, attached to 2012-08-22

Review by nichobert

nichobert I'll keep this confined to the part of this shoe which will likely spawn endless hyperbolic venom.

Bouncing, Number Line, Heavy Things, If I Could.

The first word that comes to mind is bliss. The second is cohesive.
The criminally underrated Bouncing, one of- hell-THE best actual songy song that Phish ever wrote has a little history with Mikes and feels great right here. Following that up with Number Line feels so ecstatic as Trey once again pours his heart into a song that seems to be appreciated less with each rendition. Probably not as cathartic as the San Fran version that rocketed out of that wooly Simple jam, but so sweet nonetheless. Then Heavy Things drops and you can feel the joy emanating from the band as again they make this song gut wrenchingly gorgeous.
Following these two up with the quietly resurgent If I Could is almost an unfair bounty of riches for those who want to share in the joyous groove.

There is a lot of chatter. Most of it stems from a mistaken belief that there are thousands of teenage top 40 radio fans flocking to see Phish play some songs that may have been on the radio once or twice. While I understand the sentiment, and while I sympathize with those who feel that the middle of second sets are a needlessly improvisation free wasteland, I'm kind of in awe of Phish for pushing these concerns aside and playing 24 minutes of beautiful uplifting music without worrying about the peanut galleries siren call requests of 73 minute Lushingtons. You will be hard pressed to find a recent second set that crafts a singular narrative without hiccups the way that this one does. Will it be remembered over the ages? Perhaps for the only appearance of the word "rape" in show note history and nothing else. But when your politicians are preaching hatred and doom and you're curious as to where you can find an ACME safe to Drop on their head like an erstwhile Wil E. Coyote, you may want to dip into this 24 minutes of Phish and let Trey soothe your soul with 3 timelessly heartwarming solos that are engineered to sweep away the complex emotional webs that can trap us in a never ending coral maze of malaise.


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