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Here are the 15 most recent reviews submitted

typeIIjam , attached to 2014-10-21 Permalink

just because one can still appreciate and get down to some 3.0 phish does not make them a "3.0 noob." I think you are greatly underestimating the difficulty to play such a high quality of music FOR OVER THIRTY YEARS!! These dudes are over 50 now, I think if any time is the right time, we should cut them a break if you do not get into a show. We should all rejoice that we love a band that is dedicated enough to still play and come up with new tunes after 30 years. Again, you are welcome to stop listening if the phish does not cut it for you anymore. I hate running into people like this at shows. They invest so much time simply to just complain about the music
Score: 0
mblum , attached to 2014-10-21 Permalink
Countless pockets of gorgeous defined this, my 66th show since 1992. The band's relaxed and confident exploration allowed disconnects to blossom into beauty and blossoms to grow into majesty. I was drilled by the music, enjoying its afterglow this morning in the Santa Barbara sunshine.

Chalkdust>ghost was thrilling and mesmerizing. Over and over. And I loved the birds of a feather, a song I wouldn't normally seek, because they played it with a loose-tight undulating jazziness. A highlight version. Wombat is a weird song that takes--and delivers with--chutzpah. A beautiful and different Tweezer picked up the continual discovery jamming where CDT>Ghost left off, and Julius provided a vaudvilluan interlude, which Page had to resuscitate a few times.

There's nothing like being there for a tweeprise, and this one packed a punch.

Such beauty. Flubs aside (they certainly didn't dwell on them) the band jammed with open ears and interplay, consistently in the zone. Looking forward to tonight!
Score: 2
SoularT , attached to 2014-10-21 Permalink
I was couch touring deez chips. Take that as you will.

This was a great show that had some flubs. Chalk Dust Torture is a must hear. Ghost is a must-hear (best since Randalls maybe?). Wombat is a must-hear. Tweezer is a must-hear. Boogie is a must-hear. That's a lot of must-hears! Yes, there were some sloppy moments, and yes, Trey was right, the ending of BOAF sucked. But in the end, who gives a shit? Trey? No! Me? HELL NO!

Seriously though, a show with 5 must-hear jams is a 5 star show if ya ask me. And I mean it, they really are must-hears. CDT went smoothly through unchartered waters. And Ghost was wonderful and arguably the most unique one of the year. Wombat dove head on into some ballsy bumping magic as soon as the jam began. This is actually probably my favorite version (I understand why most people would put 7/18/14 above this one but I actually prefer this one). The Tweezer Jam quickly brought us through some ill unique territory as well, with a really cool transition into Julius. And the Boogie encore was tight! A short encore jam, but very grooving and mooving and sweeping and swooping. Mainly because of how sick those 5 were, I disagree with some of the less-flattering reviews. This show was the shit!

The opera fan who listens to his dog fart for 30 seconds before attending the opera doesn't enjoy the opera any less. Think about that.
Score: 2
TajMahalic , attached to 2014-10-21 Permalink
Boy, do I have some conflicting feelings about this show...

After attending the tour openers in Eugene and Seattle, I watched this show from the comfort of my living room thanks to a fittingly intimate webcast from this very intimate venue. Where the previous two shows were exercises in precision with only a few precious moments of inspired jamming (Eugene Crosseyed, anyone?), this show featured some bold jamming early in the second set, but suffered from a string of flubs and miscues that really detracted from the experience overall.

The show looks like it started off strong on paper with a Stash opener, but the tempo was a little slow, which may have been a deliberate choice by the band. Knowing that, I expected them to construct a masterpiece of tension with soaring peaks akin to the best 90s versions (and a couple of exciting first-set readings this year). Instead, though, they quickly abandoned the jam and moved along to standard readings of both Possum and Ocelot that both stayed very much in the box. Is that inherently an issue, though? Unlike some fans who crave a return to the exploratory approach to first sets from the late 90s and the flub-and-jam 2.0 era, I have no problem with a varied first set that stays mostly in the box. There are certain songs that excel in this format (cue NICU), so I think it works when they play those songs well. Unfortunately, a by-the-book first set was the least of this show's issues.

