Notes: Trey sang the verses of Fee through a megaphone. Johnny B. Goode and Three Little Birds made their Phish debuts at this show, the latter with a guest appearance by LeRoi Moore and Dave Matthews. Tweezer included a tease of A Live One’s Montana. Stash segued out of Curtain and included Curtain teases.
I attended this show, but am reviewing it approximately fifteen years after the fact. It's a little known, and maybe forgotten show which deserves a listen. Summer of 1995 was a fun one for the band, with interesting jams, inspired and rocking energy and the touch of the playfulness of this era Phish.
The show opened with a solid, and blasting Divided Sky, which the band played as the sun was setting in the Virginia skyline. Nice touch. From there, high energy versions of classic songs followed, with Trey soaring and blazing.
Set two is the key, with the Mound>Tweezer>JBG>Tweezer>Mcgrupp as a face melter. They jammed, they rocked, they did it all. The encore featured a debut (the great Three Little Birds--what a way to end a concert--perfect) and a guest appearance by Dave Matthews before he became as big as he is now.
If you like 1995, and are looking for a hot summer show, give Nissan Pavilion a spin.
This was my very first Phish show attended. I didnt really know a heck of a lot about Phish at the time. And thats too bad because this was one heck of a show...One that I would have appreciated much more had i been fully on board with Phish prior to attending it.
A very upbeat, dance happy first set gave way to a deep, dark and exploratory second set. Phish debut'd Johnny B. Goode as the meat of a Tweezer sandwich. Ok, maybe it was more like the lettuce....and the Tweezer jam seguing in and out of JBG was the meat.
Seeing Dave Matthews and Leroi Moore come out for the encore and play a Bob Marley song was really great for me. At the time I was more familiar With Dave Matthews and Bob Marley than I was with Phish.
All in all it was a great show from a great tour. Dont sleep on this one
After driving down to the DC area from upstate NY to surprise my girl, I said hey let's go see Phish. Neither of us had seen them before but by then I knew most of the tunes and had a handful of shows on tape. So we drive a couple of hours into rural Virginia and pull into the lot. After some extracurriculars we head in.
The Nissan Pavilion was your typical summer shed. We had pavilion seats about 3/4 of the way back and towards the middle. The band strolls on stage, the crowd is pumped, showtime.
Divided Sky - not a horrible way to open my first show! Fuckin stupendous version, really hot right out of the gate and with an early summer sunset taboot. Killer.
Suzie - ok, a fun one, nothing too memorable
Taste - wow a new tune. Good early Taste.
Fee - good stuff, standard but with the megaphone
Uncle Pen - I'm a pretty big fan of bluegrass and it was appropriate for middle of nowhere bumfuck VA. So I dug this Bill Monroe classic.
Julius - let me put it this way, if they played a Julius this good TODAY the entire phish community would be fuh-reaaking out. Just one of the several reasons this show should get more love.
Lawn Boy - standard summa classic ready for the next shoe to drop. And it would...
Curtain - wow, how friggin choice. I don't know if it is just me, but when I think back to 6/17/95 everything is tinged with a purple hue. This song screams purple to me. Great version, no "with" but the tension grew and grew until...
Stash - BAM right into Stash from Curtain. If the transition wasn't perfect enough, how about this version of Stash. Good fucking God. This Stash is the kill. Rages, peaks, rages some more. Every Stashophile needs needs needs to hear this one.
Wilson - kicking off set 2 with that dark heavy funk. Fairly standard version but it totally set the tone. We were in for a ride.
Maze - heeere we go. Sick maze. Killer version. This was probably my single favorite phish tune at this point so I was experiencing my first permagrin. Psyched.
Mound - ohhhh man. Dear Phish, please play Maze > Mound at every show. Thanks. Stellar, spacey version with Mike holding the "bitter bluuuuuuuuuuuue" just a little extra long. Sweet sweet sweet.
Tweezer - oh slam. This is where shit blasts off. One of those deep dank dark funky slimy solid grooves that just burns in your brain. You know what I'm talking about, this Tweezer is epcot! After the "uncle ebeneezer" bit it goes into a nice rocking jam. That builds. And builds. And builds some more. And then...
Johnny B Goode - what theee fuuuuuck! Tweezer > JBG! Totally out of the blue and yet expected and perfectly fitting out of the Tweezer jam. A ripping good, wicked fast version (say twice as fast as the Dead's version). After a short shredfest...
