Gee, It’s Good to be Back Home

10.22.13 Rochester (Jake Silco)

10.22.13 Rochester (Jake Silco)

Phish stepped into a room of legend on Wednesday night in Glens Falls, New York, and bounced back from their Tuesday night clunker with a fiery two-set performance. Leaving their rust in western New York, the band was on point from the get go on Wednesday, hitting Glens Falls in stride and treating the intimate 7,000 person audience to a high-octane mid-week performance.

10/23 Official (R.Kelly)

10/23 Official (R.Kelly)

When the band stepped foot in Glens Falls Civic Center—a room whose lone Phish show spawned their most popular holiday tradition—it was only appropriate to start right where they left of in 1994, with The Beatles “White Album.” Opening the show with the third-ever “Back in the USSR,” a song debuted in the same building 19 years ago (the other was 12.6.94), Phish quickly gave a nod to their seminal Halloween concert. Right away, one could tell Phish was a different band from the sluggish quartet that took the stage in Rochester. The guys sounded sharp, focused and enthusiastic from the jump, attacking their opening run of songs—including a popping version of “Undermind”—before truly igniting the show with a scorching, fifth-song “David Bowie.” Within the “Bowie” jam, the band illustrated a clear command over the music, displaying tight, full-band, tension-and-release jamming that was strewn with nuances and mini-peaks. Their willingness to take such a deep dive early in the show fully showcased the band’s confidence on this night in New York state.

The entire first set was comprised of tour debuts, less “Stealing Time,” and the fresh setlist got the crowd going early. One point of note—if only for a blazing set of blue balls—came in “Gumbo,” when Page took his final piano solo on clav and began to push it! Trey was even feeling it and hit a couple rhythms chords as accompaniment, but Fishman slowed down the backbeat and thus dissolved any shot of a jam. Also in the first set, the guys played a blazing version of “Limb by Limb,” featuring a wildy passionate solo by Trey.

10.22.13 (Jake Silco)

10.22.13 (Jake Silco)

Come the end of the set, the obvious choice seemed like “Antelope,” thus the band veered the other way and dropped an intense rendition of “Split Open and Melt.” So many times in this era, the band has gotten discombobulated during “Split,” often losing direction all together. But not last night as the guys remained notably coherent throughout this version. Even when the jam elevated to a space cloud and Captain Treyhab went on an intergalactic whaling mission, the band was able to return to earth and hit the ground running, tearing through the peak of “Split” with a fury and ending a very high quality, opening frame.

10.19.13 (J.Silco)

10.19.13 (J.Silco)

Tour’s first “Rock and Roll” opened Glens Falls’ main event, but things didn’t exactly go as one might expect. For the first time since tour’s first show, the band didn’t go huge on their second set opener, this time electing for a concise jam that seemed to end prematurely. As Fishman dropped into half-time, “Rock and Roll” seemed primed for take off, but before anyone could get their bearings straight, Trey strummed a signal to wind things down, and up came “Seven Below.” Phish allowed this second jam in the set to breathe considerably more than the first, as Trey took center stage with precise, six-string theatrics. Though this piece never moved too far from its theme, “Seven Below” gave the band the confidence they needed as a unit to dive into the centerpiece of the set—“Twist.”

On most nights, Phish places their largest improvisational effort on the second set opener, giving shows in which they do not, completely different contours. This show was weighted towards the back of the second set, as the two most impressive jams of the night were the final two—”Twist” and “Harry Hood.” During “Twist’s” contained jam, Trey bucked convention and set his sights much higher, speeding up the piece into wide-open territory. Where so many “Twists” have gone dark before, this one turned towards the heavens as the band opened the magic door to some awe-inspiring music. Locked in and playing as a single unit, the guys navigated a cathartic, uptempo jam for some time before hitting a change with which things turned ethereal and majestic. A extended down tempo segment in which the band played some truly sacred music provided the final piece of this melody-driven “Twist”—the shining gem of the night.

“Velvet Sea” bridged us to the second-place highlight of the show—“Harry Hood.” The throwback environs must have evoked something in Trey, because it had been quite a while since he laid into a “Hood” jam—and peak—like he did on this one. Moving from a plinko-esque beginning to a staggering end, this “Hood” is a must hear for any Phish purist. Trey’s exquisite playing throughout this version is enough to send shivers down any fan’s spine.

