, attached to 2016-07-15

Review by n00b100

n00b100 Set 1: The opening Tweezer, while not exactly 11/17/97's version (or, for that matter, Portland's), still gave both the band and the crowd time to stretch their legs to prepare for a wild and crazy night (oops, sorry to give that away). The rest of the set is pretty mellow, especially in comparison to some of the stronger first sets of the tour, but that's not the worst thing in the world. Fish's new song is, uh, something.

Set 2: Hoo boy. Let's break this up into bullet points:

- C&P comes roaring out of the gates, as full of piss and vinegar as it usually is, and after a blistering Type I jam slides into a mellower range as Page moves to the clavinet and Trey makes the call for major key. The resulting jam, while not particularly long, is still a fine sign of things to come;

- WTU? pops out at the back end (not quite a segue), and enriches our lives for a few brief minutes, even dying away to a hush nearly as gorgeous as that of Magnaball's defining version - proof positive that the band has really got a handle on WTU? nowadays;

- NMINML returns to Set II, gets grottier and nastier than the usual version, and with the flipping of a switch (in this case, a Crosseyed & Painless tease/quote) the band really starts cranking into the usual funk jam, Page hopping onto electric piano to add some nice color to the proceedings. I can't say this quite broke into Type II the way NYE '15's did, but it's still a strong version in the mold of, say, 7/25/15's. Then Trey, for whatever reason, pulls out the opening thread to Stash, and the rest of the band takes a second and a half to catch on, but a) I've heard much worse "r-words" in my life, and b) the band really never stopped playing, so I think a -> is apropos;

- The first second-set Stash since 7/2/11 features tinges of C&P in the "maybe so, maybe not" section, then Trey wanders back into WTU?, leading to a brief, charming mashup (always fun when Page follows along with Trey while the rhythm section holds down the fort), before the band absolutely rips apart the usual Stash jam;

- Ghost comes in next (Trey blasts into it so fast that one wonders if this is what he had in mind after NMINML and Stash was just a fun detour), and Trey tosses in both C&P and WTU? teases during the song, then as the jam blooms into something wider the band makes their way over to Fish's kit (first Trey to the Marimba Lumina - hey, he loved the mini-kit, too - then Mike and Page to Fish's kit) and they break out a crazy rhythmic jam (Fish sings/screeches the lyrics to NMINML & C&P too, the goof). And then, as the band returns to their normal instruments, Trey decides that one good idea deserves another, and they neatly -> back into a reprise of NMINML (does that count as a sandwich? Ah, the things you think about when writing a review at 4 AM);

- Trey takes another run at segueing into CDT after the botched try at SPAC (if you listen to the 7/1 Carini - and damn, should you! - you can hear him intermittently teasing it starting about 9 minutes in), and this time he pulls it off perfectly, leading to a wonderful segue into the song proper. We get more NMINML, WTU?, and C&P teases in the song proper (gotta love it when Trey is dialed in enough to actually make the teases fit into the song), then the normal CDT ending collapses in on itself into spooky ambiance, which leads to, uh, Meatstick;

- Meatstick is Meatstick, but Trey kicks on the Echoplex to change things up a bit, and things get a bit dissonant and weird, almost Ghost-ish, but instead the band builds up the fog of noise that told you Also Sprach Zarathustra was coming in the late 90s;

- And Also Sprach Zarathustra is exactly what we get, and both this and Cavern make for a fun (and, again, tease-laden) end to the set. The encore is exactly what it looks like.

Final thoughts: I called 6/28/16 a great '93-style show, but this is a great version of the '93 shows that *you remember*. Hell of a way to kick off the West Coast "leg" of the summer tour.


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