Parts of the Whole

Watkins Glen (Brian Ferguson)

There were so many mind-bending highlights throughout the three nights of Super Ball that many standout jams can easily fall through the cracks. The following four pieces didn’t take center stage over the weekend, but certainly deserve their due credit. While these selections are hardly diamonds in the rough, they are some of the more structured highlights from an amazing weekend of music that people are still glowing from today. Read about, listen to, and download each piece below.


Wilson” 7.3 I

7.3.11 (G.Lucas)

“Wilson” isn’t a jam vehicle—that is unless you are at Super Ball. When the band dropped into this first set version on the final day of the festival, no one suspected what was to come. As the guys entered the “heavy metal” section of the song, they did so with far more passion and intent than usual, and before long they had veered off course into a seething tangent. Dicing into the heavy textures, Trey tore off an original solo in which he infused a prominent Mind Left Body tease that the entire band hopped onto in a shining improvisational moment. Phish passed through this section into original hard rock before re-merging with “Wilson’s” lyrics. A prime example of how anything the band touched turned to gold on the festival’s final day, this first set surprise fit right in with spiced up jamming on display throughout.



Wolfman’s Brother” 7.1 I

Watkins Glen (B.Ferguson)

Late in the opening frame of the festival, Phish crafted the centerpiece of the set in “Wolfman’s Brother.” Though “Wolfman’s” is always reliable for a foray into Phish grooves these days, this enthusiastic version took the 3.0 template to a supercharged level. Coming in the midst of a stellar run of songs that included “Bathtub Gin,” “Life On Mars?,” and “My Friend, My Friend,” “Wolfman’s” provided one of the first throwdowns of the weekend. As Page hopped up to his clav and the band dripped into the jam, the concert grounds immediately popped off. Trey tickled the grooves with a repetitive staccato lick as Gordon and Fishman held down a slick pocket. Trey got far more creative with his phrasing than usual, urging the band to follow his creative path—and that they did. Transforming into certifiable Phish crack, this dance session had the festival in full gear if everyone hadn’t gotten there already. Complete with Gordon’s footbell approval, the band sunk their teeth into this version like they hadn’t in quite a while with “Wolfman’s,” engaging in all sorts of rhythmic exchanges and extending past the length of most recent outings. The creative guitar licks never stopped throughout the entire jam as Trey led the troops to a blistering whole-band peak in this early-weekend gem.



Stash” 7.2 II

7.1.11 (G.Lucas)

Saturday’s second set contained a bit of a lull in the middle, but that didn’t happen until the band had slaughtered a standout, fourth-song  “Stash.” As Phish got into the jam, they readily reached a series of collective hits that created an alternate rhythmic template for the entire piece. Mike and Trey worked their ideas together, spiraling guitar lines around the dynamic beat while Page added piano comps to the increasingly intricate and dramatic excursion. Bringing the piece into more abstract territory, the three guys delved into darker waters as Trey and Mike’s lines adopted an ominous tone. Migrating back towards “Stash’s” natural build, the band’s lock-step communication never faltered as their ideas were coherently tied upon entering a retro, face-melting peak. A second-set highlight that got overshadowed by stellar final frame, this “Stash” is fully on the level.



Scents and Subtle Sounds” 7.2 II

7.3.11 (G.Lucas)

In 2004, Phish deconstructed what many believe to be their greatest post-hiatus composition—“Scents and Subtle Sounds.” Lopping off the mystical introduction that gets right to the metaphysical meaning of the song, the band started the multi-part epic midway through—out of context—with Trey’s heavy guitar chords. Taking much of the majesty away from the piece, this is how Phish decided to leave it, and when they played a short rendition at MSG ’09, this chopped up format remained. Thus, when the band crept out of the post-“Rift” silence with the opening notes of “Scents’’” intro, many of us were flabbergasted and blissfully surprised. Whether or not the song will remain in semi-rotation, at least it’s back together again. And when they dropped from the song into the void, everything felt in right in the world. Sculpting a gorgeous sunset rendition of the emotive piece, the band’s precise interplay and Trey’s lyrical phrasing took this sequence to the mountaintop. Steeped in soulful textures the music seemed to climb towards the heavens as Phish’s modern precision was applied to the post-hiatus standout. Let’s keep our fingers crossed that “Scents” and “A Song I Heard the Ocean Sing were reintroductions for the second leg rather bustouts for Super Ball. A kid can dream, right?



Jam of the Day:

Destiny Unbound” 7.3.11 I

Another song that moved beyond its usual boundaries during Sunday’s first set at Super Ball.

