, attached to 1994-11-02

Review by timbuk295

timbuk295 Well, well... it looks like this was a first show for a lot of us!

I'll recap my memories of the show, which are less of a review of the music (sorry, I just had no frame of reference at the time), and more a recap of the experience. I have never listened to a recording of the show (save for Tweezer, of course) since. I'm looking forward to listening to this show finally, after writing about it purely from memory...

I knew very little about Phish at the time, and only went because a friend gave me a free ticket, and I went with an open mind. It would be a long time after this show before I would open my mind again and finally start to like the band.

It was a very cold November night, as I vaguely remember walking to the venue and back with frosty trees and slick sidewalks. I also remember the long line and something about gate-crashing that TheGhost mentioned, so I probably didn't make it inside until well after the music had started.

The pre-renovation Bangor Auditorium was a horrible building acoustically, with a metal roof and long, sloping bleachers, designed more for State Championship Basketball than anything else. The stage was backed up against the wall at one end of the court. I remember black curtains surrounding the back of the stage area. Since the entrances into the auditorium were on either side of the stage, with a hallway behind, it's a puzzle to me how the band got on and off stage without going through that hallway and being swarmed by fans -- although maybe those were early enough days that it was no concern.

I remember the floor was arranged with folding chairs at the start of the concert, which the audience removed once the music started. (between this and the gate crashing, I imagine the venue staff were just grossly ill-informed about what to expect from a Phish show). I wonder if the clanking of metal chairs can be heard among the first few tunes? I remember being confused and thinking to myself 'we probably shouldn't be moving these chairs...', while the community effort moved all of those chairs up the bleachers on the sides and into the stands, freeing up the dance space for the floorward migration.

I remember being very confused as to why no songs were played, as the music seemed to just go on and on in no particular direction. 'Is this still the same song,' I vaguely recall asking my friend somewhere in the middle of the show. The response was something like 'you're a musician, you should appreciate this.' I remember trying, and failing, to appreciate it.

I do remember that Stash was played, because I remember trying to clap along with everyone else, and then clapping at the wrong time. It was like being an outside date at someone's inside joke party.

I also remember that Maze was played because that plinking intro was unlike anything else I had ever heard, and I was fascinated.

Into Set 2, it just seemed like things had devolved into noise (this was probably Tweezer). I remember that Trey had a rack of effects next to him on stage and just kept playing with the effects knobs, and he seemed to just really be experimenting with noise by himself.

I also have this vague recollection - and I hope someone can corroborate this - that Trey and Mike were ballet-style prancing across the stage, and pretending to 'shoot' their guitars at Page, who would pretend to be hit by their 'arrows' and slam on the piano. Anyone else remember this, or is this just my imagination?

At some point, I had had enough of the nonsense and decided to leave. It was likely during the Tweezer. Not being familiar with the music at all, I had nothing to latch on to, and was bored.

I remember waiting by the door at the side of the stage, looking to see if anything interesting would happen before I left. Nothing to me did, and that was that.

I do remember the next day people saying how amazing it was that they came out and played an acoustic Encore with Fishman on Madonna washboard and that I had missed something very special.

I'm looking forward to finally listening to this.


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