Universal Frequencies

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , , on September 10th, 2011 by Mr.Miner

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On Cloud 9 In Colorado

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , on September 9th, 2011 by Mr.Miner

Denver (Charles Bridwell)

Leaving Colorado, I had been blown away by three days—six sets—of spectacular music; Phish hadn’t put such a run together thus far this summer. While other three-nighters all had one lesser night or at least lulls throughout, Denver had none. Coming to the Rocky Mountains to close a monumental summer, Phish left with three timeless shows under their their belt and a list of highlights that just doesn’t end.

Using their three-night stand as a definitive statement as to where they stand right now, the band sent a message of excellence and exuberance to their fans—things could not be finer in the world of Phish. With authoritative playing all weekend long, the guys sculpted jams of all shapes and sizes, illustrating their diversity of styles in 2011. And as a result, top-shelf highlights poured from the stage from Friday’s first set through Sunday’s last.

Denver (C.Bridwell)

Perhaps the most original and forward-looking excursion of the weekend came in Friday night’s “Seven Below.” Growing into the peak of the “S” set, the band launched into an experiment in quick-paced groove, a path that eventually led them into the storage shed psychedelia that has quickly developed into Phish’s most innovative style of play. Earlier in the set, the band showed off their ambient soundscapes in a gorgeous rendition of “Simple,” and before that, a smashing, bass-led “Sand” capped off a summer of scintillating dance grooves from the song. In a run that featured all-star first sets, taboot, Friday night saw the three-song combination of “Stash,” “Sneakin’ Sally > Sparks” light up the opening set of the run. In “Sally,” Phish took another ride through unconventional groove and into the storage shed, before landing perfectly in a demonstrative cover of “Sparks” for the first time in 15 years.

Amidst their improvisational combo platter of in Denver, Phish dropped their most blissful and uplifting jam in memory— “Tweezer.” While Fishman maintained infectious beats throughout, Trey, Mike and Page combined in awe-inducing mélange of sound that groove that carried massive emotion and spirituality. After all the traveling and shows this summer, “Tweezer” summed up the heightened emotional state of the band and their community with music harnessed from the divine. Bathing in IT for the duration of this stunning version, this transformed into one of those life-affirming moments in which any and every decision that I had ever made that brought me to the place I stood in Colorado was absolutely fated—this “Tweezer” was the reason. A sky-scraping jam that touched the very soul of IT all, “Tweezer” felt like a poignant ode to life’s eternal spirit. This was most definitely the reason.

Denver (Charles Bridwell)

Later in the set, the band jumped off “2001” into a unsuspecting “Light,” a move that would culminate in one of the moments of the weekend. Amidst a passionate jam that Mike owned with rolling, melodic basslines—a divergence from the song’s futuristic soundscapes of summer—Phish migrated into a intricate and percussive section. Trey laced the “Disease” melody—piece by piece—perfectly into this context and the band joined him in an instrumental reprise of the set-opener without ever leaving the rhythmic template of “Light”—a true moment of catharsis in a weekend laced with majesty.

Denver (C.Bridwell)

On Sunday, the centerpiece of the non-stop final set—possibly, the most complete set of all—a low-ride in “Twist” seamlessly segued into a voyage through a red, red wormhole in “Piper” and then Phish led a celestial ascent with a “Hood” for the ages.  Employing quickened yet danceable grooves in “Piper,” the band locked into one of the weekends indelible excursions, one in which Page infused the Theremin like never before. This high-speed musical drama ended with another pass through the storage shed of sonic psychedelia in what became the most creative music of the final night. And Phish hasn’t played a “Hood” like the version that followed in ages. Combining the staccato stylings of more modern renditions with the precision and passion that defined “Hoods” of the mid-‘90s, this rendition was a staggering spiritual triumph. And while we are at, throw a first set “Bathtub Gin” into the mix that was one of the most exhilarating dance sessions of the weekend.

Needless to say, Phish had it all working over Denver’s three-day extravaganza. Stamping summer complete with—easily—their most accomplished, top-to-bottom stand of the season, the band likened musical superheroes as they had their way with each and every piece they played. Creative, responsive, and innovative, Phish finished tour on a mile-high note in Denver, leaving their community in a state of bliss. And who would have thought this is where we’d be when September rolled around?

