Trey on keys and Fish on vacuum for part of the jam.
 Fish on vacuum
Peaches was played for the first time since February 28, 1997 (162 shows). This long AC/DC Bag featured Trey on keys and Fish on vacuum for part of the jam. Gumbo included an Another One Bites the Dust jam. Fish again grabbed the vacuum for Frankenstein and quoted One of These Days (Pink Floyd). This show is available as an archival release on LivePhish.com.
Yep. My decision to go was a last second one, discovering that a rt ticket from Seattle was $90. The below is something I wrote for a non-phish listserv I'm on when I got back. Maybe someone here will like it. (Note: I don't think I would still call Farmhouse or Waste some of my favorite songs (I just was really digging them that tour) but I stand by Wading, the Curtain, and What's the Use?
In the late part of summer tour '94, Phish got bored with their normal songs. Every night had a different breakout or rare song or cool jam or something. The band nicknamed the tour the "You snooze, you lose tour." This idea has carried over to later tours. After playing 2 completely sold out shows in Vegas for Halloween, the band responded to having an half-empty E Centre at the next show by playing all of Dark Side of the Moon. You snooze, you lose; don't blow off the weekday shows in the middle of nowhere. So when I discovered that I could fly to Boise for $90 rt and only miss a half day of work, I jumped at the chance. I will snooze not!
I am always somewhat excited about going somewhere new. Being able to hit a new town is rare these days, so I could hardly wait for the plane to land. When I got out of the plane, the very first thing I saw in the airport was a french fry dispenser; it was a vending machine that fried them after you put in coins. "Famous Potatoes" indeed.
I was playing this show by ear. The original plan was to rent a car, drive to the show, return it that night, and then sleep in the airport. That plan fell apart when it turned out that there were no available cars in Boise to be had. I had to take a taxi to the BSU Pavilion. The Grateful Dead played one show at BSU in 1983. It turned out that my taxi driver had given Mickey Hart a ride and received backstage passes.
Because I was so torn about what I was going to do about sleeping, I decided to not bring my tape deck to the show. That turned out to be a wise move. Despite what I was told over the phone, my tickets were not on the floor. Floor seats said "General Admission" on them; mine had a section and a seat. I waited in the GA line anyway, hoping to be stubbed down from the Bagel Boys (a couple of Phish fans who work at the Noah's near my house). 
When the Dead played there in 83, the fans didn't exactly respect the idea of staying in your seat. Pretty much everyone ended up on the floor. As a result, BSU had a different plan for this show. Everyone with floor seats had to enter through a special door. Then they would mark your ticket with a black marker, and give you a wrist band. Without the band, you couldn't go to the floor. I resigned myself to sit in the seating area and tried to get out of the floor line. The cops redirected me into the floor line. Hmmmmm time to play Jedi Master. Holding up my ticket to 4 different people, I willed them to not see that it wasn't a GA ticket. Sure enough, I received a marked section R9 ticket and a green wristband as testimony of my power over weak minds.
Anticipation ran high before the show opened. Rumors were passed around. Someone told me that they were rehearsing an album; a friend from the 94 tour showed me the setlist that she passed to Trey. Lights went out and the show opened with..... Chalk Dust Torture - a very standard call. While the YSYL potential went down, the version played was really strong. In fact the version of pretty much everything that entire set was strong. The setlist reads like a list of my personal favorite songs; "The Curtain", "Waste", "Loving Cup", "What's the Use", "Wading in the Velvet Sea", and "Farmhouse" were all played, and all played well. Farmhouse in particular made me happy because it made up for the horrible version played at the Gorge. Of the 5 shows I had seen this tour, it clearly was the best first set. Moreover, the venue was... well a tad on the small side. The back of the floor was roughly where the back of the first section was in Vancouver. I was able to walk up to the rail... and there was dancing room up there. I don't remember they last time I was able to do that.
The setlist had just enough rarities, that the You Snooze You Lose talk was all the rage. I was stoked enough from the first set that I tried to tell myself that it would be enough to just see a hot set, but I was afraid that I had bought into the hype. "Peaches en Regalia" opened, the first since 97, and I figured we were going to get something. What we got was a non-rare song - "AC/DC Bag." "AC/DC Bag" is a simple build and build and build energy song. About 5 minutes into the song though, right after the jam started, it changed. For the next 22 minutes, I was treated to one of the best jams I have ever seen. About halfway through this jam, and about 4 "!'s" into my notes, I heard a scream from the center of the crowd and out came the tortillas. Sure glow stick wars are now a tradition, but being surrounded by dozens of flying tortillas as the lights shone and the band raged is a moment that will be forever etched in my mind.
