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pmc2kd , attached to 2013-10-20 Permalink
A lot has already been written, but I'll give my night III review anyway.

After two pretty solid shows to kick off I had high hopes for Hampton magic on a Sunday.

Set I kicked off with a nice Julius. Definitely a fun opener, gets everyone moving and singing a bit.

Funky Bitch ratcheted up the energy.

Back on the Train was really really strong. This version definitely stood out at the time. They jammed for a while and brought it to a really high peak. Standout.

Roses are Free was up next. This is always welcome for me and they managed to take this out for a little spin as well. The end of the song saw Fishman go to the cymbal (ride or crash, idk I'm not a drummer) and they sort of picked up this droning sort of jam. It didn't go anywhere really, but it was a shining moment and foreshadowed some of the magic to come.

Sample was it's typical sing-songy self.

Ginseng Sullivan was fun, and fit the setting.

46 Days was fiery. I liked this version after the preceding two songs. Good jolt.

Divided Sky was amazing. The incredible and surreal moment where everyone just held up lighters during the pause was magical. It's a moment I'll never forget. The band must have been in such awe as well. I felt like everyone shared an intimate and incredible moment there. Plus they played a great version of the song!

Bold As Love was a good closer. Great tune.

Overall set I: It's not the greatest first set, and to be honest I was thinking it was just so-so.
Highlights: BOTT, Roses, D-Sky (probably less so for re-listen versus in the moment)

Well set II was fit to be a barn-burner with Tweezer in play.

They opened with a request for Paul and Silas from some costumed Where's Waldo fans. Fun banter and fun song.

Then they kicked into Tweezer. This one was the dark menacing older brother to the springy upbeat Tahoe version. It growled and snarled with some truly evil work. It eventually morphed into one of those jams that reaffirms why you;d see this band over and over again. The feedback drenched, reverb-ed tone Trey found had an almost underwater feel. He simply played all the right notes, which for me was emotional and contemplative. It just sort of melted around you. His work with the dynamics were amazing to, sort of going loud to soft and using the feedback to sustain certain phrases. It was really just sublime.

Then they dropped into Golden Age which felt like a nice call after the Tweezer darkness. They played the song section well and this one took a serious turn towards the ambient as the jam kicked in. This is a seminole version and concluded with an eerie effects laden ending.

They found piper at the conclusion, and this one hit warp speed quickly. They were really cooking when the found a nifty familiar chord progression.

**Side note and amazing story. My friend had commented before Friday that there was a Takin' Care of Business jam in a few versions of Bertha from '74 - specifically the Winterland shows. So we had been joking on and off the whole run about that tune and how the Grateful dead should get credit for it.

Long story short, we looked at each other and both mouthed "Takin' Care of Business?" and boom they dropped into it. It was one of those cosmic moments that's literally too ridiculous to not be true. I don't know what else to say about that moment. For me it was just indescribable.

Musically they slid into the cover without effort and it was straight out of the early 90's (looking at you Real Gin). They blew through the over and the energy was top of the charts. Superlative moment. They even managed to drift into outer space towards the end with Gordo letting off another bone rattling meatball bomb before they queued up 2001.

This set was already magical, and this 2001 continued the jamming vibe. I think it clocked close to 10 minutes and had plenty of space. Trey was echoplexing it up to great effect. It fit really well. This was a danceable beast.

Sand up next and more dancing ensued. This was a high energy version that took a bit of a diverse path to the top as well. I found this jam (like the Hood jam the night before) to be unique and very interesting.

We knew they'd cap it off with something special and Slave was perfection. The guy next to us just threw his head in his hands repeating "Oh My God" over and over. Well, that's pretty much how I felt too man. This slave was great too. They took a nice approach at the beginning with Trey just playing one note and altering dynamics with Fishman doing the same and they sort of followed each other. They wound through a nice patient jam and found a typically glorious peak and ended a near perfect set. Ok it was a perfect set.

The encore was ADITL which was standard great, and Tweezer Reprise was the final bomb that incinerated any remaining elements of humanity left in the alien spacecraft.

End SET.

Overall Set II: This one is top to bottom classic. Best single set I have seen. I place this set ahead of MagnaBall Night II Set II. So yea. All killer no filler.
Highlights: All, but Tweezer & Golden Age are both top tier versions of all time for me.
Score: 0
Gumbro , attached to 1994-06-11 Permalink
Gumbro Been listening to Phish off and on since about 1995. Junta through Hoist were in constant rotation for a solid two years, and "A Live One" and "Hampton Comes Alive." Fell off the wagon for a while. Dove back in deep about 2012, starting with 3.0 live shows and working my way back to other eras. Went nuts on 1997-2000 (I love Fukuoka most of all) and love the funk, ambient jams and intergalactic space Phish.

But now I'm digging deep into 93-95 and am really loving it, as it's getting me connected back to those early records I loved so much. I'm a jazz guy and a rock guy, so this is like aural candy for me.

Anyway, just gave this a spin and I agree with other reviewers that it's an upper echelon Phish show. There's so much manic energy, fire and passion in the playing, which is spot-on for the whole show. The YEM and Stash from the first set are outstanding, as is the RLAA. Superb.
Score: 0
pmc2kd , attached to 2013-10-19 Permalink
Hampton night II

Set one opened with Gin. Awesome call (like Wolfman's of last night). Typical fiery 3.0 peak. Nothing out of ordinary, but great show opener.

Moma Dance is always pretty comfortable in the two spot. This was a standard version, but the energy remained high.

Tube was very sightly stretched out and made for a good version. Solid, more high energy and a good dose of funk when paired with Moma.

>FEFY was beautiful, stunning really. In this spot after some high octane Phish, this tune really fit in. It is just sublime and this is a nice version.

Curtis Loew was my second and was equally fun. This is a nice one to catch.

Ya Mar was nice, but nothing too special here.

STFTFP and My Sweet One were both pretty much straightforward. This was a decent run through some tunes during this stretch, but started feeling "jukeboxy".

Mike's song assured us a nice Groove to close out the set. I thought the Mike's worked well here. Great energy.

I was super happy to get hydrogen, and this one was much improved in comparison to the version I caught at Camden '11. Nice.

Weekapaug was in the closer spot and this one was great. They took a nice patient approach to the jam focusing more on rhythm then Trey soloing. Page hit the clav hard, and after some time Trey circled the wagons for a victorious conclusion. Great way to end the set.

Overall Set I: Another nice first set (like last night's). For me stronger than night one, with good jamming found in Gin, Tube and Mike's Groove. Plus some cool song selection with FEFY and Curtis Loew. Very solid.

Set II opened with the familiar sound of the big Ghost chord. I was 0-2 on my Ghosts with both versions I caught in 2011 being very weak. This one set me straight though. It was quite long at around 17 minutes or so from my memory, and Trey took a good and interesting path to bliss-town. They also got some good spacey/evil sort of jamming in for good measure. It wasn't maybe the cleanest of all peaks, but I thought I peaked really well nonetheless. This was a take-home version for sure. Show highlight probably.

Disease popped up and rather than continuing the big type II jamming it served more as a rocking bridge, and worked pretty darn well considering it's such a glorious tune. It was sort of a quick version, but I thought satisfying tacked onto the Ghost.

The dropped into Steam, which was awesome and fit right in with the song selection. This was a great version. There was a technical issue at one point with Trey so he slotted over to the kit and him and Mike just started banging away on Fish's gear. This was a cool rhythmic segment and gave Page some space to just color the rhythm. Definitely a great version.

They had given us plenty of jamming through three and the next run of tunes was a sort of back to the jukebox run.

Caspian cooled us off, Boogie gave us a chance to get moving, Theme and Wedge were both pretty straight, but fun. Silent was Horseless and was ok.

They dropped into Hood in the closing position and that was a great call. This one was a really interesting take too. Rather than go for the straight up blissful build they took a dissonant/minor key approach and the jamming was actually pretty tense. It's not overly long, but it's not your straightforward standard Hood. This one is worth a listen and I really enjoyed it. Just a nice fresh take.

Quinn sent us off into the night happy. Nice in the encore slot.