Enjoy “Dick’s Picks” in this installment of Ten Tunes For Friday!

 

Denver (Charles Bridwell)

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TTFF: “Dick’s Picks”

Bathtub Gin” 9.4 I

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Seven Below” 9.2 II

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Sneakin’ Sally > Sparks” 9.2 I

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Tweezer” 9.3 II

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Simple -> Steam” 9.2 II

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Ghost -> Guy Forget -> Ghost” 9.4 II

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Light -> Down with Disease” 9.3 II

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Twist -> Piper > Hood” 9.4 II

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One More For Vermont

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , on September 7th, 2011 by Mr.Miner

9.14.2011

Just when you thought it was safe to put away the dancing shoes for the season…we’ve got one more show! After capping a massive tour on Sunday, Phish announced yesterday that they will play a one-night benefit for Vermont Flood Recovery at Champlain Valley Expo in Essex Junction, Vermont on Wednesday, September 14. Last weekend, Hurricane Irene brought the worst flooding in nearly a century to Vermont while causing devastation to many parts of the band’s home state, and now Phish will step up to help.

9.2.11 (G.Lucas via webcast)

A 24-hour ticket request period ends at Noon today, with options available for “Best Available” $75 GA tickets (either stands or field) and a “Friends of the Waterwheel Package” that includes preferred parking, a reserved box seat, a limited edition event poster, and access to a Vermont craft beer tent. Additionally, in an effort to assure locals get tickets, the only be general-on sale will take place this Saturday, September 10, at 10am at a location to be disclosed on Friday on Phish.com, email update, and local Vermont Radio. The Champlain Valley Expo holds 10,505 people, but with a limited-access on sale, tickets may not be as easy as they sound. Then again, on a Wednesday night directly following a 33-show tour, perhaps people won’t be chomping at the bit to make it to one more show. It will be interesting to see how tickets shake out.

The Phish from Vermont

This show marks only the eighth Phish show in Vermont since 1993, and the first in the band’s home state since the Coventry debacle back in 2004. A special show, without question, it certainly doesn’t suck that the band is getting another chance to play together right now—a time when they are churning out consistently great music. And a small break seems to do the aging wizards quite well. So in just one week, Phish will take the stage for a summer encore, the 34th show of the year, and an earnest goodbye until (likely) December. The show will surely be one to remember and once it sells out, something tells me there will be a webcast option as well, as this is all to bring money to a struggling state.

Before even getting a chance to post a reaction to Denver’s peak of summer or to speculate when the band will next take the stage, we’ve got one show to look forward with the Phish from Vermont. And this time, we’ll be in Vermont!

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Jam of the Day:

Roggae” 8.5.11 I

Sublime sunset psychedelia from the Gorge’s opening night.

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Segueing Out of Summer

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , on September 5th, 2011 by Mr.Miner

9.4.11 Graham Lucas via webcast)

Phish slammed the door on their greatest three-night stand of the year last night, again crushing two sets of highlight-ridden music for their Denver audience. In their tour finale, the band unveiled a spectacular final set littered with buttery segues, smoking improv, and the razor-sharp musical marksmanship displayed throughout three glorious nights in the Rocky Mountains.

9.4.11 (M.Stein)

Once summer’s last set kicked off with “Rock and Roll,” it would be quite some time before the band put their instruments down for a breath of air. Another frame of Phish in which the highlight was “the entire thing,” the band closed tour in high-style with a set teeming with creativity and seamless communication. Moving from “Rock and Roll’s” full-throttle shred fest, the band dropped into half-time—a pit of musical quicksand that slowed things into a swampy realm immediately. As the band was breaking down the music into its next stage, Trey began layering the iconic introductory lick to Abbey’s Road’s “Come Together” into the mix. As the band latched onto the idea and crafted a smooth transition into the song, they dusted off the Beatles’ classic for the first time since Cleveland on December 8, 1995. And just as the band smoothly as they spliced the set’s first two selections, so would they their next two, sculpting fluid transitions into “Twist” and then “Piper.” I know I’ve said this in the previous two reviews, but the band—again—oozed a vigor and confidence unseen even at UIC’s previous trifecta only two weeks ago. Such demonstrative playing would take them  through my favorite “Twist” I’ve heard in some time—an intricate four-part exchange that possessed a laid-back yet directional quality that allowed the piece to breathe while still never losing momentum. All night long, Trey’s lead lines attracted a white-hot spotlight, and within this “Twist,” his playing absolutely shone. Completely within context and without missing a beat, he laid down “Low Rider’s” melody, another idea on which the band smoothed right into as they jammed on War’s ‘70s relic before slipping right back into “Twist.” The seamless transitions continued as Phish morphed, with uber-patience, from “Twist” into its song mate from birth in 1997, “Piper.”

