, attached to 2003-02-25

Review by whatstheuse324

whatstheuse324 By reading some of the other posts, it seems to me that 2/25/2003 is regarded in a completely underrated way. I thought this show was great, and it still holds up to me on a second listen. Having attended the East Rutherford show the night before and feeling underwhelmed, I was ready for something more from my favorite band.

The lights went down and Phish kicked it off right away with a great Julius. It was energetic, built to a nice peak, and immediately warmed up the cold Spectrum. When they started playing Talk, I felt like Trey was making a statement about all the smack being talked from the night before' like, "Hey, mea culpa." This was indeed a different show, and I was very excited to hear 46 Days start up. I liked the short version they played on Saturday Night Live before the MSG-Hampton run and I was ready to hear them take it out. It did not leave the box but delivered a solid guitar driven jam to make the night officially open for business. Taste started out from 46 Days and kept the momentum going. Kuroda was killing it on the lights during Taste and Trey peaked the song out with the What's the Use? theme, reminiscent of the 12/29/1997 Taste from MSG.

I was standing with one of my best friends Achal when Frankie Says crept out from the stage. I wasn't expecting to hear this and I was so excited for it. The song brought my mind back to the glory days, riding in my buddy's car around New Brunswick, chillin' like villains. Slave to the Traffic Light was well executed and the perfect song to come after Frankie Says. Water in the Sky was quick and clean. I was really excited to hear Page lay down the keys for the opening of Walls of the Cave. Fishman took the spotlight rocking the woodblocks and the band came together on a really powerful jam to close the first set. It built for a long time, slowed down around the third quarter mark of the jam, and built back up around the outro theme before concluding. The first set was definitely solid and I felt that this show was already better than what East Rutherford had to offer.

The concourse of the Spectrum was tight and crazy, I miraculously survived a departure trip to the bathroom and a successful return trip with two beers in hand for my wife-to-be Stephanie and I. AC/DC Bag brought everyone right back into the zone, and although it wasn't particularly crazy, it still delivered a lead off hit to start the set. Cities came right away from the end of AC/DC Bag and kept the good times rolling.

Theme From the Bottom was exceptionally good. Phish was definitely in the pocket tonight. At one point in the jam Trey went off on a tangent, and instead of coming back to the others, he made them come to him, built a lot of tension up, and came swooshing back to the power D, blasting the Spectrum with divine sound waves of awesomeness. Theme made an excellent transition into Runaway Jim. I was cheers-ing beers with the rows in front of me and behind me, it was definitely a party.

Thunderhead is what it is. It's a nice song to listen to when you stare out of your back window on a rainy day, but it brought the crowd down a little while the band caught a breather. Sparkle attempted to rescue the mood. Pebbles and Marbles was well received and it closed the second set. It was strong, especially for an early version, and clocked in at over sixteen minutes. I was very happy to see most of my favorite tracks from Round Room at this show in addition to some really strong versions of oldies, including Julius, Taste, and Theme.

Coil was a great encore. As Page was tickling the keys at the end of the song, the band did not leave the stage. Trey was hovering over Page like a hungry dog next to the kids table. We knew something else was coming and the band delivered a strong Character Zer0 to close the show. Trey got his last licks and wailed on the E scale for an extra ten minutes. I was definitely happy and satisfied when I left the Spectrum.

Before our crew headed back to Steph's apartment for the night on City Line, we hit up Lorenzo's Pizza on South Street and had some delicious giant slices to cap off a wonderful Phish experience.


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