Overall set II: This one started really strong. In hindsight it would have been preferable if they took disease a bit deeper and cut off some of the middle song based section of the set. Ghost, Steam, & Hood were all keepers though, so I can't complain.
Highlights: Ghost, Steam, Hood

Overall: I thought this was the better overall show than night I, but didn't have the top jam a la Carini. Good solid above average show. Serious fun.
Score: 0
DARKH0LL0W , attached to 1997-12-12 Permalink
DARKH0LL0W This is one of the shows that made me think of phish in a whole new way.
as a huge Pink Floyd fan I tend to like my music a bit darker. Do you like that kind of stuff? then this might be the show for you.

First set- funky bitch is a top version must listen. Good choice for a opener, until they step back into the smoke and let it all go,2001,now it was a great opener! This is when I knew we were in it deep, and this 2001 is fantastic 97 all the way. 97 was a good year for this jam, if you like funk then camel walk is for you. A great combo.Taste!yea i like this placement. a couple of cool down songs make up most of the rest of the set , it is a first set after all,But they did give us one more big jam, Tweezer this was a an unusual version, in a good way, with some great funk and echoes. the sound was amazing you could catch the effect bouncing from all directions. just the way i like it.

so on to the Darkness

The second set is all must listen 97. I SAW IT AGAIN IS THE SHIT.This goes to new places, and is way longer then normal . The piper is one of the best of all time. It was mixed with a llama jam/ birds of a feather jam all the way through. Llama Llama Llama! I kept saying its going into llama. wow!
then things get even more dark with Swept away> steep, I love this song combo. onto the gem of this show. Prince Caspian>llama jam>Prince Caspian. I kept thinking i am going to get my first Llama its going to happen yes, no , well Dont let the set list fool you, it is a Llama jam! Man this will change your opinion of Prince Caspian.Is it just me or was Fishmen going into Rocco Williams before trey changes the jam? what a show! At this point your mind should be mush, so they hit you with a Izabella. nice. and a Tweezer Reprise. OH SHIT
oh yea then a Guyute> antelope enc.
Fuck, what the hell just happened,
that is what most people were saying stumbling out of the place into -10 below weather. The next night blew the place up all over again. Add this show to 12-11-97 and 12-13-97 and you have a perfect end to the 97 east coast run. On to new years and a finish to a major year for this band.

I think this was one of those shows that lost the 91-95 phans that liked upbeat happy phish. but not me, i love it in the Dark.
Score: 0
pmc2kd , attached to 2013-10-18 Permalink
Ah the mothership (ok it was my first Phish show there so I don't know if I can rightfully call it that).

I was super pumped to be able to catch the opening three shoes of Fall tour. I worked / lived in Charlottesville at the time and my good buddy was also in Virginia, so we were crashing nearby in Norfolk - a quick jaunt down the road from the venue.

Set I opened with Wolfman's, which was a nice signal of intent. This one didn't open up too much, but rocked nonetheless. Good start.

Runaway Jim was nice in the two spot. Fine version.

Mound was up next and this was a fun one. Nothing special but a good song.

Chalkdust was placed fourth in an interesting position. Kicked up the energy for sure. Band was definitely getting loose.

Army of One was for Page, and Nellie Kane was a nice nod to the southerners in attendance.

Stash had some good jamming, but they botched the ending, which led into a joke as Fishman had to redo it. Funny.

Ocelot was ok, loping along in typical fashion.

Rift and Bouncin' was exactly Rift and Bouncin'.

WOTC was a great closer and cranked up the energy before set-break.

Overall Set I: A good opening set, felt kind of like a warmup, which delivered some looseness, some fun, and a couple nice jamming moments in WOTC, Wolfman's and the Stash jam proper.

Set II opened with Twist. Twist was awesome. They took a good patient approach to the jam and found a nice peak then went straight ambient. Kuroda was lighting the back wall and it was really cool during the spacey ambient section of this one. I enjoyed this version.

I feel like I have seen Free in the second spot of the second set so often. This one was no different. (p.s. it's always fun)

Roggae was in the 3 hole and this one absolutely cruised into a beautiful peaking soaring space. Trey was unbelievable, but it should be mentioned the hole band kept driving him further and further to the top.

Sparkle was a brief and fun interlude before they kicked into Cavern and had me thinking a rock show.

Carini kicked in a destroyed all in it's path. This was a GREAT version. Dark rock, dancing funk, upbeat Trey. This had it all. Must hear Phish and foreshadowed the tour to come.

Numberline was a nice choice after that jam. This was a decent version.

20 Years and Wading were fine.

Antelope rocked, but didn't do anything too special.

Overall Set II: Good set, a couple really nice jams (count 3 - Twist, Roggae, Carini). There were some uneven moments, but overall a great first show.

Go get that Carini!

Overall: Good show, sort of felt like a tour opener get loose kind of show. Good songs mostly and one big jam that remained a tour highlight in a VERY strong tour.
3.75/5 Niiiiice.
Score: 0
pmc2kd , attached to 2013-08-02 Permalink
My first trip to BGCA (I now live in SF and have been fortunate to go back).

Free opened up set I. I like it as an opener. Good playing.

Meat was on deck and that was a real treat. They kicked in a cool out of the ordinary breakdown and Trey treated us to some killer notes. Great version.

OKP>Bag was a nice old-school pairing. So far the energy level was high.

Vultures was a treat. Ok it wasn't the finest version you've ever heard, but I love this one.

Roggae continued its upward trajectory as this version soared to a great climax. Fantastic version for sure.

Sand didn't give us a chance to slow down and picked up steam before reaching a fiery climax. Killer.

When the Circus Comes to Town was a perfect breather here. Well played.

Babylon Baby was pretty cool. I enjoyed it.

Reba kicked in and carried a good jam. This version was solid, the jam wasn't super stretched out, but it was good (not Great).

Halfway to the Moon was a bit odd in this spot, but pretty solid and Golgi rounded out a really fun set.

Overall set I: Great song selection. Tons of surprises. Some really good jamming in Roggae, Sand, Reba.
Highlights: Meat, Roggae

Set II jumped off with PYITE. I love this one in the set II opener slot. They didn't nail it completely, but tons of fun.

DWD was up next. I was ambivalent about this version at the time. It's not my favorite, but it wasn't bad per se. It covered a fair amount of ground too, just not overly magical.

Caspian>Farmhouse gets annotated in the setlist as noteworthy, which I think is more a function of the weakness of those tunes than any truly mind-blowing playing you think you might find here. That said, if you do like these tunes, the versions in this show are worth a listen.

Seven Below was awesome. OK the intro was not, it was an unmitigated botch fest. The jam was awesome though. Some wooing (like in Vultures in set I D'OH!) was present during the stop start. This also carried a good conclusion. Show highlight.

Theme was solid, and I thought interesting.

Harry Hood was a nice call in this slot and provided the appropriate smile factor.

STFTFP was very interesting. I think this is the best version they've ever played. Worth a listen.

Coil is a great way to end a set. This one was nice. Always beautiful.

Encore: WOTC was great. I like that this song is pretty much common nowadays. Always rocking!

Overall Set II: This was a good set with some nice jamming in Seven Below and interesting takes on DWD, Theme, STFTFP and even Caspian/Farmhouse (in the 3 & 4 hole though....).

Overall a good show, I think appropriately rated. First set was a blast and second set had its moments. Grab this Seven Below for some woo period heroics.
3.75/5 Above Average for sure!
Score: 0
pmc2kd , attached to 2013-07-13 Permalink
Just before the Fall 2013 peak Summer 2013 was rolling along and the playing was pretty darn good for this tour to be sure.

I hadn't caught a show since the previous year in August, so by the time MPP rolled around I was pretty pumped to dive back in.

We had a nice spot right up front of lawn, which helped since it's not the best shed for lawn viewing.

Set I opened with a peppy KDF. Nothing new, but a fun kickoff.

Destiny was up next. Great tune and I've been fortunate to catch a few of 'em. This was fun.

Taste was awesome. This version had a great and patient jam, with Page and Trey working really well. I REALLY enjoyed this.

Halfway to the Moon and Twenty Years Later brought the 3.0 tunes and paired nicely with some good playing and they kept the darkness coming as they kicked into Maze.