Page on Theremin (G.Lucas via webcast)

At this juncture, the set had still not stopped for a moment and the band was absolutely on fire. Under such circumstances, there was no better place to launch into than the wide-open musical fields of “Piper.” A piece that takes no time at all to get into deep waters did so especially last night, as Phish locked into a whole-band groove early on and with ease. And from there, the improvisational beast of the night would truly take foot. Moving through infectious dance patterns at a mile a minute—a vibrant illustration of musical density—Phish took hold of the jam by the jugular and never let go. Never meandering and directed like an inanimate assassin, the jam sprang to life as the music coursed through the band from another dimension. Passing through several sections of hard-edged rhythms, including an indiscernible vocal chant over a sublime sequence, the show’s centerpiece culminated in a wide-open, Theramin-laced chase through a psychedelic portal. In, perhaps the most precise and fast-paced uses of his retro-futuristic toy—the magic ingredient to some of the most sublime jams of late-summer, Page led the way deep into the storage shed. And amidst this exploratory monstrosity, Trey wove in mind-melting “Mind Left Body” licks that briefly allured his band mates amidst this primordial soup.

9.4.11 (Michael Stein)

To resolve “Piper’s” journey into the center of the earth, the band brought us to heaven with the most magnificent rendition of “Harry Hood” since Worcester’s modern classic last December. A version that combined a modern staccato soundscape feel with a very old-school, whole-band assault on the song’s theme, when “Hood” is given this kind of treatment, it delivers us to places only known only to the heart and soul. With a mid-‘90s precision and sublime guitar melodies, Trey led the whole-band excursion through the holy piece with phrasing so sublime it sounded like he was narrating a story. Passionate to the core, this “Hood” provided an hugely cathartic exclamation point to the first part of the set and the shows highest high. Regal and life-affirming while also quasi-experimental, this “Hood” is a must hear and taps into the very ethos of the band.

9.4.11 (M.Stein)

Phish followed up this platinum playing with a dip into the second “Roggae” of the late-summer. It seems that the Gorge’s opening night sunset psychedelia cracked a wall in this song and its potential is now beginning to seep out. This blissful soundscape provided the perfect compliment to the sky-scraping “Hood,” and an ideal late-second set selection whose change of pace doesn’t didn’t alter the improvisational focus of the show. And at the least-expected time of the night, Phish dropped into “Ghost.”

Charging into driving, groove-rock textures, the band was locked in annihilation mode. Trey and Page simply went to town, riding their galloping rhythm section into a highly-danceable version. Well into a highly danceable version, Trey unleashed a bold and familiar lick, but before I had time to process what it was, the band had slid right into their cult-classic “Guy Forget” for the first time since Phoenix 2000, and only the second time ever. Blending right out of the “Ghost” jam, the band finally returned their ever-elusive piece to the live stage after several soundchecks over the past few weeks. A smashing highlight in a set—and weekend—filled to the brim with mind-numbing musicianship, the band crushed the “Ghost -> Guy Forget -> Ghost” combination, and then closed the set with a searing run though “Walls of the Cave” within one week of the ten-year anniversary of 9-11. Bringing the set full circle with a “Rock and Roll” tease within the fiery “Walls” jam, when Phish had finally did put their instruments down, no one could possible have asked for anything more.

The summer tour that once loomed like a never-ending monster has finally been laid to rest. With three shows that represent the crème de la crème of 2011, the band has completed their 33-show path, and—god damn—the Golden Age of Phish has reached a whole new level of excellence! In a perfectly-placed encore, the band concluded its summer of reinvention with the song that represents of the rebirth of Phish, and hearkened back to the unknown, though limitless, possibilities of 2009. Well, two years later, as Trey sang “The only rule is it begins” amidst a triumphant tour-closing jam, the words of promise have never rung truer.