I'm not going to run through the rest of the set. Suffice it to say that the three remaining songs floored me, that I put this show in the top 10 - if not the top 5 - of all of the Phish shows I have ever seen. The only complaint I have at all is that the second set was a tad on the short side (57 minutes); the entire show can fit on two cd's. Despite that minor complaint though, I was quite happy. I was "WHOOOOOO!"ing and trying to remember why exactly I am not quitting my job and going on tour.
After the show, I found the Bagel Boys and they agreed to give me a ride to the Boise Airport. The cops were remarkably cool in the lot. We overheard one saying, "By the way, '6 Up'." [Deadhead slang for,"Look out, here come the cops."] They were very polite as they slowly got us all to leave. The Bagel Boys made sure I could get into the airport, and waved as I found a comfy couch and prepared to bed down. It was only after they left that it occurred to me that I could have just asked them for a ride home. A cop did come by to make sure that I did have a plane ticket, then it was time to kill a few hours before my flight left.
Failing to oversleep, I got into the plane. On the trip out to Seattle, we circled around Mt Rainier a few times before the captain finally announced that we wouldn't be able to land in Seattle. It turns out there was... fog there. Excuse me? What kind of plane goes to Seattle at 7 AM and can't handle fog? We ended up landing in the Yakima (WA) airport and waiting. And waiting. The only thing to do there, with no tv, internet kiosks, fast food places, or pretty much anything was to read the copy of the Encyclopedia Yearbook of 1967 that was lying around. In 1967, the Dow Jones Average went up 30.27 points to close for the year at.... 233.24. I also learned a lot about the China/USSR feuds and the race riots. When I finished with that, I went to the newsstand. No they had no food or magazines, but they did have a floatie pen that I bought for a certain collector of those.
Finally, after getting no news for 4 hours, after hearing stories that United regularly just gives up and rents a bus to drive people to town, I talked my way onto a Horizon Air flight . We circled once or twice around Mt. Rainier and I got really nervous. Quickly we we reassured that this was just a temporary delay as SeaTac cleared out its backlog. To my left was Mt. Rainier. To my right was a priest. In my recent past was an extremely hot show. Surrounded by transcendence, I figured that another 10 minutes wouldn't kill me so I relaxed. Just another day on the tour.
 2010 Note: 11 years later, one of the Bagel Boys attended my wedding. Kind of cool to be reminded of just meeting them.
 2010 Note: Yes, talked my way onto a flight. In pre-9/11 days, not only could people hang out with departing passengers until their plane boards, but occasionally if a flight had extra room, you could ask nicely if they'd let you on it and every now and then they would. In retrospect this stuns me.
What hasn't been mentioned about this show is how empty the arena was. Many people skipped this one, opting to stay on the I-5 corridor to connect Portland to the Bay Area. Boise was the "elbow" show that many people deemed too far out of their way. And Boise over a few chill days in California post Vancouver/Gorge/Portland? No brainer, right?
Another "You Snooze, You Loose" in my opinion.
I was in college in Portland at the time. After hitting Gorge/Portland shows, I (reluctantly) was back in class shaking off the party that was Phish. In the library my friend approaches me around 11:30am. "Hey, you want to go to Phish in Boise?" I looked at him, looked at my computer, back at him and said "Fuck yeah. When do we leave?" He says, "now."
Game on. We packed into a friends Volvo and set out on I-84. 8.5 hours later we're in Boise. We exit the interstate and drive straight to the arena. Buy tickets at the window and walk right in with no line to be seen. Glimpsing through the tunnels into the arena, "holy shit! No one's here!" We easily grabbed Page side 5th row seats right above a GA floor that was just as easy to get on to. The entire upper deck of the small arena was empty. Getting adjusted to our fortune after a long drive, "Lights!" We knew something special would ensue.
And it did indeed. Just not in the first set. At the end of set 1 someone (Trey? Brad? I forget) announced there would be a contest to see who could guess what all the songs in the first set had in common. The winner would receive tickets to any show of their choice on the tour. At the end of setbreak the winner was announced with a correct answer of "all songs were in the key of E."
Lights. Peaches. Energy! Bag. Awesome! Gumbo Dust funk, raging Disease, exclamatory Frankenstein, long drive home! So awesome.