Maze was awesome, like most recent/semi-recent 3.0 versions, Page has played amazing and Trey has contributed really interesting work during the Page solo. He peaked this well.

Yarmouth gave us a new tune, it was fun, and it started absolutely pouring at this point with a crazy orange red sky.

Split Open and Melt kicked in at a perfect time (weather-wise) and they played this one fantastic, with a nice deviation to the major key. Really good version.

Overall Set I: After almost a year since my last show, this set hit a lot of high points for me. Good song selection, some really nice jamming in Taste, Maze & Melt & a good bit of weather made for a memorable set.

The second set opened with DWD, which I am never unhappy to hear. This one was very nice as it hit a couple different jam spaces and they found their way back into the ending verse, which was super cool and kicked the energy way up! Great stuff.

Free was up next (how many times have I been hit with that combo!). This was fine.

Bouncin' took it down a notch. Not the best spot.

BOAF was a very nice version. It didn't break away, but it had some really good interplay and Trey and Page were both doing fine work. I really enjoy this take.

Harry Hood mid-set? This was a nice placement, and the jam on this one was really good. I put this way above many of the 3.0 takes. This was straight ahead but had an actual guitar lead peak. Throw in a tasty divided sky tease. This one is rightly annotated in the setlist.

Architect was kind of an odd call. I don't really know about this tune. Pretty cheesy.

Mike's song popped into the fourth quarter as a great energy boost. This version was good, and to my ears much more interesting than the 2012/2011 versions I had caught. Good playing into Simple.

Simple was awesome and this version could have achieved serious liftoff. They hit a glorious chord sequence at the end (similar in some ways to the 7/18/2016 Bill Graham version, but probably a little better even). It threatened to emerge into a hard rocking Disease reprise, but with impending curfew they kicked into 'Paug. The Simple is a sure highlight.

Weekapaug was also great, with a rhythmic dancing take on the jam and a good finale. This Mike's groove was great.

Encore: Waste>GTBT - I was hoping Waste wouldn't finish us off, and GTBT was just what the doctor ordered. Trey wizardry.

Overall Set II: Good set. A little uneven with Free, Bouncin' & Architect, but no complaints about the rest. This was a very good show.
Highlights: Disease, Hood, Simple (throw in BOAF if you are a fan of that song).

Overall: A good show to come back to after about a year. Good jamming, good songs. Not the most even, but definitely nothing egregiously bad or serious lulls.
3/5 Thoroughly enjoyable show!
Score: 0
FunkyCFunkyDo , attached to 2016-07-23 Permalink
FunkyCFunkyDo Palm fronds shrugged effortlessly at us on our final approach into the venue. Swaying peacefully, purposefully, their silent grace showed us more life lessons than a year’s worth of living – some years at least. Listen to the silent trees. The dry grass on the rolling hills knew what the trees knew – rhythmically dancing in the same breeze as if they knew no other way of life. The music hadn’t started yet, but the harmony had. It was all around us, on the wind and under water, a subtle, relaxed energy, softly speaking to us. All it took was a moment away from your phone, your beer, even your best friend, to look around and feel that mellow mood unifying. All it took was that moment to know that something special was on the wind this night.

A soft roar trickled through the crowded Sleep Train Amphitheatre as the Phish took the stage. One section at a time, like ripples lapping at the shoreline, took notice of the band’s (normal) anticlimactic return to the stage. The band seemed in no hurry. There was patience from fan and bandmate alike, harmonious acceptance that this was the last show of the tour, so let’s soak it in. The sky was a gradient of warm orange, fading into brilliant white, segueing into deep blue, and finally into a magnificent purple hue. The palms fronds still shrugged. This was nothing new to them. How lucky we were to be able to share this with them, with all our friends, in this corner of time, in this place, whatever it meant.

"Farmhouse" opened the show with a seemingly apologetic tone. I heard no groans, no mumbles – only smiles. After the weirdness of the Forum, although neither I (nor anyone else) would have predicted a "Farmhouse" opener, it fit. As if the salted breeze itself carried the notes from mind to ear, this version’s subtlety was as much of an acknowledgement of our collective situation tonight, the final show of tour, as it was an apology for the night before. Beautifully played, the sentiment was set. I looked behind the stage, the palm trees didn’t seem to care, they were happy to be there, just like always. "555" came next and Trey immediately took a grinding edge with his tone. Improvisationally normal, the song itself has an attitude – one palpable for any fan who has a seen at least a couple of versions of this song live. A good sign. A slowed down, bayou style "Water in the Sky" filled the 3-slot and provided a moment of reflection. Was this planned? Trey seemed to be looking at his feet quite a lot – perhaps at a group of songs the band wrote down, collectively, to let us in on what they were feeling. I felt as though they played this one for us. A trio of songs played with heart and purpose; songs meant to let us know they were just as aware as we were, and now that the hatchet was buried, it was time to do what we all came to to do: it was time to get down.

The gritty notes of "Ghost" hustled through the amps, and bodies started moving. Wide eyes looked around, heads turned to friends, feet started shuffling, and the fuse was lit. Wasting no time, Phish nailed the transition and embarked on a major key explosion within minutes of the jam segment taking off. Reminiscent, almost to a note, of the major key shift in the 12/31/10 "Ghost," this version prowled through the fading sunlight, with Trey stalking each note, Fishman attacking each beat, Mike thundering through the rhythm, and Page driving through the jam. A tour-de-force of Set I jams, we can only look back at this complete, peaking version and say “Whoa.” Trey knew something special had just clicked. He was smiling ear to ear as they returned into "Ghost" proper. Following a quick conversation with the man wearing a dress, "Ass Handed" (finally) got back into the rotation. Perhaps an acknowledgement of the previous night, who knows, the hard-edged 20 second jam gave way to the even harder edged, (ironically): "The Sloth." Played with gusto and attitude, band and fans alike were fully aware that this was going to be no ordinary show.

After nailing "The Sloth," and a few giggles and smiles later, "Martian Monster" announced that we had been selected to be the first astronauts to explore the planet Mars! How serendipitous that I was wearing my space suit for this show! I can only assume the rest of the crowd was aptly prepared, as the first volley of highly controversial dance moves were unleashed during this truncated, yet fiery space expedition of thumping bass and scratching clav. As the dissonant retro rockets fired to get us back earth, with fluttery beauty "Reba" made her second appearance of the tour. Meandering placidly and cohesively through the composed section, the jam called on the name of the wind to guide it through cerebral soundscapes. The palm fronds noticed. A swaying jam, the music was interwoven with soft progressions and warm builds. Delicately gaining in momentum, just as the waves were a few miles from the venue, this "Reba" jam reached a blissful peak, with Trey conversing with the breeze, acknowledging the role it had been playing in Phish’s final show of Summer Tour 2016.

In "Reba's" aftermath, Trey stepped back to talk to Fish, and both started giggling in a grinning, sinister way. FINALLY! The return of "Ass Handed!" Again! Fish took the mic and reminded us of what he told us at The Gorge, “Truer words have never been written in a a song.” (Or something to that effect). This is our concern, dude; you do indeed get your ass handed to you; every day. With energy now radiating from every corner of the sprawling amphitheater, the band sank its teeth into undoubtedly the best "Tube" of the last seven years. Fantastic Fish/Trey interplay gave way to Mike taking the reigns in the second half of this extended (finally!) "Tube." Page patiently sprinkled flourishes and textures throughout, taking a backseat supportive role, and assuring that this jam would hold together. At one point I believe I saw him mouth to Mike, “Do we have any peanut butter to go with this jam?!” Well that’s not entirely true, but it may as well have been, as the Sandwich King’s smile said just as much as the music did.

