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”

  1. Mitch Says:

    Can I suggest g-tech? It’s what I use. USB, FireWire 800 and esata so you’re ready for all comps.

    It’s Mac ready but it you know how, getting any drive to work on a Mac takes literally a minute and a half… If that.

  2. Mitch Says:

    And if we sidebar this to email I can talk discounts.

  3. gavinsdad Says:

    @chef brad: thanks for the Tweez data from a couple pages back…in and out here tonite. i also do analog…but never ever check my phish companion tho it’s been on my bookshelf for years!

  4. Mr.Palmer Says:

    Day-um. the 12.3.99 Sand is a badass mofo !! Thanks for sharing Miner and Sumo. ’99 was a dope and under rated year. Shit was poppin…

  5. Mr.Palmer Says:

    12.13 ^^^

  6. ChefBradford Says:

    Gavins, happy to throw out some morsels, I hope they help. I don’t refer to it much these days, but before I stumbled upon this site two years ago, the Companion was my primary go-to guide for choice jams and shows. I don’t have nearly as much live-show experience as a lot of the fine people here, but I try to keep up. I think the jam Dancing mentioned was the 4/21/92. I love that jam, beautiful and almost atonal, but still within the box

    good hunting, sir

  7. ChefBradford Says:

    Speaking of Tweezer, Sand, and December 99, the 12/16/99 Tweezer that popped up in the same set as an aforementioned Sand is glorious and life-affirming

  8. ChefBradford Says:

    and regarding my comment that the Companion was my go-to guide:

    Not only have I not been to many shows, I have never known many big Phish fans, having lived in a couple of parts of the country that have never nurtured the scene. So I’m mostly, um, self-taught. I think I’m sort of an anomaly, really

    happily so

  9. Frycanthropist Says:

    in the same boat @Chef

  10. ChefBradford Says:

    I feel ya, my friend

  11. gavinsdad Says:

    this place is certainly enriching in more ways than one. i just keep taking notes and try to get my listens in. access is exponentially better than years back so i’m ravenously playing catch up…currently rocking mp3s of camden ’10 C&P over one shitty computer speaker…still sounds freaking sick.

  12. gavinsdad Says:

    and i don’t care what you guys say…the Camden Nothing was nice.

  13. William H. Bonney Says:

    two computer speakers here GD, till …. stereo repairs commence sounds ok…better than ipod nano speaker 🙂 my other go device right now

  14. William H. Bonney Says:

    nothing = great song to me

  15. Mitch Says:

    i might like the camden nothing on playback but i was NOT feeling it when it cock blocked that crosseyed

  16. Mr.Palmer Says:

    Nothing is cool.

    Gdad- got the PNC Gin from ’00 going. Dance party gin.

  17. voopa Says:

    gdad speaks the truth, yet again.

  18. voopa Says:

    but why speak anything else, right?

  19. garretc Says:

    Hey Mitch, I have the same problem on my iphone that you were describing earlier. Good to see the two-finger fix, I’ll have to give that a try!

    Just got back from my first class of relaxing yoga (fulfills a PE credit!), and all I need to do to be happy is sit on my bed and breathe… Not too shabby!

  20. Mr.Palmer Says:

    Man, i forgot how great that Gin was. 6.28.00. Do yourselves a favor and put this in the queue.

  21. Mitch Says:

    doesnt really fix it garret. still dont know where the submit button is.

    that bitches aint shit video from earlier is awesome. i’d LOVE to see what dre has to say about that.

  22. Mr.Palmer Says:

    I’ve had that issue too, mitch re:iphone

  23. gavinsdad Says:

    fishman is really appropriate for singing C&P…it’s uncanny.

    this right speaker just crapped out tonite…@Mitch….we have an imac…under a year old…oh yeah, you saw it…you recommend anything speakers-wise (i don’t think i’m stepping up to a sub…i’m just not in here -bridget’s office- enough)?

    @palmer – i think, if we talk about it enough, both ’99 and ’00 PNCs will become the stuff of legends. both those ’00 shows were absolutely silly…i know i front on Meatstick but that 2nd set 2nd nite (6/29) they were making it rain music on us.

  24. gavinsdad Says:

    switched over to that PNC ’00 Gin @Palmer…thx.

  25. Frycanthropist Says:

    nice to see the double aughts getting pimped today.

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