Tahoe Revisited

8.9.11 J.Crouch)

When comparing stands of summer’s second leg, Tahoe hasn’t felt the type of love that the Gorge or UIC has received. And while that analysis is completely justified, and the second night left much to be desired, let’s not sweep Tahoe under the rug just yet. Overshadowed by the bookends of Leg Two, the first night of Tahoe stands humbly in the wings; a dark-horse, two-set effort that can hold its own against the stronger shows of summer. Were it not for the wooked-out cocktail party that was popping off throughout the venue all night long (a result of the casino vibe bleeding right into the show) and an undersized sound system that couldn’t compensate for said wooks, the first night would be getting more props for what it was—another stellar night along summer’s second leg.

8.9.11 J.Crouch)

While some shows over this last run were defined exclusively by their second set theatrics, Tahoe’s opening frame carried some significant weight. “Party Time” provided a surprise opening and the rare combination of “Oh Kee Pah > Bag” got the party started in earnest. “Mellow Mood” in the mountain sunshine matched perfectly, as everyone began feeling the set before the band had dropped into any jams at all. Stretching out the intro to “Punch” into an infectious series of grooves, the momentum of the set began to grow. And following a bust out of the ’98 relic “Meat,” the band got serious with a mid-set “David Bowie.” Quite the odd placement for the jam made it all the more enticing as Phish dipped their ladle into melodic-infused darkness early on in the show. A blistering “46 Days” brought one of August’s better first sets to a close.

But—as usual—very few people would walk out of Harvey’s glorified parking lot buzzing about the first set. Enthusiastic conversations centered on the colossal, bass-led excursion that grew out of “Light,” and how it traveled through intergalactic wormholes dripping with harrowing textures and futuristic, beat-driven soundscapes. The band locked into another forward-looking adventure out West—one of those jams that rendered the rest of the set gravy. But this gravy was was quite good.

As “Light” meandered into nothing—as so many of its outlandish journeys tend to—Trey slowly wound up the into to “Chalk Dust” in a complete juxtaposition of styles. From the outer rings of Saturn to slamming white lights, the band jumped right back into a rock concert with little buffer zone. But as a dynamic “Chalk Dust” flew through multiple teases, the band all of a sudden had the crowd on its knees with a delicate breakdown of the classic rock anthem, efficiently deconstructing the song with a melodic bridge to a mid-set “Slave.” And per usual, when Phish centers “Slave” in the second set, a highlight rendition was sure to follow. Slowly building through blissful textures to match the mountain locale, the band unfurled a cathartic centerpiece that resolved “Light’s” journey into the center of the Earth.

8.9.10 (John Crouch)

A concise but cathartic “Jibboo” had opened the set, and after a seemingly random “Free” came out after “Slave,” the show’s delicate feel continued. Apparently spurred on by a legion of fans in some sort of on-going campaign, Phish broke out Elton John’s “Rocket Man: late in the second set, a cover which Page did far more justice than the thousands of bellowing drunkards ever could. And closing upon a similar note, the band dropped into “Harry Hood.” Though “Hood” was tight, it remained a relatively vanilla version. But Phish had one last gasp left—“Walls of the Cave.” And while I can’t say that the song seemed to fit in the set, I can vouch for the fact that Phish tore it to pieces. Ballooning the end jam into a set-closing exclamation point, the guys punctuated a rather delicate show with a bang.

Returning to the mellower feel for the double encore of “Bug, Squirming Coil,” Phish whispered their goodbyes into the cool mountain evening. And though the debauchery would grow from there, Phish left stage with a very mood-matching performance that greeted their fans to the gorgeous locale of Lake Tahoe. And with all the deserved hoopla over UIC and the Gorge, this gem—with a distinct flow from beginning to end—has gotten lost in the mix. Give it a re-spin, you won’t be disappointed.

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Jam of the Day:

Light” 8.9.11 II

One of the standout jams of 2011; a dark trek into progressive bass-led mania.

[audio:http://phishthoughts.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/ph2011-08-09t14.mp3]

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1,022 Responses to “Tahoe Revisited”

  1. albert walker Says:

    Damn that 95 red rocks Mikes is killer

    Goes storage jam in the middle and gets pulled back out to the metal groove

    95 summer. Can’t beat it.

