, attached to 1993-08-02

Review by paulj

paulj My second show, after the previous week’s show at Knoxville’s Tennessee Theater. I was not overwhelmed by Phish in Knoxville, but intrigued enough to see them again. With tickets purchased that morning at an outlet in Orlando (where I was attending a conference), two buddies and I rented a car for drive to Ybor City, the true “home” for this show. Glad we bought the tickets early because as we walked up to the door it was announced that the show was sold out.
The place was relatively empty as Phish took the stage only 10 minutes or so after the announced start time. By the end of the first set the room was packed, hot and sweaty. The venue had a sloping floor with the bar in back; beer bottles rolled downhill to be crushed against the bottom of the stage. Even if I had known the secret signals at the time there is no way in hell I would have participated in sticky and glassy All Fall Down.

I had a good feel for the four albums released to date (through Rift), but little knowledge of songs not on any album. Thus, about half the show was new music to me—unlike Knoxville, I was astounded at what came from the stage, both the songs I knew and those I had not yet heard. If I recall correctly, Trey references this as a “monster show” in a “Tampa shithole” in The Phish Book. He nailed that description.

The second set is what I remember most vividly: “2001” had been introduced a couple of weeks before and they were playing it nearly every show. Like Knoxville, Kuroda saved the laser lights for the second set, and the song’s well-known lighting scheme had a superb effect—and has remained remarkably constant since then. What I now know as “Mike’s” was exceptionally hard-edged, while “Coil” was ethereal.

When we walked out I knew I was hooked.


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