What’s Next?

6.16.09 (B.Kisida)

6.16.09 (B.Kisida)

With the wild-goose chase Phish’s created around their musical costume for Halloween, and the buzz around Sunday’s acoustic set, we continue to forget that the heart of Indio’s throwdown will be six sets of full-on, festival-sized Phish. We left the band at a point of massive creativity, evolving through the second leg of summer tour. The most significant mystery of the upcoming Holiday weekend may not, in fact, be what album the band chooses to cover for Halloween, but what direction the other six sets will take – where will Phish’s music move next?

6.16.09 (B. Kisida)

6.16.09 (B. Kisida)

After a concise and straight-forward June, Phish opened up their music significantly during their second leg of summer. Over the course of August, Phish rediscovered themselves and their improvisational chops, crafting music that evoked memories of their finest days. Their creativity returned, taking their jams in many more directions than June’s predominately structured improv. The excitement returned; no one knew what would happen next, bringing the unknown back into play. Using organic jamming, Phish found themselves arriving at stunning musical planes, instead of forcing themselves into mediocrity – in short – their flow returned. The Red Rocks and The Gorge jams sound just as fresh as they did two months ago – music with staying power – the hallmark of quality. The east coast jams still shine as well, though with less of a majesty. But don’t tell that to Darien’s “Drowned,” Merriweather’s “46 Days,” or the “Number Lines” from SPAC and Chicago – you might have a fight on your hands. But what’s next? Where are we headed now?

The Gorge (G.Lucas)

The Gorge (G.Lucas)

While Phish jams came to life this summer, no distinct musical direction developed – it was still too early. But as we move into Indio, and then Fall Tour, the band’s comfort level will only increase and we are sure to see new sonic elements and directions emerge. Looking for clues in the band’s new material, both “Number Line” and “Light” have proven to be legitimate springboards for diverse jamming. With “Number Line” taking the torch from “Disease” as 3.0’s feel-good anthem that can go anywhere, some of the most exploratory jams of the fall will ironically stem from the “Joy’s” first radio single. Played much less frequently this summer, the versions of “Light” at Bonnaroo and, especially, The Gorge illustrated the song’s propensity for open-ended, original destinations. Boasting one of the moments of the summer with its calypso jam at The Gorge, we have only begun to see where “Light” will take us.

The Gorge (W.Rogell)

The Gorge (W.Rogell)

And now that it is Fall, it’s time to open up “Stealing Time From the Faulty Plan.” Whether it happens at Indio or, more likely, indoors, this song will blow up. Its searing blues-rock psychedelia has been begging to be stretched since its debut at Jones Beach. The fact that Phish has left this one alone for so long makes me think its jam will explode somewhere along the course of Fall Tour – time will tell. While “Ocelot” has been a source of structured improv, it could easily break its mold into playful funk with uncharted courses at any time. I continue to await the 20-minute “Ocelot” second-set opener. The “Kill Devil Falls” jam has proven worthy – entering both upbeat and abstract realms at Bonnaroo and Red Rocks, a pattern that will likely continue. The other song off Joy that could meander into ambient spaces is “Twenty Years Later.” Played only once on each leg of summer, its future still remains hazy. With a few unknowns on Party Time, as well as the funk-laden title track, we could be in for some treats.

Merriweather (K.Pusey)

Merriweather (K.Pusey)

Another potential source of a musical influence is the album they have chosen to cover. We all know how Remain In Light influenced the band, and their current choice could have a style that is genuinely new to Phish. Such costumes include Hitler’s nightmare, MGMT’s Oracular Spectacular, Radiohead’s Kid A, or The Clash’s London Calling. But assuming Phish sticks to the classic rock genre, which most believe they will, it’s doubtful that they will pave their path of 2010 during their Halloween set. More illustrative of their potential direction will be the other six sets that contain far more unknowns than any other part of the weekend.

My gut tells me the band will progress to some form of patient, layered jamming with an undertone of groove; moving with a purpose through music we’ve never heard. With their skills and experience, if the band stays happy and healthy, I see no reason why this era won’t develop into one of the most engaging in the band’s history. If August was any indication, we are well on our way, as the band combined a mid-’90s determination with an evolved skill set, resulting in sublime jams. And we were just getting started. With Indio fast approaching, and Fall piggy-backing off Festival 8, we are about to enter a serious age of musical discovery and development. Hop on for the ride!

Winged music note=====

Jam of the Day:

The Curtain > Stash” 6.17.95 I

The punctuating statement on the first set in Gainesville, VA, and, in my opinion, the highlight of the entire show.




6.13.95 Riverport Amp, Maryland Heights, MO < Torrent

6.13.95 Riverport Amp, Maryland Heights, MO < Megaupload

1995-06-13gnA stop along Phish’s space camp of Summer ’95, this show in St. Louis boasted a second set that centered on the colossal “Bowie” opener. “Hood,” “Reba,” and “Stash” also standout in this lesser-known Summer ’95 gem.

I: Runaway Jim, Foam, Bouncing Around the Room, Stash, Strange Design, Taste, Reba, Hold Your Head Up > Terrapin > Hold Your Head Up, Sparkle, Chalk Dust Torture

II: David Bowie, The Lizards, Axilla (Part II) > Theme From the Bottom, Acoustic Army, Harry Hood, Golgi Apparatus

E: Sweet Adeline, Julius

Source : Unknown

Tags: ,

336 Responses to “What’s Next?”

  1. Mr. Completely Says:

    Trey will be serving you breakfast.

  2. HarryHood Says:

    I agree that tickets should be readily available and reasonably priced closer to the show dates, but I personally hate making all of the other plans without having a ticket in my hand yet. It seems ass-backwards to be reserving hotels and making travel arrangements and then worrying about tickets. My impatientence has cost me plenty of $$$ though. I made a last minute decision to go to Darien this summer and ended up with really great seats for under face. I had plans to go to Fenway, GW, and SPAC ahead of time and ended up paying 3X face (or more) because I was worried about availability.

