This show was webcast via LivePhish. Wolfman's Brother contained a Heartbreaker tease from Mike and a Little Drummer Boy jam. Twist contained multiple Little Drummer Boy teases as well as quotes from Trey, referring to Fish, and Fluffhead contained a Little Drummer Boy tease from Page.
I brought a guest to the show. She was brand new to Phish; a great soul who doesn't always seem to see how beautiful a person she is; a 20 year old who had commented on her Twitter that she didn't feel connected to the music she had always thought she had loved. She came with an open mind....and she appeared to be blown away.
In fact, she was blown away from the very opening cords - as the room went dark, as CK5 went to immediate work - and as Trey lit the run off with an electrifying wailing opening riff of Stealing Time From the Faulty Plan. Her hands came together as if she - in just that one moment - that one split second - her self doubts were a distant memory and she had achieved total bliss - like it was the fulfillment of all she felt it was missing. She didn't say it, I saw it in her eyes. You could see love. Absolute adoration. It was less than a minute into the show. I watched her start dancing hard for Moma Dance and Funky Bitch...and then I watched her let go of herself - give in to her natural instinct to dance, give in to the jamming, loosing her limbs and let the music take them where they would...all with a puppy dog look as if she found a missing piece of her life. I watched her nearly crumble for the poignancy and power of Free and I watched her became teary eyed in Wolfmans...as they reached Little Drummer Boy...and then I watched her ready and waiting to dance as the band triumphantly returned to Wolfmans. She didn't stop dancing once...except to pause with a look of bewilderment on her face as if to say "I'm blown away."
And after set I came to a close, and we cooled off...sat down...rested our feet...I turned to her and explained... that the first set....was nothing. No real flow...lots of band discussion...seemingly between every song...except that Wolfman's - which was an INSTANT masterpiece. We marveled together about the deep funk and heavy Mike/Fishman in the jam just before and after the Little Drummer Boy...and how Mike and Fish never really seemed to stop playing Wolfmans while playing Little Drummer Boy.... But as to me referring to the set as "nothing" ....she didn't get it. She didn't understand how that amazing set was nothing.
But then she did. The second set, we both let go. The Wolfman's had left a smile on my face too wide to ignore...and had an affect on band to profound for them to ignore and the energy in the room was unlike anything I've felt in a long while during a set break. There was a lightness in my feet that compelled me to dance. The Tweezer was magnificent...20 minutes....I had no idea...felt like 8. It was 20 easy minutes - easy on the mind, soul and spirit... I felt free entirely. Breezy. I genuinely felt like I could've been sitting on a couch in the band's garage somewhere just listening to them play. But that Tweezer was not my highlight - that distinction went to the outstanding Maze. I loved the ominous peaks...and maybe it was just me in the moment...but those peaks seemed higher. They seemed stronger...darker...vicious...rabid almost...more powerful...as the sound ricocheted off the ceiling down on me, my mind melted and I had literally --- for the first time that I can remember in 3.0 --- completely surrendered every muscle of my body to the music...even my brain - not one thought to be had other than a subtle screaming in my mind of yes, yes, yes. Yes, it carried through Twist and Theme and it carried through Fluffhead and Bowie...both of which just seemed to have something extra that night...an extra energy...an extra force....it was driving band...it was driving me....it was driving my friend and everyone around me and for that first night the Garden had collectively released a wow.
...and my friend felt it too...and I couldn't be more excited about it...for what 2013 will bring...me...you...the band...my friend...
Loved the Wolfman's
Loved the second set.
Loved the show.
1st set they were clearly dusting off the cobwebs, and it felt to me like they were just going through the motions for the first 5 songs. "Army of One" was a surprise, but its placement was odd because that song is such a down kind of tune. They hadn't hit any kind of momentum yet and then they play that song which put the skids on any chance of the 1st set taking off. Fortunately, Stash was a fairly standard but good one, with evil sounding elements going on in the short but good jam. Nellie Kane was good but forgettable.
Momentum really picked up with Kill Devil Falls. The song itself was pretty much note for note as it was recorded on "Joy", and then the jam was very nice. Mellow jam at first, then a nice build up picking up energy toward the end. The 1st set needed a jolt and this song was it. After that, an excellent version of "Free" with an extended intro which I always like, followed by a set-closing Wolfman's Brother.
