, attached to 2016-10-21

Review by fhqwhgads

fhqwhgads Fishman sounds really pumped on this ASIHTOS 1st-set opener. Tasty fills galore! I don't usually concern myself with this kind of thing, but sometimes it boggles the mind how little mainstream-critical adulation Phish gets, particularly with regards to their individual and collective instrumental virtuosities. "The boys" sound connected/in synch to start with, with Mike asserting himself basically to the point of steering the jam, so this bodes well for the rest of the show. I think the last time I can remember an Oh Kee Pa Ceremony > AC/DC Bag was Lake Tahoe from 2011, 8/8/11 or 8/9/11 IIRC, but this standalone Bag is tight out of the gate. I love Mike's delivery of the "Let 'em fight it out" line, perhaps a piddling thing to zero in on, but it shows that Phish can switch things up nightly, even in a 6m17s version of Bag like this one. Trey sounds like he's having a lot of fun, and his guitar playing is inventive here, if not incendiary. I'm viewing Page's contributions through the lens of the new Rolling Stone article, with its assertion that Page has a hard time leaving his home behind to go on the road, but in my mind, he's always been truly vital to the band, and if the four of them--along with crew members and everyone whose work goes into making this spectacle for us--have to compromise in order for us to continue getting to go Phishing, I'm okay with that. Particularly illuminating in that article was the context placed behind the lyrics for Home. Honest Phish means healthy Phish. Nice, swift little transition into BOTT. I think I remember asking a friend--right before my first show, which was a month or so after the release of Farmhouse--which song from the album he most wanted to hear, and his answer was "Piper," though mine was "Back on the Train." I'm about the least vetted 1.0 phan there can be, I guess, though that's not to disparage BOTT, this performance of which sees some post-Fare-Thee-Well leads from Trey in accompaniment with Page's driving clavinet licks. Call me crazy, but I can hear the practice behind Petrichor starting to inform Trey's "soloing" at this point in Fall Tour: see around 4:15 in miniature for some classical-influenced Trey lead-playing. I think that could be just the thing to open up his playing and possibly reinvigorate the other three band-members, as well. I worry sometimes that Trey spreads himself a bit too thin, but then something magical always happens to make me eat that question. Some really tasty bends circa 6:30 of this BOTT from Trey! The drop back into the closing chords feels natural, though I'd've been perfectly happy to get a long, wending Type-II excursion, of which for BOTT there've been too few, IMO! I definitely prefer the live Things People Do over the studio demo. "One, two, motherfucker" to count in BOAF? Sure, why not, LOL! Kind of a '99 feel to the first set up until Mercury, to my ears, though I recognize that's an highly unorthodox opinion when the vast majority of the set is 3.0 material. Trill(y) revved-up More to close, and it's time for a message from our sponsor.

Key change around 11:00 into the Down with Disease 2nd-set opener is where we enter Type II territory proper, and this is really a throwdown (it had already been broughten, too!) Some angular type of riffs from Trey eventually give way to some time spent with the Marimba Lumina, and then it's time for Carini. This Carini is kind of like a yin/yang symbol: dark to start (though not negative or necessarily feminine) and then bright (though also positive and I suppose masculine, LOL) and is quite a journey. Winterqueen is interspersed as what I would consider a breather, but it also takes on special personal resonance following the previous thirty minutes' music. Ghost reminds me somewhat of the 8/17/97 Went Gin, in that it builds on single-minded purpose to a raucous peak. Funny voiceover from Fishman in the closing moments before a > into Possum. Slave is masterfully poignant as always, and we get a Loving Cup encore. 4-star show, in this reviewer's opinion!


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