Continuing the FUNK, "Wolfman’s Brother" appearered next. Talk about controversial dance moves. When the band moved into the "California Love" tease/jam, security was taking shelter as far away from the whirling masses as possible. People were getting down. There was no stopping us. We knew it, the red shirts knew it, and the band knew it, as they blistered through the jam into a reprise of "CA LOVE" before swooping back into "Wolfman’s" proper. Not a second after the closing chords, Page started "Walls of the Cave." Moving confidently through the song's meaningful lyrics and emotive notes, I looked to the palm trees again. They swayed their approval, speaking inaudible words – words only felt by those lucky enough to be in attendance that evening. A seismic build erupted into a flurry of notes, as Trey and Mike exchanged scales. Fish crashed his cymbals in approval, and Page hammered the ivory with passion. The band hit a lock-step, volcanic peak that sent shockwaves through the bordertown. Mexican residents falsely reported an earthquake, how silly, it was just Phish.

Phish took the stage again after an abbreviated setbreak. I don’t blame them. We were just as eager to dance as they were to play, it seemed. Wasting no time, spacey noise permeated the loudspeakers and "Down with…" wait… no… could it be?!? "2001"!! Marking the first time "2001" has opened Set II since the legendary "Moby Dick Show" in Deer Creek on 7/11/00, the dancers' moves were bordering on the prohibited. Transitioning through swampy funk, a "CA Love" reprise of sorts, and dirty disco grooves, both peaks were executed flawlessly, giving us a top contender for best "2001" of the last 5 years or more. The spaceship was now primed for blastoff, and "46 Days" was the rocket fuel of choice. Taking notes from the "WOTC" jam, this version was a welder’s torch of focused energy. Cutting through the night sky like a comet, "46 Days" streaked brilliantly in the 2 slot of the second set. A take-no-prisoners jam complete, the band shifted back into the song proper before fading into "Piper," which continued the energy of the first two songs. Trey stepped back after the lyrics with thought and purpose. He had ideas to take this somewhere. Fans of 2003 "Pipers" will enjoy this one quite a bit. Trey reverted back to some of his classic 2003 licks to engage this one in a feeding frenzy of tension and release. Just as the jam started to sprint, Trey jerked his head over to Cactus who was pounding away in deep bass bliss. Something clicked for Trey. An idea! You could almost see the lightbulb above his head. He dropped the chopping block on "Piper" (sigh) just as it seemed it was going to be one of “those jams,” but undaunted, Trey ripped into "Twist" with a purpose. They got through the refrain with pep, and Trey immediately dropped into a tone and progression reminiscent of 7/23/97 "Ghost." Twinkling and sparkling, the minimalistic starshine groove floated in a free form tapestry of punctuated drum hits from Fish, rumbling vibrations from Mike, and layered organics from whatever concoction of psychedelia Page had arranged in his fortress of keyboards. Shifting gears on a dime, the jam picked up pace. Fishman toyed around the "Twist" beat as Trey scratched over him. Mike unleashed a sonic bombardment of approval as cosmic noise dissipated into the ever-darkening night sky.

"Backwards Down the Number Line" emerged from the depth of night in true celebratory fashion. Trey triumphantly tiptoed around the chord progression, emanating the happiness and positivity at this song’s core. One could not help but smile as the jam reached a swirling, cathartic release – every person in attendance was singing along with the chorus, “ALL MY FRIENDS!” The goosebumps are as real as I write as they were in that moment. That is why we go to shows, that is why we push our bodies, minds, and spirits to their limit: to form the unbreakable bond of understanding, of unity – of friendship – that only a Phish show can provide. "Carini" crashed the late-set love fest and was greeted with perhaps some of the most controversial dance moves of the night… most of which border on superlegal. A hard-edged rocker enveloped the crowd in a wash of power chords and ferocity. A freight train of music, the jam hinted at turning into a major key bliss jam, the likes of which we all know and love so well in this day and age, but alas the jam evaporated quickly and peacefully into the San Diego sky. "Harry Hood" showed us to follow the light, as "Carini’s" darkness disappeared. Some fun, nose-to-nose interplay between Mike and Trey in the opening segment of the song was a harbinger of what the jam proper would hold. Glowsticks flying, smiles stretching, legs moving, the jam took on a progressively laser focus and old-school sentiment. It dug into its roots, finding the time and energy after a full nationwide tour to simply and purely explode, just as it would have in the mid '90s. Is that to say this "Hood" is comparable to those giants of two decades ago? Not quite. But there is simply no denying the sentiment, focus, and energy this "Hood" brought. To my ears, the most fiery version since Dick's 2011, the tension and release blossomed into a life-affirming peak, one which Trey circled back to over multiple measures. Striking again and again, Trey climbed the scales as Fishman was a flurry of brilliance behind the kit. Page’s piano cascaded waterfalls of triumph while Mike steadfastly anchored the harmonic trio to his 5-string Modulus. A full-band effort led by its fearless band leader, "Hood" exploded into one final, emotive peak. We can feel good. We did feel good. We do feel good. Good about "Hood." The chords falling away, Trey walked over to Page, who gracefully started the power rocker "Loving Cup." Played with equal parts heart and passion, "Loving Cup" put an exclamation point on a show that flowed as smoothly and swiftly as a Pacific Ocean current. A beautiful buzz indeed.

After an excruciatingly short encore break (because we know this is the last time we get to see our guys for a month) Trey came out and proclaimed that they just couldn't end the tour without playing Page’s favorite song. "Sleeping Monkey" got a rise out of the crowd, with onstage verbal antics from Page, Trey, and Fish … a solemn, single sad bass note from Mike, who pantomimed a tear running down his cheek. Me too, Mike. Me too. As the final chorus rang through the crowd, people started to gather their… wait. Trey walked back to Fish who bore a grin bigger than a kid on Christmas morning. They’re not done yet! BOOM! POW! "Tweezer Reprise!!!" Words cannot explain the energy wave that pulsed through the crowd when Trey unleashed those first notes. "Tweezer Reprise" is always "Tweezer Reprise," until it isn’t. Until it is played without "Tweezer," on the last show of the tour, the final song of the night, when it is completely unexpected. But that’s the angle isn’t it? The unexpected. That’s why we travel thousands of miles, spend thousands of dollars, and smile at thousands of people: to share in the everlasting surprise that is a Phish show. A phosphorescent glow radiated off of all bodies as the "Ass Handed" lyrics were sung over the "Tweeprise" power chords, reminding us, humbling us, that no matter how good, bad, or in between you feel, no matter how many shows you’ve seen, no matter if your life was saved by rock and roll or if you’re just here to share in the groove, you are gonna get your ass handed to you every day!
Score: 0
NICUonshakedown , attached to 2016-07-09 Permalink
NICUonshakedown Hartford, CT Review:
Medium: SBD

Set I
Opening up with “Pigtail” is a cool nod back to the tour opener, and it’s nice seeing Phish bring it back around again from the TAB repertoire. The studio version is a lot of fun, so it’s cool to see Phish playing it. Nothing out of the ordinary to note, a pretty standard version but well played to warm up the show. First set is very strong starting out with the Moma>BOAF>Meat>Vultures. Moma Dance & BOAF are both standard versions but still have some heddy typeI jamming that’s unique to this year.

Meat is stellar with some strong breaks and trading of bars back and forth between the guys. Mike is especially charismatic here, laying some sticky lines with effects laden on them. They come to a nice type I peak and close it out. Set keeps rolling with great tunes, very 98-esque as they open with a perfect version of “Vultures”.
Free opens after a pretty abrupt key change by Trey, with a tiny bit of a different sound to it, than its usual composition before heading right back into the usual plate. Rolling into Let me Lie another TAB tune was a nice change up to the gritty take of Free. Jumping into a Halley’s Comet, the band was playful and fluffy, alluding to a night that was to come.

Unexpectedly, Trey opts for what almost sounded like La Grange but instead that turns out to be a flub turning to Julius instead, and it’s pretty shaky until the second verse kicks in but once the cobwebs are off, its all out blues rock city. Julius finishes out into the set closer You Enjoy Myself. YEM’s has flawless interpretation throughout. It is progressive and the band plays it with fire. Through the composed sections up to the funk, lot of highlights and phishy type jams. Mike once again coming in with some serious effects taking the funk section on a UFO ride, Page laying into the Clav and some great drum work by Fishman with Trey holding it down. This YEM is textured as it goes into the vocal movement, coming together for a harmonic and melodic few bars before colliding into madness as its end.
First Set Highlights: Moma>BOAF>Meat>Vultures, You Enjoy Myself.

