As for Summer of '89...y'know, it's a pretty song with an uplifting lyric, and the ending jam definitely gets somewhere, but it felt long on this night. (My friend Laurie was reduced to this: 'I'd rather hear "Let Me Lie."' Trust me when I say that such an admission could not have been easy for her, though I kinda like both songs.) Like Dr Gabel and Idea, I think Summer of '89 could come into its own. in time.
The second set is huge. Light gets deep, and the segue into Billy is gorgeous; this is the first *flawless* live performance of Billy I've heard. (I've yet to hear Phish surpass their delicate, layered studio version of this song.) In the anthemic two-chord Tweezer jam Trey shows just how much he can do with the much-derided 'whale call,' hopefully silencing his increasingly shrill critics. Tweezer melts into a face-melting Theme, an unexpected highlight: Trey played this tune like a man possessed, skipping over those pre-jam arpeggios to get right to the hose. Beautifully patient Harry Hood to follow. The rest is gravy, but when the band ended the second set with Stealing Time you knew they still had energy to spare - hence the ecstatic cock-rock encore. Twoprise!! That blowout tune is obviously important to Trey; certainly it's one of his purest nerd-god achievements, and offers the whole band a couple minutes of straightforward energetic release at show's end. They deserved it this night.
Seek out the Light > etc. > Hood immediately.