Settling Into Place

Jones Beach '09 (Wendy Rogell)

Almost two years has passed since Joy dropped, and the songs from Phish’s only modern-era album have found their primary spots in the band’s rotation. Today, we’ll look at some of the most promising songs from Joy that were debuted in 2009 and their role in current shows.



Trey's Ocelot Inlay

Debuted right after Hampton in Fenway’s first set, “Ocelot” seemed like a promising jam vehicle for the band out of the gates. At the time, it’s playful and methodical grooves seemed like the could easily lead the band in adventurous directions. I remember all of June ’09 waiting for a big “Ocelot” to open the second set, but  to this day, the song has still not appeared in any second set at all. “Ocelot” has found its home as a first set staple, often the first improvisational piece of its given show. The jam has developed a roots Americana feel, spouting passages that sometimes evoke the sound of The Grateful Dead. While the song never seems obtrusive and provides a warm musical breeze, the piece has yet to take on any risk whatsoever. Seeming to content to play it straight, Phish has domesticated their “Ocelot,” much like Salvador Dali did. Perhaps one day, the band will let their pet song out to play.


“Stealing Time From the Faulty Plan”

Jones Beach 09 W.Rogell)

When “Stealing Time” crunched from the PA at Jones Beach ’09, many fans freaked on what seemed like a new dissonant, hard rock launch pad. But almost two years later, we are still waiting on the song to break form. A platform for seething guitar solos, instead of morphing into the next improvisational juggernaut, “Stealing Time” has turned into this generation’s “Character Zero”— a hard-edged set closer that leaves the audience on a high note. Closing only one second set in Hartford (6.18.10), “Stealing Time,” like “Ocelot,” now finds its home in the opening half. And when I first heard it, I would have bet good money against that development. Seemingly reluctant to take their new songs to new places, Phish has also kept this song firmly inside the box.


“Backwards Down the Number Line”

Trey and Tom (

Perhaps the biggest enigma from Joy, “Backwards Down the Number Line” has blown up a handful of times—most notably last summer at Blossom and Jones Beach—but has otherwise remained a noodly anthem. While some of the contained versions shine more than others, Phish has yet to find a good placement for the piece. Often breaking up the flow of second sets with its sudden beginning and abrupt change of vibe, “Number Line” seems to work better as an opener a la SPAC ’09. Though “Number Line” has had some all-star moments, until Phish finds a natural home or musical direction for their ode to friendship, it will continue to be an awkward piece of the band’s catalog.


“Twenty Years Later”

Perhaps the most contemporary-sounding Phish songs on Joy, the enchanting-turned-menacing “Twenty Years Later” has most-often appeared as a soft landing pad for outrageous psychedelic jaunts. And just this fall, Phish began pushing the end of the song, itself, creating dissonant and layered walls of sound out of the jam. A song that always seems to fit perfectly at the end of torrid adventures, Phish has definitely found the right home for “Twenty Years Later.”



8.7.10 -The Greek Theatre (Wendy Rogell)

When Trey performed “Light” twice with Classic TAB (before Phish returned to the stage), I immediately sensed that it would be Phish’s next cosmic trampoline. And lo and behold, “Light” has been the most consistent portal to the universe in this era of Phish. An open-ended piece that is routinely placed in the second set, its jam has migrated from thick ambient textures to futuristic groove, while hitting just about every musical place in between. “Light” is the band’s most exploratory piece right now, and has been since it first explored darkened territory at Bonnaroo (6.14.09), and further exploded during Fall ’09. Easily the improvisational MVP of 2010, every time “Light” started up the most interesting jam of the night was almost sure to follow.


“Kill Devil Falls”

Starting out as another straight forward rocker at Jones Beach ’09, “Kill Devil Falls” got immediately interesting at Bonnaroo as the band’s first stellar and exploratory jam of this the summer. But these type of excursions have been few and far between from of the song, and no version has yet to touch Bonnaroo’s ’09 peak. Staying within the box 99% of the time, “Kill Devil Falls” most often finds its way into a show—or set—opening slot. Providing quality rock and roll, “Kill Devil Falls” warms up the audience for what is coming next.


Jam of the Day:

Piper > Guy Forget” 10.1.00 II

A classic nugget from the home stretch of Fall 2000.




12.4.1995 Mullins Center, Amherst, Massachusetts

FLAC Torrent (via etree), Mp3 Torrent, Megaupload

This December ’95 re-post goes out via reader request to Willowed!