Set II
Down with Disease opens the second set, as Mike brings it in and the second set is off to the races. Quickly the song gains some ground and heads into type I territory, Trey really shinning through with his victorious and nostalgic soloing. Around the 5:00 mark look for some serious type I jamming. Around 8:30 the type II slayer comes to pound town moving to a darker, more mellow and minor key space. Page begins to lay on the Rhodes around the 12:00 mark giving us some laser beams & offering trey some new direction, as they both head off together pulling Mike in on top of Fishman’s cemented groove. Sand comes next as Down with Disease begins to simmer down with a slightly ambient & funky segue perfectly landing into the funk based tune. Tela almost surprised me as much as I love the song, I’ve chased it since 2009 Miami, but this tune is the perfect thing to counter act Sand while being the perfect flow>Carini which comes out from the beauty of Tela and rips everyone’s face off as it very quickly heads into type I territory briefly with Page bringing a strong peak together as it goes type II. Listen to this jam for a shorter type II rendition but still one that delivers. Oh, and Fishman screaming Lumpy Head is always great to listen to and laugh at. It also gets pretty weird in the end before heading back into type I jam zone.

Twenty Years Later calls in as the 2nd set breather, and as usual I hope this gets the Reading, PA treatment. Alas, it is not; just standard type I jams which were a welcome after that huge segue. Run like an Antelope is always welcome with its playful and light intro, into it’s heavy E minor jam section. Trey takes us on the ride as he then hits his major chord and rolls it out into the crowd favorite Backwards Down the Number Line. This version features absolutely gorgeous type I shredding by Trey as the second set comes to a close.
Second Set Highlights: DWD> Sand > Tela> Carini. Lizards (encore)

Many bands throw away encores with greatest hits, and sometimes Phish mails encores in as well. Yet, every once in awhile they come out & and perform shit you wanna hear. The Lizards is one of those chaser tunes that does not come out too often. I am sure many people loved to hear it, and the band soars during the instrumental sections, as it fills the station with love. The Loving Cup cover sends everyone off on the right happy note.
Score: 0
pmc2kd , attached to 2012-08-26 Permalink
Interesting show to review. My only show of 2012 unfortunately, but my buddy and I decided to hit it last minute after we went to Railroad Earth's music on the mountaintop in Boone, NC. This was a nice way to just extend the trip. We grabbed tickets easily and hung in the lot for a bit.

We actually entered right as they were playing Bag and sort of just rushed through into the Pav without much ado.

Bag was fun, nothing to note really.

Moma kicked in with its funky self. Again nothing notable, but its always fun.

Heavy Things was one of the better versions I'd heard, but was still Heavy Things.

Ocelot was ok, but I also thought this wasn't as good as some of the versions I'd heard in '11 and and years following.

Funky Bitch was a good cover and kicked up the energy level, which I thought was needed.

They burst into Gin, and I was hoping for a really solid version. This one felt super short to me and much like the previous songs, just didn't feel markedly better or different in comparison to some of the previous (or subsequent versions).

Fluffhead was great - I didn't think they completely nailed it, but this one is always nice to hear in the first set.

They kept it old school and treated us to Alumni > Jimmy Page > Alumni, and shared the well known Page recruitment story from Goddard College.

Tube was short and sweet, and they then took time to give Fishman some grief about My Sweet One, which was a fun romp.

They gave the jamming another shot with Bowie, but like Gin I didn't think this one fully connected.

Set I: I'm a bit hard on this set, but I just didn't think musically it quite delivered. It did have a nice old-school vibe though and the banter was more than welcome. I also thought the energy was great and crowd really erupted at the end of the set. It's not a set I go back to however.

On to set II!

They opened with Crosseyed and Painless, which is always a hoot. This one rocked hard and managed to dip briefly into some type II stuff. Perfectly strong opener.

McGrupp was up next and this version was awesome. Great Page playing and this one had a cool sort of jam to my ears. Really good pairing.

Mikes is a good song, but this one didn't really elevate. Following McGrupp it did sort of fit the old-school type show feel.

Bouncin' was up next and was ok for me as a breather.

Axilla kicked the energy back up, which was a good call after Bouncin'.

They kicked into Tweezer and this gave us the highlight of the night. My friend and I had managed to get into the Pav and we were right behind Kuroda and the Soundboard so it was amazing to see him at work during this Tweezer (he was grooving!). This Tweezer was pure hose and they moved effortlessly through the song into a straight-up flawless full band improvisation that was 100% liquid hot butter. Take this one home.

Hood followed and this version was actually disappointing and the jam felt super short without much of a climax.

Horse>Silent 'Paug and Suzy were all satisfactory, but not really much to note.

Encore: BBFCFM was fun for sure, and Tweeprise sent everyone home with a smile.

Overall set II: Tweezer is a great one. Opening pair is worth a spin. Otherwise, an average show.

Overall: Not much here - it was fun, with a good old-school vibe, but I'd say just grab the Tweezer.
Score: 0
pmc2kd , attached to 2011-07-03 Permalink
After a rocking first night, a long day 2, and some mind-blowing storage jam shenanigans everyone was ready to celebrate the final day of SBIX in style. So what was in store for us on Sunday?

Set I started with Soul Shakedown party. Great way to ease into the show. This tune has foreshadowed some amazing shows in the past and of course is a major rarity. Awesome start.

>AC/DC Bag was a nice call and this was a solid peppy version and it jumped right into >Curtain.

>Curtain following Bag had a super old-school feel. Great choice and they played it well.

Forbins! Woah, awesome. They played it well and I like to think everyone there was really appreciating this. When Trey took a step forward to tell the story I was just in shock. Great narration. This was just an unreal treat - go listen.

>Mockingbird completed the pairing and was great. They played it well and boy this set was just such a treat.

>Destiny Unbound! more rarities and inspired song choices. This one was great and the jam was way above average (Thank you Mike!). Killer bass.

BBFCFM was a nice bit of fun (per usual).

I must say this set was already unreal with an old school vibe. Well, they just continued to up the ante from here...

Wilson kicked in with it's typical energy, but this version contained a fantastic mind left body jam and the band was just all over it. Perfectly cohesive jam and they slid back into the end of Wilson with aplomb. This is a top version of the song.

Mound was up next and they played it really well, but something special happened at the end. Maybe it was the looseness of putting the Saturday marathon behind them or a nod to how special this set had been but Trey just took the reins and played a glorious solo at the end, which was just unbelievably perfect. Best Mound Ever.

ASIHTOS popped up perfectly and man did they keep this set going in fine fashion. After running through the standard tune they took a turn towards the psychedelic. It was the perfect time of evening for some deep type II space. They stretched this out really well with some awesome guitar work and then just melted into a blissful effects laden dream space. It's not the longest version, but boy does it go places. They melt beautifully into...

Time Loves a Hero! This was a great placement (really fun cover) and they just nail it.

Reba! Wow, perfect spot - and festival Reba is the best Reba. This one remains the best version of 3.0 for me. It's played well in composition and the jam is perfection. They drop into the jam section in perfectly satisfying fashion and navigate creatively to a key change and Trey finds himself strumming some chords, which gives this such a unique feel. It should be noted that Mike and Page are both just so cohesive with Mike really pushing the creative envelope. They come back into the Reba jam perfectly and peak this baby to perfection. Emotional playing from Trey. This is a must-hear version.

Oh and they go into the whistling ending (which they botch in hilarious fashion). They have a little effects laden bridge after the sloppy whistling which drops into Bowie.

Well this is how you play a set I! Bowie is well-played and they drop into the jam section and Trey turns on the little effects loop he had going during the Reba whistling transition which was pretty cool. They proceed to shred this one, and it actually has some unique moments with Trey trading some rhythmic chopping with Fish. It managed to get good and dark without being an overly exceptional version. Perfect ending to an amazing set.

