Patience Is a Virtue

8.10.11 - Lake Tahoe (Eric Batuello)

After four consecutive shows that flowed naturally with jams routinely seen to fruition, Phish closed out their stand in Tahoe with a herky-jerky performance that had flashes of brilliance, but little cohesion. Ironically, the band played quite well and continued to present original ideas throughout the second set, but instead of allowing any of these jams to fully develop, Trey showed his first signs of impatience during leg two as he continued to push the setlist forward while cutting of several jams that had loads of potential. In a second-set filled with improvisational vehicles, the possibilities were endless. When all was said and done, however, the “mini-jams” strewn throughout the main event—some charted for the stars—were never realized and Phish left the Sierras with a high-energy set that possessed little continuity.

"Disease" - 8.10.11 (E.Battuello)

When the band opened the second half with “Disease,” one had to think they were taking one of their favorite recent jams into the deep end. But when they had broken structure and engaged in serious improv, Trey decided to bring “Runaway Jim” to life at the cost of the “Disease” jam.” But when the guys opened up “Jim” for the first time in ages, it seemed like that decision would soon be forgotten. Coming out of a segment of growling psychedelia, Phish made a change and sounded like they might debut a new song. But when they took this idea and transformed the music into a sublime groove, it seemed like the band was on the brink of transcendence. But just as they hit full stride, Trey, inexplicably, bailed on the idea in favor of “Ghost” (a song he had already pushed earlier in the “Jim”.) At this juncture, Phish had embarked on two legitimate jams during the first two selections of the second set only to have them aborted by the big guy.

Though the “Ghost” jam, itself, was a straightforward rocker, once the band hit the peak, they dripped into an ambient excursion. As the guys added layers of abstract effect and melody to this burgeoning sound sculpture, the moments within were the most spiritual of the night. But once the band had locked themselves in the storage shed, Trey got claustrophobic and escaped this developing beast with the eject button in the form of “Golden Age.” Not to be repetitive here, but as soon as “Golden Age” got out its structure and into a palpable groove, Trey urged the band into an ambient fade out and “2001.” Letting loose a bit in the super-charged space funk, Phish crafted a sweltering late-set dance session, a vibe that would be furthered by a jamless “Sneakin’ Sally” and a wholly standard “YEM.”

8.10.11 (E.Battuello)

The meat of the second set would have to be considered the sequence from “Runaway Jim” through “2001,” but with little cohesion, the presentation of this music suffered. The set could have been huge. If Trey allowed one or two jams to grow—specifically, “Jim” and/or “Ghost”—the show’s eye-popping setlist would have sprung to life. But as it stood, though “Disease,” “Jim,” and “Ghost” all had moments of sheer genius, Trey’s continuous impatience didn’t allow the band to reach any musical breakthroughs. For the first time this tour, Phish didn’t drop a timeless, improvisational gem, but, instead, powered past a few passages of huge promise en route to their most discombobulated effort of August.

Unofficial Tahoe (Masthay)

Oddly, as tour has seemingly just started, it is now on the brink of conclusion. With one show at Outside Lands and three in Chicago, Phish will bid us adieu until Colorado—three shows that will likely be their swan song of 2011. And over these next four shows, I’m sure we will hear quite a bit more mind-bending music. Every tour has a speed bump, and last night certainly felt like the off night of this run—not such a big deal considering the goings on in the Phish universe over the past week. On to San Francisco. Next stop—Golden Gate Park!

1st Set Notes: The band played the first set straight as an arrow, favoring well-played songs though stringing together a lot of flat setlist choices. The show’s first signs of life came via a late-set “Stash” whose spiraling jam provided the first improvisational licks of the evening. The band built a little end-of-set momentum with “Funky Bitch,” and “Antelope,” but when the lights came on for setbreak, there wasn’t much music to discuss. The most notable talking point was the bustout of “Dogs Stole Things” to open the show, one of the last songs to appear in this era.

I: Dogs Stole Things, Stealing Time From the Faulty Plan, Poor Heart, Alaska, Halley’s Comet > It’s Ice, When the Circus Comes, Ya Mar, Stash, Funky Bitch, Instant Karma!, Run Like an Antelope

II: Down with Disease > Runaway Jim > Ghost > Golden Age > Also Sprach Zarathustra > Sneakin’ Sally through the Alley, Guyute, Wading in the Velvet Sea, You Enjoy Myself

E: Show of Life, Good Times Bad Times

"2001" - 8.10.11 (Eric Batuello)

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1,321 Responses to “Patience Is a Virtue”

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  1. Jtran Says:

    Nice write up Miner

    Watching the stream last night I felt similar to what you just wrote up. Looks like a great show to have been at though, and obviously the vibe can’t be beat (except by the Gorge ;))

    Interested to hear from all the BBers in attendance

  2. Jtran Says:

    Because I’m up top and all alone I’ll say this:

    Light > Chalkdust > Slave is sublime. First respin for me this morning

  3. Cable Hogue Says:

    Yeah, seems about right.

