While They’re At It…

8.7.2010 Re-master

Phish has been remastering recent shows at a torrid pace, seemingly holding onto their goldmine of archival releases for later down the road. The recent remasters have provided lush upgrades of three standout shows from last summer in Merriweather and the  two final two nights of The Greek. Audio engineer, Fred Kevorkian, has also given his treatment to three shows that wouldn’t have been close to the top of my list in the Alpharetta stand and Deer Creek’s second night—well played shows with significant peaks and valleys. With no idea if the band has further plans to remaster modern era shows, here are three can’t-miss nights from 2009 (in chronological order) that certainly deserve Kevorkian’s aural enhancement.


7.31.09 Red Rocks, Morrison, Colorado

7.31.09 (Graham Lucas)

In one of the first, truly great performances of this era, Phish had one leg and one show under their belt, and came out swinging at Red Rocks on night two. Though the band opened the show with a potent “Jim,” “Chalk Dust,” “Bathtub” triumvirate and punctuated the first set with a terrorizing “Split” amidst an oncoming monsoon, the everlasting story of this evening came in the second. Served up in three musical suites, Phish annihilated their best set to that point in 3.o. Featuring a flawless segue (“Drowned > Crosseyed”), exploratory jamming that found gold (“Crosseyed”), liquid dance grooves (“Tweezer”), copious risk taking (such as transitioning out of the “Fluffhead’s” peak into “Piper”), and a classy cover to close the set that had debuted at Red Rocks in 1995 (“A Day in the Life), this show had it all. A top shelf effort through and through, and a hallmark show on Phish’s return to greatness.

I: Runaway Jim, Chalkdust Torture, Bathtub Gin, Time Turns Elastic, Lawn Boy, Water in the Sky, Stealing Time From The Faulty Plan, Split Open and Melt

II: Drowned > Crosseyed and Painless > Joy, Tweezer > Backwards Down The Number Line, Fluffhead > Piper > A Day in the Life

E: Suzy Greenberg, Tweezer Reprise


8.7.09 – The Gorge, George, Washington

8.7.09 The Gorge (Graham Lucas)

You want jams? This show has got ’em. On their first night back in the Columbia River Gorge in six years, Phish dropped an instant classic. The improvisational peaks of this night have become household jams of this era—the intergalactic “Sneakin’ Sally,” “Light”-turned-calypso, and the monstrous show-closing combo of “Bathtub Gin > Harry Hood.” Throw in a dynamic first set “Stash” and solid daytime versions of “Disease” and “Ocelot,” and you’ve got quite the improvisational smorgasbord. But far more impressive than the quantity of jams (which in this day and age is scare), was the quality of the band’s interplay. On his night Phish was nothing short of majestic. Weaving patient, open-ended tales that could only have sprung from The Gorge’s inspirational surroundings, Phish had their cosmic portal functioning in full force all night long. This show’s delicate jamming would greatly benefit from Kevorkian’s love.

I: Down With Disease, Ocelot, Pebbles and Marbles, Possum, Sleep, Destiny Unbound, Stash, Sneaking Sally Through the Alley, Cavern

II: The Moma Dance, Light > Taste, Fluffhead, Joy, Bathtub Gin > Harry Hood

E: Slave to the Traffic Light


12.29.09 – American Airlines Arena, Miami, Florida

12.29.09 (W.Rogell)

Phish turned a corner in Miami over last year’s New Year’s Run, and despite any backers of 12.30’s follow up, this is—unquestionably—the show that deserves enhancement. The first set contained a red-hot “Maze,” extended groove-sessions in “Wolfman’s” and “Reba,” a couple bust-outs in “The Connection” and “Access Me,” and a spirited “Divided Sky.” The main plot line of this night, however, would come after setbreak. After the greatest modern-era “Tweezer” bled into a regal “Caspian,” the rest of the set was pure gravy; but Phish never stopped. The playful sequence of “Jibboo > Wilson > Jiboo” went directly into “Heavy Things” before Phish capped the night with the can’t-miss combo of “2001 > Slave.” If the band is pumping out modern remasters, this Florida adventure should certainly be high on the waiting list.

I: Golgi Apparatus, Maze, Driver, The Connection, Wolfman’s Brother, Ocelot, Reba, Access Me, The Divided Sky, Cavern

II: Kill Devil Falls, Tweezer > Prince Caspian, Gotta Jibboo > Wilson > Jibboo > Heavy Things, Also Sprach Zarathustra > Slave to the Traffic Light

E: Sleeping Monkey, Tweezer Reprise


Jam of the Day:

Ghost” 8.7.98 I

A smoking Summer ’98 “Ghost” from Raleigh, North Carolina just after the rain cleared—in SBD.




2.23.1990 Haverford College Dining Center, Haverford, PA

Haverford College, Pennsylvania

This SBD relic from nearly twenty years ago in a college dining hall comes at you as a reader request for Mitch in New York City.

