I’ve spent the past week spinning the hell out of Fall and I have come up with my top ten jams of tour. These are—by my ear—the most hooked up, flowing pieces of improvisation from an all-too-short fall run. As always, ranking these was an incredibly difficult task, but that said, I’m quite happy with how this top ten turned out. always, Enjoy the playlist!
10. “Ghost” 10.31 III, Atlantic City, NJ
This locked and driving jam opened the third of set of Halloween with a bang.
9. “Down with Disease” 10.29 II, Reading, PA
After steering through a couple different moods, the band found the end of the rainbow in a southern-style pot of gold. This Allmans-sque passage and earth-shattering peak cement Reading’s “Disease” as a keeper.
8. “Golden Age” 10.27 II, Hartford, CT
Fishman absolutely destroys this rhythmic jam, as the band dances around his inhuman beats for much of its duration. The band truly sits into this jam, something they are becoming more and more comfortable doing with “Golden Age.”
7. “Twenty Years Later” 10.29 II, Reading, PA
Methodical, growling, and funky as James Brown’s band on their worst night, this mid-set surprise obliterated the dance floor and left people picking up pieces of their brains off the walls of Santander Arena. Sliding into a rootsy, Americana outro, this jam hit the feel-good spot as well.
6. “Twist” 10.23 II, Glens Falls, NY
This jam provided the pivot point of tour; from here on out, everything the band touched turned to gold.
5. “Carini” 10.31 III, Atlantic City, NJ
A free-form, third-set joyride that reached profound planes following some early-jam hiccups. The improvisational centerpiece of the Halloween show.
4. “Light” 10.26 II, Worcester, MA
The most slamming “Light” of Fall has so much to offer, including a searing guitar solo, a passionate composed jam and the the most sophisticated groove exposé of the entire tour. Hey!
3. “Twist” 11.1 II, Atlantic City, NJ
The central part of this jam provided the most cathartic group moment of the year aside from Tahoe’s “Tweezer.” Very powerful music; very powerful energy. The band came down from the mountaintop and retained cohesion through a mini-“Under Pressure” jam, continued into a full-blown, psychedelic third segment of music, and finally came down via a dreamy denouement.
2. “Carini” 10.18 II, Hampton, VA
This multi-staged, super-dynamic jam is the only piece of Fall—other than my number one pick—that flows with a completely effortless nature from beginning to end. And that’s quite impressive considering the amount of ground it covers, including a scintillating mid-jam, peak and a funked up final section. Despite Sunday’s scorching final set, this “Carini” is the everlasting gem of Hampton 2013.
1. “Tweezer” 10.27 II, Hartford, CT
The guys clicked from this jam’s first note, locking into a sacred stride and never missing a beat. No jam from Fall flowed more effortlessly that this—four-minded, egoless, soulful music from start to finish. As if God pressed play and the band simply allowed the music to flow through them—this is what it’s all about.
Tags: 2013, Fall '13, Jams, Miner's Picks