Starting with Back on the Train, this first set took on an entirely different complexion. It's difficult to put my finger on a specific issue without a second listen, but it sounded like the band began to lose its footing and stumbled a bit down the stretch as the truncated jam reached its conclusion. They recovered nicely with the newer, less frenetic material (Waiting, Yarmouth) and dusted off that wonderful Los Lobos cover, but stumbled again -- hard this time -- during Heavy Things. Unfortunately, that stumble led to a complete faceplant during Stealing Time, which featured one of the most disjointed intros in recent memory. Thanks to the clarity of the webcast, it was easy to see the frustration on Trey's face and hear it in his voice as the band rounded out a typically lean reading to close the set.

I had high hopes that the second set would be all about redemption and, for a while, it seemed that would be the case. After a surprisingly short setbreak, the band emerged rejuvenated and kicked into a set-opening Chalk Dust that kept a very deliberate pace, on par with the 29-minute set-opening masterpiece from Randall's Island this summer. As the jam immediately took off into deep space, the band coalesced in a way that had completely escaped them during the first set. As that incredible jam gave way to a truly inspired Ghost, it seemed that the band had completely regained their footing and would sprint to the finish line, relegating tonight's show to the "tale of two sets" category so common to this era.

Sadly, though, that premonition turned out to be premature. As the Birds jam floundered, Trey tried to signal the band that he was about to pull the ripcord and finish the song, but Fish didn't get the memo. The botched ending was yet another missed step in a night that featured many and immediately took me out of the experience. To be fair, the band took a mulligan and replayed the ending again on its own (to show they could get it right, I suppose), but while Page tried to shift focus and engage the intimate crowd in baseball talk, Trey decided to chime in with a comment about the ending that drew even more attention to a mistake that would have otherwise been a minor footnote.

The band had another chance to deliver redemption by way of a second-set Wombat that could have been on par with the great type-II Chicago version, and while that seemed possible for a brief moment when the jam took a dark left turn, the band -- perhaps conscious of their flubs -- instead dialed it back to a compact finale. Tweezer would allow another opportunity, and while the jam did deliver some fine improv in the form of a wonderful repeated arpeggio, it was ultimately too little, too late. Trey managed to eek out a decent -> segue to a truncated Julius, but an abbreviated Piper and a lethargic Velvet Sea seemed to seal the fate of this show. The final flub during the Suzy intro seemed like a fitting finish line blooper on a night where, despite some very inspired moments, sure footing was hard to come by.

For the sake of rigor, I will say that Boogie On was a strong encore and featured a brief-but-exciting tension-filled jam that eventually led to perfunctory Tweezer Reprise. After a strong show, Reprise seems like a welcomed exclamation point; however, after tonight, it seemed more like a compulsory send off.

I am fully aware of the "webcast bias" and I will admit that my review should probably be taken with a grain of salt. Having just had the time of my life at a couple of average-great-but-oh-so-rare Pacific Northwest shows, I know how easy it is to turn off the critical mind when you are there in person. I am sure all 4,562 people lucky enough to land tickets to this show had the time of their lives seeing Phish in such an intimate venue and no amount negativity from those of us stuck on the couch will change that. After all, isn't that why we travel across the country to see them year after year?

So, y'know, it was an off night. No big deal. I probably won't re-listen to the show any time soon. If you do, fair warning: there are a few of cringe-worthy moments that will take you out of it in a big way. But, hey -- the tour is young and there's still a lot of magic to be had. You can't let one rough night get you down. Onward!
Score: 3
Blissfulmusik , attached to 2014-10-21 Permalink
The boys started the show like gangbusters. Stash, Possum, Ocelot, NICU, BOTT, Limb by Limb and yes Waiting all Night (I felt like they nailed the vocals) sounded really tight and suggested it was go time. The set continued to sound fine but took a turn nevertheless and never really bounced back to the heavy hittin'.