Overall Set I: Oddly enough, as a set I, this one is the "keeper" set for the festival. Then again, look at that setlist and it's not a stretch. You're looking at best of 3.0 versions of Reba and ASIHTOS, All-Time versions of Mound & Wilson, a notable Destiny Unbound, A Forbin's > Mockingbird with narration, two great and rare covers, and some old school selections including a solid Bowie closer. Grab this one and relive the magic of the weekend.
Highlights: I'd say play it all the way through, but if you just want the real gems grab: Forbin's>Mockingbird, Destiny Unbound, Wilson, Mound, ASIHTOS & Reba ...OK just grab the whole set...

How would they follow that up?

Big Balls was a hilarious call with Fishman leading the vocal charge and giving us a nice Super Ball reference to scream and shout about. Perfect fun Phish.

Down With Disease offered us a chance to go deep. This one wasn't super long, but they moved in and out of a couple different spaces. Trey was definitely rocking at first and then they moved towards a rhythmic jam with Trey chopping as the band chugged away. Eventually they opened up the space and Page took us to No Quarter. This is a good version and is definitely interesting enough to warrant a listen. Really good jamming.

No Quarter was awesome, I venture to say the best version of the tune they have ever played (it's 5 years later - and I can't find a better one). They absolutely demolished this tune.

Partytime kept up a celebratory vibe. I am not a huge fan of this song, but holy hell this one smoked! Seriously, you might think I am fluffing here, but Trey let it rip on this version. I'd easily call this the best version ever.

Ghost was a song I had only managed to catch once before at PNC and that version was a hugely disappointing 7 minute ripcord victim. I was hoping they'd take this deep or at least give us a run to Hose-ville. Well this version was a bit odd, I actually kind of enjoyed it even though it never really found it's footing. It sort of took a dive to the spacey side and it was certainly atypical in comparison to the major key bliss jams that typically emerge. People would probably moan about them abandoning the tune but I thought it was a good choice as the ambient spacey jam wasn't really going anywhere and Trey found a nice spot to start strumming the opening chords of Jibboo. So definitely disappointed they didn't blow it out, but they recognized it was not to be and made it interesting.

Jibboo always has a fun jam (albeit typically in the box). This version fit the bill for how they had played in night 1, in that the jam stayed pretty anchored in the theme, but they really worked it out. This one ripped and the whole band was contributing immensely to the groove. I place this firmly in the win column.

Light was up next with it's rather abrasive intro. It's a harbinger of jams and this one did not disappoint. Trey showed off a fantastic solo out of the gates and they all navigated into some really cool jazzy territory. It was one of those jams where everyone was hitting different runs and each seemed to complete and flow into the next. This was a great version with intricate playing. Dexterous.

They found there way into Waves after a cool little start stop sort of ending in Light. Everyone figured they'd be jamming this one out after the Bethel Waves soundcheck they had treated us to via The Bunny. Well this Waves remains a favorite for me. They do an awesome job with the classic Waves jam and then just dive immediately into an ambient space. This one had legs (in comparison to the less successful Ghost jam) with Page playing some good chording on top allowing Trey to set up some beautiful backing effects. The hit a decision point where they could choose to go dark ambience (a la the IT Waves) or towards the light. Mike had his echoey effect on and the soundscape was just breathtaking as they took it to a happy place. Everything just sort of melted together creating this beautiful sonic place. They drifted perfectly into What's The Use?, which was not as common as it is today.

The instrumental was awesome (although not as powerful as Magnaball's version). It just dripped out of that ambient Waves jam.

At this point the set took an odd little turn with Meatstick and Stealing Time to close it out. I think most people were probably expecting some sort of classic Phish tune (YEM, Fluffhead, Slave) to close out the festival. I won't really complain, I'd just say slave would have fit really perfectly based on the patient playing they had been delivering to this point. Both Meatstick and STFTFP were fun.

Fireworks and the star spangled banner was fun.

Encore: First Tube was raging and a great send-off with more fireworks.

Overall set II: I thought this was a really strong set, even if it didn't quite hit the majesty of the first set. Lots of quality jamming (Light, Waves, DWD, Jibboo), some surprises (No Quarter, Big Balls, What's the Use?), and some atypical takes on tunes (Party Time!, Ghost - maybe not in the best way).
Highlights: Light>Waves (I'd include some more, but objectively those two are true standouts, with the others being more suggestions)

Overall Night III: I'd give this the edge over night I in terms of best of the Fest. The first set was untouchable and the second set was great, besting night I I think since it didn't have the Horse>Silent Joy Show of Life ending. I re-listen to this often as it's top to bottom quite a strong show. 5 years later and SBIX still holds a place in my rotation.

General thoughts since I figure it's worth a recap - overall it was a bit of an odd festival as it didn't deliver a sort of signature jamming moment (I am discounting Storage Jam). My favorite sets are the first set of night I and the first set of night III, which shows you a bit about the approach they took. Don't let that scare you away though, there are plenty of highlights to be had throughout - and as I mentioned in my night I review, this was a peak experience for me personally for sure. I was happy to come back to the Glenn in 2015.
Score: 0
pmc2kd , attached to 2011-07-02 Permalink
Day II of SBIX held the promise of the classic festival style treats. Three sets and one (not-so)secret set.

As I mentioned previously the camping was just immaculate. Not over crowded, absolutely stunning weather, a sprawling ground to explore & even easy access to some nice showers!

We headed into the campground for the day set a bit earlier to check out some of the vending and beer tents and grab a nice spot. This was a somewhat foolish move as this was a beastly hot set with the sun just beating down mercilessly on the typically nocturnal wooks.

On to the music.

Set I was very much a set I today. I think it lacked the X factor of the previous day's first set, which had great song selection and great jamming.

That said, the Tube opener was absolutely amazing. We were up close so we happened to be in the middle of all the beach ball fun. They kicked in a hundreds of inflatable beach balls sprung up. The band was clearly loving it and Tube was a nice celebratory opener. It was short though.

KDF lined up in the 2-hole and took it's typical path to a satisfactory peak.

Ocelot captured my mood slightly as I was feeling like the heat had me moving a bit more measured and conservatively. Overall it was a nice jam. I may be in the minority, but I like this song and I like the loping jams that accompany it.

Lawn Boy saw Page emerge and he cleared out some of the beach balls that were clogging up the stage. He crooned well, and Mike's bass solo was satisfying.

Divided Sky was a predictable call for the day set and this one was really well played (unlike the Holmdel version I had caught earlier on tour). Really glorious and a definite high point for the set.

The sun continued to beat down as the band kicked into a sequence of Boogie On > Camel Walk & Cities. Great triplet of tunes. In this heat with the dancing that those three elicit, it was a rather callous call though. Serious funk & fun. Water needed.

>Poor Heart kept up the energy.

>46 days did nothing to slow it down and peaked in fine fashion.

>Suskind Hotel was a Mike tune and they really nailed it. It sounded great, which is kind of a bummer considering they never took it back off the shelf I think. It also had a really nice jam.

When the Circus Comes to Town was so necessary at this point. Thank you for slowing it down. This one was so emotional (as always), and Trey nailed the solo. This was really well placed. After that I felt like I had the energy left to make it through the set (and caught a second wind).

Timber rocked me through to the core and was a great treat.

BOTT>Suzy were both a bundle of fun, but pretty much straightforward.

When the opening keys to Monkey Man kicked in I was ecstatic. I am a huge Stones fan so to have gotten Torn and Frayed and then Monkey Man's only ever performance was great. They really nailed it too. Vocals, arrangement, everything. Great closer.

Overall Set I: It was so hot out.... fun set, everything pretty much by the book so it's not much to re-listen to.
Highlights: Suskind Hotel is really worth a listen

Set II: Expectations were high - after a song based afternoon affair, everyone was hoping for one of those big middle festival sets to provide some serious jams (think middle sets of Went, IT, Clifford, Wheel, take your pick).

They kicked off with Runaway Jim which was a canvas to bring out the 5k winner versus play any serious music. A cool moment.

McGrupp was up next and I am never unhappy to hear this one. Great song, and I thought this one had a pretty good jam section too. Positive sign?

Axilla felt like a first set type placement. It was sloppy, but it rocked.

BOAF was fiery, but beyond a really scorching (and somewhat sloppy) Trey solo, this one didn't break out.