[audio:] Tags: , , ,

672 Responses to “Parts of the Whole”

  1. Bwana Says:

    definitely Shabazz Palace me @gdad

  2. SillyWilly Says:


    I don’t use facebook so it won’t let me in either

    I guess I can change the fact that I don’t use facebook. You can’t really change being Canadian.

  3. angryjoggerz Says:

    You can’t really change being Canadian.

    ^ that is some stone cold truth, brother

  4. alf Says:

    DF: i can’t get on that site

    next 7 BB posts: that site is totally awesome!

  5. alf Says:

    bs jam

  6. Tray Anastasio Says:

    I guess you can always try to get on their list. Think I got the question wrong (Who would win in a wrestling contest, Lemmy or God?)

  7. SillyWilly Says:

    poor DF

    nicest kid in the world in person

    kid can’t change the fact his parents procreated in Canada

  8. Jtran Says:


    The site is almost worth joining facebook. Definitely worth joining facebook under a fake name 😉

  9. SillyWilly Says:

    that’s true, Jtran

    I do have a facebook account

    But, friends kept getting pissed that I would miss party invitations and group messages

    As if facebook was the only way of communication

    then with the whole PA thing, I decided my time with facebook was over.

    I guess I can re-activate at any time.

  10. BrandonKayda Says:

    A kid had to go to the hospital at rehearsal today. During the fight scene a punch accidentally brushed his glasses and they slit his eyebrow a little bit. He said he didn’t hurt at all but he had to go to the hospital for stitches. Worried about the whole situation because I don’t know if the kid has insurance or what’s going to happen. I mean it isn’t my fault, but I just hope he ends up alright. Accidents happen i guess. Shit.

  11. mitch Says:

    anyone watching the game? heath bell is now on my watch list. what a nice fuckin guy going into the stands during the game and chatting up kids.

  12. Bwana Says:

    the AUD pull of the pre-secret set music is great… includes the random race cars zooming by [@ 16:13]… worth it for that alone for me. loved the vibe that night…

  13. SillyWilly Says:


    I know that the skin on your forehead bleeds much easier than skins on other parts of your body.

    it’s easier to cut it.

    When I was in college, during football season, I’d be bleeding from my forehead perpetually.

    I’m sure he’ll be ok, man.

    Like you said: Accidents happen. Feeling bad is natural, but don’t beat yourself up.

    also, fun random fact: professional wrestlers (back in the day) always used razors to cut the skin on their forehead as part of the props during their matches. you could always tell a pro wrestler because he would have little scars on his forehead

  14. mitch Says:

    school can pay for that prob BK

  15. tela'smuff Says:

    funny Alf! join the fun kid.

  16. mitch Says:

    thanks for the info bwana. i was oblivious to why anyone would want that 27 mins.

  17. BrandonKayda Says:

    This isn’t a school show, mitch

  18. SillyWilly Says:

    I think it’s safe to say SBIX was one of the greatest events the USA has ever seen.

    Probably on par with VE day, Appomattox Courthouse, the Miracle on Ice, and the day Prohibition was repealed

  19. Bwana Says:

    more cars zooming throughout AND the official announcement “attention, attention. we have lost all power to ball square……. we rely on a natural resource, that we call hydrosonic power……”

  20. SillyWilly Says:


    If it makes you feel any better:

    When I was in 6th grade at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Elementary school in Sandy, Utah, a kid called me a mother fucker, so I shoved him down and he hit his head on the concrete, got a concussion, and they called an ambulance.

    And nothing happened to me.

    I was kind of a surly youth.

  21. mitch Says:

    then tell that bitch he better not bleed on your shirt or its coming out of his pocket. fuckin pussy. ida slapped him after he bled and told him to buck up, we’re trying to act around here. class it up, will ya?

    end rant

    in other news, i had my bro login to FB for me so i could use the turntable thing but they go one step further and deny you if you arent friends with someone on BB, which he’s not. foiled again.

  22. BrandonKayda Says:

    And I know @Silly, I just don’t know who’s paying for it and what’s happening with that.

    I didn’t hit him, so I really shouldn’t be worried. I guess I just hate seeing the guy who did it beat up on himself so much, since he doesn’t seem to be fully emotionally stable anyhow. I hope everything turns out alright.

    Ah, the things we do for our art 😉

  23. mitch Says:

    thats cause you were in utah silly. UTAH??!! 😯

    some kid calls you a mother fucker in catholic school and gets a concussion. i bet the nuns woulda kicked his ass anyway and figured it was even.

  24. Mdawg Says:

    i don’t think you need BB friends on facebook.

  25. tela'smuff Says:

    damn Mitch! i didn’t realize the was so tough to get into. hopefully they rectify this.

    as Alf mentioned, it’s awesome!!

    it might let you through via Twitter also. damn social media.

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