Debut Years (Average: 1987)

This show was part of the "1990 Tour"

Show Reviews

, attached to 1990-06-08

Review by User_25581_

User_25581_ Okay all...I have a few discrepancies between the tapes that circulate under this date and what I remember clearly as going down at this show. It was my first Phish show and I have some crystal clear memories of it...and this recording, while close, does not entirely match up! So, here it is as far as I can recall it from 23 years ago: I drove through a horrible downpour from Atlantic City to Philly to see this gig. I had just graduated Temple University a couple week prior and had missed the band three times over at the same club because of being so busy with I was determined to go, rain be damned. Unfortunately, my friends all refused to go! Apparently a 90 min drive and $2 beers were too much of a cost and hassle for them to see a Phish show (hahaha joke would be on them later when they finally got hip to it all), so I drove out to the show with a Deadhead couple I'd just met through mutual friends with promises of a fantastic gig. When we arrived the Bill E. Penn Band was onstage...doing the rare opener. They were mainly Dead cover band who gigged around Philly at the time and were known for their rap infused cover version of Bob Dylan's "Tangled Up In Blue". As far as I can recall it, because of the Bill E. Penn opener, there was just one long set this night and no set break. I was positioned right up at the front of the stage...not a hard thing to do as the gig was sparsely attended. Not an empty hall...but not packed by any stretch! I stood directly in front of Page and watched the lighting guy sneak around behind the amp during the opening song to create an effect with a yellow spot light by waving it back and forth like an air raid search light searching the sky for enemy bombers. Very cool stuff...except that he kicked the power cord for Mike's amp out of the wall. I remember Mike, who was playing his old G&L bass and dressed in rolled up jeans, a pink shirt, and a leather Kangol hat turned around and yelled "What the fuck did you do?" as the light guy scrambled to plug him back in. Trey, meanwhile, was very impressively dressed in flared pants, print silk shirt, and roach killer shoes...not the "hippie" at all. There were a pair of lights positioned behind electric fans on either side of him and Page which created the most awesome wavering light effect! The opener was probably Foam as Mike was thumb popping as I remember. However, I distinctly remember them having played "Fee" on this night...a song I had looked forward to seeing them play ever since I read the blurb on the band in Relix Magazine months prior...and I had the backing vocals of "Fee, fee, fee, fee...traveling a life that's completely free" and the chorus running through my brain for days afterwards. Yes there was a "Bouncing" played that night, as was a Mike's > Hydrogen > Weekapaug...I loved the dancing in hydrogen and they DID bring out the tramps for both Mike's AND You Enjoy Myself. I swear I remember them singing "Wash Your Face and Hands Before you Go To Bed" as a joke when they did!! They played Antelope too...and changed the lyrics there as well to "Roll Like a Cantelope" which myself and my new freinds remarked on on the way home. I also recall there being an "Alumni Blues" played at some friend kept pointing at me and singing "He's got a degree!!!" to Trey as they played. I don't thinkg Tweezer was played this night...because I returned on 9/29/90 to the same club to see the band again and was blown away by the tapping bit Trey and Mike do on the necks of their axes. I didn't see that on 6/8/90. Yes they did I Didn't Know with a trombone solo and Jon dressed as "Henrietta" as he was introduced to the crowd. I am pretty certain the Possum was a set closer or encore. Now, the biggest discrepancy I have...and I mean the BIGGEST between what I recall from the show and the recording circulating under that date is the performance of Divided Sky. The night I saw them play Trey went into a very detailed Gamehenge rap in which he described the roof of the club opening and everyone being transported away to another land (not unlike the Anaconda Theatre tapes) but he went into detail about the Rhombus and the Lizard people who would climb the Rhombus "using Hook-ed instruments" to scale it's face and upon reaching the summit would sing "Divided Sky The Wind Blows High!!!". Now, I have never found a similar rap in any show I've listened to since then...but I clearly recall this happening on this night! Where on earth would that information come from other than seeing the band perform it. This was before I had bought any Phish album (we bought Junta that night on cassette) or traded for any bootlegs! I was coming in a tabla rasa purely on the reputation of the band alone! All I can say is that there must be some confusion about what recording and date this show is from because things just don't add up here. I know there are other 23 east sets unaccounted maybe this is just one of those other shows mislabeled? Sorry!
, attached to 1990-06-08

Review by J_R_B

J_R_B The first review for this show is incorrect (or "misremembered"). They are not recalling the right show. I was at this show. There were definitely two sets. The second set was cut short and there was no encore. The rest of the setlist is correct, and there was no Gamehendge rap with Divided Sky at all. The tapes are correct for the night because I remember thinking they are alternating long jams with filler at the start: Foam (jam) > BATR (filler) > YEM (jam) > Vocal Jam (filler) > Divided (jam) and it was definitely one segue.

I went to Haverford College and saw both shows there in 1990 as well as this show at the 23E. I wasn't 21 yet, so technically, I was not allowed to be admitted to this one, but one of my friends who had just graduated went into the club first and popped open the back door and I slid in and stayed away from the bar. Oh to be young again. This night was a great time and convinced me to make the trek to Townsend the following weekend. I just wish the second set wasn't cut short (this was the second time in a row that happened to me after the Haverfest show).
, attached to 1990-06-08

Review by radiator9987

radiator9987 I had so much fun the night before at the bayou I decided to make the trek up to the Philly suburbs and the infamous East Cabaret. There were quite a few repeats from the night before, but they still seemed fresh and new to me, this being my 5th show. Foam was always a great way to start things off and for the next 35 minutes they didn't let up. After Divided Sky the band caught their collective breath before kicking it back into high gear for Uncle Penn and then a great set closing run of Oh Kee Pa/Suzi/Antelope.

I missed most of Possum in the parking lot but was back up toward the front as they started MSO. From there I got my first bathtub and was more impressed then what I had heard on tapes. The Tweezer doesn't quite compare to the previous nights, but the Mike's Groove was definitely stronger. A fun night at a great old club.
, attached to 1990-06-08

Review by thelot

thelot Man these 23 East shows always sound incredible! You can always count on a nice crispy Matrix recording!

Things kick off with a nice Foam>Bouncin’ pairing. Bouncin’ transitions smoothly into YEM. Nice Page solo during the tramps section. The beginning of Uncle Pen is cut. Interesting transition into Oh Kee Pah out of Pen. Straightforward Antelope set closer.

I noticed the vocals were less abrasive during last nights Tweezer. Hearing this version confirms that. Good version but they definitely played it a little safer than last night in DC. A standard/good Groove ends the tape. Great sounding source tape but a pretty standard Winter/Spring 1990 performances.
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