“Rock And Roll > Limb”

3.7.09 II (S. Wiltse)

3.7.09 II (S. Wiltse)

In a weekend that oozed positivity on all fronts, some of the specific musical passages were lost in the sheer spectacle of the event.  The three shows carried a very old-school vibe, from song choice to playing style.  Most of the jams were shorter, directed, and concise, following the path of their earlier days.  But, as usual, it’s quality, not quantity that is sought in Phish jams, and multiple segments from this weekend possessed an amazing dynamic.  Over the next while, we’ll take a look back at some of the moments that helped define Hampton ’09, and today we’ll start with Saturday night’s “Rock And Roll > Limb By Limb.”

Ready For Blast Off (J.Kravitz)

Ready For Blast Off! (J.Kravitz)

Coming out for their fourth set of the run, Phish had engaged in minimal open-ended improv over the previous three.  Most jams were structured and tight, but lacked much exploration.  This would change with the onset of this set.  The playing throughout this entire segment flowed organically, with nothing sounding forced or contrived.  The opening chords of the Velvet Underground cover riled up everyone immediately, bringing memories of the band’s late ’90s era of glory.  As Page started to sing, everything felt in place once again.

The lyrics leading into the improv were particularly poignant, speaking of the power of music to lift us out of hard times-  “Her life was saved by rock n roll…Despite all the complications…It was alright.”  A perfect ode to Phish’s present state of affairs, the crowd latched onto the meaning, cheering the powerful words. As the band sailed into the jam, Trey sat into an emotive solo, while Mike and Page created some interlocking offerings that, when combined with Fish’s work, formed a tightly cohesive and thematic jam.

"Free" 3.8.09 (J. DiGiuseppe)

"Free" 3.8.09 (J. DiGiuseppe)

Trey initiated the more exploratory section of improv with some guitar riffs that slowly guided the band out of the song’s structure.  Hopping onto his ideas, the band switched gears into a slowed down and murkier texture.  In a quick moment, they were amidst a separate jam that had nothing to do with the song; flowing fluidly.  Page and Trey complemented each other beautifully here, as Trey began to send guitar cries upwards towards the heavens.  The band congealed around these more spiritual licks, and allowed Trey to lead the improv, which continued down an emotional path until Page’s piano roll wound the jam down to a point where Trey picked it up and segued seamlessly into “Limb By Limb.”

3.6.09 (J.DiGiuseppe)

3.6.09 (J.DiGiuseppe)

As “Rock And Roll” went unfinished, the “Limb” was the natural continuation and peak to this introductory portion of the set.  Attacking the song with a delicate ferociousness, the band slayed it.  As the jam soared, the band was glued together and absolutely crushing it.  Trey took one of most gorgeous solos of the weekend, and the spirit emanating from the stage was infectious. Moving as one entity as they approached the apex, any separation between the band members was obliterated in their collective peak.  Reflective and celebratory at the same time, this jam served as a destination for the set’s initial climb.

3.7.09 II (S.Wiltse)

3.7.09 II (S.Wiltse)

As the set and the weekend rolled along, Phish would dig deeper into improvisational ground, but this piece of music would remain the first time Phish 3.0 took an open-ended musical risk and succeeded.  “Rock And Roll > Limb,” though not the longest piece in history, was played perfectly, fit right in with the vibe of the weekend, and will always be remembered as the first unstructured improvisational leap of the new era.

LISTEN TO “ROCK AND ROLL > LIMB” NOW! < LINK (Roll over link and press play)



hampton_outsideI should have tracked copies of the AUDs up by this weekend at latest. They will be from one of the No Spoilers tapers, Jesse Hurlburt, whose rig sounded great.  I know a lot of people prefer the AUDs, which is why I am posting them.  But if you have downloaded the SBDs and are into them- I think they are the best yet- save me a buck or two and hold off.  As always, please use torrents when possible.  In related news, I am going to set up a donate button soon for the cost of site / download maintenance with any profit going to charity, so stay tuned!



“3.6.09” Photo: John DiGiuseppe

Tags: , ,

114 Responses to ““Rock And Roll > Limb””

  1. full tour! Says:

    @elihu… that 6.24.00 second set was very dark, and gnarly! that carini was pure evil. trey kept talking gibberish into the micgram during the jam…i could never figure out what he was saying. i remember the antelope being huge…and also very dark and exploratory. the epic first set tweezers was just released as a sbd bonus track to at the roxy itunes download…..one of the first huge shows of a summer tour which boasted some huge sets.

  2. full tour! Says:

    *micgram = mic…. damned playstation 3 auto correct strikes again…lol

  3. RobAins Says:

    I went to the local HS, Columbia. I think Randolph was in our sports league. Iron Hills Conference or something like that? We definitly played Randolph in Lacrosse, but it was a new sport for you guys or something, I don’t know. I knew a bunch of kids from Randolph that went to Seton Hall Prep too, I went there Freshman year but couldn’t tell you their names. Pretty much only kept in touch with the guys from my town. When was your first show? Somewhere in the general area? Mine was 7.2.94 at the Arts Center. I had heard some bootlegs of my older brother’s, but that second set pretty much did me in. I’ve been a total Phish junkie ever since!

  4. RobAins Says:

    Forget: Was it you that I had the Police Academy banter going back and forth with on here a few weeks ago?

  5. full tour! Says:

    ^^ it was you and I…lol…and it all started with a mention of the great all you can eat buffet at the “blue oyster”….lol

  6. full tour! Says:

    IMHO…the world was bleak until 1984 when a certain set of misfits signed up under comandant Lassard’s watchful eye. It was that year, 1984, when color was finally painted into he blue sky….tackleberry, hooks, mahoney, hightower….i owe them all a debt of gratitude.

  7. Bryant Says:

    is this true as I read in the news today that many heads, some 100+, got nailed for illegal subs leaving the show on sunday … entrapment

  8. RobAins Says:

    HA! THe blue oyster! I was laughing hysterically that night! Nice to know there’s another Police Academy fan out there!

  9. KRIVRAQ Says:

    RobAins + guyforget…

    I’m still here in NJ, graduated in 93. One of my best buds, and phellow Head, grew up in Randolph and went to Seton Hall Prep. You guys know/remember Jeff Feldman? I know he played soccer back then. Just wondering…

  10. Mr.Miner Says:

    Hard rumor that Jones Beach is turning into 2 nights at Nassau!

  11. jp jones Says:

    “Hard rumor” or “heard a rumor” if so – how the hell would that happen or work? how would they handle ticket situation?

  12. guyforget Says:

    hell yeah Robains, iron hills. I played baseball & hockey.
    Krivraq, name sounds familiar, i graduated in 95.
    First show was hampton 11/22/97. Enough said!!!

  13. Mitch Says:

    I’d like to see shows at Nassau for the indoor / beer factor but whats that do to my 4th row seat??

    Isn’t it GA??

    I’ll be bummed if I lose out on that seat.

  14. Wilson Says:

    @ Dave

    while Phish would certainly suit the polo grounds better than anyone could imagine, that Radiohead show blew my mind. Was way spun, and their sound had me in a total stupor. by the time they hit “everything in its right place” I was just overwhelmed. they’re for real. best show of the three days, imho.

Leave a Reply