Set 2 lacked some cohesion and offered up some miscues as previously highlighted but the highs were very high and tremendous fun. Among several others, the crazy fun Wombat was a real highlight. Solid show for us spoiled, spoiled Phish fans. A+ venue...I love going to places that are "like none other". Here's looking for another solid one where perhaps they don't have to make reference to an awkward miscue.
Score: 1
mysticfox , attached to 2014-10-21 Permalink
This was my fifth show...and a show I wasn't even supposed to be at. On a whim I decided to drive down, because why not? So glad I did.

I'll have to give this a second listen through and a little more time to process. The show had a lot of up and down moments...which I'm never a fan of. If you get me dancing my ass off, don't just dump me in a pile of down-tempo "ballad-like" songs. I want to be laid down gently. First set had a bit too much gear shifting for my tastes.

And now that I look at the set...wait...NICU was played? What? Did a blink? It's likely the alcohol that made me miss that...or perhaps it was the multiple missed cues from the band?

At least set one closed out with a heavy hitting Heavy Things and Stealing Time. I seriously was not prepared for the set to be over after those two.

Set two with the CDT opener was great. Fantastic jam--not the good 20+ jam I've been looking for all summer and now all fall, but I'll take what I can get with the CDT > Ghost. Everyone else here is saying it too--it really was the standout of the night. And thank God for that Tweezer too. No, nothing will ever live up to notable Tweezers of the past, but for a night that the band saw multiple miss cues, it at least did not disappoint.

The close through encore made me think the band wanted someone to get pregnant tonight...because I dunno, probably just me (and the alcohol) that was thinking some of those jams were just straight sex. I'm hoping someone was inspired and got laid...

Tonight was absolutley Page's night. He ruled that stage and brought all the jammy jams. Seriously.

Now that it's the night after, I look forward to giving this a second listen and will see what kind of feels I have on listen number two.
Score: 1
phish30sux , attached to 2014-10-21 Permalink
Moonface, the fact that I dosed at shows then and now is irrelevant. I love that phish is constantly reinventing themselves. However I feel that since their return they have sounded, to use Treys words, like caricatures of themselves. Like I said before, there are, thankfully, exceptions to this. But they are rare. And I can't buy in to the beginning of the tour excuse for sloppy, uninspired playing. Look at 7/21/97 or the island tour. They were sharp right from the get go. My point all along is they aren't creative anymore. Their lyrics sound like they were written by a prepubescent goth kid (though phish has never been known for their lyrics). Their jams, what they are known for, are canned. The Randall's CDT, that fluffer circle jerk, put me to sleep. If you want a type ii CDT look at 7/10/99 or IT. Of course the band will always evolve and some won't like the current sound, but their playing lacks inspiration and creativity. I'd get on board the fluff train if they at least would mix things up a bit more. It just seems like one rip chord after another lately
Score: -2
mysticfox , attached to 2014-10-18 Permalink
This was my fourth show, first time on the floor.

After a hardy tour opener in Eugene, this show certainly didn't live up to the previous night. I felt there was a bit too much up and down in the song choices--too frequently I went from dancing my ass off to just kinda standing there not knowing what to do with myself as the band went into one of their more "ballad" down tempo songs. Well, at least for the first set.

I got my song chaser Gin tonight, and it was a solid version. Definitely not the best I've ever heard, but certainly a delight for what it was--and my lot card of the night.

That second set though. I think my highlight was Cities. It was certainly the song I rocked out to the hardest and to have that transition into 46 Days and then into Sand? Wow. Seriously, that Sand could have gone on for much longer and I would have been happy girl.

Still a solid show even though I felt that set one was a bit of a slow lift off. At least set two made up for it.

