The Crab Has Vanished In the Air

Official 6/16 Print (DKNG)

Summer 2012 is a great time to be a Phish fan, and last night was another reason why. Balancing a strong, song-based performance over two sets, the band unquestionably centered the show on a surreal mash-up of “Light” and “Manteca” that stands up to the any recent sonic foray. Playing support to this centerpiece jam was an engaging set-opening combination of “Crosseyed -> Slave” and a seething, late set “Sand.” But for start to finish fluidity, this second set couldn’t touch the other four of tour. Not to diminish the playing within, but the band’s recent set craftsmanship wasn’t exactly showcased in either frame on Saturday night. Nonetheless, there are plenty of highlights to discuss, so let’s start with the brightest.

A fluid sequence of “Crosseyed -> Slave” kicked off the main event, in which the band exited the snarling rock cover with a sparse textural jam that soon built—in transcendent fashion—towards a gorgeous transition into “Slave.” But following this powerful opening couplet, the band dropped into the monster jam sequence of the night, “Light -> Manteca -> Light,” or—from here on out—”Lighteca.” Trey took a different turn when confronted with “Light’s” guitar solo, quickly deferring to the rhythmic focus of Mike and Fishman. Joining in the groove-based excursion, Trey began to subtely weave teases of “Manteca” into already similar-sounding mixture. And then—bam—the band burst into the full-blown Dizzy Gillespie cover!  As they shifted back into “Light,” they continued to groove hard in an outright musical fusion. Lacing this jam with both melodic and rhythmic teases of “Manteca,” the band sculpted an incredibly slick hybrid of the two songs. Then, as Trey switched gears with some hard rhythm chords, Fish immediately changed into a more driving beat, giving the piece a very “Chalk Dust” vibe. In fact, I was sure the band was moving slowly towards a back door transition into their rock anthem, but when they steered clear of the song—instead, veering into a lyrical “Crosseyed Reprise”— I thought it to be even cooler that they didn’t take the plunge and maintained a more subtle musical nod. Eventually dripping into a spacey outro, it sounded—momentarily—as though the band would pass into “No Quarter,” but instead they chose a fitting landing point in “Theme From the Bottom.”

6.16.12 (M.Stein)

Phish continued their setlist shakeup last night by dropping an uncharacteristic, late set “Sand.” And stylistically, this one couldn’t have been more opposite of Worcester’s version. Sidestepping the whole-band focus The Centrum, last night’s “Sand” provided a retro take on the song, as Trey took center stage, lighting his Languedoc afire. While the band certainly held down a strapping groove, the focus of this jam was on the Big Red Machine. Blending the feel of millennial versions and recent TAB renditions, this “Sand” was a heat-seeker rather than an overtly swanky collaboration. And it’s fresh to see the band with such divergent takes on within a week of each other. The band carried their lyrical “Crosseyed” reprises through the set, ending “Sand” with the second such episode of the evening. The set closed with a laid back and ethereal version of “Number Line” and a relatively stock, but ripping, “Antelope.” Trey was on fire all night and “Antelope,” put a fitting cap.

A first half, filled with old-school song selections, opened with a bang when the guys came out with an adrenalizing “Mike’s Groove.” The hefty opening suite set the table for a big first opening frame, and after a teasing twin-bill of “Gumbo” and “Halley’s”—both without jams—the vibe continued with the always-menacing “My Friend” and a laid-back-turned-spirited, Trey-centric, “Wolfman’s Brother.” But the rest of the set fizzled a bit, despite an uber-chronic intro to an out of place “Punch.”

All in all, night two of AC was a very fun and tasteful night of Phish, featuring many well-known anthems for the noticeably increased Saturday night crowd, and with a centerpiece that gets tacked on to an exponentially expanding Summer 2012 highlight list. And with a centerpiece as acrobatic as “Lighteca,” and a fun “Crosseyed” theme throughout the set, everything fell right into place.

6.16.2012 (Jesse Herzog)

I: Mike’s Song > I Am Hydrogen > Weekapaug Groove, Gumbo, Halley’s Comet > My Friend, My Friend,Wolfman’s Brother, The Horse^, Lawn Boy, PossumPunch You In the Eye,  Ocelot, Suzy Greenberg

II: Crosseyed and Painless -> Slave to the Traffic Light, Light -> Manteca -> Light* > Theme From the Bottom > Golgi Apparatus, Sand* > Backwards Down the Number Line, Run Like an Antelope

E: Good Times Bad Times

^aborted, * w/ “Crosseyed” lyrical reprise

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311 Responses to “The Crab Has Vanished In the Air”

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  1. RoosterPizza Says:

    On my no spoil, I thought for certain no quarter was coming. It was right there, and it would have been money.

