theme from the bottom was a good opener, and it was very well-played. dog stole things seemed to be very promising, but it really didn't ever do too much. beauty of my dreams was some nice snappy blue grass. billy made for a nice breather. limb by limb made a promising debut. fish still had not nailed the drum beat, but he does a damn fine job here. trey sounds strong here too. they bust the first jam of the night with the newly revamped wolfman's brother. this was is not the best, but it still has some nice funky grooves. velvet sea provides another breather and it sets up a fine set closing taste.
stash gets the second set going in fine form. this is, as usual, a nice dark jam, and trey brings it home nicely. maze keeps that deep dark vibe going before a nice light and bouncy water in the sky. this and vultures debut well. in fact, outside of ghost, i think vultures may be my favorite of the dublin debuts. after some new material, the boys delve back into their old bag of tricks for a really nice slave to the traffic light. page has some lovely playing on this one. chalk dust hits a nice funk/rock jam that works well into the debut of phish classic ghost. olivia's pool or oblivious fool or hell whatever you want to call it, works very well out of ghost. they flash their new funk muscles on this pairing. i'm not a big character zero fan, but who cares after a show loaded with new music.
then, this is one of my favorite encores. it's no vegas '96 but hey. i'm a huge sly and the family stone fan, and i would love to hear stand make a triumphant return. phish played this one really well, and they really nail the big "stand break down." as if that weren't enough, let's debut another nice soul/funk/rock classic. they rip right into hendrix's izabella, and they certainly do this one justice. it would never become a regular part of the rotation, but it came up in some key spots in key shows. in particular, if you like izabella, check out columbus '98 and auburn hills '97. both of these shows are stellar.
while this show does not have any completely mind blowing jams, the boys are full of energy springing a bunch of new material on the audience. ghost and limb by limb would really develop in the next two years, and vultures, in my opinion, has remained a lovely treat to get at any show. i love listening to these shows just to demonstrate how far phish has come....