The Jungles In My Mind

8.14.2010 - Alpine Valley (Michael Stein)

One week after peaking The Greek stand with a finale built upon a monumental “Light,” Phish found themselves in Alpine Valley, ready to build off two-solid efforts in Deer Creek. After imploding Berkeley with jams of all shapes and sizes, the band’s innovation continued through Telluride’s “Piper” and “Carini” and several pieces, specifically “Drowned” and “Light,” in the cornfields of Noblesville. But as Phish prepared to step onto their biggest stage of summer, the second improvisational peak of Leg Two lurked right around the corner. A blistering opening half set the table for a break-neck psychedelic roller coaster ride of “Down With Disease > What’s The Use?” An illustration of Phish’s willingness to push forth to find that magic moment, this jam awakened the band’s musical patience and brilliance while careening into the future.

8.14.10 (M.Stein)

When Phish pulled into their classic Wisconsin shed, Trey had grown fully accustomed to his new Ocedoc and unleashed it ferociously. Completely in the zone for the entire evening, Alpine’s opener brought one of Trey’s most dazzling evenings of the entire summer. Coupled with morphing bass-leads from Gordon and a whole-band precision, Phish had primed Alpine Valley for a mind-melting escapade. Uncharacteristically dropping “The Sloth” to open set two, a dark vibe immediately encompassed the show. And when the beginning rumblings of “Disease” started, one knew things were about to get bonkers in dairy land.

Tearing into the song’s composed jam, Trey sped off like a hyena on tornado juice, shredding leads from the get-go in a spectacle of six-string acrobatics. Playing powerful and flowing lead melodies, Trey caught fire at the onset of this piece and his playing flew off the charts throughout this futuristic excursion. The entire band annihilated the straight-forward “Disease” textures at a torrid pace. Showcasing the Ocedoc’s unmatchable tone, Trey darted through creative patterns with mind-numbing speed and dexterity. Through this entire opening segment, Mike sat in the background as part of the three-way support for Red’s scorching solo, but it was when Gordon emerged from this role, weaving his lines around Trey’s offerings and bringing original ideas into the mix, that the jam really gained liftoff.

8.14.10 (M.Stein)

Following the blistering opening, the band took a musical step sideways into a rock pattern that retained roots in “Disease,” but simultaneously drifted from the song’s structure. Mike comped Trey’s lines with eclectic rhythms as Page infused the music with dirty clav hits. After Trey peaked his high-octane shred-fest, Phish began to darken the piece without losing their fire hose intensity. Trey began slicing the air with snarling rhythm licks while Mike’s creativity blossomed into the foreground. This is the first of several junctures that Mike pushes this “Disease” jam further into the unknown, eventually resulting in an effortless and filthy segue into “What’s The Use?” In each instance, the entire band hopped on Mike’s new direction, this time molding their musical play-doh into spacier realms.

The band momentarily deconstructed the piece before Trey built it back up with quick rhythm chops, bringing the band into a less ordinary percussive sequence. Mike delivered a slower bass line amidst this ridiculously tight section, again subtly prodding the band into riskier territory. Fishman gradually merged with Mike’s concept, slowing the rhythmic pace while never losing his sense of urgency. As the tempo waned, the resulting music grew quite abstract as all four members poured their phrases into an inter-stellar sonic brew. Trey and Mike continued pushing the music outward while the jam retained its whole-band cohesion. Entering a section of harrowing psychedelia, Trey shone brightly while sprouting cosmic melodies amidst this sinister milieu.

8.14.10 (M.Stein)

Mike made another noticeable change, offering a distorted pattern that would slowly lead the band towards a fluid groove, and eventually into their to-die-for transition. As Phish built a menacing wall of sound and effect, Trey speckled the landscape with heart-tugging leads while the band settled into a transcendent passage of ambient groove. Stretching this portion of sorcery, the band drifted into one of the most indelible and emotional sequences of the summer. Realizing where their music had reached, Trey magnificently wove a lick of “What’s The Use?” into the jam and the entire band was already there. Without any change of beat or musical alteration, Phish achieved the most marvelous musical arrival of tour, leaving the audience in total awe.