9.4.11 (G.Lucas via webcast)

First Set Thoughts: The third outstanding first set of Denver opened with a bang in the form of “Maze”—the first time the song has opened a show since Albany on December 9, 1995. Spirited versions of “Back on the Train” and “Rift” set up the first set gem—and one of the best single jams in the entire show—“Bathtub Gin.” Running an absolute guitar clinic, Trey broke out countless licks in his repertoire in a rare showcase of such focused, six-string acrobatics outside of Trey tour. And with the complimentary support of his band mates, Trey signed his autograph forwards, backwards, and upside-down on a version that immediately jumped out as the most groovalicious in ages. Thought not extending the time of the song very much, Phish has now learned how to make “Tube” into a beast again. Last night’s version was the second consecutive outing that popped with creativity and shining luster. A compact, though incredibly intense “Timber” followed before “Chalk Dust” closed its summer with another creative—though more contained—adventure. With three consecutive first sets of substance, and six straight sets of top-notch Phish, the band flew out to Colorado and wrote their own narrative of How the West Was Won.

I: Maze, Back on the Train, Rift, Bathtub Gin, The Way It Goes*, Halfway to the Moon, Gumbo, Halley’s Comet > Tube, Timber, Roses Are Free, Chalk Dust Torture

II: Rock and Roll -> Come Together -> Twist** -> Piper > Harry Hood > Roggae > Ghost -> Guy Forget -> Ghost, Walls of the Cave

E: Backwards Down the Number Line

*debut, Gillian Welch, ** w/ “”Low Rider” jam

9.4.11 (Graham Lucas via webcast)

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Dreaming In Denver

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , on September 4th, 2011 by Mr.Miner

9.3.11 Michael Stein

On the middle night of Denver’s summer finale, Phish threw down a show that rivaled any of the season. Without having listened back just yet, because sometimes—well—it’s just better that way, I can, unquestionably, vouch for the two-set powerhouse. In an absolute showcase of why I travel this country far and wide chasing down a dream, the band crafted a second set that underlined the intangible excellence of now in the universe of Phish.

Fusing central jam vehicles “Down with Disease” and “Tweezer” into a half-hour of the most sublime music of the summer, the band finally went deep on “Tweezer” and came up with timeless jam that immediately vaulted itself into my favorite pieces of music I’ve ever experienced. I don’t need to hear it again—I don’t need any listen-back guarantee—it’s that good. Fusing bliss and groove in an improvisational odyssey, the likes of which I thought only lived in the far recesses of my imagination, Phish dropped a jam that will remain in all of our listening rotations for the rest of time.

9.3.11 (M.Stein)

And how they got there was a great part of the adventure. Taking a set-opening “Disease” into an exploratory realm and then patiently building towards a ridiculous segue into “Tweezer,” the band seemed in the brink of an all-time transition. Having deliberately spent time weaving the song’s together, at the last second the band (or a single member) inexplicably rushed the final entry into “Tweezer,” botching the pure transition. But at the same time, having just jammed a stellar “Disease” into “Tweezer,” rushed by a five seconds or not, shit was on like donkey kong! And instead of my writing about this “Tweezer” right now, do yourself a favor and just go listen. It’s rare that I get back to my hotel without the immediate desire replay what I just lived, but somehow, once I got back home last-night, this soul-cleansing journey wasn’t something I was ready to hear so quickly. In all seriousness, however, if you weren’t there, you should do it now. Check it out…Phish at their absolute finest.

