The Sound of the Storm

8.9.10 - Telluride, CO (Wendy Rogell)

Though “Piper” has been one of Phish’s central jam vehicles since their return with several stellar versions, the excursions that stem from the song don’t always ooze cohesion. Often likening a sawed-off shotgun spraying musical shrapnel in many directions at once, “Piper” jams usually click or meander, with little middle ground. Always representing a leap into uncharted territory, “Piper’s” most successful recent renditions have carried an enhanced sense of direction. And this summer, while tucked in the mountains of Telluride, Phish took “Piper” for a high-speed chase through a space-aged vortex in the song’s  most impressive outing of the year.

8.9.10 (W.Rogell)

Launching from the lyrical refrain, Trey kicked things into warp-speed by unleashing seething leads while Mike stuck with him, matching his creativity step for step. In no time, Phish shot into space like a musical rocket breaking through the stratosphere with a trail of blazing textures. Connecting his leads into intricate melodies, Trey stepped out front with Page, who sprinted up and down the piano as if running suicides. Fishman kept crazy-quick tempos like a metronome on speed, forming angular, driving beats.

Shifting gears, the band flew smoothly into series of fast percussive grooves with Page killing lead organ patterns. Trey adjusted with sparser rhythmic stabs as Mike moved a mile a minute in a section of lead bass. The two guitarists locked in, speed-racing through a nearby galaxy in a cosmic chase that reached an absurd intensity. Trey broke into some snarling melodies while his band mates were super-glued in collaborative musical mayhem. Page and Trey played as if on fast-forward bringing another colossal peak to this zooming show-stopper.

8.9.10 (W.Rogell)

At this juncture, the band locked into a section of warp-speed annihilation where each member crushed IT harder than the next. Morphing into mind-bending landscapes that never lost cohesion, the four-headed beast transformed into a musical wrecking ball, demolishing anything in its path. This peak journey moved with complete fluidity into a second sequence of sparse rhythms as Fishman earned his paycheck behind the kit. Trey, Mike, and Page offered fiery melodies that combined into a psychotic brew so tight and directed it felt as though Phish knew exactly what notes to play before they started.

8.9.10 (W.Rogell)

Trey initiated a pattern that Page and Mike echoed during the final stages of this cosmic blast off. The band never tapped the brakes for a second, shooting full-speed into the outer realms of consciousness. As the band collectively reached a final peak, they calmed the music through an extended and appropriate ambient outro comprised of the residual sonic energy lingering in the air. Patiently passing through this futuristic cleanse, the band emerged with “Mountains in the Mist.” The perfectly-placed ballad gained a greater poignancy with the jagged peaks of the Rockies looming overhead. The reflective piece provided a much-needed cool down from the intense voyage that had just concluded.

Over this week, we have looked at five peak jams from Leg Two which all differ in musical direction: The Greek “Light,” Alpine’s “Disease > What’s the Use?,” Jones Beach’s “Number Line,” The Greek “Simple,” and Telluride’s “Piper.” All of these are top-shelf pieces of improvisation, and their stylistic diversity speaks volumes on Phish’s renewed ability – and willingness – to explore any musical fabric. When the band took risks throughout August, more often than not, they met with astounding success – a factor that the band surely all noticed whether they talked about their shows or not. And these are but five pieces of music among the many experimental jams that dotted Phish’s brief, yet most significant tour of this era. With individual proficiency and musical communication no longer an issue, come fall, as Dr. Seuss once wrote, “Oh the places [they]’ll go!”


Jam and Video of the Day:

Piper > Mist” 8.9.10 II

The improvisational high point of Phish’s time in Telluride.




8.18.2010 Jones Beach, Wantagh, NY < Torrent

8.18.2010 Jones Beach, Wantagh, NY < Megaupload

Jones Beach 2010 (M. Ladd)

Here is Summer 2010’s finale at Jones Beach, ending a two-pronged attack that saw the band progress by leaps and bounds. Featuring a non-stop second set with top-level playing from start to finish, every major song of Phish’s last set is a highlight. The first half also had peaks in “Ocelot” and “Bathtub Gin.” All in all, a fitting end to a transformative summer tour for the Phish from Vermont.

I: Down with Disease, Sample in a Jar, Guelah Papyrus, Poor Heart, Ocelot, Chalk Dust Torture, Bathtub Gin, Tube, Destiny Unbound, Joy, Run Like an Antelope

II: Axilla, Timber Ho > Light > 46 Days > My Friend, My Friend, Harry Hood > Tweezer > The Horse > Silent in the Morning, You Enjoy Myself

E: Suzy Greenberg, Tweezer Reprise

Source: Schoeps MK41> KC5> CMC6> sonosax SX-M2> apogee Mini-me (24bit/96khz)

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1,227 Responses to “The Sound of the Storm”

  1. albert walker Says:

    My girl got hit for only 2 tix

    I’m am ex. I don’t think they show

  2. Mitch Says:

    “where i part ways with you and @aw is on the idea that 1-2 drops is not a “heavy spin”. i’ve learned these things affect people in such individual ways and for me there’s no such thing as a not-heavy LSD trip if it’s full dose of real LSD.”