Mullins Center, Amherst, MA

I: Julius, Gumbo, The Divided Sky, Punch You In the Eye, Stash, My Mind’s Got a Mind of its Own, Axilla II, The Horse > Silent in the Morning, Hello My Baby,While My Guitar Gently Weeps

II: Timber Ho, Sparkle, Ya Mar, Run Like an Antelope, Billy Breathes, Cars Trucks Buses, You Enjoy Myself, Sample in a Jar, Frankenstein

E: Bouncing Around the Room, Rocky Top

Source: AKG 460B/ck61 > custom pre-amp > Teac DA-P20 (@ 48kHz)

Tags: , ,

643 Responses to “Settling Into Place”

  1. kenny powers Says:

    @ joe

    glad to hear you decided to go, will be cool to meet you. willowed and i have a room at the glorious HoJo’s, so if you don’t have a post-show hangout at your place feel free to stay out and rage the bars with us and whoever chooses to hang out late night. pretty sure he and i will be pre-gaming near the venue.

  2. kenny powers Says:

    @ G-Dad

    lol, if only this completist, geek-Phish-historian spent as much time listening to the music as i did collecting, organizing, compiling….but hey it keeps me sane.

  3. sumodie Says:

    FS: 2 tix Trey Albany, face n fees -center section balcony (loge)

    still holding out for a BBer to make use of these, otherwise off to the greenboard I go…

  4. Mr. Completely Says:

    three hours ago:
    # of oldschool MMW songs played in one sitting: 5
    perceived awesomeness of said music on 1-10 scale: 4

    two hours ago:
    # of oldschool MMW songs played in one sitting: 15
    perceived awesomeness of said music on 1-10 scale: 9

    one hour ago:
    # of oldschool MMW songs played in one sitting: 27
    perceived awesomeness of said music on 1-10 scale: 5

    # of oldschool MMW songs played in one sitting: 36
    perceived awesomeness of said music on 1-10 scale: 2

    this is the kind of work it takes to create a solid “best-of” playlist though

  5. Cable Hogue Says:

    Hey Miner:

    JOTD tomorrow: DWD>Carini>Taste 2/17/97?

  6. Mr. Completely Says:

    I think I got a solid 45 minutes grace period from the well-known “Moti Mo bump”

  7. KfL Says:

    cool it down>water>sesh>water>thai curry>holy shit 2-17-97 sbds>$$$$

  8. KfL Says:

    i was wondering who the f stole my catapult

  9. Mr. Completely Says:

    so how many local growers across the country have come up with a strain sporting prominent hairs and named it ‘Hairy Potter’?

    in this case the actual product is very good bordering on superb but I will make fun of my friend once a week for the rest of his life if he really calls it that

  10. Mr. Completely Says:

    you can’t leave that shit sitting out unlocked….jeez dude

  11. bhizzle Says:

    $2 #1, $5 #2…………..another $5 for a square of tp

  12. Phamily Berzerker Says:

    Drive-by posting of people not to get in line behind at the airport security checkpoint line.

  13. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    good to see you on the board, mRc.

    I’d argue that a strain called “hogwart’s” would imply bigger issues, both with the grower and the product itself

  14. joe Says:

    life is pretty sad when the thing I’m most looking forward to is 4 weeks away and involves singing along to accoustic versions of waste with dudes I “know” from the internet.

  15. Mr. Completely Says:

    hookers are cheap these days joe

    just sayin’

  16. Chuck sweD Says:

    naming conventions are… non existent. i’d much rather get a strand that was named after its genealogy, rather than the growers’ personal vices, even if that genealogy means absolutely nothing to me.

    heres some rg78bq-l8-9c, its the bomb.

  17. Type III Jamming Personality Disorder Says:

    it gets better, joe. we’re gonna have a sign making party at willowed and kp’s hotel before the show. you bring the posterboard; I’ll bring the glitter paint.

  18. willowed Says:

    pretty sure he and i will be pre-gaming near the venue.


    Correct. I like getting my buzz on close to venue. Then I can go out into the night and find all of the extra curricular’s 😉

  19. Aquaman Says:


    Remember when making signs….invoke the Neemor:


    I hear Trey loves that sign, and I bet acoustic would sound sweet.

  20. voopa Says:

    Well I’m out. Getting my cu$ty ass to moe. at The Fillmore tonight.

    Suck it, haters!

  21. Mr. Completely Says:

    “moe. and voopa sittin’ in a tree…”


  22. Selector J Says:

    re: Hairy Potter

    definitely would make fun of some nerd calling it that,
    especially, since ‘Wook Sack’ is still out there as a name.

  23. bouncin fan Says:

    Moe ain’t no Wing voopa!

  24. butterflyeffect Says:


    Thank you.

  25. willowed Says:

    This just makes me so happy!!

Leave a Reply