9.2.11 (M.Stein)

When the opening half-hour of the second set consisted of nothing but “Disease -> Tweezer,” the band could have played “Julius” six times and walked off stage and I’d have been a pig in shit. But, thankfully, they only played it once towards the end of the set when things had already been scribed in the record books by a set of music that never let up for a moment. After a half-hour of exploratory jamming, one would expect such an epic “Tweezer” to bleed into “Prince Caspian,” and certainly not “Golden Age!” But that’s the kind of night it was. Tacking on the first jammed-out version since Super Ball, Phish tied a third open jam onto an unfolding masterpiece. Punctuating the opening run with a spectacular and hard-peaking “Limb by Limb,” for the second night in row, anything the band touched was turning to gold. Thus, when they started up “Kill Devil Falls”—a song I’d never want to hear in the middle of a second set—it didn’t make me flinch. On a night like last, the songs were completely secondary to the in-the-moment jamming that took hold of the band from the onset of the show. And as the band careened through the blistering rock jam, just when song usually winds down, the band hopped right back into the high-speed textures from which they had just descended. And when this bonus segment came to a close, the band seeped into the ambient openings of “2001.”

9.3.11 (Michael Stein)

It felt like a “YEM” might sprout from the peak of “2001,” but when “Light” came out of the song’s peak, the dreamscape just became more vivid. A passionate exploration of “Light”—another highlight of a set made of them—built to a delicate passage where Trey hinted at the “Down With Disease” lick. And as the rest of the band jumped into a percussive hybrid of the two songs—a legitimate “Disease Reprise”—one of the show’s most awe-inducing moments materialized out of the unlikeliest of places. At this stage of the set, the band, the crowd, and the entire universe had experienced a massive triumph, and when the band did finally segue into “Julius” amidst one of their sickest sets of the year, it seemed sardonically appropriate. “Cavern,” the seeming set-closer, set the table for an “Antelope” that punctuated this show complete. And to bring the set full circle, amidst the chaotic jam, Trey wove in calculated “Disease” licks, another sign of a band that is clearly communicating as well if not better than ever.

The classic encore of “Sleeping Monkey,” “Tweezer Reprise” provided a classy signature on a show of immediate lore. I’ll be back after the tour to rehash this whole affair in a far more musically-focused fashion. But for now, the emotions are all that will come through the keys. With one night left of a summer of legend, the band is at the top of their game, and it’s all just a blessing to be a part of.

9.2.11 (M.Stein)

First Set Thoughts: The opening frame of last night show—though only containing one true jam vehicle in “Wolfman’s Brother,” retained full engagement from the get go. Each and every song in the set got the full treatment, as each piece represented a supercharged version of its normal self. If one song stood out to me in the first set, it was “Llama.” For the past couple years, the song seemed like its old-school energy could never be matched, and that a bust-out would always be fun for the memories. But in the type of performance that underlines the band’s unbridled confidence of the moment, they exploded with a fury brought the audience back to the song’s most gloriest of days. A super smooth “Moma,” an unusually huge “Ocelot” and a slamming “Funky Bitch” also stood out in a frame that featured on-point playing throughout. And to close the set came another creative excursion of “Wolfman’s,” a version that grew into uncharted waters before returning to the song’s conclusion in a massive set closer. Fuck—even “Possum” shredded. It was just one of those nights.

I: Possum, The Moma Dance, The Wedge, Ocelot, The Divided Sky, Funky Bitch, Axilla > Llama, Fast Enough for You, Wolfman’s Brother

II: Down with Disease -> Tweezer > Golden Age > Limb By Limb, Kill Devil Falls > Also Sprach Zarathustra > Light* -> Julius > Cavern, Run Like an Antelope

E: Sleeping Monkey > Tweezer Reprise

*w/ “Disease Reprise” jam

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ssssSSSSssss

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , on September 3rd, 2011 by Mr.Miner

9.2.11 - Denver, CO (G.Lucas via webcast)

Historically, Phish has used their tour-ending shows as a summation of the musical ideas presented and explored over the previous month. But as Summer 2011 has been a multi-pronged macro-tour, instead of one final statement, in Denver we will get three. And last night, Phish began their summer swan song with a magnificent outing that put on shining display the stellar state of the union. Spanning their improvisational spectrum over a wide range of songs— all united, in loving tribute, in the key of S—Phish came out with a powerful performance at Dick’s on Friday, having their way with any piece of music they chose to play.

