, attached to 2004-06-26

Review by fhqwhgads

fhqwhgads Slightly above average-great rating applies, I think! I've read here on Phish.Net that 2.0 seemed to be sort of "samey," as in all the jams had a kind of flavor that wasn't particularly characteristic of anything except maybe a transitional period, in the way that some phans view the underrated 1996 as a transitional year that paid off in spades with the cowfunk of 1997 (especially Fall.) One knows 2.0 when one hears it, but more because of a general water-treading feeling that seeps off the circus and onto the stage to some extent, and which was also "coming straight from the sewer" of backstage. There's no blame to be apportioned, in my opinion, but retrospectively some maturation should have--and has--been accomplished, to the great benefit of the health of the music.

Access Me's debut starts off Set I > Scents and Subtle Sounds without the Intro but with a good jam. I like to hear how comfortable Phish already was with the new Round Room and Undermind material at this point, and have to ponder how it might have otherwise developed if Phish had not broken up. A lot of those songs are either missing wholesale or underexposed nowadays. The second set is almost entirely a big jam--you can hear part of what I mean by that in how Piper just kind of belly-flops into Harry Hood--and I feel like Ghost in particular reaches some interesting territory, though the song portion is delivered somewhat haphazardly, IMO. I like very much about this show that nearly everything in the second set and encore exceeds 10 minutes in playing time. The difference between this night and the prior at the same venue is not a matter of night and day, but it also challenges me as a phan to find something tying the two together thematically... and that's ok!


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