  2. [an unrelated] Wilson Says:

    if my corporate Big Brothers truly do monitor computer use, they must be shaking their heads today; “god this guy is worthless. 8 hours of this shite?”

    and yes, i too need to pack.

  3. Phamily Berzerker Says:

    MIA better make it or I need a non-sales job.

    At airport gate, seshing TT annoying gate waiting readers

  4. butter Says:

    @ Kaya – son’s name is “Jackson”

  5. Mr. Palmer Says:

    another day, another shitshow.

    What’s up kids?

    Love that everyone is booking last minute flights. You guys are sickos.

  6. EL Duderino Says:

    Oh Boy!

    What happened today Palmer?

  7. tela'smuff Says:

    nice late minute additions possibly. do it fellas

  8. EL Duderino Says:

    off to beers and dinner

  9. kayatosh Says:

    sweet, butter. $$$ name.

  10. tela'smuff Says:

    dayman – if you end up with no options let me know. funkybch gmail

  11. kayatosh Says:

    what up palm. I’m on kid bedtime duty momentarily. all is well.

    electricity rules

  12. joe Says:

    anyone remember the trick to downloading stream only shows off the archive? – morally wrong?

  13. Mike in Austin Says:

    Oh well, after all that, I’m staying here. I used to say WWJBD (What would James Bond do) and James Bond would get on a plane for sure. [protip: always a good question to ask yourselves in time of confusion on what is the right path forward]

    I could rationalize $8-900 maybe even $1000, but it was gonna be about $1300+, and well … I’d have to probably also work until 1:30 tonight to maybe get what I have to get done tomorrow and Tuesday.

    My inability to pull the trigger earlier cost me. All the early (cheaper) tickets to Denver got bought up as I was filling in my details. My last flight would have landed me nearly 5 pm.

    It will be an especially sick show now just so the jam gods can rub it in. You can thank me later.

  14. stapes Says:

    2 day conference. Done.

    1 Friday to get through.

    let’s do this meetup somehow.

    gotta fire up the grill and cook some dinner.

    avery IPA. nomnomnom

  15. joe Says:

    jim>free from oswego (live bait 5) so good.

  16. Mike in Austin Says:

    PB totally had me going today. Planets couldn’t align.

  17. phoammhead Says:

    i feel you, mia. i’m struggling over here. i’m going to need a psychic shift somehow . . . someway

  18. Mr. Palmer Says:

    Ah , nothing too dramatic today @ El. Dude. Just discovered that the kid that quit/got fired last week was trading a discretionary account behind everyone’s back and lost 200k of my bosses ( Tony Soprano) money. What could possibly go wrong?

  19. P.S.H.S. Says:

    i’m way behind…… but, after several spins through rnr>meatstick>boogie i’m convinced…. these guys are good at playing music.

    also, been spinning the new live bait for the past few car rides. my conclusion is that shapiro did a good job, as usual.
    however, i find myself not liking old phish that much lately. i appreciate it, but the new stuff is just taking over. any one else have this problem?

  20. Mike in Austin Says:

    He went too small. Gotta lose like
    Jerome Kerviel to make it worth it.

  21. Mr. Palmer Says:

    no shit Mia. Jerome knew how to blow shit up.

  22. joe Says:

    I’m going to have a music emergency if I can’t figure this out. heading straight out to my bro in-laws place at the beach after work tonight to chill all day tomorrow. He has a nice sound system and I need at least one good dead show to play. Forgot all my tunes at home and not worth the pit stop. Loaded up on the live bait 5 & 6, but need some Jerry too.
    need to take advantage of work connection right now to get some.

    Suggestions?

    Playing Supplies for tomorrow: flash drive and laptop (sans internet conneciton)

  23. albert walker Says:

    Fuck no PSHS

    That 95 Mikes and 96 tweezer been playing on a loop at the crib since they’ve been kicked down

    Love 3.0 but that 93 to 95 stuff is like coming home

    Summer 95 $$$$

  24. halcyon Says:

    Joe

    Download the deadpod through Itunes or Stream the Deadpod here.

    http://deadshow.blogspot.com/

    Professor has choice selections for your listening pleasure.

  25. phoammhead Says:

    pshs, today’s phish is quite good . . . i would call it the goodz

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