9.2.11 (G.Lucas via webcast)

Using jams of all shapes and sizes, the band threw down a relentless second set—and a meaty first—that was underlined by the ultra-responsive interplay between all band members and the confidence with which they delivered the music. Interestingly, in the promotional shots for these Denver shows, Mike is standing front and center while Trey…well, Trey isn’t. And this image, perhaps nothing but a coincidence, provided a photographic snapshot of the band right now—guided by Mike. As the summer months have worn away, so has the notion that Trey is the leader of any and all jams. With Mike’s next-generation bass-playing providing the glue for so many of the band’s modern excursions, Phish has formed its new sound around Mike’s leadership and his ability to gel with Trey in a one-brained, 11-stringed musical monster.

And never has Mike’s navigational rudder been more apparent as with the second-set opener, “Sand.” Though the band has played many stellar versions of their dance anthem over the summer, this jam grew into something more significant. As Trey took a back seat to Mike’s ninja-like craftsmanship, the guys locked into a whole-band adventure that followed a different contour. Flying through upbeat textures with a bass-infused backbone in the vein of an “Antelope” jam, Phish locked into—and peaked—a jam that didn’t finish with a guitar showcase but ended with a legitimate whole-band arrival. Serving as a frothy cap on a summer’s worth of unforgettable versions, you can take this one to the bank.

9.2.11 (Graham Lucas via webcast)

Following the fiery set-opening dance session with a rare stand-alone “Simple,” Phish followed up one standout jam with another. As the band bled into a quasi-ambient plane, still backed by subtle and jazzy rhythms, they were once again pushing the envelope of new-school sound-sculpting. Taking the audience on a cerebral ride through the other side, Trey brought us back as he delicately plucked the beginnings to “Steam” underneath the experimental plane. Merging the two songs quite well, Phish went on to crush their most significant version of “Steam” to date—a seething and heavy-handed jam that followed Mike’s sinister ideas while translating like candy in the open-air surroundings.

"Steam" 9.2.11 (G.Lucas via webcast)

Blending “Steam”—a song about the merging of souls—into “Soul Shakedown Party” the band struck a poignant, mid-set chord amidst a show that was scripted in memoriam. As the band sat within the the reggae stylings of the Bob Marley classic, Trey began to pick the beginning of “Seven Below”—a moved that would have come across far less fluidly were it not for a quick adjustment by Fishman. And with “Seven Below” came a completely original, groove-based journey that stood as the exploratory centerpiece of the set.

Trey led the band into the fray with staccato links out of the gate and the jam just continued to build momentum. Bouncing ideas off each other with a silly precision, the band crafted a rhythmic romper room, eventually taking things way outside the box with a full head of steam. Moving from groove to the abstract, the band allowed things to expand organically until they reached a subtly dynamic and totally sublime soundscape during which Trey counted off the beginning of “Suzy.”

9.2.11 (G.Lucas via webcast)

“Suzy” provided a bridge of fiery funk to a cathartic combination of “Scents and Subtle Sounds” and “Slave to the Traffic Light.” And in these two selections, Trey let his spirit soar. Taking “Scents” (albeit without the intro) on a far more emphatic ride than its Super Ball return, and coupling the heart-tugging version with a pristine “Slave,” Phish was masters of all domains last night. Check how Trey holds a note amidst his “Slave” solo while the band builds around him in frozen moment of majesty.

Up until this point, for a show filled with songs that all started with the same letter, the flow wasn’t compromised for a second. But when they started “Silent in the Morning” without “The Horse” and moved into “Sanity” and onto “Sweet Adeline,” the band’s joke had finally caught up with them. Though after a set like that, a little fun never hurt anyone at all. And then, in a total prank, as everyone tried to guess what “S” song would be come next for the encore, Phish came out with a left hook in “Sabatoge,” leaving the audience in fits of laughter and adrenaline.

And just like that, two weeks removed from UIC, the band hopped right back in the saddle with an authoritative performance as if they hadn’t skipped a beat. And there was significant meat to the first half, taboot.

Official Denver Print (LandLand!)

