Possum contained Random Note, Oom Pa Pa, and Random Laugh signals; Guelah contained All Fall Down, Aw Fuck! and Me and My Arrow (Tall Guy in the Front Row) signals; Mike’s Song contained an additional Oom Pa Pa signal. Memories and Sweet Adeline were performed without amplification.
Debut Years (Average: 1989)

This show was part of the "1992 Spring Tour"

Show Reviews

, attached to 1992-05-03

Review by TelaJewel

TelaJewel “This was an all ages show in the ornate ballroom in the MSU Student Union. The room has a capacity of about 350 and it was sold out. Possum included Random Note, Oom Pah Pah and Random Laugh secret language. Trey introduced Fish as Henrietta before his vacuum solo in I Didn't Know. The Horse contained the early "Mathilda in between" lyric. This rendition of Guelah Papyrus (specifically The Asse Festival) included Fall Down, Finger Scrape and "Asshole" In The Front Row secret language (during which the band pointed at frequent target - nice, but extremely tall Dan Roek who was usually near the stage). Mike's Song also included Oom Pah Pah secret language. Trey was especially vocal during Mike's Song, singing along, testifying and dropping in Mike's middle name "Elliot." The Memories and Sweet Adeline were performed without microphones. This show was co-sponsored by the MSU Activities Board and In-Flight Sports. Dedicated fans and In Flight co-owners Scott Pridgeon and Lige Johnson also paid for a power generator out of their own pockets at the last-minute so this show could happen.”

http://phish.com/#/tours/dates/sun-1992-05-03-union-ballroom-michigan-state-university />
This was my first show and for that reason gets a 5 stars rating from me and will always be “The Best Show EVA!” It was experience I will hold dear in my heart as long as I live. To see them in this small and intimate of a setting was phenomenal no matter how they happened to playing that night. I mean 350 people! They rent the space out for fricken wedding receptions for Christ sakes!

http://www.msuunion.com/events />
Listening to it through a filter of over 20 years I still shake my head when I think about the scene. I had been into the Grateful Dead for a few years and was lucky enough to catch some great shows in the late ‘80’s and early 90’s including the infamous Alpine ’89 run. My younger brother first turned me onto Phish and I remember him having a cassette from Amy’s Farm that he played until it snapped in half. I had heard Junta and owned Lawn Boy. A Picture of Nectar was just making its way into local music stores.

I was super excited when my brother told me about the show at MSU and couldn’t wait to see them live. The scene was . . . well there really wasn’t much of a scene. There were a few kids wandering the hallways of the Student Union, a merchandise table and the Greenpeace table set up. That was about it. I remember hearing rumors that the show was going to be cancelled when we first got there because of some electrical issues. I was sooo relieved when they started letting us in though and am forever grateful to the guys who sprang for the power generators at the last minute.

From Page’s first twinkling notes of The Landlady and Trey’s screaming guitar I was hooked! I looked over at my brother and saw the biggest shit eating grin and knew I must have looked exactly the same. We carried the groove right into a rocking Possum. I hadn’t heard any of the songs from Rift at that point and they ended up playing 6 songs from that “upcoming album”. I was so happy they played Fee and then Split Open and Melt happened. I had my first spastic AC/DC Bag feeling when you’re dancing so hard that it feels like your feet don’t touch ground. Chaos, everything falling apart then coming back togeterher, WOW! I Didn’t Know was fun to hear some live vacuum and Runaway Jim smoked to fill out the first set.

Set break was weird. More people wandering around the halls. I seem to recall Mike and maybe other members of the band milling around too but not completely sure. It just seemed really loose. I think there were a few students who actually left during set break because the crowd seemed a bit smaller to kick off the second set.
The Tweezer that kicked off the 2nd set I remember as being heavy and funky and listening to it again the guys are really having fun with the vocals. I’m pretty sure I freaked during that jam as well. Horse and Silent were pretty and enchanting to me. Fluffhead! ‘Nuff said. I didn’t know what was going on during Guelah but when they all stopped and started pointing at the tall dude in front I have to admit that it made me feel a little uncomfortable. Trey and Mike choreography, the “Aww Fuck!” it was all so surreal to me. Then Mike’s Song >I Am Hydrogen>Weekapaug. Cold As Ice then Fishman comes out for a sweet rendition of Cracklin Rosie. I didn’t see any of this coming. Who are these guys?

Dinner and a Movie was creepy and then a little Bouncin’ for some leavity. Next The Oh Kee Pa Ceremony > Suzy Greenberg to close things out. But wait! Everyone shut up so we can hear some A cappella barbershop quartet tunes sans microphones! Memories; how appropriate for looking back on my first show. Sweet Adeline had people cracking up. So sweet. And then the Tweeprise to rock us home.