Mp3 Torrent, Megaupload < Links

I: Alumni Blues > Letter to Jimmy Page > Alumni Blues, You Enjoy Myself, Possum, Foam, Carolina, Rocky Top, Dinner and a Movie, Ya Mar, Walk Away, Bouncing Around the Room, Run Like an Antelope

II: Golgi Apparatus, Reba, Bathtub Gin, Jesus Just Left Chicago, Tela, The Oh Kee Pa Ceremony > Suzy Greenberg*, Mike’s Song > I Am Hydrogen > Weekapaug Groove, Highway to Hell

E: Contact, I Didn’t Know, Good Times Bad Times

*w / “Low Rider” jam

Source: SBD

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642 Responses to “While They’re At It…”

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  1. goat Says:

    gorge light is still one of my favorite moments of uniqueness…

  2. bird Says:

    diggin’ the older jams of the day. reba from yesterday was jingletastic!

  3. thelot Says:

    FYI A Day in a Life was debuted on 6-10-95

  4. Mike in Austin Says:

    Packer’s Win The Superbowl

  5. bhizzle Says:

    What is the definition of “bust out”? Something that hasn’t been played in a long time or a good song that hasn’t been played in a long time? I only ask cuz The Connection? UGH!

  6. Spasm Waiter Says:

    Morning Folks. Good right up Miner. 2010 was so good that I have been ignoring some of the 09 gems. No longer.

  7. nonoyolker Says:

    Agreed on all. Listened to highlights from Gorge ’09 this weekend. Still hold up great.

    “Kevorkian’s love.” – this kinda makes me shudder… Poor guy got saddled with a nefarious name

  8. phoammhead Says:

    i like The Connection

    the 12/29/09 version is very nice, indeed

    i love lookin’ at that 2/23/90 setlist to see that the boyz have been at this for a long time . . . even though the band has gone through transformations reinventing themselves along the way and with different styles in different eras phish remains phish . . . the future looks bright and enticing!

  9. lastwaltzer Says:

    While I’d probably not listen to more than a few highlights from the many 09 shows they really do need the overhaul. The sound quality is shit, real muddy.

  10. Spasm Waiter Says:

    ^write up.

  11. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    nice. three of my favorite 2009 shows. I’ll never forget them riding the storm with that SOAM jam in Morrison. and I love me some Gorge Gin (though I am personally more enraptured by the RnR the next night). and 12.29 is no joke. monkey>reprise encore isn’t for ho-hum shows.

    if’n you haven’t already, go to the last page of yesterday’s thread for a fantastic DL from the Selecta himself. magnificent Mikey Dread filling my ears this morn.

  12. lastwaltzer Says:

    ““Kevorkian’s love.” – this kinda makes me shudder… Poor guy got saddled with a nefarious name”nono

    Guess it depends on how you feel about jack 😉

  13. sumodie Says:

    Recommended reading repost:

    Excellent if lengthy read on how Dick Latvala got his archivist job with the GD & the challenges behind the GD’s Vault/DP Picks releases


  14. BTB Says:

    RE: Kevorkian Remasters – Classic goof material though

    I still haven’t listened to that Gorge show. I guess I’m saving myself a gem.

  15. nonoyolker Says:

    @ Sumodie – that’s an awesome read, thanks! I only got a bit into it, going to save the rest for lunch or after work.

  16. b-rock Says:

    What up BB… been a while since I been around these parts, the man been getting me down. good to be back though.

    Thanks to miner for the reminder on this Ghost. this was my 3rd show, from what I recall this is a great version. Doesn’t get outside the box but builds way up and then mellows out to a little vocal reprise at the end. Commencing another listen to check the accuracy of my memory.

  17. b-rock Says:

    @sumo – interesting link – great quote in there: “The more critical and brain-damaged I get seeing [shows] over and over again, the harder it became to satisfy me.”

  18. bhizzle Says:

    Did Latvala do Hendrix releases as well?

  19. SillyWilly Says:

    Good morning, kids!

    f’in 3 degrees this morning

    i’m ready for spring

    Selectaaaaaa J’s mix will have to thaw my cold, cold heart.

  20. Kaveh Says:

    Good morning everyone…just got back…spinning the 08.07.10 remaster this morning. I’ll have to listen to it on the stereo; but on first listen; the remasters sound a lot cleaner and brighter.

    Can’t wait to continue the great 2011 I’m having…SUPER BOWL CHAMPIONS!

  21. Spasm Waiter Says:

    Great game you guys played Kaveh. Bask in it.

  22. SillyWilly Says:


    Madison was a riot.

    you could hear downtown from 2 miles away

    pretty fun night

  23. Kaveh Says:

    @Silly Willy – totally awesome…SUPER BOWL CHAMPS! (Love typing that). 🙂

    @Miner – for the Packers victory you should put up a download of the game from a show in WI…say Dane County 94. Just a thought.

  24. sumodie Says:

    Those dissatisfied / mystified by the shows Phish Inc selects for remastering may want to read that Dick Latvala article (link above)

    The process for selecting which Phish shows get released/remastered is likely simpler than the GD’s, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t any politics involved

  25. butter Says:

    Miner, nice piece – i hope they listen to you and get remastering!

    excited about these, can’t wait to do a side by side with the 24bit hd’s, or here from someone that does it

    comparing from what i hear from the Alpine CD/DVD its going to have some serious pop, energy or brightness

    the hd’s have a 3d spacial quality that i believe will only be heard in the 24 bit, but that doesn’t make them better

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