Though the show started rather slowly through “Strange Design,” once the band jumped into “Stash,” the vibe of the evening changed immediately. Delving into some rare first-set psychedelia, and following it up with the lock-step funk of “Sneaking Sally” the band turned a slow set eventful in no time. And within lay a three-song sequence that provided the most memorable stretch of the first set half. Phish first took “Sally” for a swanky stroll and then, spurned on by Mike’s envelope filter, they built into a darkening jam that grew more abstract until they made a virtually seamless pass into “Sparks” for the first time in 15 years (11.29.96). Steeped with a deadly, old-school precision, the band the passage from The Who’s “Tommy” in dramatic fashion. And a few songs later, the band was right back in the thick of things with a “Split” that saw Trey and Mike take front and center over a driving canvas of sound. Transforming into a cacophonous symphony, Phish took things to the heart of the matter in a version that saw them finally work their way back into the song’s final peak for the first time in a while. Closing a marathon first set with “Squirming Coil” at almost 10 pm, the band was laying it all on stage in a very special night.

And if that was chapter one—and Phish hasn’t even played a song that starts with any letter other than “S”—I’d say we’ve got quite a bit to look forward to over the next two nights!

I: Sample in a Jar, Sparkle, The Sloth, Sweet Virginia, Suskind Hotel, Strange Design, Stash, Sneakin’ Sally through the Alley > Sparks* > Scent of a Mule, Stealing Time From the Faulty Plan, Shine a Light, Split Open and Melt, The Squirming Coil

II: Sand, Simple -> Steam > Soul Shakedown Party -> Seven Below > Suzy Greenberg > Scents and Subtle Sounds > Slave to the Traffic Light > Silent in the Morning > Sanity, Sweet Adeline^

E: Sabotage^^

*1st since 11.29.96 /  ^1st since 8.1.99 / ^^1st since 11.21.98

 

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The End of the Road

Posted in Uncategorized with the tags , on September 2nd, 2011 by Mr.Miner

UIC Pavilion (C.Smith)

We have come to the end of the road. What started on Memorial Day weekend at Bethel Woods will wind down this Labor Day weekend just outside of Denver, Colorado—and what a road it has been. Regardless of what may happen for New Year’s and beyond, this is time to appreciate and celebrate the tremendous music that Phish has cranked all summer long and all the unforgettable times that have gone along with IT.

Beginning with “Boogie On -> Waves -> Caspian > Crosseyed”on the opening night of Summer, Phish built upon the foundation of 2009 and 2010 and reinvented themselves this year. The band is back to creating original music, experimenting in new directions, and exploring sounds unique to this year alone. Armed with a diversity of jamming styles, razor sharp chops across the board and a willingness to explore again, Phish has made Summer 2011 a tour that will go down in history.  Colorado will cap a season—and possibly a year—of music that many doubted could or would ever happen again. And in this summer of timeless Phish, the band has dropped more than a few handfuls of golden jams and frozen moments. And to think this has all happened in 2011…

6.10.11 - Camden (G.Lucas)

What started as multi-legged 33-show monster has dwindled to a single three-pack. But the next three nights in Dick’s Stadium could be some of the shows we are talking about incessantly for months until we hear another note of live Phish. It isn’t like like band to go out with a whisper, and after a summer in which they have transformed as an improvisational unit, these three shows have serious potential. Three-nights stands have produced some of the highest highs of the modern era, and just this summer we have seen Phish absolutely incinerate Bethel Woods, Super Ball, and UIC Pavilion. And now, one more three-pack in the mountains of Colorado to stamp the summer complete.

6.4.11 - Cleveland (M.Stein)

Though life is truly lived in each unfolding moment, it is sometimes helpful to pause and appreciate the road traveled. And when gazing back over our shoulder at the past 30 shows of the season, what a truly astounding ride it has been it is, and something for which to be grateful for all eternity. From Bethel’s “Halley’s” to Clarkston’s “Disease” to Cincinnati’s “Tweezer” to Darien’s “2001” to Camden’s “Curtain With” to Atlanta’s storm-interrupted escapade to Charlotte’s “Ghost” to Portsmouth’s “Sand” to Super Ball’s Storage Jam and “Reba > Bowie” to the Gorge’s “Rock and Roll” to Tahoe’s “Light” to UIC’s “Undermind” and everything in between, 2011 has been nothing short of a revelation in the Phish universe and an amazing time to be a fan. And regardless of how long it is until the band’s next scheduled show, anyone who has followed along this summer can sit back and smile.

But no sitting yet. We have three more nights and many moments that will stay with us forever. See you at the stadium!

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