, attached to 1996-12-31

Review by Midcoaster

Midcoaster My brother thought that the backstage pass was just some sticker received as a gift (we had various commemorative stickers and trinkets, along with our tickets, given to us at will-call, including a Phish condom!). He stuck it to a garbage can and left it there. 10 minutes later, it was gone (obviously). I had never seen a Phish show as crowded before. Bitter cold on the highway down from Maine, sweltering inside.

Second set pulled me inside out; can't explain it, that feeling, but it was free-floating and real. For some reason, the Simple outro reminded me of the Dead's "Bertha," and the jam was exquisite and sustained. Hood-> Caspian was delightful, the best Caspian I've ever seen. I was boogying and listening attentively. It was the first time the arena setting really worked for me. The sound was loud, crisp and bass-driven all out once. The light show intrigued. Hmmm . . .

The third set was rollicking and fun. Bohemian Rhapsody had us rolling in laughter. Such execution! It was such great parody that it stopped being parodic and veered into something else entirely. Amazingly, our crew spontaneously reassembled at the door where we all had entered. Those dogs were raving about the backstage mélée. I was just happy to have been in the house.


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