Combing Through Camden

6.10.11 - Camden Graham Lucas)

Phish’s Camden performance boasted little flow, several obvious flubs and wound up as one of the lower tier shows of summer’s opening leg. But during June 2011, even the band’s lesser engaging nights still carried strokes of brilliance. When at a show, its whole contour often strikes one more than its individual parts, but when listening back with the ability to focus in on one particular jam at a time, a recording can offer snapshots of greatness. Though its two-set dynamic never quite elevated, Camden’s show did offer some great musical nuggets. Despite strong first-set versions of “Weekapaug” and “Stash,” the following three jams represent, in my opinion, the most transcendent moments of a relatively underwhelming show.


The Curtain With

6.10.11 G.Lucas)

In the highlight of the first half, and arguably the show, Phish threw down a majestic, set-closing version of their seminal classic, “The Curtain With.” A fluttering beat from Fishman framed a passionate, three-part dance between Mike, Page, and Trey. The phrasing of all members took an emotional and virtuosic turn as their lines seemed played from the comb of a music box—intertwining with mind-boggling perfection. The band immersed themselves in a sacred exchange as their interplay dripped with a collective catharsis that you don’t hear every day. Camden represented the first time in the band’s career that they used “The Curtain With” to end a set; but after this rendition, there was simply nothing left to say.



Down with Disease

6.10.11 (G.Lucas)

Though June featured many a standout “Disease,” Camden’s second-set opener is right up there with the best of them. Sprinting through high-speed rock textures, the band boasted the improvisational tightness we heard during “Curtain (With),” and as they veered off course, it was clear an adventure was ahead. Settling into a sparser canvas, the band’s offerings seemed to chase each other in a game of musical tag. Trey’s lines slowly grew more abstract, while Page and Mike went along this spiritual climb with him. Fish’s driving break-beats gave way to more delicate rhythms, and quickly, the band was amidst stunning original interplay. As the music developed out of this mellifluous realm and into more psychedelic waters, Mike and Page lead the jam as much as Trey. Then after stepping back, Red emerged with an uncompressed growl over an increasingly dynamic groove—and within this section lies some of June’s more impressive jamming that has largely been lost in the fray. Ending naturally in “Free,” this “Disease” is pure exploratory fire. Though the rest of the set didn’t exactly blow the roof off Camden’s Susquehanna Bank Center, this “Disease” most certainly did.




6.10.11 (G.Lucas)

Any way you cut it, “Possum,” “Big Black Furry Creatures,” Swept > Steep” is a whole lot of nothing as “meat” of the second set. Nonetheless, following the full-on adventure of “Disease > Free,” it was this exact run of songs that totally derailed the show. But as Phish reached “Steep” and its modern-era composed jam, they decided to take the song for the first ride of its career. Not only expanding on the emotive ending that was debuted on New Year’s ’09 in Miami, Phish took the jam straight into uncharted territory. Entering a down-tempo, four-minded psychedelia, the band took “Steep” into a dark-then-ambient plane, seamlessly fusing with a solid, mid-set “David Bowie.” (“Steep’s” surrounding tracks are included in the clip below for context.)



Jam of the Day:

Stash” 6.10.11 I

While we are revisting Camden, here is the “Stash” that followed the show’s opening “Mike’s Groove,” a dark slice of  jamming at the beginning of the night .

[audio:] Tags: , ,

437 Responses to “Combing Through Camden”

  1. Gavinsdad Says:

    Hate shaving.

    Reservoir Dogs respin first in 10 years.

  2. mitch Says:

    It’s not like your grow a scrappy beard either. It’s as legit as they come. Just gotta get past the pokey stage.

  3. voopa Says:

    joe- I had McD for the first time in week yesterday, and threw half of it away. Horrible.

    mitch- Gave up the facial hair for the mrs…she appreciates it.

    Also, check out the Capitol Corridor Amtrak train from Sacto to SF..may be your best option, runs like every hour.

  4. halcyon Says:

    Evening Friends

    I think Bingo’s posted this, but this warrants a repost

    Tinariwen from a few weeks ago.

    Nice sounding recording. Thanks Bingo’s for the find.

  5. mitch Says:

    I’m gonna find a girl ok with the beard. Then I won’t have to sweat it. I can’t shave everyday. Inconceivable. (I think that means what I think it means)

  6. voopa Says:

    ^^^Sacto to the East Bay, that is.

  7. leo weaver Says:

    Shaving and smooth faces are overrated.

  8. win butler Says:

    Shaving and smooth balls however….

    Ya wanna get a tea bag going…

  9. Guyute711 Says:

    Freshly shaved with a new haircut, can you say incognito?

  10. mitch Says:

    Just gotta be CAREFUL!!

    Late night Tuesday BB convo, wassup? (east coast that is)

  11. lastwaltzer Says:

    ladies not liking beards? wtf. i mean i knew i was lcuky but…. shit

  12. Guyute711 Says:

    “Baby carrots and celery aren’t as good as m&m’s and doritos”

    Fuck carrots, that was my favorite food as a kid and I have bad eye sight. That’s bullshit. Down with carrots.

    On the six pack front. I’m sure my friend still has it but there was a pic of me floating around with a six pack guzzling down a 6′ long funnel. I didn’t even know I had a six pack. Typical distorted reality of a wrestler who would continually lose 20lbs the week before matches who thought he was fat. Still look at myself and I’m disgusted and I’m sure many would be jealous. I do have a bit of a gut. I swear I do!!

  13. mitch Says:

    I mean most dudes like girls shaved and tidy. I can see where they are comin from. They do get the short end of the stick I suppose.

  14. mitch Says:

    I’m disgusted too from past fitness too but compared to what I did then to earn it, well let’s say I can’t be THAT upset until I hit a damn treadmill.

  15. Guyute711 Says:

    You got that right mitch. I used to run 5 miles a day AFTER wrestling practice. Metabolism isn’t exactly what it used to be either.

  16. lastwaltzer Says:

    fucking shaving for anyone, there i said it. shits a whack waste of time. call me a dirty hippie if you must

  17. Guyute711 Says:

    lw, you dirty fucking hippy

  18. lastwaltzer Says:

    i fully support blowing drying your ballz and sparying them with axe though

  19. Guyute711 Says:

    alright I can’t get pulled into this shit, need to go to sleep to keep the schedule a little normal

  20. mitch Says:

    I guess that’s why we wait on women lycan. They need more time to do the shit we appreciate. Hippie or not I don’t like hairy pits on a girl.

    Ya metabolism def slowed. But it’s more the trading the 5,000 yards a day for 6 beers and puffing like a rasta that prob did me in.

  21. mitch Says:

    5000 yards swimming. Cross country was always “go run for 45 mins and be back here for stretches”

    If only….

  22. lastwaltzer Says:

    see i fully support women not shaving, i cant see how that would be plesant. i know how awful i itch after trimming my beard, let alone my full body. again though, sparying your ballz with axe? that i can see

  23. lastwaltzer Says:

    oh and im not lycan. 🙂 wonder how often we get confused foe one another, seems to happen a lot. at least he has good taste

  24. lastwaltzer Says:

    im out kidz keep it real

  25. Andrew Says:

    ***NFL Update***

    The Seattle Seahawks have agreed to sign former Minnesota Vikings QB Tavaris Jackson after deciding not to return resident Matt Hasselback. The move places the Seahawks in pole position for the ‘Suck for Luck’ campaign during the upcoming NFL season, reports ESPN’s Adam Schefter.

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