    ^i think this has to do with experience. not only being able to handle the vibrations but also the more you do something, the more your pathways in your mind are used to it. kinda like saturation with bud. the more saturated you are with bud, the less high you get. well the more you do L, the more your mind is used to those pathways. it can also mean that if you get some bomb ass stuff you can go real deep real quick. thats also set and setting. i guess the moral is YMMV but with experience, all things become more familiar.

    tho i would like to see a scientific study on your mind over multiple trips to see how it reacts differently.

  3. Mitch Says:

    i seem to recall a rule of 2. whatever you did the first day, you wanna do twice as much to get there the 2nd day. i could be making this up. maybe my friends and i liked to eat more the 2nd day to push the boundaries. tho i’ve never gone so far that i was on another plane like some plants will do.

  4. albert walker Says:

    liquid these days are mic’d a little weaker

    1 drop ain’t no jesus christ from back in the day

    still clean but it takes a couple

  5. Tzara's Ghost Says:

    Got my mom up to about 6th row at Dylan so far. We got a couple clouds of ganj but whatever.

  6. Mitch Says:

    the prankster in me is tempted to blast porn at full volume to give the neighbors a run for their money. however, the apt next to me just got occupied this month by new tenants and i dont want to introduce myself under false pretense. dilemmas.

  7. Mitch Says:

    haha my luck ms mango would come home right then with full on porn. she’d hear it from outside our door and be like WTF?? and then walk in. 😯
    no baby, i’m just trying to keep up with the joneses. they woudlnt shut up all night.

    “riiiiiiight… is this what you always do when im gone?”

  8. Robear Says:

    peace out all.

    listened to the end of set 2 from Greek 3. Came home yesterday, girl was baking cookies and listening to the show. The ‘Suzy>Jam, Slave, Lizards, First Tube’ just fantastic. wow. seems like the band and crowd really had something going. Kind of melded during ‘Cities’ the night before and kept growing.

    Noticed Trey had a little something extra going, listening to the first set of AV1, like @ AW has been saying. Just readicculus soloing for ‘GBOTT’ and ‘Taste’. Set really takes off at ‘Reba’ and doesn’t end until a multi-peaked raging ‘Antelope’.

    Bouncin Fan is this summer’s winner in Phish tour roulette, takes home the jackpot, twice.

  9. Nagarjuna Says:

    @mitch – i agree there’s definitely an issue of physical tolerance rising with closely repeated use. i’ve experienced that. and there’s also the issue of “learning the ropes” as it were.

    but there’s also the issue of how much our brains/minds differ between individuals and the degree of basic sensitivity that varies in so many ways across individuals. that’s what i’m fascinated by.

    there are some folks who could never get used to tripping and just crack instantly and then there are cats who barely notice it, even on the first trip. i’ve always been amazed by the diversity.

    @aw – i guess the mic-age change might explain some of it too

    i’m out for the night yall.

    grok your dope selves BB

  10. Mitch Says:

    ok im going to bed. work in the AM and i’m the only one posting. i hand over my title of “robear’s tour guide” to AW. i caught 6/11 shows this past tour and guess which ones i left out. greek and alpine. i caught some def heat… but as discussed this past week, greek and alpine were the creme.

  11. voopa Says:


    I remember being at the WW tent w/you when Lizards started…”Is that Lizards?”…we both went off to the lawn to celebrate…

  12. Mitch Says:

    for sure nagarjuna. def been at shows where some of us were FLYING and the other dude was like “what? really? i got nothin” i blamed it on him being a cokehead. he’d been assaulting his mind for a few months whereas we’d been dosing and smoking. again, would be cool to do studies.

    can i go back to ken kesey times where i get paid to doodle and talk about my trips??

    night y’all.

  13. Tzara's Ghost Says:

    Word robear me and my mom have insinuated ourselves 25 ft from Dylan in lovely Yakima Washington.


  14. Tzara's Ghost Says:

    @robear I told her just walk backwards to the front and no one will stop you.

    Thanks for the tip BB rules!

  15. Mr.Miner Says:

    Couple four 😉

  16. Mr.Miner Says:

    2 on a fresh head should do you right

  17. Mitch Says:

    Hopefully you snagged the tough shows miner. What’d you put in for? Whole tour?

  18. sanchothehutt Says:

    miner, you’re a saint for real

    Much love, my west coast bro.

  19. sanchothehutt Says:

    friday nights here are so much fun

    first you have Willowed and CO on the east coast, and us Midwesterners craving to follow. Bt the end, the sober/drink dichotomy is something to behold.

  20. Lycanthropist Says:

    whoo! drunk and workin! yeeea haw!!

  21. albert walker Says:

    Drunken rasta here

    Once a month at most

    Crashing out

  22. Mr. Completely Says:

    tripping is subjective

    of course

    unique to each person

    very difficult to state any rules or guidelines which are universal

    it’s good to have friends but everyone has to figure it out for themselves

  23. gavinsdad Says:

    you guys are killing….just back home….9 page catchup…caught some clash of the titans….cookies, one stella artois, some bowlpacks…now here…this is a funny fuckin bunch. personally looking to lift off in AC one solid time. ready for that.

  24. gavinsdad Says:

    have fun…nite yall.

  25. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    drunk. sup guys

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