Tweezer/Montana - the comedown off the end of JBG lands peeeerfectly into that ultradense Tweezer sickness. How the hell they did that I still have no idea. But oh does it work. But that is not all. Far from it. The Tweezer jam melts into what is easily my favorite jam of 1995 (only possible exception being the Albany YEM). As far as straight-up improv, it does NOT get better. And to put the exclamation point on how sick it is they not only jam on Montana (my favorite cut off A Live One which was fairly new at the time) the post JBG jam alone is over 10 minutes but they drift into space and right (again peeerrrfectly) into...
McGrupps - okay again um you've gotta be joking. Gorgeous tune. Masterfully played gorgeous rendition. Completes what has become to me one of the most epic classic runs in my phish career still to thos day.
Acoustic Army - really nice acoustic instrumental, well played Phish well played
Sweet Adeline - nice standard a capella
Harry Hood - yet another spectacular, special unique version from this show. Simply put, Mike's bass line in the first part is frigging NAAAAAASTAYYY dirty gnarly. Some effects going on there and man you need to hear this Hood.
Sample - not done raging yet? Course not! This fun standard didn't disappoint and closes out this monstrous classic of a set in prime fashion.
Three Little Birds - Bob Marley tune first time played. With Dave Matthews singing and LeRoi (RIP) on sax. Cmon now. Just classic.
To sum up...
My first show and STILL one of my favorites 100+ shows and 18 years later. Classic tunes, amazing song placement, amazing jams, 2 first time bustouts, AND a bigtime guest. All I have left to say is... Phish, PLEASE PLEASE release this as a livephish sbd.
3rd day of summer tour and I was getting into a nice groove. I was still with Chris G. and my buddy from home and we were having a blast. I have no idea where we were sleeping in between shows. This was pre hotel era for me and we certainly didn't have a tent. You would think I would remember pesky little details like that but when you are young and Phish is your life sleeping isn't your main concern.
We got to this one early as it wasn't that far from the previous venue. Heavy drinking crowd which was ok with me. I think I paid 5 bucks for a ticket for this one. My buddy literally traded the shirt off his back to a guy with an extra.
LIstening back it's another fantastic show. But the thing is when everything is always super like that even the great shows start to become mundane. I remember thinking that this was an "average" show. listening back it's obviously way more than that. The first set was fairly standard for the time period but the Stash was above and beyond. I don't think I really loved Stash when I first started seeing shows but by this point I was really starting to appreciate them. I think it's a type ii but I'm not really the expert on these things... Definitely gets a little jazzy at some points.
2nd set is pure fire from beginning to lights off. Wilson is always good right? Are there bad ones? I don't think so personally. Maze is hot and Trey shreds. He's getting some encouragement from Fish I think who then says OWWWWW right before it wraps up. Some songs just flow together really nicely and Maze>mound is a great example of that. All of that high energy in Maze comes way down with the beginning drumbeat of Mound but the crowd is in total lockstep with the band.
Tweezer was under intense scrutiny at this point. After the extended extended version at Mud Island people were wondering if that was the new standard. I personally don't like a song taking up an entire set. I need some closure every once in awhile or I start to lose interest. SInce then we've of course learned that Tweezer is capable of pretty much anything on any given night. IMO it is their ultimate jam vehicle. Page is on fire during the composed section really looking to break out. This night they are itching to jam out and start immediately after the composed section. All 4 of them get points for that. Fish is especially in the zone. Trey starts leading them somewhere and truly surprising is the JBG debut. It's totally unexpected from Phish at this point. I mean this is practically a GD cover which is not something that was expected at all. Trey of course completely shreds. It was fun to watch. Was this rehearsed? I always wondered that. they drop back into Tweezer as if it was just another few bars they had jammed out. Page and Fish get into some real bluesy sort of riff. THen they just get real spacey and mellow. It just gets so far out before Fish brings it back around... Amazing dynamics represented here. Mcgrupp being next highlights their sense of dynamics they were throwing around that night. Acoustic Army kind of lets us know the sick stuff is done for the night except...HARRY. Mike is going nuts during the Thank you part. Also this is pre Hood chant which makes it better for me. They were just so in the pocket back then. I think a lot of that comes from the amount of time they spent playing together. They were just completely in time and tune musically. THree Little Birds with Dave was very nice to wrap up a very complete show.