Features of Fall

Fall tour contained more musical highlights than I can discuss in one post, but we’ve got plenty of time. Every week before the Holiday Run, I will spotlight a couple standout pieces from tour that haven’t been discussed in other articles. Today, we start with three. (Click the song title to download each selection.)

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Ghost” – 10.10 II Broomfield, CO

10.10.10 - Broomfield (Chris Klein)

This exploratory entree of Colorado’s tour opener was delivered amidst the first “Mike’s Groove” of fall. Despite a solid first-set “Stash,” this “Ghost” brought Phish’s first real improvisational odyssey of the season. Progressing through several distinct sections of jamming, this multi-dimensional version started with Mike taking both the rhythmic and melodic leads, as Trey wove his minimalism around Gordon’s foundation. Emerging slowly within a melodic and groovy jam, Trey eventually wound up at the front of the pack, bushwhacking musical territory side by side with Mike. Offering abstract leads over a rolling beat that continued to gather momentum, Trey merged with both Mike and Page in a soaring tri-colored peak segment. On came Mike’s envelope filter, upping the overall juice, as Trey reached for the top in a dramatic climb. But after the band arrived at the climax, they didn’t bail for the next song. Instead, Phish rode a familiar-sounding, descending pattern down the back side of the mountain, landing in a sparse and fully connected whole-band groove. Getting into the funkiest section of this “Ghost,” Page offered a organ solo that led the music into a series of staccato hits that were soon encompassed by the ambient jaws of the Phish. This final shift transformed the piece into an awesome space-aged experiment.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/phish2010-10-10.d2t04.mp3]

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TweeZeppelin” – 10.30 II Atlantic City, NJ

10.30.10 - Atlantic City, NJ D.Lavery)

After Phish played a verse of “Whole Lotta Love” within “Chalk Dust” in the 30th’s first set, the ploy could have gone either way. Perhaps the band was hinting at their chosen album, but more likely than not, they were poking fun at the hype around Led Zeppelin. But the band answered that question loud and clear in the second set when they got their Led out amidst the a twisting and turning last “Tweezer” of fall. Dropping into the jam, Phish immediately broke into a hard-nosed tease of “Whole Lotta Love.” But as Trey tore into his “Tweezer” solo, drenched with a hardcore vibe, it seemed Phish would launch into a super-charged jam. But their prank had hardly begun. Within no time, Trey brought the band into another Zeppelin anthem, “Heartbreaker,” fully crooning the first verse over the band’s interpretation. Dropping back into “Tweezer” for its most extensive mini-segment, the band had just entered a beautiful melodic framework when they dissolved into “Ramble On.” With each Zeppelin song came tidal waves of energy seething through Boardwalk Hall – easily the biggest surges of the weekend. Blasting the old-school structure with classic rock and roll, Phish had the crowd eating out of their hand like a puppy. Instead of Page, who killed the song back in ’98 at Vernon Downs, Trey sang “Ramble On,” not quite doing the piece justice. But this “Tweezer to Heaven” wasn’t about sharp musicianship, it was about energy, adrenaline, and unadulterated fun. Before stepping into the transcendent guitar solo of “Ramble On,” Page exchanged a joking look with Trey while he played the beginning of Zeppelin’s ballad, “Thank You;” and the band moved from one melodic song to another. Dropping back into “Tweezer” for only a moment, before anyone knew what had hit them, Phish was in the iconic final verse of “Stairway to Heaven.” One couldn’t help but laugh along with their musical gamesmanship as the Phish toyed with the audience while creating a spirited medley of Zeppelin classics; quite an enjoyable trick on the eve of the treat. And as we walked out of the venue that night, the 24-hour guessing guessing game commenced with Led Zeppelin crossed off the list.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/ph2010-10-30t16.mp3]

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Stash” – 10.24 I Amherst, MA

10.23.10 - Amherst (Matt Wagner)

With much-deserved praise going to the interstellar “Stash” from Halloween, the precursor to the holiday version came a week before in Amherst. And if Atlantic City’s version never happened, we’d all be talking how the Mullins “Stash” was the best of this era. Engaging in a dueling leadership from note one, Mike and Trey commanded the onset of this voyage as Fishman’s beats morphed into the effervescent percussion of lore. Trey’s leads began to encompass a melodic theme, pushing Page to join step up his piano work – a defining facet of this excursion. The band shifted into a major key, and the vicious textures transformed into rolling pastures as Trey’s melodic run never relented for a millisecond in some of his most impressive work of tour. While Trey signed his name backwards and forwards on this piece with numbing, non-stop leads, the rest of the band fully engaged in a crushing musical passage of the highest degree. Pushing and pulling the tension beneath Trey’s wizardry, the whole band played in sync, crafting a new-school, top-shelf version. Page’s piano work emerged as a highlight of this “Stash,” providing a retro feel in the retro venue. Reentry into “Stash’s” final build happened seamlessly and with roaring whole-band passion. Without a thought of hesitation, Phish narrated a cooperative tale of super-glued psychedelia.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/ph2010-10-24t06.mp3]

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Jam of the Day:

Vultures” 10.20.10 I

This third-song appearance of “Vultures” was the first signpost along the road at Utica that pointed to special night. A smoking rendition, rarely do bust-outs come off the shelf with such zest.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/11/Phish-Disc01Track04.mp3]

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DOWNLOAD OF THE DAY:

10.10.10 1st Bank Arena, Broomfield, Colorado

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

Official Broomfield Poster

Fall tour’s opener contained the typical event-less warm-up set before the band put together a somewhat choppy second half that had some serious highlights. “Ghost” brought exploratory jamming while a top-shelf “Slave” made an powerful mid-set exclamation. Solid versions of “Mike’s” and “Weekapaug,” and a seemingly out-of-place debut of “My Problem Right There,” filled out the moments of note.

