Miner’s Picks: Summer Leg II

"Rock and Roll" - 8.5.11 - The Gorge (Graham Lucas)

Phish was riding high from a standout June tour and phenomenal festival when the hit the road for their second leg of summer. Beginning at the West Coast musical shrine of the Gorge, things started on an incredibly high note. From night one of tour we saw Phish integrate their newest abstract style of “storage jamming” into their live shows. Throwing down a seminal piece of modern-generation Phish on the first night of tour in “Rock and Roll -> Meatstick” things were off and running in a hurry. Pushing forward in their stylistic reinvention, the band incorporated this new-style psychedelia into all of their shows, even if only in small spots. The band was moving forward again, and there was no looking back. Following the night of insanity at the Gorge came the LA “Piper,” Tahoe’s “Light” and “Ghost,” UIC’s “Elements Set” of 8.15 and the next night’s “Down With Disease.” The band was comfortable taking massive musical risks again, and more often than not they were succeeding with flying colors. On a tour that lasted only two weeks, Phish still managed to crank out quite a few highlights. Capped at UIC by the only indoor stand of the summer, Phish’s second leg like it passed in a blink…but the music remains. My favorite pieces from Leg Two are below.

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“Roggae” – 8.5 I, Quincy, WA

The laid-back, West Coast psychedelic vibe took hold right away at the Gorge, sinking in deeply with this surreal sunset version of “Roggae.”

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“Rock and Roll -> Meatstick -> Boogie On” – 8.5 II

The jam of the year and, perhaps, the defining musical sequence of the modern era. Page’s Theremin was re-introduced in the live setting after the band’s groundbreaking Storage Jam, bringing new sounds into the mix while facilitating a new style of abstract jamming.

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“Farmhouse” – 8.5 II

“Oh snap! Did Miner just drop a “Farmhouse” on his picks?!” Indeed, I did. The cosmic energy from the previous 50 minutes spilled over into a beautifully reflective version of Phish’s ballad.

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“Wolfman’s -> Maze” – 8.6 I, Quincy, WA

Passing through a “Heartbreaker” tease within the monstrous rhythms of the jam, Phish built from this groove-based outing into “Maze,” a combo that cranked up the intensity of the first set.

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8.6.11 (G.Lucas)

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Tweezer > Caspian -> Sand -> Tweezer” – 8.6 II

If wide-open Phish grooves are your thing, this sequence is for you. Featuring an underrated “Tweezer” and my favorite “Sand” from the second leg, this is a can’t miss sequence of dance floor Phish. The “Sand -> Tweezer” is below.

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“Run Like an Antelope” – 8.6 II

Musically recapping most of the set within the song’s intro, Phish finished the job with a “Golden Age” jam in the “Antelope.” A supercharged version in a season that wasn’t necessarily full of them.

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“Tube” – 8.8 I, Hollywood, CA

A powerhouse few minutes from the first set of Hollywood.

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“Piper” – 8.8 II

This standout “Piper” capped a fierce (and underrated) set-opening sequence of “Carini > Crosseyed > Twist” at the Hollywood Bowl, and became the improvisational highlight of the show.

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“David Bowie” – 8.9 I

This rarely-placed, mid-first set “Bowie” anchored a strong opening set in Tahoe with a dark and intricate excursion.

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8.10.11 - Lake Tahoe (John Crouch)

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“Light” – 8.9 II, Stateline, NV

An exploratory, bass led epic that—like the Gorge’s “Rock and Roll”—reached musical places never before touched in the band’s career.

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“Chalk Dust -> Slave” – 8.9 II

Two ripping renditions of classic songs that were tactfully bridged by an delicate breakdown of “Chalk Dust.”

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“Runaway Jim > Ghost” – 8.10 II, Stateline, NV

In my mind, Phish should have rode out the magical plane they found in “Runaway Jim,” but they didn’t. Cutting a potentially stellar jaunt short with “Ghost,” the band took the second piece from rock to storage psychedelia in a version that takes the cake for the best of a weak second leg for the song.

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“Wolfman’s Brother” – 8.15 I, Chicago, IL

With a completely original jam all together, this version gets my vote for “Wolfman’s” of the year.

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“Reba” – 8.15 I

Riding the cresting momentum of the first set, this “Reba” hit the spot at UIC.

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UIC Pavilion (Chad Smith)

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“Sand > Light > Dirt” – 8.15 II

The beginning combo of the “Elements Set,” a standout segment that has been overshadowed by the latter par of the frame. Phish took another dive into original, abstract, and intergalactic realms in “Light.”

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“Waves -> Undermind > Steam” – 8.15 II

One of the most compelling jam sequences of the second leg, Page broke out his Theremin again for a spiritual soiree at towards the end of “Undermind.”

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“Harry Hood” – 8.15 E

The exalting exclamation point on a remarkble night in Chicago, and the best “Hood” of the summer that wasn’t played in Colorado.

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“Chalk Dust Torture” – 8.16 I, Chicago, IL

A third-song scorcher from UIC’s second show.

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“Limb by Limb” – 8.16 I

Taken into plinkofied planes, this first set “Limb” came as a surprise and delightful highlight of its set.

