The Rebirth Of Carini

10.31.10 (Graham Lucas)

Every tour brings twists and developments to Phish’s catalog, often infusing new tunes into the mix and sometimes revamping old ones. But over the golden road of Fall 2010, no song went through a more holistic transformation than “Carini,” as Phish breathed new life into the crowd favorite.

2.17.97 - Amsterdam

Debuted in Europe ’97 as part of their winter progression towards groove, “Carini” rarely transformed into anything with improvisational significance over the years with a few notable exceptions. The song’s premiere in Amsterdam blossomed from slowed darkness into a sped up melodically-anchored experiment that eventually led into “Taste,” but after its European debut and a funked-out surprise encore at Madison Square Garden on 12.30.97, the song stayed firmly within its cage until December 28,1998. To jump start the New Year’s Run, Phish knocked down the doors of the second set with a menacing excursion that morphed into the song’s most significant exploration to date. Scouring the dark corners of the universe, Phish tore the roof off the elusive piece, combining it with “Wolfman’s” in a defining slice of MSG history. But ever since this ferocious plunge, “Carini” stagnated over the years. Always good for a crunching hard rock interlude, the band never built anything of note with the crowd favorite, giving it a simplistic role in setlists.

This pattern continued through the late ’90s, the post-hiatus years, and the beginning of this era (with Telluride’s extra-terrestrial ending as the sole aberration.) But when Phish broke out “Carini” in Broomfield – and then again in Providence and Atlantic City – the song’s paradigm changed forever.

10.31.10 (Graham Lucas)

In a complete 180 degree turn, Phish chose not to use “Carini” as path into darkness, instead transforming the song into a piece of sublime improvisation. No longer growling through evil jams, Trey elevated them with gorgeous leads that cut through heavy and unique full-band interplay. This uplifting direction, debuted in Broomfield, was expounded upon in Providence’s top-shelf version, and then abstracted upon in Atlantic City. All of fall’s “Carinis” deviated far from the song’s structure, transforming a one-dimensional piece into a full-blown portal to the divine. Within three unique and experimental excursions, Phish completely changed face of the game. “Carini” has now become an exploratory vehicle of the highest degree, and this has to be considered the single, most significant song evolution of Fall Tour.

Check out all three “Carinis” from fall with some context and a description of each.


10.12.10 II Broomfield, Colorado

10.12.10 - Broomfield (S.Short)

This three-night run set the tone for fall as each night built upon the last. As Phish came to their final set in Colorado, they broke out “Carini” to open things up. Trey comically changed the lyrics to “Carini had bubonic plague!” referencing the reported cases among Broomfield’s prairie dog population. But there was no comedy once the lyrics ended. Initially riding the traditional “Carini” jam, as the band settled into a more mellow groove, Trey spontaneously unleashed a sublime solo over the heavy backdrop. Reaching for spiritual heights, Trey took a melodic sprint over the full-band groove that evolved out of “Carini’s” foundation. Fish and Mike hooked up behind Trey’s lead as Page built a wall of sound to color the conversation. Throughout this segment, Trey continued his cathartic playing, fitting right into the rhythmic pocket. The band eventually slowed into an ambient curtain of sound which descended over the arena as if preparing for an alien arrival. And Phish smoothly slid into “Bowie.”



10.22.10 II Providence, Rhode Island

10.22.10 - Providence (J.Rizzo)

With tour in full swing, Phish hit The Dunk on a Friday night coming off their two-set escapade in Utica, New York. After a solid opening frame, Phish opened the second with, in my opinion, the jam sequence of tour -“Rock and Roll > Carini.” Fall’s second version of the morphing song came out of, perhaps, the tour’s most innovative psychedelic trek in “Rock and Roll.” And as the band segued into “Carini,” they carried big-time energy and momentum, and were primed to explode. Once the lyrics ended, Fishman immediately launched into a hard-edged beat while Trey spit guitar fury. Very quickly, however, Mike and Page made a harmonic shift beneath the two devilish players, coaxing Trey to join in with transcendent guitar work. Beginning with beautiful leads, a switch to a soulful rhythm pattern brought the band into a four-piece experiment. Before long, Phish reached one of the most uplifting segments of music of the entire tour, as the whole band collectively crushed a jam that took on a soul-tugging life of its own. Perhaps my favorite segment of music from Fall, this piece reached a far more emotive plane than Broomfield’s introduction. Migrating to a sparser realm that had nothing at all to do with the song, the entire band continued their locked and original patterns while Trey flowed in a melodic river of dreams. Page brought some slick compliments to the mix which moved the band into a rhythmic texture that served as an infectious come down from the mountaintop. Meanwhile Trey continued to play to the heavens over this groovy canvas in a sequence of to-die-for Phish.