This version of Wolfman's was outstanding, and probably one of the best I've heard them play. The jam went into lots of new territory, and the guys were clearly having fun at this point. Many new ideas were introduced during the jam, and I'll have to give it a listen again but I recall at least 4 different "sections" to the jam with well developed interplay between band members.
2nd set carried on the momentum of Wolfman's, with each of the 6 pre-encore songs having extended jams. Everyone loves a 2nd set opening Tweezer, and this one was superb. The jam moved "outside the box" pretty quickly, eventually taking a beautiful, blissful turn before becoming more of a spacey, mellow jam. Seemed like they got stuck in a few spots where ideas fizzled out, but being the pros they are, they simply moved on to the next idea and the next until they reached an end of jam peak that brought up the energy. I appreciate this Tweezer because it went into quiet territory for much of the jam. This is definitely a top Tweezer of the 3.0 era.
Maze was a real throwdown, with a wild, frenetic, energetic jam that got my pulse going. Trey lit up the place toward the end of the jam with some insane fingering on his guitar.
Twist, and then Theme from the Bottom, were both well-above-average with enjoyable jams.
Fluffhead was solid too -- and it's normally a song I get bored with -- but it was well executed.
Set-closing David Bowie was a blast. I may have been imagining it and I'm going to have to give the webcast a 2nd viewing (I hope I can re-watch it if its downloadable) because I think I saw the lights above the stage spell out B-I-E-B-E-R at one point during the jam. That aside, it was a song filled with inspired jamming; another venture into spacey/mellow territory, then a cacophony-like crescendo to finish it off.
Encore: Bouncing around the Room - always solidly played, and tonight's was no exception. Someday I'd love to see them jam this one out.
Finished off the show with Good Times Bad Times, which appeared numerous times during their summer tour and was always a highlight and tonight was also a good one.
So I'll be the first to start. Great opener for the 2012 New Year's Run. Solid first set with a "get your feat wet again" feel to the first three songs. I love the guitar and piano solos in Army and this one didn't disappoint. Then the first outside the box moments started to emerge. Tube, I felt was very exploratory even if it wasn't the longest. Nelli was solid as always then onto KDF. The "this time is gonna be different" line felt like an omen to me for hopefully the whole run but definitely for tonight. Free was beautiful as it always is then BAM! The heart of the show for me. Wolfman's with Little Drummer Boy in the middle. WOW! What a way to kick off the Holiday! This version is a must listen right now! Super funky and I LOVE PLINKO!!! 1st set down...time to put the kid to bed. Yes, I'm couch touring from sunny Southern California.
2nd set here we go. Little William Harpua went nighty night and it's time for the wife and I to spark up *huh huh* set 2!
Tweezer opener. I know this is gonna get serious and it does. This is what Tweezer's are made of. Maybe not quite Starlight quality but damn good. Worth an immediate listen IMAO. Then the symbol for Fishman starts ringing...Bowie?? I announce to my wife. No it's Maze she says. Damn it when she is right! Good Maze but nothing out of the ordinary. Then the Drummer Boy starts to emerge again and I catch the opening rifts of Twist interlaced in it. WOOHOO, I called one right for once. Twist is good and funky with plenty of Drummer Boy teases. This lands right into a flowing Theme that is just pristine. Not a fan of 2nd set Fluffhead's but this one is nice and tight. Set closes with a very nice Bowie and we're in the wraps for night one. Encore tidy's things up with a little Bounce and GTBT but no Tweeprise?? When will that show up. My vote is to close it all Monday night but we'll see what the boys have in store for us. One thing is for sure. "This time is gonna be different"...at least from last year!
I made it to my seat under the retired number 10 of Walt “Clyde” Frazier later than I wanted, but whatever. I’m back in the Garden, and that’s all that matters. If I were Clyde, I’d probably say “Phish is absolutely astounding and rebounding tonight, an auspicious beginning, showcasing a mellifluous style on the Garden floor compared to the last time we saw them in the building…” (Listen to a Knick’s broadcast some time, he’s really something).
For those who don’t know the venue so well, these seats put me on Rage Side, just off said-Rager’s right shoulder, and in the second section up off the floor. So, no pretty light show for me, but I can see the entire band, and more or less make out their expressions and see their interplay.
