Golden Dust

8.25.12 Lakewood Amphitheatre (Ryan MacNeill)

Historically, Lakewood Amphitheatre has been the site of legendary Phish shows. From the band’s first visit in ’97, featuring a monumental “Ghost,” to July 4th’s instant classic in ’99, and from the underrated two-pack in 2000 to ‘03’s smoking stop, Atlanta’s south side shed has almost always hosted shows of gold throughout its past. But last night, not so much. With two solid but unspectacular sets, the show never really hit full stride, though its highlights were certainly significant. Steering clear of any long-form improvisation—a facet of the second set that has become almost a given over Leg Two—the band, instead, shone through two more compact jams in “Golden Age” and “Chalk Dust > What’s the Use?” Interestingly, both Saturday night shows of Leg Two have produced the band’s spottiest efforts, but even on the nights that don’t form a total package in 2012, Phish still manages to crank out spectacular nuggets of music.

Official Atlanta Print (M.Davis)

The band opened the second set with an extended and laid-back take on “Kill Devil Falls” that flirted with breaking form for a few minutes, but never made it outside the box. But when then band dropped “Golden Age” for the second time this tour, one of highlights of the show emerged. Slaughtering the dance floor with exercise in robo-funk, Phish launched into a hard-edged groove fiesta. With playing intricate yet driving rhythms that were textured yet thick as molasses, the band crafted one of their most impressive groove-based throw-downs of summer. Backed by tripped out loops and effects, and anchored by Mike’s envelope-filtered leads, this jam transcended rhythmic interplay, eventually entering a demented realm of storage-laced psychedelia. Certainly the best “Golden Age” we’ve heard since Jones Beach, it was nice to see the band bring an improvisational focus back to the song.

Landing in “Free,” the guys were sitting on the precipice of a huge set, and when “Light” started, it seemed like a forgone conclusion that we’d have another jam to write home about. But for the first time in 2012, “Light” fell completely flat. Disconnected and meandering throughout, the band never locked up in what has become a virtually bankable jam, thus when they dissolved into “Velvet Sea,” the combination created a discernible lull of creativity.

8.25.12 (Ryan MacNeill)

When the guys revved up a late-set “Chalkdust,” it seemed like an odd call for that point in the show, but once the jam got going, the second highlight of night blossomed out of nowhere. A fast-paced jam turned into something far more interesting when Mike, then Trey, started soloing in a more feel-good tone, and the whole band jumped on the idea immediately. Resembling the famous Camden “Chalk Dust” of 7.10.99, Trey took his playing into a completely uplifting feel as the band smashed through the boundaries of the song ‘s structure. Hitting a staccato melody that was so smooth it sounded composed, Trey let loose as Page stuck right with him the entire time. Nobody’s offerings’ went unappreciated in this one, as all four members assumed joint leadership of this stellar excursion. Slowing into an ambient ending, the band made a drone and washy transition into “What’s the Use?” Pairing two songs that couldn’t be more dissimilar, once again Phish showcased their modern proclivity to cover all sorts of ground in a short amount of time. A notably laid-back, though somewhat botched, version of “What’s the Use?” blanketed the amphitheatre with its post-apocalyptic soundscape.

8.25.12 (R.MacNeill)

Rounding out the set with “Joy” and a hotter-than-usual “Antelope,” the guys closed the night with a final bang. Some Phish shows elevate into a cohesive night of music, while others remain more disjointed and highlight-based. And though Lakewood’s performance was one of the latter, there are certainly two jams in the show that every fan must hear right away. Check ‘em out today, because I suspect tonight’s performance in Charlotte will jump right over Atlanta’s on everyone’s Monday morning playlist. Only time will tell…

First Set Notes: The first set started with a whale of momentum with quality versions of “Cars, Trucks, Buses,” “Wolfman’s,” “Runaway Jim” and “Ya Mar.” But when Trey called for a mid-set combo of “Alaska” and “My Soul,” he halted any energy the set had built on the front end. A hot “Maze” was the only notable piece for the rest of the set that fizzled significantly in song selection.

I: Cars Trucks Buses, Wolfman’s Brother, Runaway Jim, Ya Mar, Alaska, My Soul, Wilson, Maze, Roses Are Free, Backwards Down the Number Line, Character Zero

II: Kill Devil Falls, Golden Age > Free, Light > Wading in the Velvet Sea, Chalk Dust Torture > What’s the Use?, Joy, Run Like an Antelope

E: A Day in the Life

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428 Responses to “Golden Dust”

  1. William H. Bonney Says:

    @palmer. Hit me up. Will be on lot early today.

