8.31.2012 Commerce City, CO (Graham Lucas)

When Phish dropped “You Enjoy Myself” halfway through the first set, albeit a surprise, it felt totally out of place. They had just slayed an extended “Carini” that immediately vaulted into the elite versions of all time, and all of a sudden we were headed for a vocal jam? Nonetheless, Phish was on fire and throwing IT down. Halfway through “Ocelot,” my friend told me a theory someone had just hatched: the band was spelling “Fuck Your Face” with the first letter of each song. My first reaction was, “Really? Yeah, right.” Then we quickly went through the setlist—“First Tube,” “Uncle Pen,” “Carini,” “YEM,” Ocelot.” Really!? It seemed like a brilliant idea—referencing the “S” set from the first night at Dick’s last year—and I immediately believed. If the band played “Undermind” next, it was clearly going down. And boy did they ever play “Undermind!” Closing the first set with a staggering piece of cathartic improvisation, Phish wrote last night’s “Undermind” into the record books. With an uplifting piece of utter bliss, the band stamped a divine exclamation point on one of the best first sets of all time—and the setlist spelled “F.U.C.K.Y.O.U.”

Official Colorado Print—Blue (T.Stout)

It was one of those magical nights that only happen in Gamehendge; one of those shows that we will never forget; one that will live in legend forever. Drenched with jamming of the highest level—including two excursions in “Undermind” and “Chalk Dust” that easily flirt with the loftiest jams in band history—the first night at Dick’s 2012 contained more masterful improvisation than several “normal” shows combined. The guys were as thrilled to be in Colorado as much as we were, illustrated by their “Phish Love Dick’s” vocal jam in “YEM.” Trey was notably on from his solo in “First Tube,” and he played as well he ever has all night long. The entire band swam in IT throughout the show, cranking out mystical, uplifting music for the duration. Following a late-summer trend of bliss jams, the band added two of their best to date last night with “Undermind” and—easily— the greatest “Chalk Dust” ever played. Phish feels great these days, as Trey admitted openly on Denver’s KBCO yesterday morning, and that feeling is permeating their music. With every jam last night, Phish reached points of rapture and exhilaration, sculpting their most spiritually significant night of music in memory.

8.31.12 (G.Lucas)

At setbreak, everyone hypothesized how the band would spell “R.F.A.C.E.” in the second half. My call was “Rock and Roll > Free, Crosseyed > Esther,” but I wound up going 0-4 in my guesses, which was all part of the face-fucking theme of the evening. Starting out the set with the first long-form “Runaway Jim” since Miami ’03 (but that was slop, so really, the E Center on 7.3.2000), the band dropped an exploratory epic that touched on incredibly diverse feels from wah-clav ’97 dance-funk to ambient, etheral realms. About halfway through, the band “reset” the jam into groove, and from that point out, it only grew in grandeur. Reaching several remarkable planes, the guys continued to gravitate towards the euphoric at every opportunity. An exploration that likened the old days, but with the music of Phish 2012, this one couldn’t have been a bigger surprise. After playing “Farmhouse,” however, Phish set up the prank of the night.

8.31.12 (G.Lucas)

Building a several minute ambient intro, it was all but clear that “Also Sprach Zarathustra”—better known as “2001”—would be the next song. But throwing a left hook that nobody saw coming, the band dropped into “Alaska!” Causing a collective groan from much of the audience, the fake out was an incredibly Phishy maneuver. It soon became part of the joke—the band played the best show of the year with “Farmhouse” and “Alaska” in the middle of the second set! When the guys kicked into “Chalk Dust” for “C,” they simply unveiled the best version of all-time. If you love Phish, and you love inspired guitar playing from one, Trey Anastasio, this jam is as good as it gets. Connecting on every level—another theme of the night—the band improvised out of the end of the song and into heaven. Combined with “Undermind,” these two pieces have instantly earned plaques in the Hall of Fame that are being chiseled as I type. This music was the stuff of dreams. Highlighted by four magnificent jams—totaling a ludicrous 68 minutes of top-shelf Phish—the band’s music spoke for itself last night; an aural revelation of the highest degree. And the face-fucking wasn’t over.