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8.9.10 - Lake Tahoe (John Crouch)

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“Down with Disease -> Twist” – 8.16 II

This exploratory “Disease” touches on countless places, though settles in few; a post-hiatus style jam without the opiates. A smooth transition into “Twist” capped a wild ride.

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“Bathtub Gin” – 8.17 I, Chicago , IL

A cathartic musical farewell, albeit for only a couple weeks.

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“Crosseyed > No Quarter” – 8.17 II

The only sequence really worth including from a fun, but musically anti-climactic final set of tour.

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1,017 Responses to “Miner’s Picks: Summer Leg II”

  1. Lycanthropist Says:

    Yeh I think I might pop up there on my summer break.

    Will be late summer though

  2. albert walker Says:

    the fact that my sports season begins with NHL playoffs and MLB baseball starting is making me feel very whitey today

    going to go spin some Arcade Fire and work on my excel worksheets

    laterz peeps

  3. kayatosh Says:

    8.5.2011 RnR->meatstick->boogie on

    $$$+ (perhaps the elusive fourth $, reserved fr greatest phish jams ever, is due). great irie walkin music. RnR jam super trippy. transition to meatstick $$$. trey sounding a whole lot like jerry at times during this amazing segment.

    today spinnin 7.26.97 dirt, YEM>Izabella and then set II. $$$ show. 2 drummers.

    phils opening day.

  4. Spasm Waiter Says:

    Woods -1

  5. Phamily Berzerker Says:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=V-OYKd8SVrI

    Yes, I can!

  6. kayatosh Says:

    sick willie the pimp tease (zappa/beefheart) at the end of this YEM (7.26.97) and then right into Izabella; no vocal jam. slick segment. trzr on fire

  7. Dr_Braun_Schitzmir Says:

    Tela’s, I absolutely have to agree about The Pod, Pure Guava and C&C.

    And I also agree that The Mollusk is probably their best, but Pure Guava remains my fave.

  8. SillyWilly Says:

    i like how tiger’s putting right now

  9. MiA Says:

    PB with the inside Lubys joke. Nice.

    I have never been in a Lubys. But I have gone to Marie Callenders.

  10. garretc Says:

    I can hit you with only a little MLS talk, Rob… The Portland Timbers are only my third favorite soccer team, so they don’t get much of my attention, but I’ll give you what I can!

    Started the season with a nice win home against Philly, but three straight losses since then… Darlington Nagbe (who, despite the name, is not a British noble) picked up a brace last game and, from what I’ve read, has really been finding his form this season!

    Now, if you want any Serie A or Bundesliga talk, well speak up, ’cause is be glad to pontificate!

  11. MiA Says:

    Today is Alpine ’98. I think I took a piss break during this Guyute, but that Ramble On, Mike’s -> Esther -> Week was just fantastic to start a 1st set.

  12. tela'smuff Says:

    @mia – i’m watching stream on cbs. is there other coverage following Tiger live right now? cbs is just Amen corner, 15 & 16, and some lame featured groups.

  13. MiA Says:

    I will say, that the Masters is made for High Def TV’s. Went to a practice round 4 years ago, and that place is a shrine. Not a blade of grass out of place. Stunningly beautiful.

    As a gardener and lover of nice landscape design, I dig it. Figured Robear would too.

  14. MiA Says:

    Tela, not that I know of. Thought Masters.com would have it as one of the “Featured Groups” and there are two on there, but I haven’t figured out who they are yet.

    The iPhone App for Masters is pretty good.

  15. kayatosh Says:

    went back to 7.26.97 timber. $$$. check it out ASAP. jam is deep and rich and chocolatey. not the typical 97 funk jam stye. trey going w/ the liquid tone throughout. page on the baby grand; gordo dancing in and out of the trey wash and keeping the beat. drummers playing off each other with light agile play. trey loops a laser beam for the 2nd half of the jam and goes to work. a return to the timber theme and then pre-bowie space.

    grateful to still be discovering delightful phish jams. July 97 delivers

  16. kayatosh Says:

    should i be watchin golf or something? so out of touch with that sport.

  17. kayatosh Says:

    extended pre-bowie space. wow.

  18. Phamily Berzerker Says:

    When I lived in Austin, my boss loved Luby’s.

    After golf on Saturday morning at Roy Kizer. it was always his ‘treat’. After tuning up from the course to the restaurant anything is edible. 😉

  19. lumpyhead Says:

    mornin dudes.

  20. MiA Says:

    Kizer is a great links course and always windy as you know. Played there a ton. Jimmy Clay is also a great muni course.

  21. dorn76 Says:

    @tela’s go to the leaderboard and click on him, you can see all the shots Tig has made so far pretty much.

  22. Leo Weaver Says:

    Too much fertilizer out there for Robear to dig.

    I designed the grounds around the new hospitality center behind hole 2 a few years back. Just missed out on working on the restroom bldg behind 16 and new entry gates. I can tell you lots about the landscape there MiA. My old boss was integral in most of the landscape improvements since the early 80s, including refurbishing and bringing back the magnolias along Magnolia Drive.

  23. dorn76 Says:

    You could fit four 3.0 Timbers in this 7/26/97 version

  24. MiA Says:

    That Austin show is fantastic.

  25. Kaveh Says:

    DriveBy: Greg Williams is terrible. Glad he is out of the NFL; with crap like this.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fhnn9kbqQUA

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