Thursday 08/11/2011 by sethadam1

TAHOE 2 RECAP

Night two of the Lake Tahoe webcast had a whole slice of the internet abuzz. Coming off of an exciting night 1 that showed some potential in Bowie, 46 Days, Slave, and arguably, Walls of the Cave, there was a near-palpable excitement about night 2. The show started a touch later - almost 7 PST, 10 EST.

Phish took the stage and dropped their first "Dogs Stole Things" of "3.0," the first since 2003, a 167 show gap. While "Dogs Stole Things" has always been a song I've enjoyed, it's recreated relatively similarly each time, so it was more a "Wow!" factor for stats than music. Dogs led to an uncharacteristically short "Stealing Time", which handed off to "Poor Heart." Hard not to notice the three song "Steal" theme - "Stole," "Stealing," and "You won't steal my poor heart."

Sadly, the set lost some flow from there. "Alaska", "Halley's Comet", "It's Ice" really offered little in the way of highlights, and when the band settled into "Circus", I feared for the direction of the set. "Circus" is so slow it's often hard to recover the energy. Luckily, the following number was the always-welcome "Ya Mar". "Ya Mar" led to the undeniable highlight of the first set - jam-wise, at least - in "Stash". "Stash" has matured into a reliable centerpiece in the last year, rising to the top of the highlight list many times since last October. "Funky Bitch", which would've fit really well into the night 1 setlist, was next, and the increasingly present "Instant Karma!" followed with a fun if slightly-disjoined "Antelope" closer. On a personal note: when Trey misses the guitar-featured fill in the "Antelope" intro, I feel an emotional hurt. Set 2 is much harder to describe succinctly.

When "Disease" opens set 2, hopes are high. I received an IM from one from that said, "Here comes a 5 song second set!" and another friend messaged me "20 min DWD right now." Sadly, the jam could be counted in seconds as the ashes of "Disease" led us to a blue-light colored "Runaway Jim". From the quiet part that leads to the loud resurgence, I felt a very good vibe of potential. My feeling was right, pretty much everyone agrees that Jim led to a gorgeous, somewhat spacey jam. Unfortunately, the so-called "ripcord" was pulled staggeringly early, and "Ghost" crawled up.

As "Ghost" is one of my favorite live Phish songs, I immediately smiled and texted an obnoxious smily to a friend. The "Ghost", too, would show flashes of brilliance. With the recent NYE "Ghost" and the even more recent Charlotte "Ghost" fresh in our heads, the Tahoe "Ghost", unfortunately, is easy to forget. Just as it got interesting, it was winding down. Normally, a segue from "Ghost" into "Golden Age" would cause fits of laughter and joy. But this "Golden Age" felt flat on the webcast; the mix was screwy and it felt hollow. "Golden Age" may be my new favorite cover, but it went nowhere fast tonight. The glorious funk of "2001" arose - anyone think this setlist looks amazing on paper?! - and rained upon us. But a short and forgettable version was delivered, following the theme of potential "ripcord'd."

I'm a "Sneakin' Sally" fan. I found nothing objectionable about this version whatsoever, except that it exists in a set I found mostly frustrating. "Guyute" was another victim of an odd mix. Trey did some work in the intro that felt a little hollow, but an otherwise acceptable version of the ugly pig's theme. I wish Trey would play the climbing melody notes during the closing coda more often. It seems to be a "once in a while" thing, and it really hammers it home for me.

What can be said about "Wading in the Velvet Sea"? Generally, you either love it or hate it. This is one of the few examples where the studio version really nails what the live version almost always lacks. I've seen versions of this song that made me weep - I'm thinking the wet, rainy 7/21/97 Virginia Beach debut - but most versions these days are merely breathers.

"YEM" to close the set was a mixed bag. The "YEM" intro contains some of the most amazing Phish music. The bouncy jam, the piano led twinkles, "the note" - all played well enough tonight. Objectively, I'll dare to state that most versions of "YEM" over the last few years don't really compare to most versions of "YEM" from days of old. This version, according to our own Icculus, "it's a little more spirited IMO than a typical 3.0 version. B/B+." Sounds about right. Nice enough jam, somewhat rushed, always fun, mostly par.

Sorry, but "Show of Life" is not an acceptable encore for this usual-Fluffer-but-today-jaded-vet. Aside from cringing at the "struggle and strife/show of life" rhyme that often feels stolen from a middle-schooler's diary, the "we thank you all" pandering frustrates me. Had I been there, I would've thrown my arm around my neighbor and foolishly called it a special moment. But I wasn't, so I can tell you more objectively, I was crestfallen that a second set filled with so much almost-brilliance was closed with a "Show of Life" encore.

