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. Stupendous a.k.a The Beasel Says:

    velvet cheese has transcended into well that, cheese imo
    had similar views on b&r but i let it slide…

  2. ChefBradford Says:

    Velvet Sea live is one thing, but its studio incarnation is a whole ‘nother beast; and I had a fantastic psychedelic experience with the song the first time I really dropped L. Culmination of the album and all, but…damn, still, 11 years later, a peak psych experience

    also, great lyrics and a fantastic guitar solo


  3. Stupendous a.k.a The Beasel Says:

    i guess if were talking peak versions of all time they can be there…

    -Billy Breathes
    -If I could
    -Dog Faced Boy
    -Anything But Me
    -Mountains in the Mist
    -Strange Design
    -Brian & Robert
    -Summer of 89
    -Army of One
    -Swept Away
    -Train Song
    -Let Me Lie
    -Secret Smile
    -Velvet Sea

  4. Mitch Says:

    cool thinking about all this going down in that sweaty gym we blew up last fall. coming full circle. you could say that place was hell in a bucket it was so hot in there. -7 > ghost…

  5. Frankie Says:

    I would rather sail the seas of cheese than wade in the velvet sea…

  6. Frycanthropist Says:

    drowning in an hourglass as we speak.

  7. Stupendous a.k.a The Beasel Says:

    can we add page’s “rules I don’t know” & “final flight” to that list or does that throw us into something else?

  8. thedayman Says:

    long time lurker scant poster, great site, great community of phans here, just wanted to say
    @ frankie this new thom yorke material is so good man, big radiohead fan, and hadnt heard any of it, thanks for pointin it out

  9. Frycanthropist Says:

    hello @dayman

    hope you grabbed some of the Radiohead that I dropped in my mediafire.

    Thinkin about putting the Bonaroo show up next.

  10. Mitch Says:

    poured myself a small taste frankie.


  11. Mitch Says:

    that bonnaroo radio was quite the experience for my friends and i. some of them “took too much” i wound up listening to a lot of it from the campsite. no matter the sound was still great and i had a blast. but the crowd was overwhelming.

  12. Mitch Says:


    who said 90s dead wasnt good? i’m loving this shit.

    gdad, were you at that show?

  13. Frankie Says:

    Welcome dayman!
    Fighter of the nightman!

    Glad you’re enjoying the new songs…

  14. vegas wolfmans Says:

    I’m down with Thunderhead, but have genuine animosity towards Secret Smile, Two Versions of Me, and Mexi Cousin (not sure if that one counts). Horse>Silent is a polarizing one that I really dig- unless Trey pulls out of an unfinished jam to drop into it without the rest of the band (a al Hartford from this summer). Then…I don’t like it as much. 8)

  15. Frycanthropist Says:

    tell me about it.. Lost my buddy and my wife after leaving the grounds to pop over to MMW, by the time I got back for Radiohead (Beck was still playing), the crowd had already gathered so much, that I was unable to navigate my way back to where we were.

    I also was very imbibed.

    Ending up watching the whole show by myself surrounded by strangers, trippin face. But I could feel my crew out there grinnin to and jaw dropping to the same incredibly deep moments that abounded that show.

  16. Frankie Says:

    Cheers! *raises glass high*

  17. thedayman Says:

    thanks guys, @ fry the bonnaroo radiohead?? that show is incredible man, thom yorke has said that that is his favorite radiohead show ever, the whole thing is on youtube actually, i watched it last year during my frequent downtime as a college senior haha

  18. Frycanthropist Says:

    man I just love that laser tone that starts around the 13-14 min mark of that Sand.

    The Cypress one just nails that to full effect IMO

  19. Frycanthropist Says:

    uploading now…

    although it is a lot of files. I really should have zipped them.

    I will do it after.

  20. vegas wolfmans Says:

    dayman- welcome

    mango- missed the hd rec. forgot you were in the biz. could have tracked you down on the almighty facebook. will read back.

    I’m down with Radiohead- in smallish doses. Couldn’t do it all the time. Think OK Computer is a masterpiece.

    I secretly love Velvet Sea- there I said it.

  21. Frycanthropist Says:


    even I go in waves my friend.

    it can be a bit dreary at times, no doubt.

  22. Mr. Completely Says:

    we had a version of that ballads playlist burned to CD as a lullaby disk. when the boy was young it took him awhile to fall asleep and peaceful music helped. listened to that thing who knows how many times, probably a hundred or more at least

  23. ChefBradford Says:

    ^cuz Velvet Sea is a good song (@vegaswolf)

    people confuse poor placement of a ballad in a live set with a tag as an awful song

    just because a song doesn’t necessarily translate well to the live stage, or isn’t used effectively in a live setting, doesn’t mean it’s a fucking awful song

  24. Mitch Says:

    im friends with people from here on facebook and have no idea what their handle is. only way i know they are from here is that i grouped them when adding them. no matter, dont use fb for much. still funny to me that i still call people by their handle.

  25. Tzara's Ghost Says:

    NW BB meeting adjourned. Bandito, summer98 non-wook status confirmed. We have the seeds for a great BB scene here, just need a few more lurkers to join up ( I’m looking at you, bro) and, let’s see what else? Oh yeah, some damn Phish dates!

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