Most frustrating part of the night? Probably getting on the floor itself. Seriously the KeyArena needs to get its act together. First we were told to go to section 104 to get on the floor. OK, done. When we get there, we're told to go back to the top of the stairs to get a wristband. Alright. Seems reasonable. Until you witness the clusterfuck that was the wristband line. I don't know if I can even call it a was just a huge cattle push of one quite sure if we were in the right place because there was also a merch table and beer line in the mix. So you had to serpentine yourself to get to the first stop, which was a guy who would punch your ticket. Then you had to fight your way to get to the table for a wrist band. It was a mob, not actually a line, so it was pure chaos. Once you got that, fight your way back out of the line so you can actually get to the floor. BUT still had to show your ticket and wristband! I get that this is a way to prevent people from swapping stubs...but honestly the system was still broken. I could have easily slipped my ticket to someone in the stands, who could have easily by-passed the guy punching tickets (since mine was steady punched) and just get a wrist band. Then show said ticket and wrist band to get on the floor. I'm sure it didn't prevent anyone from getting on the floor who shouldn't have been. Really the way to do it is punch the ticket and give a wristband when people were just entering the floor so that it was a single-file line, with one guy punching tickets in an orderly that way as people queued up it would be obvious if the ticket was already punched.

But you know what...I guess I don't care. If KeyArena wants to have a messed up way to deal with floor tickets--fine. They shouldn't be fooling themselves that it's preevnting any ticket swaps. And moreover, it shouldn't be a goddamn hassle on my end. All the wristband employees were pissed at how they were getting treated, which I feel bad for, no one should be disrespected....but what the hell do you expect when you make the process goddamn difficult? People are going to be a little more rude when they process is unclear and unorganized and demand that you wristband people faster. Geez.

So if you do KeyArena again and you have floor, arrive early so you can avoid any shitstorm that you might need to deal with.
Score: 0
mysticfox , attached to 2014-10-17 Permalink
This was my third show ever, first time seeing a tour opener, and my first indoor show.... and...holy fucking shit.

Just by the sheer fact that I'm working my way through a song chasing list of things I want to personally see live and got to cross off so many of my wants. Top that with the fact that the band locked into the groove early and kept it strong the whole night.

Admittadly Maze was probably my favorite, but more for personal reasons than anything else. Yeah, it wasn't the best song (I'll discuss in a minute), but it was top of my song chasing list tonight--and my lot cards reflected it. Not only did I get it, but I got against jammed out version too.

But honestly, the winner of the night goes to Carini > Plasma. Carini was just a sick way to open set two to begin with, and the boys brought the energy. But to then move seamlessly into Plasma?! Re listening to the set, it's funny to hear like the only 4 people in the crowd who recognized the song get excited, because certainly everyone else in the crowd had no idea what was coming until it got to the chorus. I even looked at my well seasoned friend and asked what the hell it was, and he replied, "I've only said this once before, but I have no idea." Ultimately it didn't matter. I have relistened to that part of this set countless times because I'm still amazed every time. I didn't even mind having Farmhouse after, because I needed a biting a cool down myself...and frankly, I may be a minority, but I like that sweet, simple song.

Cross eyed was a bit of a pleasant surprise. I don't think I've ever heard it with a cold start quite like this and the tempo seemed a bit different than other times, but it brought the rage, as it should.

Encore ended with Quinn that only left me wanting for more.

In terms of song choice, execution, and the maintaining of energy--at least thus far I feel good saying this was the best show I've seen in person to date. I'm fresh and new to this, so I'm sure I have apt of surprises awaiting me...but I couldn't have asked for a better third show, first tour opener, or first indoor show experience.
Score: 2
mysticfox , attached to 2014-07-16 Permalink
So this was my second show ever. And I had really high expectations going in, having couch toured several nights before.

But really, I felt a little let down by this show.

It's Ice was absolutely on fire. I even enjoyed Mike's Song through Groove. Cavern was absolutely bananas for me, but perhaps more for personal reasons than anything else (I made lot cards to hand out that featured Cavern), so I was incredibly stoked to see that played.

