, attached to 1997-11-22

Review by Campster

Campster Is this the best Phish show of all time (outside of Cypress, since that is it's own category).

I say yes. Many will agree. Here's why:

Mike's Song opens set I, in an age where Mike's Song was a big ol' jamming machine. Sure there's not a "second jam" but there's a big long first jam that explores tons of spacey ground. Grooves, textures, layers, energy are all packed into this 14 minute or so version, which goes gently and quietly down -> Hydrogen

Hydrogen is beautiful and delicate and has a little atypical bit of soloing out front from Trey. It's a favorite version for me and notable. ->Weekapaug.

Weekapaug Groove is great version. The proper type I jam to start is plenty fun and plenty fierce, and then they shift on a dime into a funky '97 romp. Dance away to this one, which has a nice hint of darkness as well. ON a full stop from the funk jam they kick back into high gear to finish use off with a fiery peaking conclusion to the type I Weekapaug jam. Well that was great, what's next?

Harry Hood 4th spot set I! Wowzers! This version is long and patient. The jam is beautiful with a slow build full of melody and patience. Very very nice. They peak it in glorious fashion, with Trey firing off some incredible notes.

There's not a better four songs to open a set I outside of 11/17/97 (and that's only because the Ghost supersedes anything in this opening 4 pack).

Train Song is the come down and serves its purpose well. I always find myself smiling when it comes on after those 4 tunes.

Billy Breathes is another contemplative tune and I've always enjoyed Trey's solo in it.

Frankenstein>Izabella kicks us in the pants and fires us into set break. Izabella!!!! Trey is on fire!!!!

Overall - legendary set I. Guess you could give 11/17/97 the nod for best ever first set - but you wouldn't hear me complaining if you picked this one either.

Set II.

Halley's starts us off and boy what a version. This is rightly considered one of Phish's greatest jams. The soundboard gives us the "Hey Mike, stay on F" insight into the band's eagerness and spontaneity on this night (in this era). It's so loose that everyone just starts playing. It's purely four musicians communicating - and only serves to underscore the incredible chops these guys have and the fact that they do something on stage that is totally original. Just go listen to this. The ending of the jam is unbelievably beautiful.

They drop into Tweezer?! Which must have felt incredible in the arena. This version doesn't go crazy, but serves as a good jam launch pad into a funky excursion that becomes the recognizable Black Eyed Katy.

BEK is funky and climaxes into a good peak. This version isn't as good as the next nights (wow!!), but the pairing is just a funk fest and is so much fun.

Might as well play a classic Piper next, another fine version from an era where Piper was played differently (and to many, played better). Which >Antelope.

Antelope is great. It drives to a dizzying, spiraling peak worthy of any Antelope lover's adoration. It's unbelievable stuff to close a second classic night in a row.

They encore with Bouncin', which seems appropriate with all the fireworks they displayed. Tweeprise melts any remaining faces and the show is over.

Overall 5/5 - like I said, probably the best ever, unless you truly don't care for the stylings of the era.


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