Thank Jeebus Trey and company realized that the show begged for something more. Alas, in its favorite spot, Phish loosed the Zeppelin rocker "Good Times Bad Times." Although pretty standard, it was just the note on which to close the Tahoe run.

Hard to argue that night one was all around stronger than night 2, but night 2's second set had flashes of great potential. The entire webcast experience is tremendous fun, no matter what is played, especially when you can be online chatting with friends, get yourself a drink, or even fry up some bacon, if so moved. It's tough for an east coaster who works early to do webcasts regularly, but if Phish made this type of event a regular thing, I'd be an even more-dedicated LP subscriber. The webcast, overall, was stuffed with "win" and despite some technical issues with the "on demand" part of night 1, the stream itself was pretty reliable and worked just perfectly on my large HDTV.

If Tahoe 2 is remembered for its potential, I'm extra jealous of those headed to the upcoming three night run at UIC. Let's hope that some of the tendancy to bail on jams wears off and some of the brilliance is more patiently explored.

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Comments

, comment by Lemuria
Lemuria Pre-emptive strike: n00bs calling this jaded are like college kids who've discovered red wine but never tasted a young, properly macerated Chianti.

Recaps here come from connoisseurs. They're not about whether you would have enjoyed being there; it's too late for that. It's about whether you'd want to listen to the show. And there's no reason to fluff all 1500 shows, or pretend that Tahoe was the best of 'em (something we're working to ID.)
, comment by goatsticks
goatsticks great review, the perfect example of a set looking bomb on paper but fizzling in execution.
, comment by goatsticks
goatsticks ...and the only time i ever want to hear show of life is late in the second set after my face has been melted and stomped on. it's probably one of the worst encore choices i can think of... $.02
, comment by sushigradepanda
sushigradepanda agreed on Show of Life. the honeymoon's over, and I can think of plenty of tunes in the same vein as SoL that I would prefer to hear in those slots.
, comment by newbornelf
newbornelf Finally turned on the stream during Ice. I must admit, it was exciting from the first lick I heard. I was at the Gorge recently and had an amazing time, particularly set 2 opening night. Watching the webcast of Tahoe was really fun, however I wished that the cameras would have favored the lights. Every time we got the Kuroda angle I was in heaven.

I know it is fun to talk about shows and compare them, but if you're not there, it really does pose a problem. You can't smell the air. In all seriousness, this can really effect your experience.

I thought the second set (and the bit of the first I did see) was awesome. One can NEVER expect to hear the Phish of yesteryear again (pre-hiatus)...so if you're looking for that kind of glory, you may as well give up. Phish is so different now. They are OLDER. The lights are BETTER. To hear Phish play in your living room in 1997 would have no doubt been a perhaps more satisfying experience than today. But going to a Phish show has really never been better.

....and about Show of Life. I really like this song. What more could Phish sing about at this point? What a nice and funny sentiment to sing about being thankful. I think it is a quirky and interesting tune...not the greatest song ever...of course.

Really, the only thing this show was missing for me was Jennifer Dances. That is my 2 cents. I love Phish and the Phish community. Keep rocking.

...oh, and Guyute....was awesome. Really, you could see fish was happy as hell at the end of it. fun. great ya mar.
, comment by tmwsiy
tmwsiy pretty much agree...though I didn't fry up any bacon, I had a plate of Lamb Rogan Josh. The Stash was stellar all the way around, price of admission worth it right there. And yes, the Jim was shorter than it should have been but still great. I thought overall, it was decent show and glad I was able to enjoy in live time on the big screen.
, comment by Mikesgroover
Mikesgroover These types of shows appear to pop up periodically in 3.0, almost like there are nights when Trey can't quiet his mind and stay in the moment. I personally find Show of Life to be a honest, heartfelt Trey song - the type that's always been present in their repertoire that some fans love to hate. Used sparingly (and well placed) it's not a bad tune.
, comment by robertchampion
robertchampion This is not refined or edited but is the basic him haw

Tahoe night two started out fair enough and the Stash happened. This is the song that gave birth to my poetry series and now Science Friction website theslopingcompanion.com and this one delivered. It was stretched out the way I liked it and could not come at a better time to get me more interested in the set. The Sloping Companion. Those three words mean so much to me. Maybe some other time.

The Funky Bitch is always a phamily pleaser and this one got the job done with no real leap into that place that we still have yet to give a universal name and definition. However, Phish was not running on idle. They were all invested the entire time.

Instant Karma was fun and notable.

My stream for night two is cutting out a lot more than night one. Do I blame comcast or do I blame Phish? I blame myself for being so obsessed.

I write notes about Phish shows while Phish is playing. Why? Because I can. I don’t do it everytime but couch tour makes it easy as pie but not American more like a nice rhubarb.