Stash kept the first set flow going, but offered the first chance to open up some deeper jamming. This was actually a really cool and interesting version. Trey and Fishman were working off of each other in some call and response rhythmic playing, just slightly encroaching on one another while still being highly complimentary. I enjoyed this version a lot.

Sample, Heavy Things > Horn was a run of tunes that really solidified the first set vibe and didn't offer much if we are being honest. They weren't played particularly crisp either.

It's Ice, well if you're gonna to a set one I will take it. This is a great song and was much fun to hear.

Mango Song was fun, but also played poorly. It didn't dampen my mood, but objectively, Trey just had trouble with it.

Rift kept the oldies coming - again, it was a bit tough on Trey, who was having a bit of a time up there.

SASS with the intro was absolutely awesome. This song had been hibernating for a while, and the intro, well I don't even recall how long it had been. They did a good job with the song and kicked into a nice building jam that was pretty straightforward but really satisfying after playing song after song for a while. Good and open, full band came together for it.

Run Like an Antelope gave us a nice bonus. This one was fierce too. I really dug it, and Trey did a cool run up during the Rye Rye Rocco section.

Overall Set II: Hopes of a legendary middle set were dashed. If this were a set I of a "normal" show I'd be pleased. McGrupp, Stash, SASS, Antelope were all great. Throw in a rocking Birds and a fun run through Ice, Mango, Rift, and I'd normally be saying pretty pretty good. However, this is set II of a three set festival show and we have to hold ourselves to a higher standard. There were also a bunch of flubs.
Highlights: McGrupp, Stash, SASS

Well, the sun had fully set during SASS/Antelope so it was time to get serious, particularly in light of the first two sets.

They opened with Golden Age - my first version. I enjoyed the song and thought they did well with it (vocal strain though). Plus I felt as though it had good jamming potential, which delivered in spades here. They broke it down into some good funk with Page hammering away. They soon entered the plinko zone, which was bundles of fun, and Trey moved to an effects laden plinko style throwdown. Mike was an absolute monster here just throwing out some serious dirt. This one turned evil quick and clocked in at a very respectable 14 minutes or so. If you were looking for hints of what was to come in the late night set, well, here's you're clue. Just terrifying, captivating, and utterly unique. This is music from the future. They peeled back the layers of effects towards the end and Caspian emerged.

Caspian did get the treatment at Watkins 2015! But 4 years prior they played this version, which wasn't the expansive type II beast of Magnaball, but was actually quite interesting. Trey played really well throughout the jam and I thought this was a good version.

>Piper brought some renewed jamming promise. This one was fairly short (I think under 10 minutes), but it did pack a punch and a really strong jam. Fishman was driving the bus with wreckless abandon, Trey was kicking in some heaters, and page was teasing Tweezer. So they took Page's idea after a strong Piper and kicked into the crowd pleaser.

Tweezer's opening lick is a tonic like no other. It's like discovering the fountain of youth. It hits and you know for some time you'll be treated to the magic that only music can conjure up. This one kicked into the jam in snarling dirty fashion, with Trey hitting that deep wah growl and the band getting minimal. Eventually a bit of stop start happens and Trey hits the absolute tastiest of licks during the one of the final pauses and a pulsating dance party ensues. Trey drives home a couple screeching notes during a cool middle segment and then they drive into some nice waters where Mike sees fit to teases SASS (woah that was cool..what a tease!). They find there way into some new space but you can hear it coming as Julius emerges.

That was a really nice run of tunes, with GA and Tweezer being really solid jams. That said kicking in Julius was kind of a bummer and I was hoping it wouldn't signal a horse>silent moment from the previous night.

Julius was a good sing-a-long bit of fun.

They came in with #line next and this one was pretty subdued. I'd caught some fine versions at Bethel and Holmdel, and this one was firmly below par in comparison.

Twist came in and was well poised to bring back the set a bit. This was a really fun version. Type I for sure, but really good jamming and the ended was really neat with Trey hitting the progression sort of backwards and the band shouting What? (a joke from earlier in tour).

2001 up next and more dancing ensued. Standard version (which does not mean it was bad!). Nothing too notable but everyone was getting down.

They kicked into Hood, which I was hoping would be very patient and well peaked. This one didn't really stand out for me. It was satisfying and beautiful as ever, but it just didn't feel "Festival Patient". Either way I was feelin' good by song's end.

Cavern>Golgi>ADITL was a good run of tunes to end it, but it did complete the set in a sort of fitting "songy" manner.

Loving Cup>Tweeprise was great as always.

Overall Set II: After the two previous sets I was hoping for jams. They delivered a really fun set overall with lots of good jamming, but nothing transcended and the set itself had some ups and downs I thought. GA and Tweezer were immensely fun - although I feel like Tweezer was one of those in the moment / present jams that doesn't quite translate to re-listen as well. Similar to night one after a strong run of tunes they sort of veered in an off direction and never quite recovered (although Twist>2001>Hood was a valiant effort).

Overall: Day II for me was the weakest day of the fest. But seriously am I going to complain about like 7 hours of Phish music.... uh kind of.
3/5 (gets a bump based on sheer quantity)

I won't touch the Secret Set, because it's impossible to describe in any adequate way. It's the peak musical experience of my life. I liked it even more than the Drive In Jam, I think because the music was so unbelievably weird. The way they positioned the speakers and the risks and sounds they took and made are things I don't think will ever be paralleled.

Hooray for Phish!
Score: 0
pmc2kd , attached to 2011-07-01 Permalink
Ah SBIX... 5 years removed, this festival remains a peak experience for me in terms of capping off a nice run of shows, a good overall year, and just an amazing perfect camping experience.

But, vibes aside, we came for the music.

Set I:
Possum opened up in cheeky fashion. Shrugging off the haters and blowing everyone's lid early with some guitar fireworks. I thought this was a strong version. Good opener.

Peaches...yes! GREAT treat and really well played.

Moma Dance was next, and I was expecting a standard version, but this one smoked. I kid you not it had extra swagger and a great guitar solo from Trey. Fire.

Torn and Frayed is rare and a great Stones tune, so that's a big home run in my book. Good version, they nailed it.

NICU brought back the dancing vibe we had in Moma and Possum and slotted in nicely as a jolt after Torn and Frayed.

Bathtub Gin offered the first canvas for the fellas to stretch their legs. They did so with a nice patient, but fiery Gin that hit the highs of the typical 3.0 versions. Fishman was an animal and Trey delivered a really strong well constructed solo. This version isn't in the pantheon, but it's good. More so, this was just a great release for everyone, band & fans alike.

Trey took a moment to say how relaxed they were since they were going to be there for like 4 days or something. He made some comments about encouraging the guy in the Ferris Wheel to take a leap (jokingly) and mentioned bringing a big mattress in next year (..ok we didn't come back till Magna, but hey, they made it back, sans mattress).

Life On Mars? was more magic. Like Peaches, they nailed this rarity and it felt so right after a lot of rocking tunes.

My Friend My Friend kicked in and brought that darkness we all love to the set. Great placement and a fine version indeed.

Wolfman's Brother is always welcome and this brought us back to the rocking funk. This is a GREAT version. It's not exploratory or overly long, but the playing is top notch. There's a great funk section and Trey leans on the wah for a descending sequence of notes that is just perfection (with Mike and Page doing absolute work). They get through the dance jam and turn towards a rocking peak. Fishman comes in at the absolute perfect moments with some incredible fills and drives Trey to a raging peak. The climax is great and Fishman is simply a man possessed. Those fills are the stuff of legend for me. Ok you get it, I really enjoyed this.

Roses are Free was a welcome cover and they played this one well. It's a definite favorite in the cover department.

Speaking of covers they kicked into a rocking Funky Bitch. High energy tune for a pretty darn energetic set.

A final cover - Quinn the Eskimo - which deserves to be mentioned / annotated in the setlist. This is the finest version they have played of the song. It's great.

Overall set I: Wow, what a way to kick off a festival. No lulls here, plenty of rarities/covers, and plenty of great (albeit type I) jamming on some classic Phish tunes.
Highlights: Peaches, Moma Dance, Gin, Wolfman's Brother, Quinn the Eskimo - generally a top to bottom well constructed and well played first set.