But somehow that show still left me wanting. Yeah, right after the show my initial thoughts were "this is a fucked up set list ON PAPER, but everything was excited well." I still feel that way--the band got into a groove and really kept it kicking...but I dunno, I still came away from the show wanting something more. Maybe it was the fact that I was on the lawn and didn't have that great of sight lines. Maybe it's because it wasn't terrible crowded where I was (which you'd think was a positive), but I wasn't getting much energy from the crowd. I haven't quite figured out what that "special something" I feel was missing.

But I do have to say, that 2001 encore opener...SAY WHAT?!?! My friends and I played a "guess each set opener" and when one of my friends guessed that for encore opener, we thought he was nuts. IT HAS NEVER HAPPENED BEFORE EVER. Until now...
Score: 0
Harveyglobetrotter , attached to 2014-10-21 Permalink
Harveyglobetrotter Full disclosure: I wasn't at the show and I realize that in the eyes of many around here, that automatically disqualifies me from writing a review but hey, at least I listened to it!

If I could sum up the show in one word it would be "disjointed". That's not necessarily a bad thing as there were moments here that truly made my heart soar. More on that later. It's just that there were also moments where the band didn't seem to be on the same page and these moments were rather glaring. This is nothing new of course, just something that really stood out last night, mostly due to them actually calling themselves out on it.

Oh well. No harm, no foul. But this show did make me wish that Trey would go back to meticulously drafting setlists like he used to. I know, that's selfish as hell and utterly ridiculous.

Anyway, this show was absolutely fire right out of the gate. I mean c'mon, a Stash opener?! Too good. Then a little taste of Plinko in a really fun BOTT? Give me more! Ok, how's a beautiful LxL? I'm in heaven! The inevitable cool down comes with Waiting All Night but I'll be the first to say that I love that tune. I also really like Yarmouth Road too but the placement seems a tad off. I guess they just wanted to shut that drunk in the crowd up. The cool down continued with Circus but it's one of my favorite ballads and covers in the catalog so I'm still happy. That being said, not a fan of Stealing Time in general and surely not as a set closer. All in all a decent set but...disjointed.

CDT->Ghost was the highlight of the night and of this very young tour (with the Eugene C&P coming in as a close second). I have always been a sucker for contrast in music and when they went from the deep deep darkness to more buoyant and crystalline atmospherics, I was hooked. As has already been mentioned the > to BOAF was a bit abrupt but that's mostly due to the nature of the song's intro. Unfortunately, the ending was also a bit scuffed as well. And while I love stage banter, sometimes you don't want to show them how the sausage is made, you know?

Things picked back up with a very welcome Wombat that took a delicious turn into the darkness which also continued through Tweezer. Not a big fan of Julius but that segue sure was nifty and Piper is always a treat for me. Wading is Wading and then another somewhat deflated set closer arrived in the form of Suzy. Once again...disjointed.

BUT! They left us on a high note, the Boogie on Reggae Woman in the first encore slot came with extra mustard and woke me right back at a quarter to midnight! And of course, Reprise always gets the blood flowing. Much to my chagrin I couldn't fall asleep until well after midnight but honestly I wouldn't want it any other way. Looking forward to tonight!
Score: 2
moonfacebrb , attached to 2014-10-21 Permalink
moonfacebrb Oh and I also wonder if @phish30sux gobbles doses and sees 10 shows a year with all his friends like he did 15 years ago. Phish isn't allowed to change but you can right? Dumb.

I don't think anyone would argue 3.0 is better than 2.0 or 1.0 but there's a helluva lot of great material. And in every era Phish did not slay EVERY SHOW. Get real, brah.
Score: 2
moonfacebrb , attached to 2014-10-21 Permalink
moonfacebrb Great first set energy, typical first set music. All of the Set 2 jams were cut short. It was nice that they all HAD JAMS to cut short. Chalkdust was particularly freaky. I like the direction Trey is trying to push here. Piper has some legs too. Please check that one out.

