, attached to 1995-06-26

Review by Campster

Campster The new LivePhish release is GREAT.

Set I doesn't necessarily have Big (read:long) jams (outside Possum), but it's very well played, with great song selection, and plenty of quality jamming within the confines of song structure.

MFMF is a wonderful way to open the show (and foreshadows the psychedelic set II nicely). Great spacey ending section.

Don't You Want to Go? is a nice peppy cover. Has a rocking and rollicking jam and the band does a nice job indeed.

Bathtub Gin sits in the 3-hole. This is a relatively short version at around 9 minutes, but carries a pretty nice jam without breaking too much ground or peaking too hard.

NICU is up next and is another fun tune and fits the preceding couple of song choices nicely. Good danceable stretch.

The Sloth is always a fine one to hear. This is a good rocking version and brings back a bit of an edge to the set.

My Mind's Got a Mind of Its Own is fun, but to me felt like a bit of an oddly placed song.

It's Ice>Dog Faced Boy>Tela is a really cool stretch of songs, with good playing in Ice, a delicate Dog Faced Boy, and a very pretty version of Tela. (Tela & Sloth in same set...awesome!)

Possum is the biggest jam of the first set and it is indeed a barn burner. This one is long and pretty open. Has a nice heavy jam in the middle and an absolutely explosive peak. Phenomenal closer.

Set II opens with Down With Disease. The opening itself contains a slightly prolonged bit of space, a bit different from today's unrecognizable bubbling bass. Pretty cool. The song itself is played very crisply & the solo is glorious. The jam quickly moves to rhythmic territory. This is '95 at it's finest, glorious open improv, mind-blowing complexity, challenging, but cohesive. Not for the faint of heart, but most certainly satisfying. I felt like this jam went by far quicker than the timing indicated and was also cohesive in the context of some of the long and more challenging Tweezers of '95. It's sublime stuff.

The -> into Free is very smooth, executed with some tactfulness (patience) which would develop into the glorious segues found on the back end of the 90's. It's a great, smooth drop-in & the first ever pairing of these tunes. I often lament how much I got these paired in 3.0, but it definitely works here. The Free itself might be my favorite jam of the show. It's amazing improv, with a minimalist, rhythmic, psychedelic section, which deconstructs then rebuilds to a glorious up tempo peaking conclusion. Is this my new favorite version? Asking that question alone is enough of a win.

Poor Heart does not allow us to cleanse our palette with a breather quite yet and is plenty fun.

YEM (in it's best ever year?) pops up and continues to carry this monster of a set. This is a excellent version (not December '95 exploratory/long) that has an incredible peaking solo (around 14:45 or so) where Trey is just on fire. The whole tune is executed very well. The vocal jam is also plenty wild.

Strange Design is the well earned breather and fits the penultimate song slot like a glove. Very choice.

Run Like An Antelope charges with abandon in this straight ahead, but nonetheless scorched earth version. It's a truly relentless jam concluding a pretty relentless set. There's a great moment of long sustain in the 6 minute mark. The playing around 7:50 or so is also very tasty and commences a relentless build to the stratosphere.

Sleeping Monkey and Rocky Top end the show in a more comical fashion, reminding us that Phish still brings the laughs after some pretty amazing & challenging music.

You can't rightfully complain about anything in Set II other than you might have needed another breather or a water bottle to keep up with the pace of that set. Fire front to back and pretty much a perfect set. Great choice LP. 5/5


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