I: Chalk Dust Torture, Ocelot, It’s Ice, Bouncing Around the Room, Funky Bitch, AC/DC Bag, NICU, The Moma Dance, Horn, Stash, Golgi Apparatus

II: Mike’s Song > Simple > Ghost > Weekapaug Groove, Fee, Makisupa Policeman, My Problem Right There*> Makisupa Policeman, Slave to the Traffic Light, Strange Design, Julius

E: Loving Cup

*debut

Source: Schoeps mk4v’s(DINa)> kc5> m222> nt222> 744t (Taper – gotfob)

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604 Responses to “Features of Fall”

  1. c0wfunk Says:

    that’s actually a pretty special possum ..

    that was my “last show” that wasn’t coventry. During that Possum Trey spilled his guts about how his end would be the road if he didn’t cut it out. Mike and he then had a spectral battle to the end of the universe.

    Or that’s what I heard at least.

    😉

  2. Mr.Palmer Says:

    Possum is fun when your at a show. I usually skip it on recordings though, for the most part.

    Every time i go back and revisit ’99-00, i absolutely love it. Love that spacey jam period. Fun shows back then.

  3. Mr.Miner Says:

    “That tweez, already out in SBD mp3″

    ^ its on here as a JoTD somewhere.

    search “Tweezer > Fluffhead” or 8.1.98

    hold on. i’ll find it

  4. Spasm Waiter Says:

    JB #Line is so big. Forgot how big it was. Mr. Large…

  5. Mr.Miner Says:

    Tweezer > Fluffhead is the JoTD on this post:

    http://phishthoughts.com/2010/07/28/the-mystery-of-two-songs/

    You can download the entire selection as one track.

  6. Mr.Miner Says:

    “they prob just had 10.5 minutes left over and couldn’t figure what to put on it so they figured hey, everything’s gotta have a Possum these days right?”

    ^ lololol

  7. Mr.Miner Says:

    that was my “last show” that wasn’t coventry. During that Possum Trey spilled his guts about how his end would be the road if he didn’t cut it out.

    ^ no.

  8. cal Says:

    c0w–I’m with you on that “Possum”. I’d pretty much lost any real attachment to that tune until they were singing “your end is the road” at my “last show ever”. It was an overwhelmingly sad moment yet…felt like closure.

    Can’t believe they didn’t put the “HYHU>Whipping Post” from ’96 on there!

  9. Mr.Palmer Says:

    thanks Miner!

  10. sumodie Says:

    Halloween set 3 played like a victory lap for the tour- in a good way…They could have gone in an overall darker and more experimental vein with some of the stuff left on the table in AC (Mike’s, Light, Split), instead the peppered a more feel-good crowd pleaser set with lots of creativity in unexpected spots. Nice move.

    @joechip: you’re on fire today -well said. I was hoping for the darker more experimental vein, but by the last set of tour, right after that fantastic cover, I wasn’t surprised the band opted for a crowd pleaser

    and you’re right, there were some mighty fine creative surprises nevertheless

  11. Mr.Palmer Says:

    Miner’s top 10 from Fall ’10 for TTFF ? ( lots of 10s in there)

    ^^ would not be an easy task . Narrowing this tour to a top ten. I’d love to see your list though. 🙂

  12. Mr.Miner Says:

    ten jams…oy…I dont even have all shows in AUD to do this yet.

    basically KS picked the best tweezer, disease, and ghost in AV history, and threw in a Possum for the Midwestern custies 😉

  13. Mr.Miner Says:

    havent thought of tomorrow topic yet though…

  14. Mr.Palmer Says:

    Tempo

  15. garretc Says:

    Miner’s hand-selected, only the finest, 70 Volt Parade must hear jams

  16. Mr.Palmer Says:

    Trey solo acoustic show is tonight, right?

  17. joechip Says:

    Yep, I liked set III a lot even though it didn’t really deliver on the levels I was hoping it to. Took a little personal lesson away from it about relaxing my expectations. One of the best things about fall tour has been those creative moments popping up in new places.

    Still could have done without the mid-set “Suzy”, but the heady outro jam of Wilson was a great treat.

  18. albert walker Says:

    midwest custies represent!

  19. Mr.Palmer Says:

    posting from the rail at Gordo @ AW?

  20. albert walker Says:

    couple cats just went up there

    I’m all about the pre show puff

    skip the show

  21. sumodie Says:

    Random topic idea: focus on one band member (not Trey I’d say) who particularly shone on some gems from Fall tour. Avoiding the big songs already blogged about

    Maybe Page, his Halfway to the Moon track, his best WFC tune, a couple other tunes…

    for example

  22. Mr.Miner Says:

    ^cool idea…

  23. sumodie Says:

    @joechip: yeah, after catching the hot NE shows, my expectations kinda got the best of me at times in AC, though I still had a great time. While I would have preferred smoother flow to the AC run, on the whole the boys more than delivered, and at times they blew my mind.

    Tour really knocked me over with its intensity across many levels

  24. Spasm Waiter Says:

    All that You Dream= Unsung hero of WFC set

    I hope it sticks around.

  25. Mr.Miner Says:

    trey played greyhound rising acoustic tonight. at least he remembers it exists 😉 backed by a string quartet…played Gone on piano….and parts of wolfmans…looks cool

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