A Utica Preview

10.20.2010 - Utica (Michael Stein)

On May 24th, on the brink of Summer Tour’s kick-off in Bethel, Phish will drop the DVD/CD Box set “Live in Utica,” commemorating what many fans, including myself, selected as the show of 2010. As the release gets closer, the band will likely release several previews of the DVDs, and the first snippet came today—footage of the show’s first set “David Bowie.” Below is my description of the jam, excerpted from last year and the video clip.


While Fishman’s cymbals danced into the intro to “Bowie,” Trey continued to play “Guyute’s” triumphant lick with increasingly distorted phrasing, a seemingly innocent move at the time. But these teases sparked a theme for the rest of the set – self-referential integration of one song into another in with the spontaneity of lore. As “Bowie’s” jam dropped, Trey used the same “Guyute” line, phrased differently, to initiate the improvisation. Almost immediately, the band landed in the opening hits of “Wilson” and the crowd caught on just as quickly. In a call and response exercise, the crowd chanted “Wilson” to which Trey answered in Guyute-speak, “He’s bouncing like a new born elf.” Instead of dropping into “Wilson,” in earnest, the band made the far shrewder call of melting back into a delicate, full-on “Bowie” jam. Page’s piano leads wove with Trey’s melodies, pushing the piece in an ominous direction. Mike supported with harmonizing rhythm offerings that catalyzed a darker feel, and the band took off running in a powerful version of their revitalized classic. Passing through an additional “Wilson” tease on the way to a smashing final section, Phish had dropped a twisting tour highlight smack dab in the middle of the first set. And that wouldn’t even be their most impressive excursion of the half!



Read the rest of my Utica two-part retrospective…


Jam of the Day:

Run Like an Antelope” 10.20.2010 I

The peak of Utica’s opening set.



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426 Responses to “A Utica Preview”

  1. Mulitbeast Says:

    Right on AW.

  2. Chuck D Says:

    yeah… pretty much.

    unless my logic is flawed and the masked shrew poo sends you straight to the moon. anyone wanna report back?

    (i would volunteer… but my climate is not adequate for any type of fungal growth. snowed at least another foot this weekend, !@$!@#$!)

  3. marcoesq Says:

    TVOTR’s new album is most definitely MUCH more downtempo but still has the grit of some of their earlier work.

    Free d/l of their new track Caffeinated Consciousness: http://www.myspace.com/tvotr

  4. marcoesq Says:

    I loved the urgency and hustle of their earlier work like on Dear Mr Science but new album is growing on me.

  5. marcoesq Says:

    It’s their self-proclaimed “Album of Love Songs”

  6. marcoesq Says:

    Dear Science, not mr science

  7. DukeOfLizards Says:


    You should check that Titus Andronicus that I mentioned earlier.

    Indie punk from a bunch of white NJ suburbanites.

    Right up your alley.

  8. angryjoggerz Says:

    Lol @ Dear Mr. Science. Hippies.

  9. albert walker Says:

    The Mr. Science show was epic. way hipper than Moe.

    love white suburban rock. only thing better is white suburban kids playing black urban music.

    my favorite genre.

  10. Mulitbeast Says:

    @Marco – thanks for your thoughts. I am grabbing the album tonight.

  11. albert walker Says:

    brought Aceyalone – Lightning Strikes out of the collection this week

    was kind of bored with hip-hop when it came out so it never got many spins but some of this shit is great.

    produced by Bionik it’s all reggae beats with great flow. not my fav from Ace but pretty fucking slick.

  12. angryjoggerz Says:

    You must be a huge Beasties fan.

  13. angryjoggerz Says:

    On topic, I will say that I think Utica is the best show in 3.0 and is for sure my most listened to show in the car. Both sets are heat and are on a whole other level. More of that, please. Tahoe Tweezer, bitches.

  14. albert walker Says:

    like I’ve often said

    the Dust Brothers made a great album called Paul’s Boutique

    that’s about all the positive things I have to say about the B-Boys

    on that note
    time to get that first puff in
    laterz comrades been fun

  15. albert walker Says:

    I’m the last one to come around on Utica. think I’ll give it a spin tonight

    in my other lessons the lack of true centerpiece jams other than the Antelope made me doubt the hype. could have been the hype getting the best of me. just don’t see the epic open psych rock of a Greek III.

    will stop by later to confirm I wasn’t given Utica enough due.

    now I”m really out.

  16. angryjoggerz Says:

    though probably not a popular opinion, I still think that Greek 2 trumps Greek 3 because that Simple blew my mind and really surprised me. That plus the sick RnR, Cities, Moma and the heady Show of Life. Great show.

  17. phoammhead Says:

    i’m with you on ^that!

  18. bane. Says:

    I have a pretty good single for hollywood bowl for sale if anyone needs an upgrade. I think it was section F2 or F3, dont remember exactly.

  19. gavinsdad Says:

    greek 2 no slouch.

    haven’t listened to any ’10 phish in a good while. need to revisit. i od’d on the sands in January and kind of fell off. few month break was good for me.

  20. Cable Hogue Says:

    The highs of Greek 2 are indeed some of the highest of the year.
    But I definitely give the nod to Greek 3, because that Ghost>Mike’s trans is really, really rough….like one of the worst moments of the year… Next night had exceptional flow.

  21. ae Says:

    i’m also a Greek 2 over Greek 3 fan. great show. greek 3 real good too, and i’ve gone back and listened and it holds up.

  22. ThePigSong Says:

    ARGHHHHH!!! Cable, you just prompted me to go back and listen to that (lack of a) segue. YIKESSSSS.

    had such a nice groove going too…

  23. Cable Hogue Says:

    re: that Greek 2 Ghost>Mike’s…it hurts every single time you hear it. In my book that automatically DQ’s a show from elite status…”flow” is extremely high in my personal criteria for evaluating a show…that Simple really is sublime though, and I’d stack it up against any jam of any era…

  24. Mr.Miner Says:

    that Ghost>Mike’s trans is really, really rough….like one of the worst moments of the year

    ^ easily. they might as well have beat baby seals on the stage that was so rough (credit: Mr. C)

  25. Mr.Miner Says:

    the first in a series of upgrades to the site the the social network integration on the bottom right of posts. Now you can share your favorite Phish Thoughts articles to over 300 social networks online with clicks of your mouse.

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