, attached to 2011-05-31

Review by pmc2kd

pmc2kd After Bethel we had a day off to cruise back to our Northern NJ homes and rest up before the short hour or so drive towards the Jersey shore and Holmdel. Both nights we took a couple first timers to try and get em hooked on the Phish.

Night one we cruised into the lot and set up the easy up. It started raining a bit, so we ended up with some comrades pre-show which was fun.

We grabbed a nice central lawn spot (tickets were basically free outside the venue which was awesome for us who were looking).

Set 1 opened with CDT, which was high octane and contained a bit more in the mustard department than previous openers I had seen. Spicy brown from the Trey-man.

Roggae was beautiful. Really really nice. I liked the studio version and didn't realize the live one would hit such heights. Nice.

Punch was awesome and to me feels like summer. I had been waiting to cross that off my list.

Moma was fun, but I didn't think particularly noteworthy. Nevertheless the opening run of songs was a lot of dancing.

Rock and Roll was a scorcher. Sort of illustrated to me that this song could slot in anywhere as either a rocker or an improv platform. Great set I style version.

Sand was awesome and actually threatened to open up. It didn't quite do that but this one was unique to my ears.

Tube kept it funky (although short). Trey made reference to Page's house...which brought back amazing memories from Bethel. Glad they kept the house thing going for a bit of this tour.

OK Divided Sky was a train-wreck unfortunately. Trey owned up to it and held out the microphone as he forgot this one. We're all human, but this one was botched badly.

Zero concluded the set in typical fashion.

Overall Set I: More killer songs, and a lot of energy. Everything was played with lots of mustard. D-Sky was a blemish on an otherwise fun, well executed set.
Highlights: Sand, R&R

Set II opened with After Midnight! I didn't see that coming. It rocked and then took an awesome turn towards jam street. The jam was sort of throbbing with Trey hitting a cool descending run. It was pretty cool and definitely noteworthy. Not sure it sort of found gold anywhere, but the intent was great and it popped into Possum smoothly.

Possum was fun in the two hole (summer of Possums had begun).

Drowned was back to the jams and a nod to our beautiful jersey shore perhaps. This one went into a pretty cosmic place, but sort of lacked direction. I thought it sort of reflected the first jam in that it never found its true footing, but was a pretty cool sonic exploration regardless.

>Maze was welcome and kicked up the energy. Rocking!

Dirt, Alaska were both ok. Dirt was a good cool-down, but following it up with Alaska was not the best in my opinion.

YEM was an awesome way to close. Fun version!

Encore: Fire. Great choice, always happy to catch Fire! Rockstar Trey.

Overall Set II: This was a good set generally. They gave a good effort to jamming in After Midnight and Drowned (even if they didn't completely click). Possum and Maze were both good energetic efforts. YEM was its awesome Phishy self.

Overall: This was a solid show. I don't think it was exceptional really. That being said, for me it's actually worth a spin (After Midnight & Drowned), even thought it was closer to Bethel III than I or II.
3/5 Good not great.


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