There are better shows from 1999, but this one does contain one transcendent jam: the wide-ranging 27-minute AC/DC Bag, which wanders from blissful ambient textures to comical rhythmic play to razor-sharp start/stop jamming and finally out via a wash of eerie movie-soundtrack noise. The show's worth hearing overall, sure, but if you only have space on your iPod for one song, that 1999 highlight is the one to get. It was part of the 'From the Archives' broadcast at Coventry, so you should be able to track down a charmingly noisy FMSBD radio recording without trouble.
I figure that 1999, and specifically Fall '99, is the least represented era of Phish once you get past 1992; only the Camden show and 7/31/99 have seen official release (and the Japan show was for an earthquake benefit; you could also argue that Camden wouldn't have been released without that admittedly impressive Chalkdust), which means that only the spreadsheet hunters/tape traders and those that were there know what treasures that run provided. I have a great deal of affection for ambient Phish - the spaced-out, atmospheric, Page-driven jams sound great through headphones - and over the past week or so I've been trying to figure out which show I'd consider the best of the run.
Boise probably has the best reputation out of the fall tour, mainly due to the exceptional AC/DC Bag that anchors the second set. I don't think we need another description - there are 3 other reviews here that do the job quite well - and instead I'll point out that the rest of the second set is no slouch either. Gumbo is the other highlight of this five-song second set, with its razor-sharp funk workout (did that song benefit from the Great Funk Revolution of '97, or what??) and inspired Another One Bites The Dust jam. DWD burns white hot and Frankenstein is its usual great self, and a two-song encore that includes a well-played Simple and always-welcome Hello My Baby rounds things off in style. The first set is fine, but not essential; however, the energy of all the performances make the listening that much easier, especially on the opening Chalkdust and What's The Use?.
I personally don't think this is the best show of the run (there are shows that are better from start to finish), but it definitely has the best jam of the run and possibly the year, and a second set that rewards extra listens. Not much ambiance here, but it doesn't matter with all the great music they did play. Definitely recommended - at the very least, hear the AC/DC Bag.
This review is occasioned by the LivePhish archival release (I wasn't at the show.) Phans have clamoured for 9/14/99's release for some time, and many feel that 1999 is underrepresented in the LivePhish catalogue disproportionately to its quality. I've listened to merely a sample of '99, but aside from being The Year of the Big Cypress, I'd have to agree that it's not to be overlooked. I remember talk on rec.music.phish (RMP) in 1999 about Phish's new "techno" sound; while I can't quite agree with that association, I would definitely sign off on 1999 representing a critical interlocking of the funk of '97 and the ambience of '98 into a new--yes, perhaps more "electronic," at least in a synaesthetic sense of having a propulsive groove yet a clinical or detached patience--groove that didn't put as much emphasis on balls-out "rawk" as would be found in many shows in 2000. Someone in the Forum said that the first set is the definition of standard, but I have to stand up on behalf of 9/14's Set I. It scratches a very thematic itch, with that peculiar-to-1999 sound cropping up in several tunes' outros, or, in the case of What's the Use?, for the duration. The kind of picture I'm trying to draw of how I perceive 1999's signature sound is probably best encompassed by The Siket Disc, which IIRC was released that year but was comprised of jams from the Story of the Ghost album sessions compiled by Page and Phish engineer Jon Siket. I have to inwardly giggle a bit at The Curtain here, because, although Big Cypress wouldn't be announced until later, the boys/gents have to stifle their own snickers at the "Follow the lines going south" line, not giving away the surprise. Waste is rendered quite beautifully here, Wading has pristine vocal harmonies, Taste is long and inspired and holds my attention for the duration, and Nellie Kane and Rocky Top bookend that jam with their respective bluegrass merits. This is certainly not a first set that I feel should be dismissed too hastily, if at all.