10.29.10  II Atlantic City, New Jersey

10.31.10 - Atlantic City (G.Lucas)

Phish pulled into AC for their three-night Fall finale as fans nationwide descended onto the Jersey Shore. After a mellow opening frame, Phish dropped bombs at the beginning of the second, combining two fall-standouts – “Sand” and “Carini” – into a single highlight reel. Phish took “Sand” on its most fluid and adventurous course of the tour as they entered a post-peak, mid-tempo, ensemble groove that had Little Featprints all over it. Thus when the band hit “Carini,” they, again, carried a colossal head of steam. Trey worked in the “Carini” line to the collective groove, signaling the change into another Fall Tour All-Star. Boardwalk Hall exploded with the opening chords of “Carini” and the band carried that energy through the composed section of the song, screaming the lyrics as they drifted into the jam. Trey’s guitar picked up where their voices left off, wailing over a nasty groove. Red began a lead with distinct attitude over the  bass-led patterns, while the band crushed “Carini.” But once the guitar solo ended, everyone settled into a equitable plane. As this segment began, Trey almost went berserk with crack-like rhythm licks, seeming for a moment that shit was about to fly off the meat rack. But he pulled back into an equally creative solo that infused the still-heavy piece with supporting melodies. But the band shifted back into a funky canvas as Mike dropped one unique idea after another. The band’s rhythmic talk soon drifted far from the song and into a four-piece ambient collaboration. The future-sounding segment melted into “Prince Caspian,” thus ending the final “Carini”of fall.



Jam of the Day:

Sand” 10.20.10 II

A scorching second-set rendition with a mini bonus jam on the way to “Theme.” A middle-man between South Carolina’s initial version and Atlantic City’s blowout.




10.20.10 Memorial Auditorium, Utica, New York

FLAC Torrent (etree), Mp3 Torrent, Megaupload < Links

Official Utica Poster

The virtual consensus “best show of tour.” Phish put together two twisting and turning old-school sets in a tiny venue, oozing energy of the past combined with music of the future. A standout Phish show for any era, the band was locked from moment one in this musical and experiential highlight of Fall.

I: My Soul, Stealing Time From the Faulty Plan, Vultures, Wolfman’s Brother > Cities, Guyute, David Bowie*^, Wilson*, McGrupp and the Watchful Hosemasters, Saw It Again* > Run Like an Antelope*

II: Drowned > Sand > Theme From the Bottom, Axilla, Birds of a Feather, Tela,  Split Open and Melt > Have Mercy > Piper** > Split Open and Melt, Slave to the Traffic Light

E: Good Times Bad Times

* w/ Guyute Teases, ^ w/ Wilson Teases, **w/ Birds Reprise

Source: Edirol UA-5>Edirol R-09 HR>Nakamichi 300 Mics W/CP4 Shotguns (Taper  – D.Boedicker)

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468 Responses to “The Rebirth Of Carini”

  1. neemor Says:

    Good stuff, Miner.

    Last night, I found the disc you had sent me so many months ago, Portland? I literally said things like, “Oooh” and “Aaaaaah” when I put it in.
    Awesome, awesome stuff…
    Thank you.

  2. sumodie Says:

    What happened to the real Carini?

    Did he have to leave Phish Inc cause his head was deemed too lumpy for the 3.0 era?

    He was sorely missed when that naked dude jumped onstage last winter in Charlottesville VA

  3. sumodie Says:

    The SOAM -> Have Mercy > Piper -> SOAM (note the full arrow segues) is, however, to my mind, the representative piece from the Fall

    @matso: well said. perhaps that sequence is the yin to Carini’s yang

  4. RobbieP Says:

    Miner – You are forgetting about Carini at MSG 12/31/02. My favorite Carini and it is PURE HOSE. I highly recommend a listen. Great idea for a blog today…so mad I gave up my Prov ticket for Saturday night at UMass; although the DWD/My Friend was absolutely terrific piece of segue.