Second set of Tahoe night two opened strong with “Disease” Stop Stop Stop...No Phish...Keep on going. It might sound cliche but so far this has been a tour of second sets for me and I don’t say that about every tour. The jam at the end of “Disease” was strong and to the point. Trey’s sustain then broke into a short stated series of 16th notes the was reminscient of machine gun Trey of old but let’s not get bogged down in technicalities. Let’s talk about the feelings that those technicalities create in any number of people with any number of backgrounds....Shit...Machine gun Trey. It’s one of his elder tricks and he has learned apply it tastefully over the tours instead of banging you over the head with it to the brink of almost having an anxiety attack 1.0 style. It’s not that I didn’t enjoy that brink in my youth..Hell...I chased it... but I am in a much more relaxed anti manic stage in my life and have learned to embrace the whole that present day Phish creates and when he brings out the machine gun then I stand ready to be shot by it.

It’s these same tasteful applications of their entire tool box that has marked the maturity of this band into present day American venue icons and I don’t use the word icon casually. “Disease” went on until it melted into an abrupt rest and then back up again into “Runaway Jim.” Plinko Jam became the theme of this meandering “Runaway” for the intro into the second verse. They have been using that tastefully as well this tour and I actually am embarrassed to even use the term publicly but there you go.

The second chance for the band to improvise was again straight ahead Phish and created a second story beyond the plinko....beyond the jam....beyond any competition. And then we went there again...Phish took us there again as the song concluded. Where did they take us? They took us to that place that we still haven’t been able to universally define or put our finger on exactly because it keeps wobbling off every time we get closer to the one. However we wobbled for quite some time before they busted out the arguable song of the Summer for me personally. We are truly living in a Golden Age. Sell now!!!

The impromptu vocal jam out of Sallie made the song unique and obviously had the crowd shaking their collective asses.

Fuck...Guyute. I have often said that I could hear “Guyute” at every Phish show and never complain. Do I really need to explain why? The short answer is that this song rang through my head almost every time I lined up to the assassination range while I performed in The Dupage Symphony Orchestra. We were playing Brahms or some god awful rehashed Christmas spectacular...but in my head...everytime I picked up a stick or a mallet....I was playing “Guyute.” That’s the short answer. The long answer? Let’s not go there.

Trey grinning before going into the final verse left me fleeing all cares and worries of the day while we were getting ever closer to that one thing. Mike also was grinning ear to ear during the final musical phrase and it’s always good to see him lose the poker face and smile like he probably smiled when he figured out his first scale.

WATSIYEM? I had been secretly waiting for this without going gaga about it on any of the boards. It’s one of the songs that unify everyone involved because in this song we see set up after setup after setup after setup and then....the vocal jam. It was my secret wish since The Gorge launched this leg and I was lucky enough to see it in High Definition. How many set up’s are actually in a standard “You Enjoy Myself?” Then again, this is Phish. Is there anything ever standard about a live “You Enjoy Myself?” The trampolines came out and Fishman was clicking away on his hi hat in perfect sequential order and then the debatable hose for a brief moment. Then, back into Fishman’s seqeuncing which turns into the kilter/off kilter accents on the snare then the debateable predetermined hose again as a whole note just sits in your belly then....then....Boy.Man.God.Shit. Then, the lyrical mind fuck that can only come after listing four basic words that are powerful enough on their own but when stated together and in that order....well...What exactly are they saying in this song? It’s something bigger than we could ever know. It’s something bigger than the four guys on the stage for that matter. It’s the gateway to that one thing. It’s the subconscious wobble that makes itself conscious multiple times when everyone is dailed in...The Mike solo that was the punctuation mark on the end of the first part of the song magically propelled Trey to dance like nobody was watching but we were all fucking watching and if you weren’t smiling then you should just give up right now. Then, the vocal jam.

Phish quickly went into what I call their Nightmare Before Christmas harmony. There were spiders crawling up my keyboard and then onto my hands and into my various orafices to only lay and hatch more eggs inside of me. Then, they started shouting in some sort of other worldy chant...Not to the mothership but to the thing that controls the mothership. Was that thing answering back? Well...we live in a society that refuses to look up so we may never get that answer. One thing is for certain. Things are certainly looking up for the second leg of this tour for sheer historical record.

“Show of Life” concluded the evening. Lyrically it’s always a powerful message and is one that I am glad to have reiterated by Phish when they choose to share the message. You know some lives were changed forever in Tahoe. Some for the first time...Imagine having that transformation and then rounding it out with the message that “Show of Life” affords?

Some of us can remember that first moment....right? Isn't it our responsibility to give that moment to as many people as we know?

