, attached to 2023-04-19

Review by HarpuaTheBulldog

HarpuaTheBulldog As of 1:40PM PST on 4/21/2023 this show only has a 3.75 on phish.net, something I strongly suspect is the result of review bombing/people on the East Coast voting anything on the West down.

The last two shows being rated in the mid 3s on dot net and N1 being only a low 4 is ridiculous... There is 100% either a heavy East Coast demographic or older bitter people that will vote anything low that isn't at MSG or in the eastern seaboard...

Even when discussing the merits of the shows that is so pathetic. Early 3.0 would kill to have half of the hour and ten minute dark journey on N2. You're telling me a show with 14 minute Bag and Jim in the first, a hot Mike's Groove with 15 mins of Phish's Dark Star sandwiched inside plus a 22 Set Your Soul Free that got filthy is a 3.7. Not fucking buying it. Sorry you reflex downvote every show west of the Mississippi because your boomer ass had to go to bed at 10:30pm so you wouldn't be late for that meeting with Jim from Accounting.

Extended AC/DC Bag - first real jammed out Bag since 2004. First set jammed out Runaway Jim - longest since Charlotte 2019. Second set had near-perfect flow - Cool It Down serving its name and then Set Your Soul Free was another scorcher in a mini-tour full of them, leading into dark, drippy goodness. What's the Use coming out of that ambience - and a maybe-so-maybe-not Vangelis (RIP) sounding intro. I could take Tweezer Reprise to end every show until the end of time.

Now - am I saying that every show is getting review bombed these days? I find it hard to believe - there are certain exceptions, such as MSG shows or a few others that continue to have high *venue* ratings. I think it's a combination of the expectation game - 4.0 Phish is so unpredictable, every song on every set could go deep, a level of exploration not found except for past eras that are upheld the most online (97-2000, 03). From 2009-2012 or so, if you stuck this show into a random tour, it would be in contention for show of the year. And this is a good thing - it means the boys are doing much better and this is an era of realized potential of which the roots were just growing from it back then. But the other side of the coin is that it raises expectations - so when there isn't a 25-30+ minute outstanding effort or a distinct segue-fest to hang your hat on, it doesn't shine through as obviously and it will take time for people to realize how good this type of show is. I could see this being looked at 10 years from now as another heater in the fertile 2023 Spring run. Or not! That's the magic of things.

But there are suspect voting patterns. I've seen with my own eyes organized efforts to downvote 3.0/4.0 shows, I've seen people outright saying that they are voting down new shows to keep their 90s attended ones high, and there was someone on the forums here who scraped the data for Mexico and there were onslaughts of 1-star ratings on each night - I get if you didn't like a show, maybe it's not 5 stars, but to see a coordinated 1-star effort just reeks of dishonesty. Wish something could be done about it, at least here's to spreading the word. Keep your mind open, there is a Golden Age everywhere you look.


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