8.14.10 (M.Stein)

Flowing naturally and sculpting a larger-than-life soundscape, Phish brought a cathartic resolution to their extraordinary journey. “What’s the Use?” dripped, note by note, over the massive audience: a seething, psychedelic fable. Stemming from one of the band’s hallowed vehicles, this jam immediately sat side by side The Greek’s multi-thematic “Light” as the improvisational zeniths of tour. And the most fascinating part about these two jams is their vastly divergent paths, illustrating Phish’s ability to crush many types of music once again. No longer a one-trick pony that galloped from rock to percussive grooves to ambient outros a la ’09, Phish took the the standout jams of Leg Two in totally unique directions, foreshadowing a thrilling fall tour.


Jam of the Day:

Disease > What’s The Use?” 8.14.10 II

You’ve read about it; now you can listen one of Phish’s peak moments of August.



Thank You, Readers!

Yesterday Hidden Track posted detailed survey results of all things related to Phish’s Summer Tour, and Phish Thoughts was voted the “Must Read Tour Blog!” I just wanted to take a moment to thank each and every reader that tunes in while on tour and/or off tour, contributes to the ongoing conversation in the comments section, or simply grabs a download. Phish Thoughts has transformed into a vibrant community that far exceeds anything I ever imagined. So, “Cheers!” This place is as much about you folks as anyone, and here’s to a ridiculous fall. See you on the road!

(Chart excerpted from Hidden Track)



8.14.2010 Alpine Valley, East Troy, WI < Torrent

8.14.2010 Alpine Valley, East Troy, WI < Megaupload

Official Alpine Valley Poster

Here is Alpine Valley’s phenomenal two-set showcase from the stand’s opening night. Phish opened the second set with one of their defining open jams of summer in “Disease > What’s The Use?,” and followed up a mid-set “Mule” with a ferocious “Mike’s Dirty Sally Groove.” A relentless first set is highlighted by a gorgeous “Reba,” a semi-rare “Taste,” and the fiercest “Antelope” of Summer 2010.

I: Tube, The Oh Kee Pa Ceremony > Suzy Greenberg, Funky Bitch, Reba, Fuck Your Face, Alaska, Back on the Train, Taste, When the Circus Comes, Lawn Boy, Sparkle, Gumbo, Run Like an Antelope

II: The Sloth, Down with Disease > What’s the Use? >   Scent of a Mule, Mike’s Song > Dirt > Sneakin’ Sally through the Alley > Weekapaug Groove, Bug

E: Quinn the Eskimo

Source: Schoeps mk4v > CMR > Naiant PFA > Sonosax SX-M2 > SD 722

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1,028 Responses to “The Jungles In My Mind”

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  1. Foul_Domain Says:

    Great read, Miner. I had made some loose plans to be at Alpine, but work thwarted me. I was really kicking myself after listening back to that show – especially dwd->wtu. That segue is Phish at its best.

    Also…I loved hearing the Miami wtu, but I much prefer it as a landing pad out heavy psychedelia.

    Light->wtu or Tweezer->wtu would work brilliantly IMO

  2. Mr.Miner Says:

    but I much prefer it as a landing pad out heavy psychedelia.

    ^exactly (check 9.11.00 piper > wtu)

  3. Foul_Domain Says:


    I think I’ll talke you up on that, Miner. Pulling it from your archive now. I dont think Ive ever listened to this show!

    Geez. I had planned on getting a nice early start to my day….

    So much for that idea!

  4. hoedown Says:

    That’s some illustrative stuff! Great review. I remember the Red Rocks Crosseyed being pretty slick but this just blows that away.

  5. Foul_Domain Says:

    This 9.11.00 ‘Piper’ is fucking my face

  6. Foul_Domain Says:

    so sick! What a great way to start off the day. A lot af patience and space in that music.

    Thank you Mr. Miner!

    Now its time to get shit done and Im late (…and I thank you again, Miner, for that!!)

    Hope everybody has a fantastic day!

  7. hoedown Says:

    ^Is that the Road Runner opener show? I just realized I was there and its slowly coming back to me…

  8. willowed Says:

    Miner’s #1, Miner’s # 1 yeah rah rah, Miner’s #1
    Congrats brother. Well deserved.

    Even though I think Greek Simple is better than Greek Light and DWD>Use.

