Soundcheck: Bug, You Enjoy Myself (partial), Magilla, Driver, Sleep, Dirt, Back at the Chicken Shack

SET 1: Julius, Fee -> Jam, Guyute, Dirt, Nellie Kane, Stash, Cavern

SET 2: Birds of a Feather[1] > Prince Caspian > Jesus Just Left Chicago, Saw It Again, Sleep, Meatstick, Tube > Simple[2]

ENCORE: Terrapin > Hold Your Head Up, Character Zero

Birds included several If I Only Had a Brain teases from Trey and Fish improvising lyrics to the tune of If I Only Had A Brain. During Meatstick, Trey and Mike put down their instruments, came to the front of the stage and taught the crowd The Meatstick Dance. Simple ended akin to Coil, with each member of the band leaving the stage until only Page was left. At the beginning of the encore, Fish came out holding the Electrolux vacuum and the band launched into Terrapin (first since July 11, 1996, or 212 shows).
If I Only Had a Brain tease in Birds of a Feather
Debut Years (Average: 1992)

This show was part of the "1999 Summer U.S. Tour"

Show Reviews

, attached to 1999-07-08

Review by ThatPhan

ThatPhan True the lot was not a fun place to be, very much a police presence. But I must reederate, this show is nothing to look past, or put in a catagory of, worst show. Number 1, the worst Phish show I ever seen, was still pretty darn good.

First set was really good set, and of course the Julius opener, in its rarity now as an opener, followed by Fee, and the nearly 15 min jam they put with that. Its as good as a start to any show Ive seen. It just set the pace for the entire show in my opinion.

And what can you say about the second set. One of the best BOAF out there. Page and Trey's interplay on Jesus Left Chicago works well, and lays down that bluesy feel. And to get a late set Tube-> and Simple closer, just phenomonal. I think this show, is more consistant than the previous years show(was at both) its just the encore from 98 makes pholks think the show was as good as that encore. From start to stop, I'll take this show over 98, anyday.

Over all a really good, high quality show, with no true low points, a show worth having, and puting in the rotation. There were alot of good summer 99 shows, and this is def one of them.

I give this show a solid 4.0
, attached to 1999-07-08

Review by TimberCarini

TimberCarini SLOW BURN

This show is certainly above average in terms of its level of ambient jamming and artistic abstraction from the standard, but doesn't necessarily hit the peaks of Charlotte or Bonner Springs. It features a tremendous Fee > Jam that certainly ranks as one of the best "extended coda" Fee's in history. The Stash has a dark and ominous ambient jam with fuzz loops and demonic swirling undertones. The elongated Birds of a Feather provides a very rich take on a late 90's set standard - with a very ambient, layered "If I Only Had a Brain" jam. Simple flourishes with a delicate and emotional (and quiet) jam that features strong solo piano work by Page overtop reverse ambient loops from Trey. This Simple eventually goes full Squirming Coil walk off jam - which is quite a treat.

Standard Julius opener to get the crowd on their feet, but again the two spot steals the show. Fee is played with finesse and only minor lyric flubs and the band chooses to really spotlight Page early. The Fee jam that follows is everything you could want - repeated coda, slow build up, ambient spaciness, artistic levels of incredibly understated band interaction, and really wonderful drum and cymbal work from Fishman. The jam just keeps rising from its own ashes. Building, Strengthening, and Carrying the audience. It's actually Fishman who really keeps this 23+ minute must-hear Fee Jam going. The jam slows back down and Phish ever so gently fades the song out. After all is said and done Page lets the dust settle and seems choked up when he offers a simple, "Ok. Thank you." to the breathless crowd. The set flows along with standard fare until a very dark and delicious Stash breaks the monotony. This Stash has a really ambient, uptempo, minor dark and evil jam that pulls the set back up to the surface. A stomping Cavern closes an unbalanced set, with a Fee for the ages.

A really strangely fun Birds of a Feather opens the second set with a solid ambient jam that takes a turn to the truly bizarre as the band starts to jam to "If I only Had a Brain" from the Wizard of Oz. The band offer weird alternate lyrics to the song that seem to fit with the more ambient take on the theme than the music would seem to lend itself. A smoldering Jesus Left Chicago and a sublime Simple close out the set highlights. The pseudo triple encore provides the audience with both levity and double-fisted arena rock.