Title aside, I kinda liked the first show last year. I had fun and still spin Cities every now and again… But this was so clearly not last year in just about every single regard. This year is the first time MSG’s done a GA floor, and maybe that was enough. From my catbird seat, I could see the entire first row, a long stretch of arms pushing up against the rail, and lots of dancing bodies giving the band something to feed off of. And at the end of the night, people just didn’t want to leave. It was like Denver was just the other night and not three and a half months ago… I digress.
The lights went down around 8.20, the usual cloud of smoke went up, and Phish started with four standard renditions, though imo very laid back. Lots of discussion on stage between tunes. Felt a little like Phish on random, but still fun. Tube was the first that threatened a little bit. Slightly extended, but not in the what-are-we-doing way of AC earlier this year. Just as I thought they might do something different with this, they settled into the biting four-on-the-floor bridge, and then to Stash, which is worth a listen as it gets kinda tasty at the end. But then there’s Wolfman’s. It’s just flat out great start to finish, and pretty much left everyone around me happy and looking forward to set 2.
…Wow. This was the band telling us we heard you, and we knocked the dust off before coming to New York. It was all there – fantastic exploratory improv, a fairly tight rendition of arguably one of their hardest composition pieces, and all the flow absent from set 1. Tweezer’s a killer, fun, flowing, exploratory, total must-hear, and then into Maze. Listen to that one right around where Page starts his solo. Trey lets him go, then starts interjecting chords and rhythms that just push Page crazier and crazier. All I could think was, ‘dude, you have to solo after him. You better rip it up.” It was, in fact, ripped up. Classic machine-gun Trey. I gotta go back and re-listen to Mike to see what he was doing, I was so fixated on Page and Trey. Speaking of, this Twist won’t replace others from ’12, but Mike lays it down start to finish. Okay, fun enough Fluff, but then Bowie. When Chicago ’94 came out, the Bowie on there reminded me of how interesting that tune used to be. Tonight’s got some of that going on in the back half, way better than the other two I caught this summer, and what a GREAT set closer. My lady-friend called GTBT, insisting she heard it teased in Bowie. She’s wrong, but cute, so it’s cool.
So, so, so, so not last year. The best holiday show of 2011 was on January 1st, not December. Who cares? I still had fun last year, but tonight was just another level. Lotto was good to me for a change, I got 28, 30 and 31… I’ll spare you a couch-review on the 29th and see ya in a few days, .net!
Any adventures in space were going to wait for another night as tonight was all about the full throttle full frontal assault on the senses, Phish set the stage on fire and CK5 handled the rest of it, from the opening Stealing Time that screamed out at me from straight out of the starting gate to the show-ending rock and roll orgasm that is Good Times Bad Times. Do you think that they watched the recently televised Kennedy Honors...:-wink/wink.
What this show might have missed in execution was trumped by sheer enthusiasm though they were musical highlights galore. Tube>Stash was a very nice one-two punch midway into the 1st set. Soon thereafter, Kill Devil Falls threatened to blow the roof off the remodeled Garden while Free took an even more pensive and reverential tone to these ears than usual. And the Wolfman's>Drummer Boy>Wolfman's was to die for and the way they dropped back into Wolfman's had many among us picking up our jaws off the ground.
2nd set was just one big long songgggggggg, without hearing the playback it sure felt like Tweezer was at least 20 plus minutes long and then the Maze was just stupid crazy insanely good. Then they totally Twisted MSG 'round before getting us swimming to the Theme. Fluffhead ended with a majestic rock and roll flourish and Bowie was especially sweet as the assembled collective on stage remembered that it was as much about the space in between the notes as much as it was about the notes themselves. And then the encore bought it all home, the yin of Bouncing to the yang of GTBT.
It all felt pretty special, especially for the 1st show of a four show run. God Bless 'em if they can sustain this level of intensity for another seven sets because I suspect that, if so, we'll all be a very happy bunch of Phans by the time all is said and done on Monday morning.
