Antelope contained Simple Gifts teases from Trey. Rift was aborted by Trey after he accused Fish of error. Free included No Quarter teases and a Bouncing tease. Poor Heart was performed in the slow, shuffle style.
Only been to Landover twice. First time was to see Jerry on 3/17/93. He floored my current GF and myself with a blistering Shakedown, Dark Star, and Lucy in the Sky etc. I knew we were stepping into hallowed ground seeing Phish there for the first and only (?) time. Things got heated first set with a smoking Antelope third song. And they did Fluff next. With a nice arrival at the end. As a whole first set was good but standard for 95.
The second set began with Rift which basically sucks. We caught on to Fishman stopping the beat right away. At the time we felt that he didn’t like Rift either but who knows? They began to play Free. The first 12 to 15 minutes is great, shreddy, type 1 Free jam. Then the walls came down from the song structure and we were left with a crazy jam. From 15 to 20 min, it’s Trey and Fish pounding on the drums and page taking the lead. High energy and sick. At 20m, it becomes this dark ambient jam with Trey playing beautiful leads on his axe. From pretty, dark and slow it culminates to a rocking, hard driving jam. All the way to Trey ripping a few high notes. Then back into a drum jam then gently landing into Llama without the traditional drumbeat intro. Sunrise over turquoise mountains. Trey does the full pressure release during Llama, which felt so good. Then they play YEM. With a white hot guitar solo. Trey and Fish fully locked in. Trey hits a few monster high notes with Fish dropping bombs around it. Shapiro needs to release Free-)Llama and Yem b/c there isn’t any great sounding copies of this around. I laugh at the fact no one reviews a show like this and it has 3.5 stars when a weak 12/31/12 has countless reviews and almost 5 stars. This is why Phish is about the music and certainly not about the Fans. I will begin reviewing shows. Only the ones I went to since if you weren’t there you shouldn’t review it. And my reviews will be quick to read.
Free--) Llama is an all-time jam. For this alone it’s a 5 star show. But to be honest, I gave it 4.
This show contains the single most improvisational version of Free of all time. A symphony with multiple passages that never feels forced, this version is to Free what the 12/29/94 version of Bowie is to that song.
After a pleasant but largely forgettable first set, the band manages only half a verse of Rift before Trey pulls the plug. "“We’d like to credit that last one to our drummer, Mr. Jon Fishman. Let’s hear it for him," Trey quips.
Then it's on to the Free, where Fishman's drumming is solidly out front. At around the 10 minute mark Trey clearly begins teasing the guitar lick to No Quarter, while the band at first appears poised to drop into Simple. Eventually, the band settles into full exploratory "jump off the deep end into the abyss" mode. By 15 minutes they've completely abandoned the Free theme, and are out in serious Type II territory. After an ambient excursion, Fishman begins playing the Bouncing drumbeat, but the band isn't done exploring, with Trey adding some beautiful guitar playing around 25 minute mark. Eventually, the Free theme returns, followed by another Bouncing tease. The song eventually concludes with a percussion jam, with Trey on his mini-kit and Fishman pounding away, together.
Nothing else in this show particularly stands out (though the slow arrangement of Poor Heart is always nice), but this 33 minute Free is Phish improv at its finest and a must-hear.
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