It's the beginning of tour though people. And it's 2014! There's nothing left for them to conquer in 3.0 other than their new material and a potential new sound (freaky, not 2.0 spacey, psychedelia anyone?). We,ll be lucky to see anything major develop before Vegas if at all. Dem Left Coast vibes got everybody laaaaaaid back.
Score: 0
mysticfox , attached to 2014-04-26 Permalink
So, I have to admit that this was my very first Phish show. Ever. I went into this completely blind. After years of attempts of my friend trying to get me into the band, I hadn't much even listened to a single song all the way through prior to attending this show. All my friends were like, "come to jazz fest, it will be a good time, yes, we'll get to see Phish, but there will be other things if it's not your bag."

Well....12 minutes into the first set, I look into my best friend's eyes, the one who wanted me into this band for so long, and said "well, I get this. I understand" and proceeded to dance my fucking ass off for the remainder of the show.

Was it a great show? Sure. Was it the greatest show? No. In hindsight, listening to it again (and especially after getting a much bigger Phish education), this was a pretty safe festival set. No huge surprises, several songs that I now consider "bathroom break" songs. But for me personally, it will never matter. This show will always have a special place in my heart. I will always rock out to Moma from now on, because it's my "I get 'it' song." Free will forever be my husband's favorite song because all he can remember is the sun shining on our faces while just swaying to the song. The second set far out paces the first in terms of execution, song choice, and energy.
Score: 0
oceanbear , attached to 2014-10-21 Permalink
So having been at the show, let me describe the place first. Looking left there is a steep hill that wraps around to the back (imagine red rocks with Southern California trees) and to the right you look over santa barbara over the ocean. It is beautiful! You can go to a flat section on top where you look at the barges and there is plenty of room to dance or get your head straight. So let's talk music.

I can't talk song by song here as I'm on my phone in the hotel and I will relisten later. I can talk energy and song selection though. Stash opener was sick. Everyone was stoked all the way through Waiting All Night. Band and audience seemed hooked up. Yarmouth seemed to drop enthusiasm but I needed a beer anyway since my 3 year old kicked one over. On the way back from the beer stand came Circus, and it was pretty and I thought the following banter was hilarious. Crowd needed a little reconnect. I was really hoping for something that would play off the story. Maybe Makisupa. Looking back maybe that NICU was a prequel (... when my life was a haze). Alas Heavy Things! We will skip that discussion. Stealing time brought it all back and a short set was over. Mostly good but disjointed by a few selections.

Looking at the second set I can see why that asshole at the bottom who reviewed the show without listening would think it was no good. I can't, on the other hand understand why you would review or even rate without listening. That makes you a cerrified snobby asshole in my opinion. We all know shows are very different. I have a feeling that people that listen to it will be bringing the ratings up. Right off the bat a huge Chalkdust killed it. Just rock at its best for probably 15-20 minutes and straight into ghost! Sick. They were on fire! I was not upset by BOAF at all although the ending was a little rushed. I think trey initiated the ending and then commented on the weirdness. It was weird then the commentary was weird.. it was awkward but .. WOMBAT. Had to have that! Great song and great placement. Tweezer Julius Piper... we'll just say my legs felt like the end of the Dick's 12 run from dancing with my daughter in arms. I don't know but I was having a blast. Wading could arguably cool it down but I didn't think it belonged tbere. Maybe SOAM. Go weird or go home. Then Suzy was also a lot of fun. Encore I thought was high energy and everyone left smiling.

I don't understand hating on this stuff. There were some awkward moments. A few miscues. But great songs in the first and second sets and some really high points. Limb by limb was so unbelievably well placed and we'll played I can't even describe it. Chalkdust ghost. If anyone got that kind of playing a few years ago it would have been a highlight show. Anyway on a scale of 2-3 I give it a 2.8. Happy tour everyone!
Score: 4
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