A Sinister Sunday

6.27.10 - Merriweather (Graham Lucas)

Phish concluded their transformative weekend on Sunday night with a dark, thematic set filled with shredding musicianship and exploratory jamming. Punctuating a four-night run that nobody will soon forget, Phish leapt into the fray with an igneous experiment that read “Saw It Again > Piper > Ghost > Jumping Jack Flash > Saw It Again.” Bookended by groove sessions, this psychedelic suite provided the core of the show, careening into uncharted territory with the new and improved Phish from Vermont.

Sparking the eighth set of the weekend with “Wilson,” the band cranked up the heat on an unbearably hot evening at Merriweather Post Pavilion, using Gamehendge as an energetic trampoline into the final frame. Potentially responding to an “up-fronter’s” sign, the band dropped into “Meatstick” out of left field, juicing the millennial anthem’s feel-good funk with emotive guitar leads and an out-of-character jaunt into a series of swamp grooves. As Trey, ripped a single chord, the band left the song’s progression for swanky dance rhythms that stretched seductively until Trey got another idea in his head. Once Red awkwardly ended a growing “Meatsick” with the opening riff of “Saw It Again,” the set flowed impeccably from here on out.

6.27.10 (G.Lucas)

Staging a sonic assault in “Saw It Again,” the band stretched the piece into thunderous sheets of sound and psychedelia while screaming the lyrics over the top of the evil soundtrack. Morphing into a significant piece of musical dramedy, the band continued shrieking the one-liner as they built a spacey segue into “Piper,” much like SPAC’s “Makisupa > Piper” transition from a week ago. And with “Piper” came the unquestionable creative and innovative highlight of the evening. Take the full-band crushing from “Oswego” ’99’s legendary version, and cross it with “Miami’s” crafty piece of musical density, and you’d come close to approximating the vibe of this stellar summer standout. Bombarding the crowd with a sawed-off shotgun of musical ideas, Phish exploded in an ever-morphing series of mini-jams. Without a tangible linear theme, the band took a jump off the deep end, going for the jugular in an experimental piece of roaring proportions. Transcending the uptempo rage-fest and avoiding generic percussive jamming of ’09, Phish wove through many creative portions of new-era music. This is one that needs to be heard to truly comprehend, as it reaches so many diverse places. In the jam’s denouement, the band broke into a groove that brought rhythmic resolution to the freight-train that had just demolished the venue. Moving the outro into a spacier texture, the band slid from their sprawling epic into the long-awaited second “Ghost” of summer.

6.27.10 (G.Lucas)

Left untouched since opening night in Chicago, the crowd was more than ready for the seminal late-90’s vehicle. This version shied from straight groove, as Trey began soloing early with notable nimbleness, and he simply never stopped. The whole band toyed with the changes of “I Saw It Again” throughout the “Ghost” jam, thematically uniting the non-stop sequence. Taking center stage, Trey slayed his leads as the band continued a driving groove beneath his display of fireworks. In an aural double-take, virtually nobody in the audience realized that Phish had sculpted “Ghost’s” jam directly into The Rolling Stones’ “Jumpin’ Jack Flash.” Trey simply stepped up and sung the lyrics over the existing pattern in the smoothest possible segue; the kind you don’t even realize is happening. Blowing out the end of the cover, the band began chanting “I Saw It Again” over an increasingly menacing texture, moving back into the song that started all this madness. In a fifty-minute period of maniacal music, Phish painted Sunday evening black, celebrating their new found confidence with a compelling trek into the underworld.

Official Merriweather Poster

Breaking out “Contact” for a light, late-set interlude, Phish capped the evening with a short but sweet “You Enjoy Myself”, featuring “Jumping Jack Flash” teases at the beginning and end of the jam. The lyrical reprise of “I Saw It Again” that surfaced throughout the set came out most creatively as Trey substituted “Boy,” and portions of the “Wassha Uffizi” lyrics, with “I Saw It Again,” all completely in rhythm and with hilarious intonation.

Last night Phish underlined a set of seething music with their classic sense of comical creativity, illustrating, once again, that the band has arrived. Playing another flowing set flooded with modern ideas, Phish followed up their past two nights with yet another magnificent evening.With three straight nights of next-generation Phish, the band has redefined what it means to be a fan in 2010. Cranking out everything in their repertoire, from exploratory jamming to ornate compositions, and doing it like the maestros that they are, Phish has taken the second half of tour by storm. After this weekend, the south should take heed, as a musical cyclone is about to hit the region. With only a Tuesday stop in Canandaigua separating us from tour’s four-night finale, June will always be remembered as the month when the band began moving forward again. And the future has never looked brighter.

Set I Notes: The first set featured six summer bust outs, most notably, “Walfredo,” “Tela,” and Bob Marley’s “Mellow Mood.” Though everything was played quite well, the set picked up steam, in earnest, with another scorching “Bathtub Gin,” which, in turn, set the table for a closing “Antelope.” Before the two classic vehicles emerged, the set had translated as a somewhat choppy recital; but its ending salvaged the opening frame.

