Four Wishes For Fall Tour

8.2.13 (Brian Thomas)

8.2.13 (Brian Thomas)

Phish played so well this summer, these lists are getting harder and harder to make. But as we go into Fall, there are still a few things I am hoping to see.

1. The First Set: The last remaining weakness of modern Phish shows is undoubtably the first set. Aside from SPAC’s “Split Open and Melt,” there were no open ended jams in the first half of any shows this summer. There is rarely even much contained jamming of note in opening frames, causing these sets to be musically uneventful. At no point in the last few years have I spun any first set from start to finish, and rarely do I dip into first sets at all but for the random “Reba” or “David Bowie.” Why does Phish choose to keep their first sets so mellow? Sure, lots of fans are there to hear their songs, but how about mixing it up? When the band throws down a great second set, I consider it a great show at this point. Imagine if they infused both sets with creativity? I’m not saying it should be like 1997, but just a bit of interesting music, some meat—and not always “Stash,” “Bathtub Gin,” or “Antelope.” An air of unpredictability has returned to Phish’s second sets this year, but their first ones have remained quite routine.

2. “Energy:” We’ve just seen the birth of Phish’s newest jam vehicle—”Energy.” In only three versions after its debut, the band has built an open-ended psychedelic juggernaut. Sprouting a jam in Alpheretta, the cover was soon placed in the hallowed spot of second set opener in Chicago and San Francisco. The band first opened up “Energy’s” jam in Chicago, charting an uplifting course with an ambient outro, while in San Francisco, they took it down a less cathartic, darker path. I believe we will see this song really blow up this Fall, starting right away in Hampton. I also believe we will see the band take “Energy” jams in wildly different directions, making the new Apples In Stereo cover all the more intriguing.

3. Get In Set Two! : There are several songs that have been begging for the second set treatment, though Phish has been quite stubborn in in keeping them as structured, first set jams. They are: “Wolfman’s Brother,” “Bathtub Gin,” “Tube,” “Stash,” “Split Open and Melt,” “Ocelot,” and “A Song I Heard the Ocean Sing.”

4. New Phish Material: Before every tour for the past couple years, this hope has been listed. Let’s be serious, the band hasn’t written a song in ages. “Steam” is the only original that has debuted in this era and stuck around. Joy songs have been played into the ground and then some. A new album has been hinted at all year, though nothing—even a rumor—has materialized. Does this mean another run with no new originals? Most likely. They did great this summer adding “Energy” to the mix. “Say Something” has potential. But how ’bout an actual Phish song? It’s about time.


Winged-music-noteJam of the Day:

Rock and Roll” 8.3.13 II, BGCA

This monster version provided the centerpiece of Bill Graham’s second show. PS—Thanks for your feedback. I am keeping the links.

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906 Responses to “Four Wishes For Fall Tour”

  1. little umbrellas Says:

    Saw the Lips in I thihk 06 on 12/30. they had it billed as an NYE show. countdown, ballon drop and all, but everybody left and it was the same year…

    that show kinda rocked, I hadn’t heard much of their music but enjoyed the show. but it was largely about there stage production. ex, coming down in a spaceship that turned into a sun.

    but saw em last year acoustic at Bridge School and it was bad. they did A Day In The Life and the guy was reading the lyrics off his iphone.

  2. DaNcInG fOoL Says:

    i was in the disappointed by gravity camp, sadly. huge cuaron fan, just found it too linear and a little flat.

  3. chris Says:

    Yoshimi is a masterpiece. That being said I don’t think its a great fit for phish. Is too contemporary anyway they won’t do it.

  4. Stoney Case Says:

    Hey all! So close I can smell the oil pens!

    Second Jam outta Mikes to jump start the Phish Tsunami this weekend! Aiming for CouchTour at Slicksasquatch’s crib.

    Peace y’all!

  5. snow Says:

    DF would have been right either way. Shit was unreal sunday night. Friday too. Dicks’ 12 may have been more jammy, but hampton was high class.

    dicks ’12 = pamela anderson.
    hampton ’13 = natalie portman

  6. FeeTheProdigy Says:

    Well you sure did get #4 to say the least in Atlantic City.

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