Albums: The Last Step
Historian: Martin Acaster (Doctor_Smarty)
Last Update: 2015-06-04
Some moments of natural beauty are perhaps better described without words. The wintry soundscape of “Snow” that tumbled and glistened onto the stage of Boardwalk Hall during the Halloween 2013 Wingsuit set was definitely one of those moments. Had it been introduced by name and performed as an acoustic instrumental, the song would have painted the stark beauty of the green mountain state covered in a blanket of its namesake after a particularly devastating nor’easter.
Unfortunately, because the Gordon and Murawski penned tune has some (largely inscrutable upon repeated listening) lyrics and those words were sung in Mike’s near unlistenable cracked falsetto, the vision of boreal beauty was transformed into a twinkling yet malodorous poopsicle. It was the frozen turd in the midst of a bowl of the finest new Phish Food scooped up in a long time. The song would be an amazing instrumental. The song would likely have been just fine had the words been sung in Mike’s natural register. As debuted it may be better off left as a one-timer that is ultimately excised from the album. The June 2014 release of Fuego confirmed this cutting room floor fate for the widely maligned tune.
As the saying goes, one band’s trash is another man’s treasure. Especially when the man in question is the song’s author. It was not surprising then that Mike elected to include the Fuego sessions studio version of “Snow” on his five song EP (The Last Step) of leftovers from the Overstep sessions. Featuring both his Phish band mates and songwriting partner Scott Murawski; the studio version does little to polish the turd. The vocals aren’t quite as strained and appear to be dialed back in the mix to allow the music to shine brighter but it is undoubtedly the low point of the EP. Did I mention it would be a great instrumental?