, attached to 2003-11-29

Review by Anonymous

(Published in the second edition of The Phish Companion...)

Holiday traffic on the NJ turnpike makes the usual ninety minute drive from NYC to Philly an extra hour longer. Running inside the Spectrum, we hear the familiar first set opening thumping chords of Wilson, whew made it and not a minute late, ok maybe a minute. While searching for our seats (the “Kaz behind the stage” tour continues, thanks to Phish-Tickets-By-Mail) among aisles and stairs filled with fans, the audience's chant quickly lets us also know that we are singing about the tyrant of Gamehendge, and the second show of this historic 20th Anniversary run has begun.
“Twist” to open the second set seemed like it would be the correct remedy to get things started and revive this show. But this “Twist” was very strange. It started out of nowhere. The band walked on stage and just began fading up into this “Twist” with an opening slow jam. Once into it, the "whoos" and the rest of the song just seemed forced as if not everyone in the band was playing on the same page or in the same mindset. The solo lavished in a very calm mellow mood. Not the kind of start this crowd was hoping for. However, the band kept at it and persistence eventually paid off and it turned out to be the only real jamming highlight of the show. The improvisation began to gain a “Harry Hood”, floating type of feel ,peppered with Trey releasing several quick riffs getting you back down to earth.
This then began rolling along into what sounded like a “Takin' It to the Streets” type theme with some spacey 70's-rock style work from Page and Mike layered among Trey's and Fish's standard theme. Maybe it didn't get the crowd all sweaty, but it was sure good from a groove sense.
Tom was hanging out side stage all night, so it was good to see him come up on stage and be another of the Phish family guests featured during this 20th Anniversary tour. Trey introduced the song by saying Tom will sing a song about "a boss, a log and a piece of rope". Tom and Trey cheesed up Buffalo Bill as well as they could, extending the singing of the "Bi-ill-ill-ill-ill" part to extreme harmonic points where the mics began to feedback. Wow, well that was something else. Now back to your regularly scheduled programming and at least a very “Bowie”, probably the most energetic song of the evening.
The “Friday” encore again was a head-scratcher, leaving us wondering if there was more drive and feel at the Sixers game next door where Allen Iverson was putting up 50 points against Atlanta this evening.


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