This Wolfman's is the jam of the run, far as I'm concerned. The Tweezer, Bowie, Disease, Carini, and Ghost are all strong as well, but I don't think any of them reach the level of creativity of this Wolfman's. (To be fair, Carini two nights later is right up there, but it hasn't stuck in my rotation as long for some reason.) From the Mike solo, to the Drummer Boy jam, to the 6/8 finale, this jam is in a league of its own when it comes to jams out of this song. There isn't another one like it.
The jam has three sections: the pre Drummer Boy, Drummer Boy, and post Drummer boy jams, and the best part is the whole thing still feels like a single succinct idea. I suppose you could even argue there are four or five sections since the pre DB jam, following my analysis, is by far the longest of the three. The pre DB jam features some great Trey/Page interplay, the aforementioned Mike solo, a great tension filled build complete with an appearance by Machine Gun Trey, and a great release and come-down into the DB jam.
The DB jam is absolutely wonderful, Trey's tone is just so damn beautiful. Hearing the audience sing along is great too. And to top it off, the funk drops so good afterword. All Trey has to do is give one little wah-laden chunk and the crowd erupts. Then comes the great transition into the 6/8 and the great build to the end. The band tears the ending of this Wolfman's up! Very energetic.
A jam for the ages, if you ask me. Hear at all costs!
It started out okay, not a big fan of STFtFP, and my internet couldn't sustain well for Moma. Funky and Army were pretty good, and Tube > Stash was awesome to here. Nellie Kane came and went. Kill Devil Falls was awesome. Free was pretty cool, but Wolfman's is the set highlight here. It was amazing, going from here to there, with the Little Drummer Boy bit right in the middle.
Tweezer was awesome. Pure awesome. Same for maze. Twist and Theme I can't rate, because the webcast froze up on my bad internet for a good chunk of em. Liked what I heard (and the bits of Drummer Boy teases in Twist. Fluffhead was the downpoint of the show, Trey missing a few notes here and there. Mike and Page really picked it up, however. David Bowie was pretty great, and had a really nice outro.
Bouncing and Good Times were both pretty cool, though I feel like a segue would've made em better.
Can I just say....DAMN Mike you plucked that bass during Wolfman's!
Nice unique Wolfman's with some little drummer boy that sounded like it could just be a great addition to the song, the jam was heavier than I expected with little drummer boy, but it was great.
Tweezer->Maze was great, worth a bunch of re listens in my book.
Twist>Theme from the bottom, great little drummer boy teases, perfectly signified the theme for the night.
Fluffhead was nothing too special, but awesome nonetheless, and clean.
David Bowie was the winner in my book. The last few minutes were so high energy and the start stop jam was very, very cool. I can always appreciate a good Bowie, and having Maze in the same set was awesome. Good Times Bad Times was the perfect closer, 12/28 proved to pick up where Dick's left off.
Couch tour. Very fun show, highlights being that which everyone mentioned. I wanted to write to specifically pay homage to an outstanding Bowie.
This song has always been one of my favorites, & even the mediocre versions make me happy. Last night's version reminded me of when they used to get real weird & trippy. This wasn't the longest/most far out there version of the song, but when Trey stopped playing notes & started whaling on the arhythmic ugly chords (ala It's Ice as Fishman dances on his drums, or Maze when Trey backs up Page's solo), something really special happened & they kept it going for a hot minute. It was the first time since `95ish (that I know of) that Trey was so happy with what he threw down in the jam, he echoed it during the end section -- like the dream on Bowie from Dec. 93 & the Prov. Bowie from `94 & the Mann Bowie from 95. Very fun & old-school stuff.
Also -- I love the "dark" drummer boy quotes. 12/28/94 is my favorite for this (during Weekapaug) - I'm not sure if Trey turns it minor or what he does to make it dark, but he did it again last night & it was very cool.
Finally, 2 quotes of the night said by friends during the show.
1. Wasson - "Don't Bowie my Maze."
2. my wife, during funky bitch - "Mike looks a lot like Bea Arthur . . . right?"
Well, anyone hoping the band would send a message with this show got their wish. Although separated by a set break, that Wolfmans and Tweezer combo is as good a 1-2 punch as there's been in the modern era. Add in one of the best Bowies in years, a toxic Maze, and a fun rockin Twist, and this show stacks up nicely alongside the best of the 2012.