    For a set that was so rushed at times, there was quite a bit of engaging music. The flaws of the set could still have been totally redeemed by a quality jam out of Sally, instead Guyute…had to be a bit deflating.

    Looking forward to hearing what comes out of the indoor 3 night run.

  4. Cable Hogue Says:

    First respin of that underway here too @Jtran. Light is one to remember.

  5. angryjoggerz Says:

    Fun time last night, thought it was a pretty solid show with some good highlights. Had a blast once again with the bb crew, really uplifting and positive vibes the entire day. Chalking Tahoe up as a huge success, still have a few days here to just enjoy the environment and rest up for UIC.

    Safe travels.

  6. Selector J Says:

    sounds like a blast, aj. bb rages it in fine style.

  7. DryIceFactory Says:

    I feel like the band wanted to rush us through a whole bunch of songs last night and I’m positive they did a great job doing it. They wanted to hit the crowd with a slew of heavy hitting dance tunes and they did just that. Every song got a short but creative jam, and the segues didnt feel forced at all IMO. I think the band did exactly what they set out to do last night, and they killed it. Nice work Phish.

  8. DryIceFactory Says:

    I thought Sally came off a bit weak. Oh well. And the Guyute selection left me cold, but great set otherwise.

  9. Jman Says:

    Ok…so what is a BB’er?

  10. Gratefulcub Says:

    i’m sure that more jammyness would have been great, but the flow from DWD through 2001 works for me on playback. Obviously not an exploratory effort, but if this is the speed bump second set, it must be a damn fine tour.

  11. kayatosh Says:

    great review, miner. great show with some jam moments to relish, but as stated not enough patience. disease and jim jams both arguably concluded prematurely. loved what was offered, though, even if set II was overstuffed.

  12. Jtran Says:

    Really love the Light from night 1

  13. Admiral Ackbar Says:

  14. kayatosh Says:

    spinning 8.8.2011 cities tube and now split. cities and tube — $$. laid back version of cities with some choice liquidy guitar tone from trey. tube gets funk nasty in the middle. split is a syrupy goo. love it.

    appreciating the abstract and weird (psychedelic) more with age.

    love the way this band is playing right now. confident.

    time for 8.8.2011 set II. then some 8.10. what a bounty for the phish addict.

  15. dorn76 Says:

    I love how a setlist really doesn’t tell you much about a show. Always get suspicious when I see a wet dream looking list like this…

    There was a set like this at SBIX, 3rd set Sat I think…Just too much candy in too short a time.

  16. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    digging the theme today @selecta

  17. gavinsdad Says:

    black board = BB

    black board denizen = BB’er

  18. marcoesq Says:

    @dry ice

    just seeing your earlier post. you get out there yesterday? huge swell hit gooch’s, I was riding chest to head high waves all morning

  19. bhizzle Says:

    Listening from yawningdrone the Disease Jim is nice throughout…nice transition between the two. Page is really making me feel like they’re about to drop into No quarter alot lately with that type of playing. The ghost was a lil abrupt…I’m really starting not to like the beginning of that song. I thought the transition between the Ghost and Golden Age was smooth as well. 2001 seemed boiler plate.

  20. Phuzzy Says:

    @ Marco Where do you live/surf?

  21. angryjoggerz Says:

    I will also add that Tahoe loved Phish and that the Phish loved Tahoe. People working at the venue were just glowing, my cab driver said it was a great event, everyone saying how nice people were. The hotels did it up with a ton of other music in the area, including an apparently epic pool party with Dj Logic during the day yesterday. The complete package – great environ, easy accomodations, tons to do, nice people, welcoming city, no security, and a pretty good band.

  22. Phuzzy Says:

    Sounds effing ideal! Glad all you guys had a sweet slice of time together. It’s what IT is all about! Happy Bday taboot.

  23. Lycanthropist Says:

    thought last night was this tour’s weakest effort.

    It wasn’t a bad show, but it seemed like they couldn’t every really lock in.

    I love the set choices, and the bits and pieces of brilliance were good, but overall I just felt that they just were tired or weren’t locked in.

    Still had a blast with the crew last night, and enjoyed myself.

    This tour is happening way too fast

  24. lawrencewelk Says:

    Look out hipsters, phish is coming for you and your children.

  25. willowed Says:

    Did anyone witness AW clap during the stash “clapping” portion.

    I know he loves doing that type of stuff 😉

    I personally don’t get it, but I know he lives for that shit.

    Loves the Hood chant too from what I hear.

    Love you guys…Hope you had a blast. Can’t wait to hear the stories.

    On the Stash right now, there is a part of this jam that could get so dark, but they really don’t go for it.

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