I: Walfredo, Mellow Mood, Stealing Time From the Faulty Plan, The Divided Sky, Tela, My Soul, Ginseng Sullivan, Sample in a Jar, Bathtub Gin, Brian and Robert, Run Like an Antelope

II: Wilson, Meatstick > Saw It Again > Piper* > Ghost* > Jumpin’ Jack Flash^ > Saw It Again > Contact*, You Enjoy Myself**

E: Fire*

*Saw It Again lyrical quotes
**Saw It Again quotes and Jumpin Jack Flash teases; Saw It Again and Surfin’ Bird quotes in vocal jam.
^ Phish debut

"Tela" - 6.27.10 (Graham Lucas)

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1,083 Responses to “A Sinister Sunday”

  1. Mr. Murph Says:

    Mr. C, if your here, could you recommend one of your compilations that has a Crazy Fingers in it?

  2. hoedown Says:

    6/18 tweezer is my favorite so far this tour. Real dance machine that Tweezer is!

  3. Foul_Domain Says:

    CMAC back on for me!


  4. butter Says:

    6/18 Tweezer = Trey + Mike cold destroying a groove

    love it

  5. butter Says:

    good for you Foul Domaine

  6. butter Says:

    giving Light from Mansfield its proper spin

  7. Foul_Domain Says:

    you going tomorrow butter?

  8. butter Says:

    no, leg 2 awaits , and is my next live Phish

    any leg 2 for you

  9. Foul_Domain Says:

    nothing solid yet.

    I need to see how my work schedule unfolds.

    Alpine 1 and 2 at least though, I hope

  10. brother Says:

    just catchin up on the last four shows (shout out to the yawner!). Where the hell did that chaulkdust come from?? good lord! must be an ode to the many monster dusts they’ve killed in that shed. just right out into space it went and never came down. great stuff boys. can’t wait to hear that 2001 ya’ll are talkin about. btw, i’m lookin for atlant tx it anyone can help. will pay what it takes for good pavs.

  11. Foul_Domain Says:

    Mike killed that 6/18 Tweezer.

    Wolfmans too

  12. butter Says:

    they were really in “the belly of the beast” during the Mansfield Light

    i see why Miner wanted them to stay there, although this 46 days does resolve the jam nicely, and i enjoyed the Sneakin>Light>46 days thoroughly live without questioning it

    the swampy bluesy funk let the bubbles out of the belly of the beast

  13. BrandonKayda Says:

    Congrats on hitting CMAC @Foul, Phish is on a hot streak ever since Camden, and I don’t think they plan on stopping soon 😉

  14. Foul_Domain Says:

    Thanks BK! Cant wait

  15. Foul_Domain Says:

    I am really enjoying Light more and more after every new version I hear.

    Great vehicle

  16. ChefBradford Says:

    Yep, pretty much every version of Light is worth checking out; may be my favorite “new” song, and I’m hoping to get a great one this week!

  17. gavinsdad Says:

    listening to the Joni cover from camden…i was trying to place it much of the song…i knew it but it wouldn’t click…listening back now I realized that I thought it was REO Speedwagon by the way Mike was singing…then their arrangement is really a phishy version (with some dickie b’esque licks)…so it took me forever to get it. all that said, another nice cover.

    i think, because i like the tune so much, that i’d like to see look out cleveland again (but i’d take the rover again taboot).

    band sounds great. damn. cannot wait to get back.

  18. butter Says:

    i have fallen back in love with Harry Hood this summer

    with Fishman back it is carrying some serious weight again

  19. GhostPhunk Says:

    pure gold for you my friends… pure gold


  20. gavinsdad Says:

    chef – you rolling solo style down South or should we expect you at Leo W’s bbq?

  21. GhostPhunk Says:

    KWL says there’s a bar with 50 taps near the venue… this is where you can find me from 3pm on tomorrow.

  22. Foul_Domain Says:

    yeah, Fish gets my vote for most improved from ’09

  23. Mr. Completely Says:

    “they were soaring in da gorge for sure”

    I love those Gorge shows. I agree the jams hold up as beautiful and creative. I do think the non-jam stuff is played much better across the board this year.

    “but it seems like disaster was pending in Jerry’s life.”

    He always seemed too…something…to stay here very long; a spirit not entirely of this world, and not really comfortable here. And he certainly had some deep wound that tired him, and drove him down. I didn’t know him but I know a fair number of people that did. Some of them knew him pretty well. They all speak of the same thing.

    It was the cigarettes and shitty food as much as anything, you know. For real.

  24. gavinsdad Says:

    fish gives that mpp Gin some fresh batteries no doubt. love it.

    butter – glad u got some daughter/show time in…i’ll be stoked to do that soon with Gavin.

  25. brother Says:

    Ha! 2001. Trey absolutely know none of the lyrics, but gives it a try tho. such a great fast paced version of 2001 overall. nasty.

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