Follow me @TimberCarini on Twitter
, attached to 1999-07-08

Review by sethadam1

sethadam1 It used to be that "Birds" was played a lot, so much so that its presence, along with the fact that it was released as a radio friendly single, made it a downer for many fans. If I ever felt that way, it was gone after this stunner to open set 2. One of my favorite "Birds" ever, this one just rocked before settling in to a funny Fishman If I Only Had a Brain. If you're not into the whole show, at least check out this BOAF.
, attached to 1999-07-08

Review by CreatureoftheNight

CreatureoftheNight As mentioned for 7-7, these shows were my lowest point with Phish. Fortunately, I stayed on tour and was generously rewarded for my efforts a few days later. My one and only Fee contained a spectacular jam that I come back to again and again. This proves that even on a night where everything isn't clicking, one jam can bring the magic. If you haven't heard this Fee before, stop reading and go to right now. Kevin, please release the 23 minute soundboard so we can throw the muffled version away. This jam deserves it!
, attached to 1999-07-08

Review by art_vandelay

art_vandelay truth be told, this show didn't really do it for me. it started strong early on, including a cool jam out of "fee", of all songs. but if i had to sum up the whole evening in one word, "lethargic" might be it. it's unfortunate too, because on paper it certainly looks like an intriguing setlist. maybe i was just in the wrong mood or something, but this was one show i wouldn't have felt bad about skipping....
, attached to 1999-07-08

Review by Frankster

Frankster Where as 7/7 was a dud 7/8 is a stud! The lot at Virginia Beach was a dangerous place to be due to oppressive security. We briefly saw Mike on the cart but he quickly retreated back to safety. As a result of the bad vibes outside, the boys treated us to an excellent show. You can't beat a julius opener and this one set the pace in fine fashion. The fee is a must here for it goes places usually reserved for jam songs. Stash is very solid as is the cavern closer. The second set is amazing! Birds takes us to the outer reaches of the musical galaxy . . . way out there . . . into if I only had a brain which had everyone laughing. I'm not a fan of Caspian but this one is well played with a beautiful ending jam that falls into Jesus Left Chicago. We get a maetstick lesson before a tight tube>simple ends the set. Tubbs treats us to the then rare Terrapin. A funny prank based on the Dead's Terrapin last year. A blistering character Zero sends us off to Merriweather Post happy as a clam. A fun show and a good listen especially the second set.
, attached to 1999-07-08

Review by dr_strangelove

dr_strangelove I am baffled that this show is not rated higher. I am blown away with what I am hearing from the audience recordings. Stellar show, with great jams (noted in the show notes) as well as several great jams/playing not noted in the show notes. Highlights:

1) Julius: I usually find this song fairly straightforward and not too exciting, but this take has a hot f***ing peak around 5-6 minutes in and it refuses to let up
2) *Fee>Jam*: This is pure bliss heaven. At ~10:30, Trey hits this soaring theme and the jam propulses into this whirling, lite psychedelic bliss. Fish and Mike keep a steady throbbing beat while Trey just swirls. Its honestly brilliant. And that it came from Fee of all songs!
3) Stash: Hite a great, dark jam around 10 min. Brief but very notable
4)*Birds of a Feather*: Another stand out jam, especially if you like swirling psychedlia. This jam is particularly notable for the "If I Only Had A Brain" theme starting around 13 min. A gorgeous mess of happy, upbeat sounds
5)*Prince Caspian*: The outro jam is just so freaking great. It doesn't ever leave Type I territory, but the whole band perfectly navigates the energy to reach a land of majestic peaks. Extremely well-executed, and flows seamless into...
6)*Jesus Just Left Chicago*: Stellar playing by Page & Trey! Each takes an amazing, firey solo and burn the place down. Among my favorite versions of this tune
7) Tube: Slick. The groove they hit in the jam just has the swirling, airy '99 sound and its a blast
, attached to 1999-07-08

Review by Bob_Loblaw

Bob_Loblaw It's shows like this that make me wish we could do half votes on shows. This would fit 3.5 stars in my book but I rounded up. It's a show that constantly teeters back and forth on the fence.

On one hand you have the Fee jam which is very much a representation of '99s take on ambient. As well as a solid BOAF which is not a song on my top list of Phish songs but none the less the jam delivers along with the strange Fish and Trey interaction towards the end.

On the other hand you have a lot of flubbery and trouble linking in other parts of the show.

The payoff for this show are the Two jams.
, attached to 1999-07-08

Review by gigrant

gigrant Probably the worst show I ever saw. However, check out the Fee->Jam and the incredible Birds of a Feather on this night. The Birds had a key change somewhere in the jam that still sends shiiiiivers down my spine. Both songs are EPIC. The Simple is also real nice, and the Stash is fine. The rest of this show is forgettable. Horrible venue, horrible security, and poor song selection. I have a copy only because I was there.
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