First set was just a matter of getting their feet wet. Nothing exciting to report. But from Wolfmans through Good Times it was ON. Power-balleds seemed to be theme behind the second set. Although the show came with little risk there was an abundance of huge, loud, rock for everyone in the place. No question Tazer (tweez + maze) was the highlight of the night. The boys are certainly prime for some big jams over the rest of the run and if tonight was any idicator they looked dailed in and we are in for a treat this nye. Looking forward to 3 more nights.
With the MSG run upon us, I felt it necessary to do a quick review of one of my favorite shows ever. Yes, shows, not MSG shows, although it does fall into that category as well.
If you were there on this magical evening, you were lucky enough to be part of one of the most amazing and electric feelings I've ever felt in my life.
As a native New Yorker, we're not always the first to share in the groove with others, but on this night, something special happened. All were united in their love of the band, the spirit of the holidays, and a feeling of overwhelming joy for the music taking place.
When the crowd started to sing along with little drummer boy, I felt my heart grow out of its usual Grinch-like state and melt into a warm ball of happiness. You could actually feel the love and vibes flowing from one person to the next, as we all sang in unison to the smiles on all the faces of our four favorite gentlemen.
Need a track for your holiday playlist? Look no further. Merry Phishmas everyone!
This was my favorite night of the 4....Listening back, it's still my favorite. How smoothe was the flow, how ripping was the show. Right from the get go; I'm sure alot of fans didn't care much for the Stealing opener tho it was ripping as was the whole first set haha. Tube > Stash is ridiculous. Trey and Page are trading off beauty on Tube and the Stash is SOMETHING ELSE wow. Free is obnoxiously strong and Wolfman's is a must listen. When Phish phans are in the club everybody yells purumpupumpum, beautiful.
Tweezer is a must listen, an instant classic, the Maze that follows is exciting, tension tension tension release release release...unbelievable.
Twist around and more little drummer boy, so much fun at this point. The Fluffhead is extremely tight, and the David Bowie adds more tension and release to the mix, I remember looking over at my friend Nick during Bowie just shaking our heads in disbelief, "How do they do it?"
Bouncing's beautiful and GTBT is rippin
at one point Trey looks over at the crowd and says "we never visit anymore" with a huge grin
This was my phavorite show to be at... 1. 1st night MSG 2012 2. 1st night Portsmouth 2012 3. Charlotte show 2012
What a great opening show. To me the boys were having a great time and it showed in their jams. From Wolfmans on they were on FIRE! With mikes bass lines and little drummer boy, this was definitely my favorite wolfmans of 3.0. Tweezer->Maze was a great way to start the 2nd set, and it was no let down. And the bowie to end the set was great.
Fun laid back and funky in the beginning transitioning into a rock assault. 2nd set got really nice and weird enough, Opened a lot of space at times. I could of went with something other than fluffhead to be honest, though I thought it was solid. I've read a lot about trey missing notes verse and there through the show but I thought the band collectively didn't miss a beat, which I think made this a great show. Sound was killer in the Garden, very loud, maze page solo was ear piercings. I'll admit Bowie ending was a little weird but satisfying if you embraced it. Encores were nice, leaves you wanting much more.See you guys on the floor.
After six months, this show holds up after repeated playback even if it's not spectacular. It's a "tripod" show for me as it stands on the three strong legs of Wolfman's, Tweezer (especially), and Bowie, as others have commented. For me, the first two legs were sturdier than the last as I found some of the Bowie jamming dissonant at best - until the frenzied, unexpected rhythms at the end, of course! It was super-refreshing to hear such a well-worn song conclude in a new-ish fashion. Couldn't warm to Fluffhead and the Maze wasn't a standout but I did enjoy the emotion in the room during TFTB.
I REALLY like Trey's playing throughout the first set: laid back, patient, and repetitive. I'm a bit surprised that Trey is so relaxed at the start of the NYE run! I don't particularly sense the “dusting off the cobwebs” feel that others have commented on; I suspect that the band's been practicing hard.
Moma is well-played (always a pleasure in the set 1 song 2 slot), as is Tube (short but sweet). I enjoy hearing Army Of One: this is a great tune to bust out now and then, and its wintery theme fits this show like a warm glove.
The real standout jam of the first set - and the entire show - takes place during Wolfman's. Now this is the good shit! For an extended segment, Mike drowns his bass in everyone's favorite effect. The entertaining Little Drummer Boy jam is a natural fit.