  5. Oldskool Says:

    I think Jiboo is another sleeper song of 3.0 and this tour.

  6. guitarpicker420! Says:

    I would say song of tour is Gin. It was consistently excellent, and much improved over 2009.

  7. KWL Says:

    for me, the big 3 are sand, light, & carini

    each version killed and went to original territory

  8. Mr. Palmer Says:

    Bowie is back in business as well…

  9. Gavinsdad Says:

    Word @oldskool. I feel like it started to get more personality right at Hershey this Summer and has blossomed from there. AC being the peak.

  10. KWL Says:

    honorable mention: bowie

  11. Matso Says:

    Bowie has got to be in the big 3 (Brim 3, Utica and AC2, which is one of the best jams of 3.0). The other two are Sand and Carini.

    Light doesn’t make it because none of the versions are in the top 3 Lights (Gorge, MSG, Greek).

    Honourable mention: Stash

  12. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    agreed there, oldskool. the can’t-not-jibboo from ac is one to highlight for sure but one could say the jibboo has been strong ever since last summer.

    the one at Great Woods in 09 opened my eyes to it (I never liked the song prior to 3.0 honestly) but they have all been pretty on point. Miami’s Gotta>Wilson>Jibboo, the ATL first set throwdown, the second set one from Albany out of Cool It Down after the oft discussed Seven Below->Ghost, the Greek version, Broomfield, etc. it really has been a consistent performer. not an open jammer, of course, but they sure have taken it on a couple of nice rides lately.

  13. jdub Says:

    Nice one Miner, Carini FTW.

    @Sumo, you beat me to it. Rock n Roll>Carini is the yang to SOAM>Have Mercy>Piper>SOAM yin. Both are mindblowing but come at ya with a different purpose.

    Also, I haven’t seen anyone mention this but On Your Way Down from Broom 3 was the initial clue to the Halloween album while being the kick off to the Chilean Miner segment. On Your Way Down, Heavy Things, 46 Days. Seems clear to me. Pardon my delayed response if this was already covered on Chilean Miner Reality Day

  14. Matso Says:

    Gin wasn’t as strong during the Fall as during the summer (see Portsmouth, SPAC, etc)

  15. KWL Says:

    which song gets you more excited when it starts, bowie or light?

    light’s in the big 3 😉

  16. Matso Says:

    AC3 Jiboo is definitely top-shelf, highlight reel material and along with the Miami Gotta Wilson Jiboo, best in 3.0. The RR version is also among the many strong 3.0 versions.

  17. Matso Says:

    @kwl –
    Hmmm, not the approach I take to determining Big 3. It’s about how well they delivered. I’m always pretty excited when Philip Roth publishes a book, but I wouldn’t necessarily say that he’s always the best thing I read in any given year.

  18. jdub Says:

    Light doesn’t fit in the most improved category but it still fits in the biggest Face Melter Category. Light, Carini, Sand, Bowie, all achieved consistently high meltage points.

  19. Spasm Waiter Says:

    Sand, Carini, and Bowie all very improved. Fluff improved as well but simply played a bit too much.

  20. jdub Says:

    IDK, if I had to pick 3 from fall it would have to be Bowie, Light, Carini.

  21. Spasm Waiter Says:

    Only one Jim all Fall. Guess they felt thay needed to shelve it for a spell. Hopefully it comes back with some new lustre…

  22. Matso Says:

    Most improved would have to include Mike’s…

    Underperformers – not many, but Hood springs to mind.

  23. jdub Says:

    Carini, Mike’s, Bowie, Weekapaug, SOAM all stepped up a notch.

  24. BingosBrother Says:

    Happy Birthday Tom Marshall! Without you, we don’t have any of this right now. Thanks.

  25. jdub Says:

    How about songs that kicked butt in their only appearance. 20 Years Later, Roggae, and Have Mercy come to mind.

    And we are sleeping on big most improved, Curtain With finally got the polish.

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