Boy.Man.God.Shit...I’ve learned what it takes to be a man and I don’t have to wish I was at home because I am on couch tour 2011. Boy...God...Shit? The other three? Again, it’s a long story. Let’s not go there. “Good Times Bad Times”. End of story.
, comment by robertchampion
robertchampion Could someone explain what so much almost means?
, comment by sethadam1
sethadam1 @robertchampion said:
Could someone explain what so much almost means?
That's not what it says. It says "so much almost-brilliance." That means "a lot of nearly brilliant work."
, comment by TennesseeJed
TennesseeJed First, I'd like to take this opportunity to encourage n00bs, or otherwise to chime in with their thoughts. If you disagree with the recap, please post why ...

As far as the review goes, unfortunately, with this show I can relate to the "usual-Fluffer-but-today-jaded-vet" syndrome. No real peaks were scaled here. There are good versions of Alaska, Funky Bitch, Runaway Jim and Guyute. They wont be on the Tour Highlights reel, but they don't make you cringe either. While, Ya Mar, Stash and YEM are worthy of at least a second listen.
, comment by robertchampion
robertchampion I know what it says....the word brilliance doesn't matter. It could be anyword. Saying something is so much almost is really not saying anything.
, comment by johnnyd
johnnyd "So much almost-brilliance" makes perfect sense to me.
Am I reading wrongishly?
, comment by Sneknsally
Sneknsally I jumped on couch tour second set last lastnight with a great audio stream...thanks glueface!!! My opinion, I agree with the whole ripcord discreption. Dwd, Jim, and ghost all fell short when they were just getting interesting.. The guyute was flubbed alittle and had no energy IMO! Sally is always great to hear but didn't seem to flow with the set ( though nothing really flowed together at all) all in all I think it was a forgettable show... Glad I didnt spend the money to travel from st.Louis for these shows.. Have all three nights at uic, which will def be the tits of the tour...saw them there in 98 and was CNN insane!! Here's to a rager in Chicago!!!!!
, comment by nichobert
nichobert I don't know how long that set would have to be to look good on paper.

Those songs look good because they're songs that we associate with bygone improvisations. If you put all those songs in a typical-length set with a Guyute / YEM clusterbomb of composition at the end it's going to look more cluttered than good, IMO.

The most amazing thing on earth would be if they were desensitizing us to increasingly standardized versions of the "heavy hitter jam songs" because they were sick of basing improvisation in the same 20 or so songs. And then on the flip side, our 5 minute Ghosts can start segueing into 14 minute Roggaes or Stealing Times or whatever. There is so much territory to explore and no reason to keep following well worn paths.
, comment by PhishMarketStew
PhishMarketStew what Phish needs a new batch of songs. Here we are almost 3 years into 3.0 and have more new covers to work with than original songs.
, comment by tmwsiy
tmwsiy @PhishMarketStew said:
what Phish needs a new batch of songs. Here we are almost 3 years into 3.0 and have more new covers to work with than original songs.
While '11 has seen a lack of new originals, since '09 there's been over 30 songs debuted. Barring Halloween albums, I can't imagine there's been that many covers.
, comment by coletrane
coletrane
As I lay in my bed right now next to my beautiful girlfriend I reflect on last night, the Phish show in Tahoe. When I got to our hotel after making sweet love to an old Bill Evans CD, I read all the posts from last nights show, and recent ones relating to critical fans. First of I'm not going to be one or those guys who starts off there review with, I have seen phish 103 times, I lived in Burlington, Vermont for a summer to see and feel the Phish roots, met mike gordon at a traffic light, and I am in the front row at almost every west leg of their tour. It's like telling me you have a big dick, I doubt it and I really don't care. You Sit their and criticize every single note Trey (just Trey of course) played last night. Criticize the setlist, the annoying drunk frat boys, and the hot hippie chicks who never give it up.
Have you ever actually learned the complex intricacy of music theory? Memorizing "it's ice" melody on your China made fender doesn't count. Or playing the same 3 major chords over and over again doesn't mean sh*t.
What is a modulation?
What is the suspension note on Bb?
What is he triad of F#?
Trey, Mike, Page, Fish are true musicians who work hard and know their shit. Period.
We all do respect my fellow phish heads, and I do have a point; DO you know how hard these guys have worked to get to where they are now? How much physical and mental energy it takes to do what they do. They play what they want to play and where they want to take the music. Last night at Tahoe, Trey was in rare form and he looked like he was having a lot fun!! Dancing, grooving, very engaging with the crowd. They brought back the space funk, rock and roll, blues, salsa.....I am also getting really sick of all the negative, over critical review of Phish concerts. If it's that bad, DONT FUCKING COME. Let someone who hasn't seen phish before experience good music. If you seen them 1 time or 300, I would rather listen to the person who saw them after their first time. We don't want your wadded panties messing with my wall of sound. In my opinion that's why phish broke up the first time, they didn't have any control of their music anymore because everyone on the Internet was crying about how it wasnt like the old days. How they didn't do this, how they didnt play that.....Stop living in the past and appreciate that such an amazing live act has maintained this kind of run for 25+ years. Well it's 2011 and a scary time for our nation and a dried up music seen.
Try going to the show sober?
Try listening just to Gordon?
Try standing I'n the back row?
Last night was one of the best nights of my life. It was my girlfriends first Phish concert, I was In f'ing Tahoe, I wasn't at work, and I loved every minute of it!! (especially the second set). My gf shook her Oregon hips while I observed in awe. Was it the best show of all time? Who cares. Did my face melt from Treys guitar, my spine jump from gordos bass, my skin tingle from Pages keys, and my body move to Fishs drums?
Hell Yah!! Last night rocked!! And if you didnt like it Mariah Carey is playing In LA next month...,..let me know how that works out for you. Or String Cheese Incidents 90 minute two Chord jams....You think you are cool because you are so way beyond phish, too smart for phish, to musically sound for phish..... so over phish.....so you bash them, your criticize every F*ing note, song, key, chord.
Again, you dont like the way they are playing, go somewhere else. I respect these 4 gentleman. Chris K. All the work and production that goes into there performance. I look forward to it.
P.S.
*****Dont like what I have to say? Tell me why, I am curious.
*****Do Like what I have to say? Thank you for not supporting this bullshit criticism painted all over the internet, at the shows, and from "fans"
Time to hit the road.
Love you Phish!!! Never stop playing!!
-c
, comment by kgraf2010
kgraf2010 I guess it's all opinion but I enjoyed everything they did last night. The feed was crystal clear and my friends and I were pretty blown away. People focus too much on criticizing rather than just enjoying the music!
, comment by Range
Range I love you too Phish! I always have, and I always will!