So festival jamming is pretty much legendary from the early days of Clifford Ball Mike's to Went (both set IIs) even to Coventry, which had some monsters, we expect a lot from the jams in the festival setting. So what did the Ball deliver?

Set II kicked off with a dark jam of the comical variety, which I hoped was a signal of intent for the whole weekend. It was fun, but still contained some odd and interesting interplay and some evil laughter until....

Crosseyed kicked in. Nice call (lot of covers already?). This one was a tight and fiery version that peaked pretty hard with the whole band playing well and Trey providing some great notes. After the peak they faded out into a nice spacey segment. It had that 2011 outro jam feel where a lot of songs weren't super long but had a nice 2-3 minute jam tacked on the end that bled into another song. This one was nice, with everyone contributing to a really pleasant space. Trey eventually got a good idea and started strumming the opening to Chalkdust.

I thought the segue was quite smooth and sort of gave CDT a more relaxed feel. The jam was interesting and at times hinted at breaking through to a major key jam without ever truly departing. Overall a really nice take on the classic with some interesting playing throughout. Great opening sequence.

Sand was a great call, and while this one had stayed pretty comfortable type I throughout 2009,10 &11 (with a notable exception at Camden '09), it was a festival groove that was a joy to be a part of. The whole field was bouncing and grooving. The jam was also quite good. It was in the box, but Trey was working some great lines, with Mike and Page really interacting and weaving around. They brought this to a nice peak.

They dove into the Wedge next. I thought this was also a nice placement, even though not a "jam" song - it was a nice breather from the ample jamming of the first three songs. It's a personal favorite as well and fit the beautiful weather and vibe nicely.

They kick into Mike's, which gets pretty serious pretty quickly. Even at 7 minutes or so there's plenty of room for the band to get down and dirty. The darkness and solitude of Watkins Glenn provided a great landscape for some menacing, snarling licks before they pop into Simple. Nothing out of the 3.0 ordinary, but it was a good not back to the darkness of the opening jam.

Simple was the jam of the day (weekend?). This one had some fantastic interplay from the outro and they slid from that nice melodic jamming to some pretty gnarly, feedback drenched, psychedelic soundscapes. Trey was making good use of the phrase sampler and looping some backing notes that slid in and out, while Page was able to continue building/layering noise on top. Mike was hitting that echoey bass effect that filled any remaining voids and Fish was drumming the way only he can on these atmospheric jams. Trey eventually hits the melody from Third Stone From the Sun which elicited a good crowd reaction and they bled quietly down into Bug.

I thought this was a nice spot for Bug as we hadn't really had any slower tunes. They hit the jam and it was really nice. I thought the playing was fantastic in the jam.

Horse>Silent was a bit of an odd choice after the Bug slowdown. I sort of thought Weekapaug would have been good to just kick in the energy. It was fine, I suppose.

Weekapaug emerged out of Silent and kind of fizzled. Maybe they were just feeling a bit tired after playing so much music already, but Unlike all of the other type I jamming that seemed to rage to fiery peaks, Trey didn't seem super engaged and this one felt pretty darn short and unsatisfying. I got hit with a ton of late set II joys in 2011.

Zero brought back some rock and roll. It's predictable, but I think it was good to bring back some guitar driven rock after sort of an odd backend of set II.

Encore was Show of Life... damn, I got a fair number of these ones too...

Overall Set II: This one came out of the gates in fine fashion and really was fantastic up through Bug. From Horse onward they kind of lost it and the playing wasn't as crisp either. Nevertheless I actually really like the set, specifically the Xeyed, Sand & Simple.
Highlights: Jam>Crosseyed->Chalkdust, Sand, Simple

Overall: This was a fine way to open SBIX. In fact, I would say Set I was one of the stronger I have seen and remains to this day a set I re-spin (so much fun, great songs, and really good in the box jamming). Set II was similarly fantastic until it took a left turn. Simple also gave us enough of a taste of type II glory to keep dreaming of big jams on day II.
4/5 Well above average in spite of limited exploratory jamming...
Score: 0
SimpleCymbal , attached to 2016-07-06 Permalink
SimpleCymbal Many of the reviews already listed sum up this show. Sure, the 2nd set was a bit slow, but all I know is that I had a blast all night.

Some highlights for me :

CTB - Trey rips a solo, great 2nd opener.
Billy Breathes - not perfectly played, but still great to hear
Heavy Things - Nice page and Trey interplay during Trey solo
Stash - Maybe so Maybe not section, at the venue, it got real quiet. You could hear the crowd whispering 'maybe so maybe not'. very cool

Setbreak - During the 1st set, I was watching this guy dance super hard all set. He was having a blast. I went and found him during setbreak and told him i was spying on him raging - him and his GF were cracking up that I called em out.

Tweezer - gets there super fast, nice little concise version. def relistenable

Weekapaug - nice trey soloing

overall - I had a very fun time, met some new friends and sweat A LOT.
Score: 0
pmc2kd , attached to 2011-06-10 Permalink
They took a swing out midwest and back to MA and upstate, which allowed me a chance to kick back after catching the opening 5 shows. I was planning to hit the next batch from Camden and head south.

My first show at Camden in '09 was special - so I had high hopes heading back to the waterfront venue.

Lot was rowdy and darker than '09 from my recollection. Lots of balloons and hissing. Kind of a generally dark vibe. I was also feeling pretty ill, and tried to power through.

Set I opened with Rocky Top after Trey teased something or other. Fun little diddy to open up. Mike's Groove was awesome in the two hole and it was great to get hydrogen in the middle, even if it wasn't that well played.

'Paug on the other hand was awesome and was the best version I'd heard thus far. Trey was on fire in a sort of sloppy fun way.

Stash after a Mike's Groove? Yea you can throw me that anytime. This was a decent version, but I didn't think it was the best.

Tube was short and sweet (and funky!) >

Guyute was nice and I caught it same spot back in '09. Fun old school feel to this set.

Guelah! sweet! Keep it old school. Great song, good version. this is old school for real! This was fun to catch live for the first time. It popped up in a good spot.

Cavern rocked per usual.

The Sloth! Awesome, despite botched intro. Italian spaghetti!

The Curtain With was the absolute show highlight. This one is up there with the best versions ever played for my money. The actual song was not 100% tight, but the With jam was sublime. When they play it like this it certainly rivals the Rebas of the world. Seek it out. This is a canonical version.

Overall Set I: This was a great set I. Great songs. Old school (mike's, hydro, scent, guyute, curtain) rare oldies (sloth, guelah) and a canonical jam in the With.

I had high hopes for set II (although I was still under the weather). My crew wanted to get into the pav, so feverishly I agreed to go down and just hop the back row of seats and make a run for it. It worked for me, and a few of the others. I don't get doing that when you end up being stuck at different areas of the venue etc. but whatever.

Set II opened fittingly for me with DWD - as I was dying at this point. This was a good version and pretty strong jam. Not super long as they dropped into Free (again paired together, saw the same thing at Bethel).

Free was typical.

Possum was actually atypical and contained some good slightly off bends from Trey that added some tension.

BBFCFM was fun. They were all switching places and sitting down in between the big noisy segments, which was neat to see (ok I was happy to be in pav for that!)

Swept Away -> Steep was a jam highlight!? as Steep contained a churning dark outro jam, super cool and not sure why this isn't annotated above.

David Bowie was nice, but nondescript and sort of formulaic. It contained the typical cool jam, but wasn't really mind blowing.

Julius was ok. I wasn't really feeling it.

Golgi was similarly ok, but not what I wanted.

Fluffhead capped off a sort of uneventful set and they tacked on Joy for good measure.

Overall Set II: Uneven and not a ton of jamming.I'd check out the jam out of Steep for a cool minute or two, otherwise, pretty forgettable.

Overall: Good first set, one great jam in Curtain With, and not much else in terms of take home value. Oh yea, and my buddy killed his car battery on the lot playing music so we were stuck there for like at least 2 hours post show before our neighbor kindly jumped us. So personal illness + that definitely puts a damper on my show experience. Objectively, the music was still mediocre.
2.25/5 I've seen/heard better, but snag that Curtain With.
Score: 0
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