This was my third Phish show - and my first Widespread show! I remember it being awesome, I didn't quite know the songs yet but I was learning. My memory of the show is pretty vague - the things that stand out are: during WSP, Michael Houser sitting behind everyone else even though he was the lead guitarist, I seem to remember the trampolines during Mike's Song, and my strongest memory - two or three huge punks slam dancing during Big Black Furry Creature from Mars - I was at the front during the show and had to turn my back to the stage to protect myself - during the breaks where Trey would do the rhythm guitar break, one of the punks would lean on the stage and yell "MORE HARDCORE" and then the band would come back in and they would start slam dancing again. Good times!!!
I thought the first set of this show was standard-great to slightly above-average great. Trey goes off pretty good in Weekapaug, and the Possum is also pretty fiery. Bouncin' ends awkwardly, and there are some weak spots in Reba, but the Reba jam has its merits, and the set is overall solid. The second set has a real spark to it. The AC/DC Bag is interesting, as Trey plays at kind of a loping tempo while the rest of the band is following the standard Bag tempo. I liked this little change up, but the standout of the show is Tweezer, which is all kinds of tasty. In the bridge between verses, everyone just gets locked in all of a sudden, and the first half of the jam is sickeningly good. Things kind of level out in the middle, but then it comes to a screaming (literally) conclusion. Page calls it "Tweezer So Cold" but it's real real HOT. The energy from that Tweezer pretty much resonates through the rest of the show, with a nice Ya Mar and blazing Good Times, Bad Times, not too mention a good A Train and its bizarre companion, BBFCFM, in the encore. What a weird pairing that is, especially to end a show, but it works for me. Second set Tweezer wins me over here and makes me bump this one to four stars. So cold, so hot!
A show that will forever live in infamy. There was a sign above the bar at the grungy Living Room that read, “Maximum Capacity 175.” I estimate that there were at least four hundred in the room that crisp May night. After indulging in a little Sport-Death, a bad situation got a lot worse. Widespread Panic opened and they just multiplied the grunginess of that bleak place. The Living Room is an old warehouse that's been cleared out and set up like a club. The floor is covered with this black, quarter-inch-thick grime. It's just plain disgusting.
I thought things would finally get better as Phish took the stage after what seemed like forever. They started into “Mike's”. After the first few notes, my friends, Andy and John, disappeared, and I was left to fend for myself. They had found a bench outside in an alley and seemed to find salvation there. Once the band started up Foam, I just couldn't take it anymore. I could not handle that bass line. I tried to find refuge, which wouldn't come till I found an empty corner of the room during “Highway to Hell”, the first set closer.
We seemed to mellow out during the set break and got right up front for the next set. It featured the saviors of the evening, “Tweezer” and Henrietta's spotlight, “Love You”. Not to mention the “BBFCFM” encore with just about everyone slam-dancing. During “Lizards”, if I recall correctly, a kid who was sitting on the stage under Page's piano got up and fell flat to the floor. It took him about a minute to get to his feet, and he arose with one side of his face covered with the Living Room grime. He looked at us and said, "I needed that." A shout picked up on the tape sums up the evening perfectly: "Would you calm down?!"
Date: Mon, 3 Feb 1997 15:05:28 -0500 (EST)
From: Jonathan Epstein
5/11/90 - The Living Room, Providence, RI
A show that will live in infamy!!!
The Living Room is the worst venue in the world! The floor is covered with black sticky grime. This bar was only supposed to hold about 150 people, and there were about 500 there that night. It was 19+ show (I was only 17 at the time). My friends and I endulged in a little Sport-Death. Dont ever do it. We each took half and we all sorta freaked out. My friends disappeared during Mike's song (the opener!!) and I starte wandering around during Foam. I just couldn't handle that bass line! Well, I dont want to go into too many details, but I will say that the Tweezer song was the savior that night. And the Henrietta segment as well. One shout on the tape sums up the whole night ... "Would you calm down!!" Tweezer song was the savior that night. And the Henrietta segment as well. One shout on the tape sums up the whole night ... "Would you calm down!!"
Widespread Panic opened, and I really didnt like them at all. It just sorta enhanced the whole grimy atmosphere.
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