Excellent review by the way sethadam1. I thought it was spot on.
, comment by MDosque
MDosque c,

Interesting take. As a guy who has seen Phish 20 times spread out since 96...hahaha...chill out, I am just kidding. Seriously though, I have. No really, you kind of have a point, but you take it too far. I think you actually are forgetting what makes our community so great. The majority of fans, certainly the ones that are involved enough to check in with this website on a regular basis, love Phish because we know they are on an entirely different level than anything else in the music world. Because of this, and the likely way our brains are similarly wired, we fans bitch, moan, rave, fawn, and obsess over every note, segue, and setlist that this band puts out. It is our way of connecting and appreciating the greatness of the band. It is this type of blog that sets us apart from fans of the garbage that comes out of the radio. By the way, Mariah Carey might be great to see live...Hero is a fucking awesome song and I sometimes tear up when I hear it...seriously. Everyone has their own way of showing their love for Phish. REAL old heads (those fools must be pushing 50!) bitch about the band sounding too commercial after Hoist. Old heads pine for the DWD-Mike's segue from Walnut Creek 97. 2.0 oddballs yearn for a 25 minute loopy Scents, and the noobs insist that every single BDTNL is SICK! Everyone is right and everyone is wrong, but everyone is still IN. The push and pull from the band and its fans defines this scene. We are intertwined and have ultimate mutual respect. So, I must respond and say that you should not get so upset by our chatter. It is healthy, smart, funny, and what sets us apart.

Now, I agree with you wholeheartedly about the notion of expectations and I have worked on that myself and truly enjoyed three solid 3.0 shows. Too many older fans go to a show with a preconceived notion and inevitably end up disappointed. It is their loss. I shed expectations and knew that I would not see the Bowie-Day in the Life-Gin-Lizards-YEM-Rotation Jam-Sixteen Candles-YEM-Harpua-Champagne Supernova-Harpua second set that I saw at my first show. I was up for anything and it paid dividends. I am more engaged in the band now than I have been since 2000. Seeing them live is incredible and they seem happy, healthy, and in a good place right now. I do agree with the original review and have to say that I have seen some real promising jams abruptly cut short in 3.0. It's ok, though. Overall they have been great, but we are allowed to critique. I think they can take it.

To sum up my way too long rant, I just want to say that you make some good points. Fans sometimes let their expectations and nostalgia ruin an otherwise really great show. Still dude, you take it too far. The robust criticism and observations make this fanbase amazing and the band must appreciate it because they know we care.

Keep the conversations going.

Dosque
, comment by bertoletdown
bertoletdown I think that this review is mostly fair.

Mostly.

Hey, I was in Tahoe, and had an absolute goddamn blast last night - as much fun as I've had at a Phish show since probably Vegas 2003. And it doesn't bother me at all to see the comments about "ripcord Trey" and the like, because that was probably the truth of the experience of sitting at your computer and watching the webcast. It just wasn't the truth of the experience of being there.