Unfortunately, the second set is not as exciting as the first. Tweezer sports a lengthy, blissful jam, but it doesn't do much for me (I'd rather hear the boys try to push the envelope a bit). Both Theme and Fluffhead are rather on the sloppy side, and Bowie is... well, another 3.0 Bowie.
Once in a while I come across a show whose first set I enjoy more than its second. This was one of those shows: set 1 had a good overall flow, Trey's relaxed style pulled me in, and Wolfman's really stood out. Not a bad start to the NYE run.
Got down to NYC about 1 hour before doors open because of Friday/NYE traffic and was immediately in a rush and had to go drop my stuff off at a friends. I ran into the show not 5 minutes before they came on and seated myself down behind the SBD in 103.
The STFTFP caught me (any probably most) completely off guard and not having any idea what to expect for the run. I have never been a huge fan of it, but it was a descent start. The Moma Dance and Funky Bitch that followed were as always funky and grooves to get into; nice song choice IMO. Army of one was nice as well and slowed the pace down for the upcoming Tube > Stash. The Tube had a short but sweet funky break and was above average for 3.0 IMO. The Stash that followed was fairly standard, and contained a very fluid, tight and typical dark jam segment.
I love me some Phish bluegrass and this Nellie Kane was well placed. The KDF really got the ball rolling for the boys and got the garden rocking! The boys really killed this jam with everyone feeding off one another. Free was standard, kept that ball rolling and was nicely placed as well and Mike shined out on this one for me.
This Wolfman's Brother... Easily the best one I have seen and not even for the Little Drummer Boy teasing (although that sealed the deal), but for the fact that this jam took off nice and slow and the build up from Trey/Page in the beginning of the jam was sweet. Enter Mike with his thunderous tones and this jam starts to really get exploratory, FUNKY, and lots of nice interplay betwixt them! Things then slow back down for a second and all of a sudden, LDB, pa rum pum pum pum!! What a treat that was! Nice funky end segue back to Wolfman's and first set come to a close! Wolfman's is easily the highlight of this set.
Tweezer was a treat and another unexpected call (at least for me) this early in the run, but hey I was not complaining especially after the way they closed that first set. This tweezer took off quickly into a nice spacey jam that slowed down and that stayed pretty "out there" for most of the song. Very tight fluid jam to say the least, a slower spacier jam segment(s), but maybe one of the better Tweezers of 3.0 (though 12/29/09 holds my personal best). The end of the jam had an awesome build up and a nice > into the Maze that followed.
The Maze intro was pretty standard and really got the crowd into it. The jam segment came and Page started ripping it up on the keys. At this point I had already moved to Page side 100's and had a great view; Trey was facing Page for a while and absolutely shredding during this segment (as were Mike and Fish) and the jam builds so much at this point before going back to the standard Maze melody and slowing back a bit. This Maze was not done yet though, the boys were having a lot of fun and the rest of the Maze finished off with a lot of energy! There was a nice little ode to Fish (the Little Drummer Boy) after the Maze which was fun.
This twist was great with the LDB vocal tease in the beginning that got the crowd even more excited! Nice chemistry during the entire jam and fluidity among all of them, Trey teased more drummer boy near the end and has some great jamming in this too. The > to Theme was a pleasant surprise. The Theme was average and maintained the energy from the previous songs.
Fluffhead was standard, but always a pleasure and lots of fun and energy from the band and crowd. The end jamming segment was pretty energetic still and kept me raging all the way through into Fish tapping the cymbals. Wait... Bowie!? Yup, and Maze in the same show!! I was pumped!
This Bowie is dope too, pretty standard intro into the jam which started out soft and slow and extremely fluid (I remember Mike leading the way for some of this). They started to explore the jam more little by little and Trey gave a little high pitch "duh-duh" which carried them around the jam and got me entangled in this jam. The little noodle by Trey kept coming back and Page started feeding off of it, which then takes the jam into a nice darker place. This keeps building and then the Bowie ending starts surfacing, but with this little "duh-duh" being thrown around here and there. This gets to the point where the band just stops playing after one and then starts back up (happened at least twice and confused CK5 once if I recall correctly). This led the way into the intensely energetic Bowie ending with Trey ripping!
