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Permalink Posted by waxbanks on , attached to 2003-02-20
waxbanksI've gotta disagree with the earlier reviewer's C+ rating - this is a strong show in the middle of a superb tour.

Seven Below gets an intricate funk workout that keeps referring to the song's original pulse and comes smartly back to the song after 21:00 or so. Tweezer is a monstrous roaring creature that gets as deep as 2/28 (but nowhere near as high). Simple is delicate, then spacey, and lovely throughout. And you even get canonical takes on Pebbles and (ugh) Jibboo to close the two sets!

If you don't like the 'Phish 2.0' style - those long hazy hypnagogic uptempo noise-jams, the intricate unresolved experimentation, the relative sonic homogeneity - you won't like 2/20/03. That's OK. But while this show is less of a crowd-pleaser than the 2/26 party or the 2/28 church service, it's a nocturnal preview of the chemical carousel ride that would take place in Limestone less than six months later. Well-chosen songs, shadowy ocean-floor jams, and collective creativity as yet undulled by rock'n'roll excess...what more could you want?

This one's as strong as 2/16 but in a very different register. Get it.
Score: 22

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