Yes, Virginia, there are "you-had-to-be-there" shows. This was one.

The band's intent last night was obviously not to experiment. The band's intent last night was to throw a dance party for the 6500-ish fans at Harvey's, and by that measure it was a huge success. People got the fuck down. Everybody left satiated, and nobody was down in the mouth about how long Ghost was.

What people have to realize is that there is nothing wrong with this dichotomy. It shouldn't cause the discord it does, and neither the fluffers nor the jaded vets are going away.

One last comment - anybody who doesn't think that the Tahoe I WOTC was special is deaf as a post and needs to be rolled in honey and lashed to an ant hill.
, comment by Scott
Scott I hate to drop this out there, but as a don't-fuck-with-me connoisseur with 100+ shows under my belt, I just can't trust a review that thinks a 5 song set is an automatic mark of quality and reports that the DwD jam was just seconds when the track lists at 10 minutes. I did want the Jim to go on forever because the extra jam in the groovy part before the big light crescendo early on in the song was super cool, and the jam segment proper went type II in a hurry and was really interesting. But when they ran out of ideas, they moved into a strong Ghost. Maybe they could have bullshitted and hoped that something new would arise, but I basically agree with the disposition of "if it ain't great, move on."

There are more ideas per minute of jamming across a greater variety of sonic palates (across more songs) these days. No, there aren't all that many jams that go on long enough to forget where they started, although I got that from the Light and Rock and Roll from this run. If that is your #1 criterion as to the relative quality between phish shows, however, I understand that 3.0 might not be your cup of tea at the moment and that's OK.

I am going to cast my lot with the noobs, the musicians, and the people at the show. I'm feeling like .net is still debating communism vs. capitalism while the rest of the world has become fascinated by the internet. I say that with great love and respect, but this review, although not as tainted by bitterness as the Gorge II posting, is flawed by the paradigmatic chip on its shoulder.
, comment by robertchampion
robertchampion How did I get a negative one rating on my review? Would the person like to step up and argue his/her point?
, comment by robertchampion
robertchampion The phrases "look good on paper" or "looks bad on paper" need to end now.

I don't take anyone seriously that uses those phrases when talking about this music.
, comment by Range
Range You know what one of the most things I love about Phish is? It's their passion. You know what I love about Phish fans? You guessed it...it's our passion. We are all of the same passionate breed my friends whether or not we agree about the caliber of a particular show. We are all linked by a common energy, and and when we're at a show there are no enemies. It's pure magic. We are the greatest fans on this planet, and we all belong to the same special club. Yes, we are very passionate about "our" band, and it's hard not to be defensive if it feels as though someone is disrespecting something that we hold so dear such as a show that brought us complete satisfaction and bliss.

I feel that the reviewer echoed my thoughts regarding last night's show. I'm listening to it right now, again, for the third time. It's a fun show and I'm enjoying it again for the third time. Still, it's not "my" show even though I do enjoy listening to it. So far, on this leg of the tour, the Gorge night two was "MY" show. I absolutely love that show. Most everything about that show fit for me. From what I've read, my feelings about that show aren't shared by many. That's okay. They have shows that perhaps nestle more snugly in their own personal niche that don't quite satisfy mine to it's fullest extent. That's one important reason why we love "our" band so much. They completely satisfy us in one way or anther, at one time or another. Each show is unique, just as each of us are unique.

I fully respect and smile for anyone who felt last night's show filled them up completely. I know that feeling well, and I'm happy the passion you have for this amazing band has been reflected in a show that "did it" for you.

I live on the East, and hit three shows the first leg including Superball. Superball was amazing, and Blossom was outstanding and received much praise. However, the Darien show really spoke to me deeply on many levels for many reasons. Again, others have a different take on that show and don't prize it to the extents I do. That's okay. I know how that show made me feel, and nobody with a differing perspective can take that away from me. Even after Superball, after Bonnaroo, and after all the many brilliant, highly complimented shows I've been to since '94, that Darien show is my prized gem that I will cherish and hold close to my heart for the rest of my days despite it not being the most widely appreciated amongst others in our unique and special club. Even though nobody in our club with a differing perspective about the Darien show can take how I feel about it away from me, I also know that nobody would want to even try to take that away from me because they understand that feeling I describe so well. After all, that's why their in this club in the first place!

As I said at the beginning, it's difficult not to get defensive when it feels something that we feel so deeply connected to is being disrespected. We are a passionate bunch, and sometimes our passion overcomes us. It's all good, we all feel that. It's just another criteria for membership in this club! Let's all just keep chasing that oh so satisfying feeling of being at "the" show that is able to somehow warmly wrap itself around our soul...and keep on high fiving each other along the way! After all, we're all on the same journey!

