, attached to 2014-07-12

Review by FurtherFromShore

FurtherFromShore 2nd Phish show. I had a blast and will attempt to be as comprehensive as possible about my experience and most importantly: the music.

Firstly, basic thoughts on my personal experience there:

Lot: My friends and I walked around the lot for a little while, until NYPD strolled by and told us we had to go to the venue area. It was still really cool as I didn't get a chance to check out the lot scene in Mansfield (arrived just before gate time). Great vibes all around. You could just feel the excitement in the air. I'm am regretting not buying a shirt in the lot as the shirts that folks sell in the lot capture the essence and spirit of Phish (in my opinion) better than any official tour shirt. They had a Reba shirt I saw on the way out that I was tempted to buy because I love that tune.

Food: Mostly positive. I had a corn dog that was pretty standard fare, but not bad. The chicken nuggets coated in Goldfish crackers were outstanding. On the contrary, one of my buddies had a chicken sandwich or wrap of some kind that he told me wasn't that good. Obviously the Phish Food was great.

General: I had a great experience in part because of the great weather, great vibes, and the fact that I quite honestly loved Randalls as a venue once I got there. Great place for a Phish festival, and while there were a few talkers and random folks running back and forth to the beer lines/bathrooms, that's to be expected. I had a better experience during the 2nd set though. I was Mike side and relatively close/in front of the board during the 1st set. A lot of talking for the sake of. No one focused on the show. 2nd set, we moved. My friends actually found a space up on the hill, and I stood Page side but a bit further back even still. This was not only a more respectful part of the crowd, but I really lucked out as to me the acoustics were better being a bit further back and behind the board.

Now, onto the best part - the music:

This show wasn't as tight as Mansfield in my opinion, but was more intense and fiery, even with the ballads from Joy and Fuego thrown in there for good measure. Opening set one with AC/DC Bag set the energy off right (might not have been jammed out, but it's a wildly energetic opening number), and they got nice and funky for a bit with 46 Days. The Yarmouth Road, Devotion, and Free segment seemed to mellow people out a bit at least where I was standing for this set. If being critical I personally could've done without Yarmouth. That's one of those tunes where I actually think MGB play it better than Phish. I heard Mike play it up in Burlington so I was mixed on it. I was mixed on Devotion as well but it's not something I was that bummed to hear for one reason or another. It's a decent tune. Free is nice and I love the funky bass segment, so I'm not complaining, but I was mixed on hearing it again. My Sweet One was next. Nice to hear some good ole Fishman-composed bluegrass, with a great solo from Page. I'm not sure how often they play this one anymore but the crowd seemed to be digging it. Back on the Train followed My Sweet One, and after a botched landing, Trey was chatting for a bit and joking about the intent behind botching the tunes, and they ultimately wound up repeating the landing 3 times (to jokingly say they wrote the botched landing). It was nice to see them showcasing this humor in their shows. Halfway to the Moon. You know, at first I was kind of thinking "really", but it's nice to see Page in the limelight. I love the piano solo, and I think Page may very well have the strongest voice out of the bunch. From a compositional standpoint, this and Wingsuit were my favorite two new (as in off of Fuego) songs played on this particular night. Sparkle. From what I gather, phans are mixed on Sparkle. I had a lot of fun with hearing it. It's a masterpiece of heavy Phishgrass. A Song I Heard the Ocean Sing was undeniably my highlight of an admittedly bizarre (but nice and to the point) first set. As a general rule, I love (or have grown to love) the Undermind album, so it was a treat to hear anything from it - and this was simply a great version of a nice tune. The Line. Meh. I try not to be negative but this one isn't a favorite. I just don't like it. Hearing Devotion was OK. Hearing Halfway was good or maybe even great. Hearing The Line kind of killed the mood for a brief moment, for me. The next tune more than made up for it though. I was psyched to get an Antelope, and though it wasn't one of the longest or most jammed versions, it was a quality version as far as I'm concerned - and dedicated to co-writer of the tune, The Dude of Life aka Steve Pollack, who was backstage or something with his two children who were at their very first Phish show. All in all, some highlights, some lowlights. Interesting song choices and decent performances keep this set as being good enough for my standards though. Set two was the real story of the night. Punch You in the Eye did seem to contain some playing of sour notes by Trey but until I hear the LivePhish I can't say it was downright sloppy. I was just glad to hear it, and there was some nice funk going on in the beginning. The Latin rhythm/melody they go into in this one is great. Page really shines. Carini is such a great uptempo hard rocker. Really got the crowd pumped. The chords are undeniably Trey but still almost remind me a bit of Led Zep's Kashmir in the manner they're strummed, and some interesting effects were used in this tune's rather spacey jam. Loved the lights during this one, too. The Ghost was, in my opinion, the highlight of the 2nd set. Story of the Ghost is one of my favorite Phish albums because it was my first one, so hearing the title track (so to speak) again was a treat. But unlike the Mansfield Ghost which was nice but short and segued into Weekapaug - this Ghost just simply went places. Places that I thoroughly enjoyed. Wingsuit surprisingly had a soaring jam at the end. This was a special Wingsuit that was, in my mind, very preferably to the Mansfield one (if forced to compare again) and simply made me a believer in that tune. It definitely sounds like something off Dark Side or The Wall, that's for sure. You can see what their influences were, but in my mind, it showcases their abilities as songwriters like never before. Very impressed. Next came a personal highlight, a cover of the tune Rock and Roll from Lou Reed's Rock N Roll Animal. A bit of a personal connection/bias but of any possible cover, I was pretty damn glad to hear this one, as I have family who love that Lou Reed album (as do I). Some nice jamming in there. Next was another monstrous Harry Hood. To me, just based on what I heard and experienced in person - this surpassed the Mansfield Hood. The intro featured some nice keyboard funk that I don't remember being as epic in Mansfield, but overall, this version featured and equally lengthy and impressive jam, but I just prefer where they took it last night. Kind of coincidental I'd attend two shows on the entire tour, but both shows get phenomenal Hoods, though. I'm not complaining. I loved both of them for different reasons. Harry Hood wasn't even a real favorite, admittedly, but now I've certainly been feelin' good about Hood. The encore was very interesting, and while not everyone will agree, it was in my opinion, everything I would hope for after such a scorching 2nd set. Firstly, I love Tube. Very great funky vibes, and every freaked out (as did I) when they went into the bluesy breakdown and Trey tore it up. Second, Joy - the title track. I know this tune is a downer for many, but ironically enough I'd been listening to it like crazy of late and was very psyched about it. Wasn't expecting to hear it, though. I know they've been favoring the new stuff but it's just not a tune I feel works quite as well live. For the reason that I don't get into it as much live, I'd say it was just a good song to hear, and not great. But oddly enough, as someone who struggles with chronic depression, anxiety, and anger - this is the one Phish tune that physically brings these weird bittersweet tears to my eyes. I usually never cry. Not just trying to sound tough or whatever but I just virtually never cry. However, I was on the verge of Phish-induced tears yet again last night hearing Trey sing the lines: "We want you to be happy/Don't live inside the gloom", as he could very well be singing the song to me and it'd be solid advice that I often struggle with. If that's not great songwriting to evoke that kind of response, I don't know what is. First Tube was a great closer. Admittedly I was blanking on the name of this tune in the moment (even though I'd just listened to the Farmhouse album) - but I love this tune's melody and it's a classic.

Trey had a lot of energy too. A really showman who had a rockstar moment at the end in holding his guitar up above his head, and was still bouncing up and down after a long show of intense performing. Definitely an energetic guy.

All in all, this show quite simply made me feel alive. It was just an unbelievable experience. Mansfield was great but to me, it wasn't quite this, so if I gave Mansfield 5 stars, this deserves 5 by default. Maybe 4 and a half for some of the slop, but the slop was so minor that if this was a 4 and a half and not a 5, I'd redo Mansfield as a 4. Either way, ratings don't matter anyways. All that matters is how great these shows have been this year.

I hope everyone enjoys tonight! Hopefully the weather will hold.


Phish.net is a non-commercial project run by Phish fans and for Phish fans under the auspices of the all-volunteer, non-profit Mockingbird Foundation.

This project serves to compile, preserve, and protect encyclopedic information about Phish and their music.

Credits | Terms Of Use | Legal

© 1990-2018  The Mockingbird Foundation, Inc. | Hosted by End Point Corporation