  2. sumodie Says:

    U saying dcu1 is pretty bad, bobby weird? You’re living up to your name if so

  3. Blakeson Says:

    Mike’s just killing it all over. Alabama Boogie On had an extra bass lead at the end of the tune that was bliss. And he owned last night’s Golden Age.

  4. bobby weird Says:

    dcu 1 = bad? not me bro. i was at that show (and several others) it its one of my personal favs. not sure where u get this from. care to explain?

    only shows i think were bad this tour are portsmouth and last night.if that makes me crazy so be it.

    and, what is my “name” you refer to please? why u pickin on me?

  5. kayatosh Says:

    sounds chatty in atlanta last night.

  6. kayatosh Says:

    bobby; i think sumo saw you say something neg about worcester, and i think you were referring to 2010. That’s why i like to use dates. it’s saul goodman. sumo is not a meany.

  7. bobby weird Says:

    i was referring to df telling me “pigtail” was played at dcu 2010. i said, wow i was there and didn’t even notice it, wow that’s bad [on ME]. geeeezzz. so eager to fuck w bw…

  8. kayatosh Says:

    “i was at that worcester show… oops. wow thats pretty bad…”

    ^^^ here’s the source of the confusion. saul goodman.

  9. bobby weird Says:

    clearly self evident on read back (one pg back)

  10. bobby weird Says:

    DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    August 26th, 2012 at 11:27 am
    they played it [PIGTAIL] at worcester 2010. forget if they played it again after that but i know trey band has played it a bunch too
    bobby weird Says:

    August 26th, 2012 at 11:48 am
    i was at that worcester show… oops. wow thats pretty bad…

  11. sumodie Says:

    Troy & ballads

    I wish he’d set a personal goal that if he doesn’t crush the preceding jam then he can’t play one of the lesser ballads like Joy

    i kinda like that tune, but it def needs to earn its spot on the setlist (unlike last night)

    Spun lakewood set2 thru Wading using lp app. Love that golden age, wowza, Mike is all over that jam

    def very good thru Free, even if Light failed to coalesce

    how nutz to label lakewood worst of 2012. Unspectacular overall, sure. but enough nugs in there. Looking forward to CDT> WTU

  12. Phunky58 Says:

    tonight will be sleeper show of the tour. 5-7 song second set

  13. bobby weird Says:

    “how nutz to label lakewood worst of 2012. Unspectacular overall, sure. but enough nugs in there. Looking forward to CDT> WTU”

    ^ c’mon man… u take this next shot at me and haven’t even heard the whole show!!! (“looking forward to …”) speaks volumes about your prob w me. what i do to you fool?

  14. dusty Says:

    I wish he’d set a personal goal that if he doesn’t crush the preceding jam then he can’t play one of the lesser ballads like Joy


    This was one of the many jaded phases I went through. Bouncin closers for weak shows was another.

  15. Phamily Berzerker Says:

    Start your fast until Colorado here:

    300 GD SBDs

  16. sumodie Says:

    See, i thought you’d clarify, bobbyw. and usually weird is good in my book, unless you really didn’t like dcu1

    FTR, i had a great time during the woosta 2010 run. both shows had a very weird vibe fo sure that year, what with the snowstorm and trey being ill

  17. sumodie Says:

    No worries, bobbyw. i like to discuss the convo here, doesnt matter who said it. if i don’t address someone specifically, then I’m just responding to comments, not individuals

  18. bobby weird Says:

    word. peace.

  19. sumodie Says:

    Only 3 shows left before Dick’s!!!

    Only 6 shows left before tour ends ;-(

  20. bobby weird Says:

    the ying and the yang for sure…

  21. PigSong Says:

    Man, I am not satiated from last night at all. As in I got a really good taste and need more. They’re going to kill it in Charlotte tonight and I’m going to cry real tears. Both from happiness for those in attendance and the depression of still being in Atlanta.

  22. William H. Bonney Says:

    On lot.

  23. Shred Says:

    Phamily Bezerker- Thanks a lot of the Dead. That’s a monster hook up~! I like the reward theory. Setlists in general need a shake up. Too many of the same 4 tunes. Light, Ghost, Golden, Rock and Roll. Play all the songs. Where is Mcgrupp, Waves, Tweezer, Mikes w Jam, And the yem guitar solo?? Trey would cut off his own nut before hitting the high note in yem. There should be no ballots allowed until he jams the ax in his crotch and hits the high note in yem 6 times. Then you can bore me with billy breathes.

  24. PigSong Says:

    Have we seen T420 at shows that aren’t sold out, lots of lower pavs available for tonight still.

  25. PigSong Says:

    crazy amount of people looking for tickets last night, didn’t expect that at all.


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