, attached to 2010-06-27

Review by waxbanks

waxbanks This is a breakthrough show and will stand up nicely in future. The first set is just a teaser for the Wilson > etc. > Contact run, which is the best series the band has put together since June '04, maybe August '03. This Piper isn't quite as interesting as what surrounds it, but it's so nice to hear the tune get a jitter-free extended performance that you won't mind. The rest of the run is pure gold, from the nightblack return of Saw It Again to a burning, compact Ghost and that sneaky-surprise Stones cover. (Compare it to the rickety Psycho Killer from Hartford '09 to see just how far the band has come in a year.) The band doesn't escape into the dreamtime here as in winter/summer '03 (check out the superb 2/16/03 gig for a post-hiatus hybrid), but it's great stuff nonetheless; for coherence and boldness it surpasses this summer's Hershey dance party (6/13) and MJ-tinged Camden throwdown (6/25).

All the auguries are lookin' good. As far as I'm concerned, Phish's summer 2010 shows have left nearly all the band's 2009 work in the shade - and we're only halfway through the season! Can't wait to hear what comes out of the late summer shows.


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