10.22.13 (Jake Silco)

10.22.13 (Jake Silco)

Following a surprise “Chalk Dust” closer, Phish brought things full circle, playing for an encore, the one song from the “White Album” that remained in Phish’s repertoire—”While My Guitar Gently Weeps”—a move, in and of itself, that spawned a tradition. As we move to Worcester, and tour’s halfway point, we have begun to see the development of a legitimate Fall run of shows. The band has been on fire every night less one, and each of those shows has produced a timeless piece of creative Phish—“Carini,” “Ghost,” “Tweezer” and “Twist.” What will come next is anybody’s guess, but if I were in a few hundred mile radius of New England this weekend, I’d make it a point to get to Worcester and Hartford to find out.

I: Back in the U.S.S.R., Stealing Time From the Faulty Plan, Water in the Sky, Undermind, David Bowie, Golgi Apparatus, Gumbo, Yarmouth Road, Camel Walk, Horn, Limb By Limb, I Didn’t Know, Split Open and Melt

II: Rock and Roll > Seven Below, Alaska, Twist > Wading in the Velvet Sea, Harry Hood, Chalk Dust Torture

E: While My Guitar Gently Weeps

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1,299 Responses to “Gee, It’s Good to be Back Home”

  1. ren Says:

    I’m fluffin this one all the way to the bank.

    Top 5 tonight….we’ll see how I feel in the morning

  2. butter Says:

    Celebration claving in Sally

  3. Dr pro Says:

    Listen to curtain with and 46 days too.

    loooong show with lots of heavy hitters. The waves was exactly what I was looking for, the Carini would have blown the room apart had it had a few more minutes for the death march to develop. Dry ice is right about the peaks of the ghost. Just run after melodic run, with shenanigans lyrics

    Mike dominated the night, but fish didn’t seem as engaged as I was expecting from listening to highlights, tho he kept trey from bailing early a few times by just shutting his eyes and keeping the beat going

  4. Dr pro Says:

    Highlights meaning from this tour and the summer

  5. butter Says:

    @Df Always stings a bit when u jump off tour and the next one is a major barn burner. At least we didn’t jump off after Roch 😉

    Stoked for the BB’ers gettin some!!!

  6. Dorn76 Says:

    Very solid.

    My can stance was limited to rift>free???! Some lull.

    Who said dirt would be a good cool down? Palmer? Nice call buddy.

    I heard Worcester Jam X 3 or 4. Annd I got my missing Chicago set. Epic status assured via in room bias.

  7. butter Says:

    The sandbaggers have their average up to 3/6

  8. ren Says:

    Holler Dr.P! Happy to have shared this one with you

  9. ren Says:

    Amazing energy all around…except at my hotel right now. Mr Rogers has more fun than these peeps

    Dicks Spoiled

  10. ren Says:

    What happens tomorrow?

  11. GhostPhunk Says:

    Real Deal.

  12. ren Says:

    Sorry I couldn’t meet up with anyone. I was all noobed out with my bud. He’s a natural by the way. We’ve picked up a good one.

    Told him though on the way out though that his career is all downhill from here

  13. voopa Says:

    lol “eh”

  14. willowed Says:

    What a fun night.

    Carini Ghost DWD outro jam. Woot Woot

    Soft part in Antelope.

    So fun

  15. ren Says:

    Is it selfish of me to be happy this wasn’t cast?

  16. ren Says:

    Sippin on a Wormtown Hoppulence…tasty shite!

  17. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    “Is it selfish of me to be happy this wasn’t cast?”

    no.

  18. revise your despise Says:

    Sounds like all the BBers in the building had a blast. So stoked for all of you!! Don’t forget to rest up and bring it twice as hard tomorrow.

  19. ren Says:

    Thanks DF. Seriously top…..5?….for me…so hard to know. But god I love this band

  20. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    let’s go red sox chant before waves.

    SUPER FUCKING LAME SPORTS ARE DUMB

  21. willowed Says:

    Chillin with Jdub taking in the Waves. Bliss!!!!

  22. sumodie Says:

    Lol, thought I heard that chant to kick off set 2

    Now that’s the kinda Waves I was looking for this summer!

  23. ren Says:

    These vapes in the hotey are nice and all….but nuthin beats an old school marley in the parking lot.

    Mission commence

  24. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    bout to fall asleep to set 2, hope it doesn’t keep me up

  25. sumodie Says:

    Ah yes, that Carini jam is very cool

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