking the next two nights off, and will write about Telluride after its over…until then….the “Light” continues growing brighter by the day.Tags: 2010, Summer '10