Soundcheck: Alaska, Let's Go, Running Out Of Time, Home
SET 1: Stealing Time From the Faulty Plan, The Birds > NICU, Cities, David Bowie, Free, Uncle Pen, Halfway to the Moon, Let's Go, Waiting All Night > Bathtub Gin > Golgi Apparatus, The Squirming Coil
SET 2: Sand > Carini > Chalk Dust Torture > Prince Caspian > Bug, Shine a Light, My Sweet One, Sleeping Monkey > Also Sprach Zarathustra > Fire
ENCORE: Character Zero
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Review by Franklin
The rain subsided right before the set began and held off the whole rest of the night -- perfect!
The entire opening sequence was just a dance party -- everyone was so stoked to be there and having fun and the songs matched it. The Birds, my favorite Halloween song, made a comeback that stunned virtually all in attendance. The version itself is a bit clunky. It was like a friend you haven't seen in years showing up on your doorstep with their clothes a little dirty and a fresh scar on their cheek... not totally intact, but you're sure glad they're back.
The fun continues through Bowie, which gets really pretty at parts, before a standard-great Free.
Tonight's debut (I'm pretty sure that they're taking 2014's "Everybody gets a Fuego" strategy with debuts) was called Let's Go and was, well, hilarious. The whole "whoahhhh" line was really weird at first but then everyone caught on and then MIKE STARTED RAPPING. not a drill. I would apologize to everyone in my area for bursting out in laughter during this song, but I'm more so interested in why none of the rest of you were laughing. All told, though, it's a really fun song and it worked GREAT. Dancing to it is a real gem and I hope it finds its home somewhere, maybe in the Moma slot. We know it won't be jammed out because Mine wrote it. *sheds a single manly tear*
Rest of the set was great. Gin was fun, coil was a real treat after eighty minutes of music, and a good time was had by all.
Attn: people at the grey port-a-John. Y'all need to speed things up a bit. I have places to be. I left for the restroom five minutes into setbreak and got back to my spot two minutes before Sand started. That's embarrassing, folks.
Sand -- this is one of my favorite Phish songs and it was the first time I got to hear it live -- already a win! This version doesn't disappoint; it basically sets up the mood for the bigger jams to follow. On a relisten I certainly would not skip Sand for this reason.
Carini's opening almost took the roof off the place -- SPAC was going nuts! The jam itself covered a lot of territory really quickly; I thought it was 18 minutes long and was surprised to discover later that it was 11 or something. Those can be the best jams, though. Lots of exploration without being lost. Whole thing was a great success. Trey absolutely just abandoned ship at the end, but it ended up paying off.
Two big things about CDT: first (an observation from my friend who is still sleeping as I eat free hotel breakfast -- it's okay, I got you a bagel) is that this is the first time this Summer that Trey's played really melodic, lead guitar deep in jams. I think he's right... There's been a lot of rhythmic texturing on the part of Mr Antipsto and very little melody-creating so far this summer. This jam was significantly improved by Trey taking a risk or two and putting himself in front.
#2: Mike Gordon is just not to be believed. Easily the MVP of the show for me (bias disclosed: I'm a bass player) Mike was playing some really juicy lead lines throughout the night, but he really took over on this jam, especially when Trey went over to Marimba Lumina. Tonight's Trey/Mike relationship, up until Trey started playing more melodies in CDT, was very reminiscent of the Pete Townshend/John Entwistle relationship: lots of texture from the guitar player and melody from the bass player. Very fun.
All told the CDT is a real journey. I look forward to many, many relistens. The section with Mike on keys is particularly glorious. I was looking for some really upbeat hose when Trey picked the guitar back up, but alas, this was another jam destined to end without an ending. > Caspian.
The whole rest of the set through Sleeping Monkey was just a bliss fest. With so much dark jamming (clearly the MO of the summer), it was nice to rock out in major for a little while. I didn't need another deep dark jam at that point, but 2001 70 minutes into the set was the last great dance party we needed.
Great, great first show. The band is at last in mid-season form. They played for almost three hours. Mike's taking risks. Mike, Page, and Fish want to go deeper -- they just need to pull Trey along. Nights two and three will be great!