Cheers all of my Phish club friends young and old!

, comment by ADAWGWYO
ADAWGWYO DwD> Jim> Ghost> Golden Age> 2001> Sally. WoW!!! That looks fucking sickkk on paper. I heard it, and agree with the above concensus. Sooo much potential. I know I'm gonna catch $hit for it but... Imagine that string of songs Feb. 2003!?!?! Am I right or am I right?
, comment by ADAWGWYO
ADAWGWYO ^^f***ing siiiick. sorry, thought the .net censor thing would catch me. ;)
, comment by ccride22
ccride22 I had an incredible time at both shows. The live experience of allowing Chris and the vibe from the crowd to help transcend any missed notes or flat songs bears remembering. After re-listening to the show and hearing about your experiences during the web cast only solidifies this truth. It was incredible if you were there. Experiencing these guys live and in the flesh is just the best. They can do no wrong and bring smiles to my face the whole night long.

I loved the Nevada party scene. Especially the epic pool party at the horizon next door. The fireworks popping off in the parking lot during Sneakin' Sally was an extra treat. Security was super mellow to allow the full phish show experience to be realized.

Thanks for a great 2 days. I hope they can pull off some big bombs at Golden Gate Park. We will divide the sky for sure
, comment by ucpete
ucpete Set I fizzled last night, and you could feel it in the crowd. I was pleasantly surprised with the Dogs Stole Things opener, but I feel like it set too mellow a tone for the rest of the set. Alaska really dragged and the crowd seemed to lose interest. Halley's began to perk things up a bit, but the jam was cut a bit short. Trey had fewer flubs than usual during It's Ice, but during the dark atonal part, Fishman seemed to be in a rush and chimed in too early for my taste and before I knew it we were dragging through Circus. Ya Mar was fine. I felt that Stash never took off. It seemed to me like Trey was trying to start the jam a little quieter and focused and wanted things to build, but it never really took off IMO. The end of Stash was a little hotter, and I feel like they went to Funky Bitch because Trey knew he'd be able to find his groove... and he did for the most part. But Antelope fell short for me as well, and overall I was left feeling pretty "meh" after the first set. Don't get me wrong, there's no other place I'd rather be than at a Phish show, but I had high expectations for such beautiful surroundings (that are especially sentimental for me having spent time in South Lake every summer growing up).

Contrary to how many of you felt about the second set, I thought it was absolutely awesome. I think the band realized the first set was a little weak, and despite having played DWD just two days earlier, they knew that it'd be difficult to not get something going opening the second set with it. Though the jam wasn't long, I thought it was tight. I was a little worried at first with the "ripcord" as well, especially jumping into Runaway Jim (what if it were just a standard Jim and then they play Possum again?!), but Jim did not disappoint. The outro jam from Jim was spacey and great, and at that time my buddy Dave and I turned to each other and nodded "Ghost!", and our wish was granted. Again, clean, nice peak, not as jammed-out as I'd like, but solid. The energy kept up with Golden Age, which is quickly becoming one of my favorites (it kind of has a Crosseyed feel to it doesn't it?). It was well-played, kept the energy up, and as night was falling, the lights really started taking off too. Everyone felt the 2001 coming on as well, and I'll never complain about a 2001. Dave and I said before the show we thought the second set would end with 2001 > YEM, but 2001 wasn't especially jammed out so we knew there was more to come. Sneakin' Sally snuck up on everyone, and everyone was feeling it! I loved the vocal jam going back into the jam. I've seen about 10 3.0 shows and I can say with certainty that DWD > Jim > Ghost > Golden Age > 2001 > Sally Alley was the best six song stretch I've seen since the reunion. There wasn't a misplaced song or a low point. Guyute was a flubfest and sort of killed the buzz from the first 50 minutes of the second set. Velvet Sea was fine, though the only thing I can think about when I see it live is Page crying at Coventry. It was nice to see YEM close the second set; I thought it was sort of strange that they hadn't played it since before Super Ball IX, and with all the repeats so far in the August shows I figured they'd've played YEM by then. YEM was above average, and Kuroda was on fire from Wash Uffizi to the end of the vocal jam.

I actually don't hate Show of Life, but I think it's being overplayed in precious slots in the setlist, and it was a bummer to hear encored. GTBT was a great way to end the show (though there were some points of hesitation and uncertainty here and there). All in all it was a great time, and many of my friends who went both nights (I only went the second night) said that the second set was the only above average set of the four played in Tahoe... I guess it goes to show how even though watching the stream is awesome, one can get a completely different experience being there. From most of what I've read online, people seemed to enjoy Set II from 8/9 the most, but most of the people I spoke to last night like Set II from 8/10 more. Looks like I'll have to go back and listen to it all again!
, comment by sethadam1
sethadam1 @coletrane - you make one of the arguments that is made over and over again, but never seems to really gain traction. Your argument is to appreciate the music for what it is, but you fail to realize that all of us on the Phish.net DO that, in a very big way. Suggesting that we either love Phish blindly or jump ship for Mariah Carey is just plain dismissive and ignores the issue altogether.