Bouncing was standard and actually kind of nice to have placed here. OH and guess what... NO tweeprise, yet! Well I bet a beer they wouldn't just because and the net song is GTBT (looks like i got my self a free beer). The GTBT was nice and my first one in a long time. Nothing exceptional, but a great finish to a great show.
"The show's shining moment came next, with a funky "Wolfman's Brother" delving into "The Little Drummer Boy." Three days removed from Christmas, the holiday classic was still fresh in our minds, and everyone had to smile as they brought it into the mix and returned to "Wolfman" at the perfect time before it got cheesy."
This is a hard to rate this out of 5 stars as second set gets a 5, first not as hot. i'm a huge Free fan so show began to accelerate for me at that point. Wolfmans was true highlight of first set with the band getting lose and playful and musically expansive. The energy level was high as was the playing. the second set brought me back, 6 songs, all expanded with quality jams, starting with an epic tweezer>maze windings its way to a very tight Fluffhead, and ending with a semithrowback DB!!! WOW great energy, band having fun, crowd responding, and a satisfying encore!! I left with a big smile, excited for next 3, and wishing there were more!!! After 2 shows, best set so far, for me, was second of first night. And i cant wait for them to surpass it. Happy new years to all.
PS i'm saving (re)listening to that second set till 1/1/13 so i can start the new year smiling and dancing
Pia n I were sitting Fish side 3 rows from the top of the old 300's sections. The first 4 songs the boys were stretching the bones out. Tube was when Phish starting heating up. Tube was funky like 97. Stash was when the crowd started interacting with band. Stash was solid! Wolfmans was hot and left the crowd stoked for the 2nd set. Tweezer opened the 2nd set. Phish took they time with Tweezer. It was a long slow build up. Maze was 1 of the best versions I've heard since the mid 90's. Trey and Page trading punches back and forth during Maze. Awesome! Fluffhead was excellent. Fluff was a journey and the boys delivered. David Bowie was the song of the night for me. Phish were point on with the tension and release in DB and the climax was pure ecstasy! The encore was solid. Pia had a out of experience during Bouncing. GTBT was solid.
Pretty Awesome start to the NYE run! off webcast couch tour I was very pleased. Set One did start off a bit slow but always nice to get Army of One and Nellie Kane. Tube was also very fun. But from Kill Devil Falls on to Bowie was non stop jams. I mean 6 song 2nd set? The Wolfmans' and Tweezer were unreal and also Fluffhead into Bowie was just an awesome way to end the set!!! It seems like every Wolfman's just gets better and better?
Cant wait to see what the boys do the next 3 nights. NYE Tweezer Reprise time?
Also Little Drummer Boy both times was unseen fun!
Phenomenal opening show, couldn't be happier! The lines for GA were ridiculous.. Lots of unhappy phans, who unfortunately took it out on the staff.. Not too happy to see that from the best phans in the world.. Windy city jams all over the place!! Surprised they didn't make the official setlist! Download this show if just for wolfman's and tweezer, stay for the tasty tasty funk jams scattered all over 1st and 2nd set. see you all for round 2!
If it weren't for this wonderful Tweezer this would be far and away the weakest show of the run. The tweezer was really great. Loved it. The Wolfmans brother was great before LDB gimmicked it up. Thought the tube was pretty smoking too. And I liked army of one a lot and free was very pretty. Some of my usual favorites like MOMA funky bitch and stash, my favorite Phish song, weren't particularly strong. And after the great tweezer and fun but ordinary maze, the show was a collection of weak versions of some of their best songs like Bowie and Twist and very pedestrian versions of theme fluffhead and good times bad times. Had a great time anyway from the second row of the floor behind Antelope Greg and his enormous backpack that tripped up two people who landed in my lap. An average Phish show is more exciting and fun and moving than just about everything else in the world so I still loved every second.
Aside from Moma and Tube, I found myself almost bored by Stash. Thankfully a little bluegrass Nellie Kane can always pick that up. If you're not giving MVP to Trey last night it has to go to Fishman! I can only think of 1 or 2 (3.0) Wolfman's and Bowie's that topped last nights. Oh yea and Tweezer. Kinda cool I guess. Theeeya tonight!
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