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Permalink Posted by DriedupGoliath on , attached to 2012-08-19
DriedupGoliathThere were times during the my listen of this show that I had to stop and just gape at what was happening. The -> from "Light" into "Sally" is justly talked about at length, but I loved the > from THE "Crosseyed" into "Light". After that pants-wetting mother of a jam, we think it's time for normalcy, right? Nope. The band crashes into the wonderful opening riff of "Light", and we're OFF. To go from the best "Crosseyed" since 7/29/03, into the 3.0's most awe-inspiring jam vehicle in "Light", is just plain inspiring. The final minute or two of "Light" is one of the best minutes in the thirty years that Phish has been cranking it. Honestly, what the fuck was going on there?? Page completely destroys this section, and holy god is that "Sneakin' Sally Through the Alley?" A true "holy shit, I didn't see that coming," moment for sure. The jam funks along in that nasty way "Sally" tends to do. The return to "Crosseyed" has been done before, but never this well. "Theme" is the perfect cool down point, and did they really play "Rocky Top" to end this sequence? Only Phish could do that. A standard, but well played, "Boogie on Reggae Meatbug" follows, then a jazzfunky YEM to close. A SF-appropriate Ride Captain Ride>Tweezer Reprise lets the crowd sail away.

The first set is nothing to forget, either. The "Crowd Control" opener is a really nice rarity, and a nice juicy "Party Time" follows. I heard some "Not Fade Away" type drums in the opening- a subtle tribute to the Dead? "Axilla", while it will never occupy too much of a place in the favorite songs section of my heart, still rocks undeniably. They first flirt with the jam unknown in "Reba"- there are a few few points where it looks like the band could tread off the beaten path here in "Reba", but it's brought to a typical, but satisfying, peak. And any "Reba" is made better with the whistling ending. "Free" was disappointing, honestly- the jam seemed like it could break free of the chains the band has placed on it in 3.0, but it turned the same corner it always does and came back in a mere 6:54. "Mound" was a bit flubbed in it's naturally weird opening, and the guitar solo didn't erupt quite like Superball's volcanic verson, but it's still "Mound," so no complaints. The band has taken "Walk Away" for a lot of wild rides in 3.0, and this one is no exception. "NICU" is standard fun, with Trey calling Page "Leon." I honestly hate "Gotta Jibboo." Sure it's fun, but I feel like it's an insult to Phish's other compositionally and lyrically astute songs. HOWEVER- this version is pretty damn fantastic. Trey sounds great- even for "Jibboo." The "Roggae" goes deep. I love the great point that this song has evolved to in 3.0. "David Bowie" is incredibly flubbed in the beginning, but still builds to a nice peak.

So, overall? I believe this is the show where everything Phish was and is working towards in 3.0 coalesced in the most complete fashion. So many different jam styles converged during the second set. And there wasn't even a "Plinko" jam, one of the most prominent jam tools they have these days. They were unbelievably on. This is IT.
Score: 11

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