Set II opens with Peaches en Regalia, which must've been oft-requested in '99, as you can hear someone on the official releases of both 7/10/99 *and* 12/16/99 (evincing attendance at Summer and Fall tours, or at least a few shows each--but I like to think of this guy doing this every show that year) yelling "Peaches" in the "Wiiiil-soooon" breaks in those shows' Wilsons. Well, the guy finally got his Peaches; I just hope he was at this show (there's some banter audible on the LP SBD with Trey asking, "You want Peaches?" to someone in the audience, totes a thing.) Next up to bat is Bag. This AC/DC Bag is enormous! Very patient, very typical yet outstanding by 1999 standards, and seems to point down the road to the year-capping festival in Florida. You've really got to hear this wide-roving masterpiece for yourself. There's even a bit of stop-start jamming, unbewooed for that matter. What I'll refer to as the "second half" of the jam really does, upon relisten, call to mind danceable electronic music--perhaps not techno specifically, especially of the Detroit mode, and not today's woefully-monikered "EDM"--before segueing fleetly into a jammed-out Gumbo with Another One Bites the Dust teases deftly woven into the fabric of the Type-I excursion. DWD features some exemplary guitar pyrotechnics from Trey before Frankenstein takes us home. A study in contrasts, the first set and the second set, though both seem of-a-piece in themselves. Great value and great variety are two things you almost always get at a Phish show. Nice Simple, Hello My Baby encore just for shits and giggles, and Phish puts this one away, no problem. Truly a show for the ages; I hope you all get as much out of it as I already have, or more, and support Phish's archival-release program by buying the show at LivePhish.com.
this is without a doubt one of the top shows of the year. I pick this second set, columbus's and memphis's for sets of the year. this show is rocking from start to finish, and they really cover a lot of ground in this one. chalk dust starts this one off appropriately. trey really drives this one. they keep the momentum going in a nice rocking sloth. the curtain gets down, and they play this one well. waste seems really strange in this slot, but loving cup works well. the rest of this set is a little hit and miss. nellie kane and taste work for me but the rest is rather blah.
then we start a killer second set. the first peaches in over two years really smokes. of course, after peaches, you have to play something big. this ac/dc bag starts out with a much harder edge than most. the song is played with a lot of energy, and the jam that follows is a monster. they move through rock, funk, and spacier realms before finally petering this one out. right when they hit a nice spacey delay loop jam, they slam right into a nasty funky gumbo. this one moves through a quicky funky jam before gordo and fishman lead the band into a full on another one bites the dust jam. trey has a lot of fun with this one. instead of slowing it down, they play a relatively brief, for the time, but very inspired down with disease. trey was really burning on this one before cracking into the rowdiest set closer of them all....frankenstein. i really like the simple encore here. they should do this more often. it peters out nicely and they bid the crowd farewell with a nice hello my baby. excellent show
Love this show. Classic Phish, and one of my faves from '99.
Starts out fantastic, with an energetic Chalkdust, spackled but soulful Sloth, a great bust out in Curtain (very well played), and a surprisingly nice landing pad in Waste. The Loving Cup gets a nice '99 style take (from Trey), though, the Farmhouse, after a slow (albeit great) What's the Use and Velvet Sea, is an interesting call. Nellie Kane and Rocky top in set 1 is also interesting, but the Taste that splits them makes up for all that with some great Trey soling and superb support from the rest of the cast.
Peaches to open is great, def satisfying the rarity category. AC/DC Bag goes big, and we all know and love it. I love that Miek and Page continue to hint at standard Bag changes htrouh=ghout, which helps propel this swirling jam for more than 15 min. The jam has a climax, with a chill spacey ending, but.....speaking from 2018, would love to see them go into Crosseyed and Painless at the 19 minute mark (when it gets Phishtronicy), but I guess phans had to wait until Cypress.
After quite the adventure that is Bag (most phans must have been beside themselves) we land in a thick Gumbo. Trey starts this one out with a pretty aggressive tone and sprinkles the lyrics with nice fills. Mike gives a little extra uummph leading up to the standard Trey solo entering the jam. Thiigs seem to be gong normally, and loosely, when Fishman snaps the hi-hat, we get the ABTD tease, which is naturally AWESOME, Fishman keeps varying the beat giving it some extra mustard. The jam that ensues is straight funky, and the dance party is sweaty, Fishman keeping it "light" with his vox.
Next DWD comes out roaring, the energy is so high going into the jam. Not the most exploratory version, but absolutely shreddery from Trey and Fishman beating the hell out of the skins. Frankenstein ends the set on a high note, some hiccups in execution, but fun nonetheless.
Simple is a fun encore, Mike hitting the harmonies nicely, and, when Trey abandons the mixed up vox before jam, launches into a short but sweet lil jamlet. Hello my Baby ends this classic show in Phishy style.
'99 is a phunny year in Phish. The inconsistency made for interesting tours, but when they were on , it could send the crowd out of this world. Many shows lag due to new song placement and often several slow songs linked together in stretches. This show starts to go that route in the 2nd quarter after What's the Use, but the band comes out swinging in the 2nd half and makes up for it in spades! This is a classic show, enjoy!
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