, attached to 2009-08-14

Review by ProfJibboo

ProfJibboo Welcome back boys. Any doubts I had about whether 3.0 was for real were not even afterthoughts after this show and the second set might very well be the greatest set I've ever heard in person.

Not trying to slight the 1st set (and its flying famous mockingbird), but the second set is must download music. Starting with a blistering DWD jam that could melt even the most sober faces, noobs and vets alike were dancing to a high energy jam. To this day I still can't figure how a band segues into Wilson. I mean, its like two notes to open the song...but sure enough, jamming away before those open cords just came out of nowhere....and the phans, not missing a beat, heard it and chanted right back. As they jammed away and I heard Slave starting to emerge in another beautiful, smooth non-stop transition, I whipped out my cell phone and sent a message to the people who I love phishing with the most that said "Something special is happening tonight"

You could hear it. They were tight, they were high energy, they were in sync, they were jamming, they were creative. And despite all of that, I can't remember being more wowed than when you heard the gentle waterfall sounds emerging as the end of Piper neared. I didn't believe it...who would expect the band to jam into Water in the Sky in the middle of the second set? But that is exactly what did and it hit the spot. It gave me a new respect not only for the song itself, but for the band who, for the first time in 3.0, proved that any song in their library can be a showstopper when they feel like it. I don't know if it was the water in the sky or the amazing ebbs and flows of the evening, but the sound was not deeper...it was the opposite...it was...free. The music was almost blowing as freely as the gentle breeze.

That was the tone of the Ghost too...free, breezy. A song that I've grown up with as dark, ominous, funk became a light airy jam, with gentle undertones, a happy Ghost. A friendly Ghost. Like Casper himself was sitting on Trey's shoulder and smiling. The Ghost jammed into something that has been relatively missing from 3.0 - audience interaction --- talking to us. They stopped being jam gods and became four fun loving guys who realized that they were clicking on all cylinders that night. Then the Psycho Killer. And that fun came out - not just in a fun little digital loop but in the rather unique Catapult that emerged. Quick, fun - I'd say 1/2 the audience didn't even realize that Phish had just busted out one of their rarest and most unique "songs". But it seemed like everyone appreciated the opening notes of Icculus that followed. I've seen some Icculus' felt forced, but go back and listen to Ghost > Psycho Killer > Catapult > Icculus all the way through and I challenge you to not have the widest smile on your face as it ends. YEM closed out the set.

An old school set to the extreme, incredible jamming, unique jamming, unique setlist, audience interaction, creativity on so many levels, bust outs galore.

If you have not heard this set, I strongly recommend it as a MUST hear. This is Phish 3.0 and its finest and...to me....the first taste that the band was back.


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