Soundcheck: Unknown song, Waking Up Dead, Things People Do, Miss You, Blues Jam
SET 1: Sample in a Jar, Chalk Dust Torture, Martian Monster > Rift, Yarmouth Road, Sand, Miss You, The Wedge, Free > Blaze On
SET 2: Down with Disease > Fuego > Twist > Twenty Years Later > Waste > Also Sprach Zarathustra > Backwards Down the Number Line, Loving Cup
ENCORE: Space Oddity, Run Like an Antelope
Photo by Scott Marks
Add a Review
Phish.net is a non-commercial project run by Phish fans and for Phish fans under the auspices of the all-volunteer, non-profit Mockingbird Foundation.
This project serves to compile, preserve, and protect encyclopedic information about Phish and their music.
The Mockingbird Foundation is a non-profit organization founded by Phish fans in 1996 to generate charitable proceeds from the Phish community.
And since we're entirely volunteer – with no office, salaries, or paid staff – administrative costs are less than 2% of revenues! So far, we've distributed over $2 million to support music education for children – hundreds of grants in all 50 states, with more on the way.
Review by Franklin
I feel absurd discussing song selection in a first set because, more often than not, it's just about how much you like a given song, not really how they fit together as a unit, especially in a set with as few alligator mouths as this one has. For example, I have a completely irrational hatred of both The Wedge and Yarmouth Road, but that does not mean that this was a bad set; they just played two songs I didn't like. So I'd much rather just talk about things that I thought were noteworthy...
Sand - Trey basically decides to build tension in this jam from moment one, and it really pays off. The best metaphor I could come up with is a high-speed chase across a bunch of city rooftops. There's a group of mini-peaks when you jump from one rooftop to the next and the band settles back onto one with increasing intensity each time, and then, when it's time to slide back onto the main theme, you jump off the final rooftop onto the back of an already-moving jet ski. There was no stumbling -- the group settles right back into Sand proper as if nothing had ever happened. Real smooth way to thwart the bad guys.
Miss You - New songs are always roughed up a bit when they debut, and I think ballads have it especially bad. This one has a little bit of cheese on the lyrics and I'm not hella crazy about those three chords that get played after every. single. line. in the verse, but Trey simply tears up the solo. If I have to endure the song itself for that kind of guitar work, I'll make that trade any day of the week.
Blaze On - Absolute heater. The BOs of yore have gone the dark and twisty route, and this version flirts with that a little bit at the beginning of the jam, but at the end of a first set in the middle of a baseball stadium, you just want the fun. Leo's solo between the two verses was particularly good, I thought, but the real magic comes when the band builds up to a glorious peak, pushing the tempo and volume just enough to deliver a smooth end of the set.
Everything else was well-played, if not sung... come on guys, get yourselves a copy of the third edition of the phish companion (available now at https://phishcompanion.com!) and learn the lyrics to your own darn songs.
The set is full of fan favorites and very intact chops all around. While there isn't much replay value in the first half, it all bodes well for the rest of tour.
Down With Disease - Ahoy! We've reached our first extended type-two jam of the summer. After the usual shredfest, Mike and Page start pushing a darker groove, and Trey keeps soloing for a little bit and then everything starts locking. From 7:00 on, we're in new, undefined territory. The jam spends its time fluctuating between pushing rock and muddier, less defined areas, but the whole thing is dark and mysterious. To be honest, this kind of jamming might be among Phish's signature moves in 3.0. Fishman and Mike get so locked in it's almost unfair, and there are often three melodies weaving around each other. An organic, exploratory jam -- a fine place to start the summer.
Fuego is essentially the same as any of 2015's interchangeable versions.
Twist -- It's a shame that the Disease was only the best jam of Summer 2016 for like nine minutes, but that's life in the rough-and-tumble world of Phish. Last year, we started disentangling ourselves from Twist pretty quickly (see Magnaball, where the song itself is basically gone once the Woos happen), but this version stays close to the ranch for quite a bit longer -- I wasn't even sure if it was going to go Type II at all. But go Type II it did. It's hard to say where, to be honest, and that's one of the things that makes this jam great -- it all just unfolds in front of you.
At one point near 9:00 Mike plays this line that sounds like Ghost at double speed, and Trey picks up on it and, with Page hammering away on the grand, we quickly jettison ourselves into this complicated area around 10:30, where Fishman is playing a sweet rock beat and Trey is playing these distorted, echoey chords -- I'm not sure which effect it is but it creates a cool juxtaposition that leads us smoothly into a more normal (albeit still magnificent) rock section by 11:30. They cover a lot of ground in 2.5 minutes there, and it brings us to a glorious place -- the ensuing two minutes is pure bliss before we drop back down underwater. Great stuff. The segue into 20YL was smooth enough to keep me from getting upset that 20YL was playing.
Waste is a good song.
A 2001 at this point in the set is a real treat. While the Disease and Twist were both great jams, they didn't provide all that much in terms of pure danceability. This tune totally delivers in a 6 minutes that looked like it got the place going real good. Sure, we don't build up to the first motif for ten minutes like it's Gorge 98, but it gets the job done.
At this point, it's clear that we're not in for a jam fest, and so BDTNL and Loving Cup are just celebrations on top of a fun show. Third quarter here is for replay, fourth quarter is for fun. Nothing wrong with that.
To be honest, I'm not a big David Bowie fan. I have nothing against him; his work just doesn't hit me in the way that other artists do. But. The way the crowd reacted to the words "Ground Control to Major Tom" and the visible weight behind each band members' vocals was enough to give me chills. Apart from being really musically satisfying (they must have been practicing this for ages) it's just stirring.
Antelope closer can't be beat.
Is this a show where every single song deserves to be replayed? Not really. Does it have a small handful of riches? You bet. Can't wait for night two.
*Edit* I just hit the "preview" button and this is WAY longer than I intended it to be. My bad.