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Permalink Posted by TheEmu on , attached to 2012-07-06
TheEmuLet me first say that there is a LOT to love about this show. The warm up section is mostly solid, with a good Jim and Ocelot, a so-so Heavy Things, and a decent BOTT and Bitch. Psycho Tube is great fun and such a smooth transition, and has some really nice Page. It was a treat, but Cracklin' Rosie was even more so, with Psycho Killer and tucking-infused HYHU segments taboot. As Fish said, "This is...well, this is a big hit." Hilarious, fun, fantastic. Things get a bit more standard from there, with a solid Stash, a Bouncin' (what can you say about Bouncin'?), Paul and Silas (yay for that!) and a mostly well-played Horn. Corrina is absolutely beautiful, and was a weclome treat. The first set wraps up, though, with an absolutely RIPPING Light Up, with devesating Page and Trey sections. Great way to wrap up set one of the first night.

Chalkdust provides a decent warm up for set two, but the crazy loop effects at the end lead us into the first powerful jam segment of the show. Carini starts out in menacing fashion, then almost develops a blues-beat about two or three times before settling into some beautiful, melodious, almost Slave-like jamming, which eventually disolves into sustain from Trey and gentle chording from Page before Sand slides sexily into the theater. This is a sweet transition, and Sand comes complete with roars for glowstick eruptions, and, of course, the deep, nasty funk with Mike and Page gettin' dirty. Trey hooks up tight with Gordo, and this Sand does nicely for itself, then gets broken down, then comes back again in wonderful fashion before slowing down and ending studio-style.

Roses is a nice choice coming out of that hot jam, but as the final chords build and Trey teases us with a lick that seems sure to set off another jam, the rug gets pulled right out for PYITE. I love Punch, but I don't think it works nearly as well when it's not opening a set, and I don't think it worked well here. Plus, it's kinda sloppy. Once again, the end of Punch breaks down into loops and effects and spookiness before - BAM! Sally!

Sally > Ghost is the second great jam segment of the night. Trey starts off by noodling a bit, then tries a couple of times to inject some straight rock into the jam. Then, as things are starting to die, suddenly we get a *reverse* rip cord, Trey relaunches the jam, and suddenly they're rockin' like the Who! The funk then seeps back in, and the Talking Heads seem to make another appearance before the jam once again begins to settle back into loops and ominous sounds...and then a Ghost appears. The Ghost jam takes its time, floating around in standard fashion for a while, before it gets pushed into a slightly syncopated, swelling jam which is by turns dark and majestic and weird. It's that classic, odd, Phishy kind of jam that both pleases and challenges. The jam grows sparse, and then the second WHAM transition takes place, this time into Suzy.

One criticism I will make is the placement/inclusion of Suzy here. First of all, the transition is abrupt and jarring, to my ears. Secondly, if you're gonna close with Antelope, why do you need the Suzy? I guess I was just enjoing the Ghost too much, plus I've never been a big Suzy fan.

Anyway, Antelope to close, and it's a typically fun Antelope, with the added treat of seeing both Tom and the Dude on stage together, although I'm sure it was much more of a treat live than it is on tape. The Loving Cup encore is somewhat predictable, albeit with one last chuckle provided by Page ("Who the hell was that, anyway?")

In the end, I keep going back and forth on this show. It's a great show, no doubt, and makes 4 stars without breaking a sweat. There are two sweet jam segments between Carini > Sand and Sally > Ghost, plus you have the first set Psycho Tube, Cracklin' Rosie, Corrina, Light Up, and tucking taboot. I think that's a lot of meat, and despite the frustration I feel about the placement of Punch and Suzy, I'm going to stick with five stars for this show. Lots of fun, lots of great jamming (especially Carini > Sand and Light Up).

I review for Phish.net. But I can only tuck for you.
Score: 4

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