, attached to 2021-10-28

Review by andrewfabes

andrewfabes This is my first review I've written on here, but when I tell this story I often preface it that it's like those timeless .net stories you read on some random show from 1991. I decided I need to write it here, lest it be forgotten to time!

I am a product of the 3.0 era, having started seeing Phish during the Baker's Dozen (at the age of 18, sue me!). There's always been a certain magic surrounding Phish tour that seems slightly bygone but I've still sought to capture - a sort of 'make it happen' attitude that makes for unforgettable moments. I think that was in play here, too!

Unable to take Thursday off of work, I decided I would fly form NY to Vegas that afternoon, sacrificing the 10/28 show, but keeping my job, and allowing me to still see three Phish Halloween shows. Once the plane took off and were in the air for a while, the show began and I started streaming to my laptop using the plane wifi. Spacey jam->2001>1999 to start, and I'm thinking this is going to be a great run, texting my buddy how unfortunate it is we couldn't make it to this show. My groupchat agreed that if they play 555 next, the show will be a countdown show - a great catch, but I didn't believe it.

Once they played 555 (not my favorite) > 46 Days (great jam) you could tell this was going to be a special show. Better yet, our flight was making great time. And so the countdown began! ---Can we make it to the show before Phish plays Character Zero?--- This would be the first show I show up to late, not knowing if I would make it at all, and Phish is providing us with a real-time countdown. How's that for a cosmic joke! My buddy already had a ticket for the show - I had nothing, so I decided to peruse Cash or Trade.. Strawberry Letter 23... I *really* started to look on Cash or Trade. Over the course of a stellar Twenty Years Later to close the set, I had finally found my miracle.

Setbreak ends as the plane lands. We can make it. We call a taxi, and the taxi goes to the wrong pickup point just as Phish drops into an If 6 Was 9 debut... my buddy, a huge Hendrix fan, was heartbroken. The taxi picks us up and we cruise down the road directly towards the MGM with our bags in tow. Our driver is making banter about casinos strip clubs, *Vegas*, and we nod along with Phish on our minds. We get dropped off during Two Versions of Me, go directly to the front desk and drop our bags off, probably looking like crazed men on a mission (which we were, I guess). We run to the venue during Army of One. Bursting from the hallway I can still recall seeing CK5's white lights come into view during My Sweet One, like a child walking through a stadium tunnel and seeing a sunlit baseball field for the first time. We made it. And before Zero!

Oddly enough, I didn't really review many of the performances through this... review... but, hey, to me, everything after we got to the show was fantastic! First Tube raged, Zero ripped. The encore started with BDTNL - even on the plane I knew if I made it to the show it would be the most rewarding one I would ever hear.

They closed with Grind, and to be honest I felt a little fake because I wasn't there for most of the show (I don't have this show added for stats purposes, etc.), and this was like a cherry on top. But as they went through the setlist to recount the musical journey the whole arena had just went on, I recounted my own journey. One that started in a New York office building, and ended at a Phish show in Las Vegas.


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