It's unfair to ask us to take every note as gospel because we're lucky to have that note. We listen to almost every show and it's entirely fair for us to compare them. Not every one of Phish's 1500+ shows can be a classic "must-hear."
, comment by joechip
joechip Solid writeup. I agree with a lot of what you wrote, though for me the set really did work fine right up to the smooth segue into Golden Age. Up to that point effective bridges were made between each tune, even if the jams didn't develop as fully as we might hope. But the promise of the set was lost when they rushed through Golden Age, 2001 and Sally. Forget type 1/2 arguments, I'm just looking for the band to relax a little and stretch out in the songs some more...maybe a guitar solo in 2001 or a jam after the scatting breakdown in Sally would have made the set a lot more satisfying. Guyute derailed it completely to my mind, and kinda belies the argument that "Night one was the psychedelic exploration night, and night two was the dance party".....no quicker way to shut down a dance party than Guyute. (FTR I like Guyute).

I wonder how much of what we're hearing is part of the current approach to setlists, where Trey is taking the stage with a long list of possible songs. Maybe at times, especially at the end of a run, trying to get too many of them in.

Stating the obvious, it's great that the band is playing so crisply and energetically right now. Their enjoyment on stage right now is obvious and infectious. Still, all in all, not one of their "for the ages" efforts last night.
, comment by Sprachtor
Sprachtor @ADAWGWYO said:
DwD> Jim> Ghost> Golden Age> 2001> Sally. WoW!!! That looks fucking sickkk on paper. I heard it, and agree with the above concensus. Sooo much potential. I know I'm gonna catch $hit for it but... Imagine that string of songs Feb. 2003!?!?! Am I right or am I right?
In 2003 that would be "the show".
, comment by batshitcrazy
batshitcrazy Why cant i vote down post i dont like if i dont agree with them. If everybodys elses opinions are valid so are mine.
, comment by Fluffyfluffyhead
Fluffyfluffyhead "Memorizing "it's ice" melody on your China made fender doesn't count."

WHAT?! darn....
, comment by TennesseeJed
TennesseeJed Having given this show a second and partial third listen, I want to upgrade my opinion to above average for Phish 3.0 (but still short of Great or Classic)

For me, YEM is upgraded to tour highlight, large sections repeatedly scale heights that are awesome, even with the flub.

And, I'll class Alaska as a song to watch. There are large portions of the LiveDownloads release where Paige's keyboards are so low in the mix that they disappear, but that is a mix issue rather than a playing issue. On the plus side, Trey's solo is excellent!

, comment by bertoletdown
bertoletdown I agree that a Golden Age in 2003 would have blown minds, especially considering the song had yet to be written.
, comment by jbirdy1995
jbirdy1995 it seemed to be the typical phish webcast kind of show.
, comment by _Kaya_
_Kaya_ Hey sethadam1 u were not at the show!!!!! I was and I can say from first hand experience that 2nd night was the heat! How dare u say anything about Hailey's or It's Ice. Were u high when u were writing this review or something, cause u are so off, and I would hate for anyone to believe the show was anything close to what u had to say about it, when u, again, weren't even there!!!! Peace....
, comment by FlaxBandit
FlaxBandit You can't reason that because of the third degree modulation of the lateral dorsal chord that Trey hit right before the peak of Guyute it was therefore mathematically the best version ever played. People have opinions and they aren't debatable or provable, they just are. Your opinion appears to be that if you don't have a 4 year degree in music theory you can't have an opinion about music. That is your opinion, congratulations.
, comment by rachelmaechel
rachelmaechel pfffffffffffffff HA!!!!!
, comment by custynoob
custynoob Sprachtor:2003?? Are you telling me that this band was playing better in 2003 then now??
, comment by Real_out_casty
Real_out_casty @custynoob said:
Sprachtor:2003?? Are you telling me that this band was playing better in 2003 then now??

No, weak then & weak now
, comment by BajaPhish
BajaPhish These shows were hot! You should have to be there to review, no offense, but a lot of energy doesn't get recorded and projected to a house somewhere. Also, some shorter versions of jams are legit where they are in a show or on a tour. Wishin UIC was webcast- why not????
, comment by pagesiderageside420
pagesiderageside420 For everyone who made it out to catch the simulcast of night two of the Tahoe run at the Boulder Theatre in Boulder, CO it was a blast. The energy in that room was insane for just a movie screen, and a dozen glowsticks.
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