8.31.2012 (Graham Lucas)

At setbreak, the only song anyone could think of that started with “E” was “Esther”—an odd closer, but what else could they play? As fans were catching their breath from an intergalactic “Chalk Dust,” the guys started the Rolling Stones “Emotional Rescue” for the first time since September 30, 2000! After spelling it out, the band closed the set with “Fuck Your Face,” a song that I thought would be the encore. But Phish came out to a with a double encore of “Grind” and “Meatstick,” a pairing that put a comical twist on the theme of the night.

A combination of the mountain air, the great energy of the crowd and the end of a spectacular summer converged to cause a musical bolt of lighting last night in Colorado. And nobody can wait to get back into that soccer stadium tomorrow night! This has been a special year for Phish, and they are capping it with their most impressive playing of the season. It has been a blessing to watch the band climb back to prominence since 2009, and to see them reaching new heights, never previously touched, is the greatest reward one could ever ask for.

I: First Tube, Uncle Pen, Carini, Kill Devil Falls, You Enjoy Myself, Ocelot, Undermind

II: Runaway Jim > Farmhouse > Alaska, Chalk Dust Torture, Emotional Rescue > Fuck Your Face

Encore: Grind, Meatstick

8.31.2012 (Graham Lucas)

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754 Responses to “FUCK’d”

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  1. Blooby Says:

    Who or what is Phish?

  2. jtran Says:


  3. mitch Says:


    Saw someone wearing this in real life!

  4. jdub Says:

    Fucking nuts. I love this band.

  5. Luther T. Justice Says:

    I wearing the sleeveless version right now @mitch. Truck stop clothes shopping.

  6. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    4 of the top jams of the year last night.

  7. Jim Says:

    Never underestimate the power of the PHISH! Love IT, all of it.

  8. phoammhead Says:

    unrealz . . . wow!

  9. Spasm Waiter Says:

    On paper, last night looks insane!

  10. Darth Plinko Says:

    Hilarious show. Dog woke me up this morning at 4:30 to go out and piss…I checked the setlist and decided that I was up, might as well listen. Great show! I love how they had no choice but to jam! No quick left turns into horse>silent!

  11. Luther T. Justice Says:

    It’s more insane off paper @Spasm.

  12. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    Set 2 gin tonight.

  13. Luther T. Justice Says:

    That would be nice Df. It’s due to blow up.

  14. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    Miner you didn’t love that yem placement? That’s when I knew it was the best show of 3.0. After first tube I was saying the run would be huge. After Carini I was saying best show of summer. After YEM it was all over for me.

  15. Gavinsdad Says:

    First time I’ve ever read a review twice.

    Thanks Miner. You got a good’un.

  16. knucklehead Says:

    Morning after and my face is still melted

  17. Angryjoggerz Says:

    Wow. Amazing day and night. Dicks is made for Phish. Yesterday felt like some sort of celebration. Such an amazing vibe at show, awesome crowd, sound, great breeze. Bb reppin large. Spent the day with Telas, Leo, Alf in boulder and area… Such a great day. No idea why I am awake…

  18. mitch Says:

    Ya, try working, im not in work mode at all!

    Wanna go home and screen print and listen to fresh phish!!!’

  19. Angryjoggerz Says:

    Ps… Best show of 3.0? I’m gonna say strong contender, best I’ve seen for sure

  20. marcoesq Says:

    Wow. Congrats to everyone there, great FUCKIN review miner. Can’t wait to spin

    Love this band


  21. plord Says:

    Best shows of the era primed and ready to drop, and not only am I not there, I am headed backwoods with no reception to even stream.

    With my kids and my thirsty wife. There are worse things. I’ll be off embracing the moment (if you know what I mean) and catch you cats after no-spoilering things on Monday.

    Such a great, great fucking show last night.

  22. Angryjoggerz Says:

    Great to finally meet sumo, graham, Negev, Pham b!

  23. Angryjoggerz Says:

    Also, huge crew of us posted up on fish side behind second speaker rack, great spot, huge amounts of dance space. Everyone welcomed. It was such a psychedelic dance circus in the whole place last night. Not a bad spot in venue

  24. joe Says:

    love the review, Mr. Miner. When the band rises to the occasion, it brings out the best in our host and the good vibrations carry out to the rest of us. thank you.

  25. Stanz Says:

    Way over fluffed. 1st set was amazing. 2nd didn’t do much for me. This is at best 6th or 7th best of summer. Off top of my head I would take Saint Louis, BG3, AC2, AC1, and burgettstown over dicks 1.

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