  3. KWL Says:

    the thing I’m worried about re: ticket prices is that these shows are only a month away. Is that enough time for scalper’s taxed prices to come down?

  4. VTsnowboarder802 Says:

    anyone looking for darien lake tickets can get them on ebay.

  5. HarryHood Says:

    @ KWL – That was my frustration with how long they waited to announce the Fall Tour. I believe that the reason that late summer tour prices dropped so much was because of how long people had between the announcement and the actual show. The impatient people like myself got nervous and paid a premium for tix immediately, the hype eventually died down, and ticket prices dropped significantly. Unfortunately, I think that by holding out on announcing fall tour in order to boost sales for Feight, they might have actually driven up Fall ticket prices in the secondary markets due to the time restraint.

  6. Lycanthropist Says:

    @Mr. C-

    Glad you enjoyed yourself, I know you have been looking forward to the BLK JKS show for some time. It sounds like they did pretty much the same show up there. I believe after a little while their sound is gonna tighten up and they are gonna be a forced to be reckoned with. Even know they were unique and fun when I saw them.

    Good call about the ambient interludes, one of the defining features of their sound. Didn’t get old (maybe a little by the end, but whatever).
    That jam at the end is how Television might jam their songs. Not necessarily improvising, but playing with the chords and the rhythms and keeping the song going while still being interesting.

    Was wondering if you had a chance to hang out with them?

  7. HarryHood Says:

    At VT – $20 says they open with Sample.

  8. Mr. Completely Says:

    I have got to stop listening to these spacy-ass Other Ones before lunch. I can no longer remember what planet I’m on. Bring me home, Jam of the Day…

    oh crap it’s ’95. I’m doomed

  9. Robear Says:

    Mr. C, 9/18/87 MSG coming out of Space, over breakfast.

    GDTRFB, Watchtower, Dew, Good Lovin>La bamba > Good Lovin

  10. Mr. Completely Says:

    yeah Lycan one of the things about being old, er I mean about having been around awhile, is that I have slowly developed patience with promising but flawed young bands. Blk Jks aren’t perfect by any means, but they’re pretty great, and they have both raw chops and a real creative concept, so they should get a lot better over time if they don’t just get stuck.

    I don’t think they have a huge amount of material yet

    They were basically covered in women before the show. I didn’t try to break into their scene – if I had been them, I wouldn’t have wanted to talk to me right then 8) Afterwards they were working on breaking down, and I had to bail.

  11. GuitarPicker420! Says:

    Mr. C – Rock and Roll > Light to start my day 6-14-09. Plenty spacy, but lots of rock too. Feeling like I need to get back into a phishy groove as I head into Fest8. Decided the thing to do was to listen to the entire summer tour front to back in the weeks leading up. Although, I was feeling kind of deadly last week, so I popped in Steppin’ Out, which is a really, really good set. The Truckin > Other One fest on Disk 3 (as well as the sublime Black Peter) had me going just the other day.

  12. Mr. Completely Says:

    @Robear, uber spacy 5-14-74 Iowa Other One, 28 minutes…for some reason they really loved dropping trip-bombs like that out in the boonies in the early 70s…like the fucking Missoula Dark Star, wtf

    now it’s in a nice jazzy Eyes, this is probably a better wake-up bet than Space Camp…I’ll save the Stash for after lunch and coffee

    speaking of Space Camp, saw this earlier

  13. KWL Says:

    have peeps listened to these festivalographies? Some cool stuff. Mike tells the story of how he ate a pot brownie at Lemonwheel & was seriously f’ed up–told Fish at the start of a set that he couldn’t stand up anymore, so Fish told him to just sit down Indian style & play. lol.

  14. Marshall Says:

    ^ i almost missed a Deer Creek ’96 show because of one of those …

  15. Mr. Completely Says:

    ^^^ that was actually my first MSG show Robear..skipped the first 3, caught the last 3

  16. Mr. Completely Says:

    Steppin’ Out is really great. The sound is amazing. That’s the one I got to hang out for part of the remastering process and hear the solos in single channel isolation.

  17. Mr. Completely Says:

    i need to get back into making fudge

  18. Robear Says:

    ^had a feeling you were there, based on past posts. Nice work.

    Just found out, I should be in regular RV parking. Oasis, back on. I just check-in at ‘Guest’ camping.

  19. fat bastard Says:

    no kidding thats cool. ive listened to steppin out so many times, i even have a cool steppin out t-shirt (must have come with the disc)

  20. Mr.Miner Says:

    what’s up with the Joy Boxes??? Anyone get theirs?

  21. Mr.Miner Says:

    @ Robear…do you know if Regular RV parking is one lot or multiple lots?

  22. HarryHood Says:

    No Joy Box yet. Stiiiiiiiilllllll Waiting.

  23. VTsnowboarder802 Says:

    Mr. C – I actually went to space camp as a kid. freakin awesome.

  24. Mr. Completely Says:

    yeah @bastard I’ve told the story before, they were playing Jerry’s track back through the amp he played at the show and mixing it back on top of the board track, to recreate the stage sound…it was a weird ghostly feeling to look at his amp with no one playing and hear the notes coming out…odd but very cool

    @Miner, FWIW I check the private trackers every night – it will go up there approximately 5 seconds after it is delivered to the first person who gets it

  25. Robear Says:

    ^I don’t know. I’ll try to update folks Tuesday night, when I get in. I should be able to get a good spot. I’m hoping I can get somewhere I can hear the show, in case I have to spend the late nights with my son at the RV.

Leave a Reply