, attached to 2016-07-08

Review by RunawayJim4180

RunawayJim4180 Had a couple pavilion seats for this show, but hung out on the lawn with some other friends when my original show partner bailed. No matter, parked in the $50 (!) parking lot so we could get out of there in a reasonable amount of time....I've learned my lesson after a dozen or so shows at the venue over the years. To prepare, I listened back at the 7/12/99 show I attended at the same place 17 years prior for a random point of comparison/trip down memory lane.

Unfortunately, this venue has gone way downhill since '99. From the $50 parking lot to the $15.75 (!!) beers, its absurd from a purely financial standpoint. Cops on patrol swarm the lots and force people to dump out beers, bathrooms/concessions were poor, and the sound was absolutely abysmal from the lawn after the Wolfman's PA debacle. Unacceptable in this day and age for a venue to make millions off every show only to provide an inferior product to almost every amphitheater around the country. Some may call it sour grapes, but a band like Phish deserves better, and places like the Centrum (or whatever Telecomm its named after these days) provide it in spades.

In terms of the music, I thought the first set was pretty strong all around. Highlights included an early Gin (love the placement) and a jazzy Cities that was the show highlight for me. After a long wait for the bathroom during setbreak, I heard the latter half of Ghost and Light, and they were both excellent. From Wolfman's onward, I felt like I was listening to Phish through my iPod headphones, a muted experience to say the least. I ran down to the Pavilion for Walrus, and it was solid.

On balance, if my last Phish show at Great Woods in '99 was a 4, this one was a 3.5. Onward and upward, but please skip the Xfinity next time boys, you deserve better.


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