, attached to 1997-08-09

Review by pikepredator

pikepredator This show is fantastic. The opening run of songs is a nice smooth build that keeps pumping up the energy. Theme and Punch were both very strong in '97 so topping them with a killer Ghost>Taste makes for a perfect first half. The Dogs Stole Things is well-earned, and then once again Reba is an inspired call. And this Reba delivers, patient and powerful. The closing Lawn Boy and Crossroads are what you'd expect. I like the "shape" of this set with the big start, breather, REBA, fun close. I don't like it when they drop rest tunes early in the first set.

Set II . . . tremendous. Wilson, Foam is not the most high-powered way to open set II compared to, say, tweezer or DWD, but they work really well here because the Foam has some extra muscle in the middle. This is where the magic of '97 shows up, when fun songs are given unexpected depth and anything is possible. Mike's rages, thunders, and then settles and segues naturally into Ain't Love Funny, which has a nice spacey feeling. They are able to bring the energy down without losing the intensity, which doesn't always happen. The last 30 seconds are another '97 moment, they crank it up in a cool way and slide into a standard Simple. Swept>Steep gives another breather in a three-part set. The end of Steep sounds like it's going to be something like weekapaug>cavern to close, making the Mule drop all the better. That "end of set" feeling fades . . . there's a lot more phish to go!

Mule, Slave, Weekapaug. That's a hell of a 4th quarter. Mule is like Coil for me, they either work or they don't and I don't have many favorites. I am loving the 3.0 mules with the marimba lumina, that's a sweet addition. Anyway this mule is sufficiently weird in the breakdown, nice groovy segment with the circus-y '97 sound. and then it seems like they go more bananas than usual before trey hits the twangy lick. Slave gets powerful before trey starts climbing the neck, and he starts dropping Peak Slave licks in a lower octave than usual. And then it keeps building from there, big long hold from Trey before he blows the roof off! And then they build a wall of sound and trey hits the lick one more time, very satisfying!! Finally, we get our weekapaug and it is wild. Great machinegun trey.

I a big Type II fan myself and I'm not a fan of people saying "it's all about the flow" but . . . this show is all about the flow. It doesn't have a huge centerpiece jam, and it doesn't need one.


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