, attached to 2009-11-29

Review by tydyvision

tydyvision Thought I might add a review to what is still one of my favorite shows of the 3.0 era, all these many months later.
Awesome little venue, the sort of tiny New England multi-purpose arena that finds its niche when hosting a baseball card convention or Tupperware General Assembly but really earns its stripes when the Phish comes to town.
The band's history practically drips from the rafters here and they seemed to be feeling it this late night in November. It served to be a perfect warm up show for the MSG run around the corner but is in no way a door mat to those shows musically.
Nestled into the quaint little town of Portland, the "Quad C" as I've taken to calling it, is an easy access venue and I had the entrance scoped out well prior to showtime. This allowed me plenty of time to check out the town and its watering holes before I had to be back to get a good spot in line. And did I ever? I was about the tenth in line to enter and from there it was a straight up sprint to the GA front row. I had to choose between Mike and Trey side...a tough decision for some but I'd been dying to feel Mike's bass bombs wreak havoc for months, so I knew my spot would be on the rail right in front of Gordeaux.
I was standing right next to a guy with a little orange sign with glitter letters that said, simply, 'Weigh'. Trey came out, all smiles, and sort of panned his gaze through the front row.
He mouthed the word, "weigh?" to the guy as sort of a question to which the dude simply nodded.
He got his Weigh.
I had on the Antelope's Jersey which Mike seemed to stare at blankly with passionate interest. (Hey there, Mike. What's up? You ah...you looking at my shirt there?)
Whole set was a Mike fiasco.
I chose well.
Mike became a Prince this night.
The Meat and Undermind were the clear set highlights. Meat had been M.I.A. for far too long and Undermind was great to hear live. Of course, Nellie Kane was hot and hadn't been played since I last saw it live, a cool connection.
This happened a few times in 3.0 for me.
Most recently with the Manchester Song I heard the Ocean Sing and, more outlandishly, After Midnight.
The second set in Portland is one that I still have dreams about.
Enough about me.
Moma continued the thick atmosphere out of the break (*ting!*) but from there the show just happened in a big way.
Rock and Roll was played for another cat's sign and raged well into the still infant Light.
Crimes of the Mind took the crowd a stanza to place but was well received. Great tune. Lots of >'s...Pebbles was hot and long overdo and 2001 was raucous. Fish owned this one.
Portland was very much to me a defining show in that this (including MSG '09) was the first time that I started to notice the new, concise jamming that would become the 'sound' of 3.0.
All of these songs had it, especially this 2001. Power-packed. Nothing missing. Pocket Einstein shit!
Then the closer/closer fakeout of Golgi and Cavern led us into the beast of the second set, as it should be-
Antelope was bliss.
This one had it all and should be checked out by any serious 'Lope fan at all costs, as well as it's twin at the next show in NYC. Crystally accurate, fun, loud and unbridled...this Antelope was one for the books and was nailed.
The encore basically served to let us all know they'd had as much fun as we'd had. Freebird was so sweet sounding to someone who had recently been calling for acapella Freebird. Too much.
Carini opened up the pores again one last time and they let us slide down into the night in style with Waste.

All in all, Portland may have been the perfect show.
It's certainly one that should be in any collection and could be relistened to on the reg.
See you on the NYE run '10!
FWIW, neems.


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