  9. projmersch Says:

    Congrats Miner!

    And thanks for the music today. It was one of the most amazing pieces of improv I have seen the band play over the years. I was at the Road Runner show and just didn’t appreciate WTU at that time. This one just arrived perfectly and blew my mind.

    Thanks again!

  10. Jtran Says:

    Nice write-up Miner. This grows on me with each listen.

  11. P.S.H.S. Says:

    Sweet Time! Thank you mr miner! I can’t wait to spin this whole show. Is
    9-11-00 great woods? That show was nasty!

  12. willowed Says:

    Yes PSHS…That was the mansfield show.
    I was lucky enough to be 8th row Page side for this one. R.I. kid so this was my home turf venue. I remember like it was yesterday. When they came out with Roadruner (I had no idea what this song was) me and my buddy Chuck looked at eachother and said…Hold on tight, this one’s going to be a doozey. If I recall this show had a 4 or 5 song second set with a nice Twist??? I could be wrong.
    Phish needs to get back to crushing this venue. I feel the GW shows in 3.0 have been a little flat. I know some will disagree.

  13. Gavinsdad Says:

    “a hyena on tornado juice”

    -nice one Miner. This one gets another listen on the ride to work.

  14. angryjoggerz Says:

    Cheers to you, Miner! Thanks for the hard work.

  15. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    that was the line that grabbed me too. I have no concept of what that actually looks like, but the imagery works for me anyway 😯

    another flowing, evocative piece here, Miner. good stuff. thanks for doing it every day!

    which reminds me…

    Instead of just voicing our thanks we should be donating to the site to keep this thing going, y’all. so go up there on the front page and click donate, people!

  16. willowed Says:

    I agree with TIII
    It’s the 31st so I am sure most of us got paid today. Make a little donation to keep this rolling. I know with all the downloads he posts there has got to be an investment from Miner.
    Let’s help out.

  17. tela'smuff Says:

    Congrats Miner! You deserve it.

    I finally accept the reason i’m being snobby on giving AV1 the same props you are is because i was a dick and didn’t go this year because I was too big a vagina to make the drive after Telly>DC. That’s what I get.

    is ther anybody from the midwest considering the Charleston run that might need a travel companion? thinking of making the drive from Cincy, but the wife isn’t down.

  18. albert walker Says:

    YWhat a night

    When on tour you get locked in to the energy of the band. You can tell by their body language and the crispness of the playing as soon as the show begins. Not a subject thing at all. Like playing a sport sometimes the boys are all in a zone clicking together and you can just feel it. This was one of those nights.

    Scorched reba. Funky full band BOTT that is tasty as fuck. One of the best Trey leads since they’ve been back in the Taste and an explosive peak new school Antelope proved the silly antics, bustouts, and covers were taking a backseat to old school ripping Trey led improv.

    One of if not the best 3.0 2 set performance. The boys were on fire.

    Great write up miner
    Need to drop you some more $$ too
    Have a good one

  19. Mdawg Says:

    Mr. Miner you have done it again!!!

    “Trey sped off like a hyena on tornado juice”


  20. Themanatee Says:

    The in depth jam analysis is a super strong point of your writing miner. Really interesting to “hear” the communication of the band members through your words . You are man ing up to Zappas assertion that writing about music is like dAncing about Architecture . Score one for the music journalists .

  21. El Duderino Says:


  22. KWL Says:

    congratulations miner, and thanks for all you do

    another stellar write up

  23. fat bastard Says:

    nicw write up man. i was dead center and i heard whats the use? coming down the tracks like a freight train. my tank was running on empty after that segment…i was grounded during all of mikes song>dirt.

  24. Kurt Says:

    Ive been toying with the SC idea for a few days, id be driving from indy, still gotta talk to some buddies to figure out which weekend well try it hit, right now its either AC or SC, so ill keep you in the know the more i find out the next day or two, before the 3rd.

    Sweet post miner, loved that show, kept looking around during dwd>wtu to see if everyone else was as astounded as i was, killer

  25. b-rock Says:

    Thanks for the write-up Miner. I was not at the show so I knew what was coming from the setlist, but I was still marveling at the arrival in WTU when I listened to it. Silky smooth.

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