, attached to 2013-10-26

Review by nichobert

nichobert As much as I like this tour, it's amazing that anyone thinks it trumps either of the last two summers.

It seems like they have regressed big time. Phish regression still lands you in some great places... But they don't seem as ambitious in their improvisation right now. Practicing a whole album is a time consuming process. So I can understand why they don't seem to be locking into that cartwheeling self replicating mechanical amoeba improv that they started crafting in 2011 and rode out through leg 2 of this summer.

I'm interested to see if they get back there, or if this more linear approach to improv will rule the day.

The last few years featured roughly 1 jam every other show that felt so locked in, so restlessly creative that I had a hard time even imagining the Phish of 1997 being able to pull it off. The knotty intricate jams of their early days effortlessly blended with the spacious repetition of their latter years..

This tour hasn't given me that feeling once yet. It has given me a lot of other good feelings though! Phish's improv going through such a phenomenal evolution at this late stage of the game has bought them endless good will from me. If their intent is to tear it back down and build it back up again, I'm on board. If they internally feel like the album practice has knocked their jams down a peg and they can't wait to get past Halloween and get back to forging their late career legacy, I'm ecstatic.

Having Kenwood Denard come out to play Boogie On and Possum is quite a curveball of a choice. A free jazz drummer extraordinaire, I wonder if they kicked around the idea of having Possum launch into an atonal excursion into the outer realms, permanently (yeah right!) shutting up the Possum haters.


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