  2. RoosterPizza Says:

    paddlin for the horrible unintended irony…

  3. halcyon Says:

    Happy Father’s Day to all the dad’s out here. Keep providing and showing your kids that this world is beautiful despite all the noise that wants you to think otherwise.

    Listening to this second set now, and wow! This is straight up fire.

  4. SillyWilly Says:

    “The crab has vanished in the air.”

    This won’t happen without medication, kids.

  5. SillyWilly Says:

    The Light won’t let me sleep this morning.

  6. MiA Says:

    Can’t wait to hear this.

  7. willowed Says:

    Who was that crazy dude posting all that stupid shit last night?

    Happy fathers day kiddos. Let’s make it a great one!

    Spoke to the wife, totally cool with me hanging up here today.

    The conversation went like this.

    Willowed: Honey, they haven’t dropped the AC Tweezer yet.

    Mrs. Willowed: OK, you can’t miss that.

  8. joe Says:

    love the bottom picture from Jesse Herzog

  9. kenny powers Says:

    Halycon – well fucking put.

    Willowed – epic Ramada posting! Priceless.

  10. kenny powers Says:

  11. SillyWilly Says:


    Hope you’re doing well. We miss ya here, man.


    Your wife rocks!

  12. kenny powers Says:

    Doing great Silly, but I am bummed not to be there! Right decision though I think, as I’ve made some real progress toward date #2 with the girl I am crazy about.

    Do it up for me tonight, boys.

  13. Gavinsdad Says:

    Happy fathers day to the fathers of children

  14. kenny powers Says:


    In other news, finally spun Worcester night 1 through If I Could on the drive to the parents yesterday, and wow I love that set II. The Carini has insane replay value and the transitions from each song to the next through the Boogie On are so fluid.

    I’ll have to dig up the exact track time but in the Carini jam Mike drops his now signature outer space bomb and you get the collective gasp and whoa from the crowd. You gotta seek out Lenny Stubbe’s DPA 4023 AUD for that one. That bomb effect is totally neutered in the soundboards. That DPA is a FOB and there’s some chatter for sure, but the music itself sounds best to my ears compared to all others.

    IMO the best taper’s section pull is Bvaz’s DPA 4011.

  15. kenny powers Says:

    here’s a repost from about an hour ago that got Horse’d on the other thread:

    One of the best lines I’ve ever heard on the BB:

    “I beleive in a Horse’s right to choose”. -luther

    That needs to be a shirt or something.

  16. angryjoggerz Says:

    Happy fathers day to the fathers of children

    ^ and mind babies

  17. Dr Pronoia Says:

    Happy father’s day to all the BB-dads!!

    Very interested to hear how Leo’s wing party went, and from everyone else who went to the show.

    Given I’ll be running all over today w the fam, it sounds like I need to start with Lighteca and Sand as highlights?

  18. MiA Says:

    I have a dog. I’m enjoying the fawning by the Mrs right now.

  19. Phamily Berzerker Says:

    Indeed, Epic Willowed!

    Happy Mother Fucker’s Day!

    Yeah, that’s what I did to get here!

    Make it a great one!

  20. kenny powers Says:

    just pre-ordered the Samsung Galaxy 3s. Pumped for that 4.7 screen and Beats audio by one Doctor Dre.

  21. kenny powers Says:

    sorry, 4.8

  22. MiA Says:

    @Deadspin: “I get every big piece of food: the big cookie, the big steak, the big Cheeto.” The Dadspin Father’s Day manifesto.

  23. Gavinsdad Says:

    Beyond the strange lack of 1st set cohesion there were some extremely big and fluid moments (lighteca duh) but what stood out to me personally was the full crowd GETTING DOWN during the front half of that Punch and during crosseyed and the light. I mean we were powerless and a sea of people were all connected and raging. Those moments mean alot to me. Tighter quarters but damn fun. Looking for a little more flow tonite let’s see what they have in the tank.

  24. angryjoggerz Says:

    Woke up to chocolate croissants and eggs, hand painted paper shoes (I like shoes), some requested cologne which came with 2 bags that I needed (a gym bag and a cooler bag… soon to be in the car on the way to Cinci) and lots of hugs and kisses. Now lakefront bikeride with my daughter and later maybe a visit to the pool.

    Father’s Day rocks!

    Much of what I have learned about how to be a good dad that still has a life has been learned on the bb, so thanks to all the dad’s and the just good men (and women) who post on here. Moral compass.

  25. SillyWilly Says:

    Front page of the Atlantic City Press:

    Gillian Carroll, left, and Marco Escuandolas, third from left, of Plymouth, N.H., sell watter to people walking to the concert at the end of St. Davids place.

    Good ol’ Marco.

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