A “very average show, if not below average”, unless it happened to be your first show or you were lucky enough actually have been there in this very intimate setting. It will be a night I will always cherish. I remember the feeling like I was seeing the Grateful Dead for my generation. The connection between the band and the audience was something I had only seen at Dead shows. Their music moved me in a similar way but so sharper, quirkier and edgier, something that I had been longing for. I’m amazed at how far they have come and all the obstacles they have overcome. I have nothing but love and admiration for these guys 
, attached to 1992-05-03

Review by dr_strangelove

dr_strangelove With all the great and amazing Phish shows available, this one falls a little flat. That's not to say it doesn't have its flashes of brilliance, fun, and great playing. It just never crosses the threshold into greatness. 1992 Phish has some amazing shows, so if you aren't a completest, I'd say skip this one and come back later. Nonetheless, some highlights:

1) Possum: The secret language stuff is fun and overall its a well played version
2) It's Ice: The piano solo here seems extended from your typical version. Good version
3) Tweezer: This is mostly a Type I Tweezer, but the tension building is great! Probably the pinnacle of the show.
4) Fluffhead: The ending jam rages as hard as ever
5) Mike's Song: An odd little octave step jam occurs towards the end. Kinda cool
6) Weekapaug Groove: Brief moments of rapid fire Trey
7) Suzy Greenberg: Rages a little harder than typical in the middle jam segment. Page is feeling it.
, attached to 1992-05-03

Review by DollarBill

DollarBill This is a very average show, if not below average. Lots of sloppiness. The bootleg was ok, vocals were a little low.

Landlady starts off the show just fine. Possum has a little foolishness as usual, and a weird end to it. Don't know if Fish stopped for a reason? The Ice jam was a little uninspired, but an ok Ice. Uncle Pen was ok. Fee and ATR were good. Melt was sloppy at the end. Good jam though. Rift seemed tentative and unsure as if they couldn't hear each other well. The Horn intro was off but ok after that. Jim was a good closer.

Tweezer also starts off a little unsure but, gets into a good jam. Trey must have pulled himself out of tune from which he never recovered. It shows during The Horse. Silent is not grooving very well tonight, complete with a false start on vocals from Page. Again, can they not hear each other? Trey remains out of tune during a pretty well played Fluffhead. Guelah has a lot of foolishness before the last verse. Mike's again contains alternate lyric structure with Trey adding backing. Hydrogen again shows Trey's tuning problem. Weekapaug is ok. Mango has some monitor feedback and the singing sounds tired. Mike mentions something about Saddam Hussein before Rosie. It sounds like there was originally more chatter that got cut. Tape flip? Dinner has some sloppy parts. Bouncing is ok. Oh Kee Pa>Suzy is a nice closer for a pretty sub-par show in my opinion.

Double barbershop encore changes it up a little, and the expected Tweeprise wraps it up for the night.

I'm not sure what it was but, this show just doesn't have the IT factor. There are some good jams but, they just don't out weigh the mistakes. Too much fun in Chicago? Anyway, a day off should do them some good.
, attached to 1992-05-03

Review by Pjfmc

Pjfmc All right! Let's get into it.

Landlady sounds weird, I think it might be the tape, I dunno, couldn't put my finger on it. I like a Landlady opener though. Possum starts weird too and has secret language stuff but the crowd doesn't really catch it. They settle in and things are getting better. It's Ice is good. Very cool little jam in there, if you'e in the mood for a moody sort of 70s piano-jam. We cruise along through some tunes and then get a nice raging Melt. People are getting into it. I am into it. I Didn't Know is a really funny call here after that raging Melt. Not bad, literally funny. Rift is a really good song, not the best version but it might be the tape, something is just a bit lacking. Horn and RJ are good, we are eagerly awaiting set two after they rage into set break.

All right, Set 2 opens with Tweezer. It's pretty good, the jam is very strong but it doesn't set my soul on fire. The boys are playing their little butts off though. I'm sure that this was a monster in what seems like an absolutely tiny venue. Horse Silent is a good call here, sounds good. Fluff is rousing (real good version). I've gotta say the Guelah here is not really doing it for me. Now... Mike's Groove. This is good. Mike's Song is menacing as hell. Trey is really pushing it here, I do hear him as being a little out of tune but he is working it. I really like this a lot. Absolutely the highlight of the show. Hydrogen keeps it up, very cool Hydrogen. Trey lays back probably because he is a little out of tune. A very fast-paced paug ensues. Trey really goes off, the pace picks up even more like halfway through. Blistering. Kind of a low-key Mango. Fishman Time is Fishman time, I've been enjoying Cracklin Rosie lately. Dinner and a Movie is a favorite of mine, this one is ok. Bouncing is Bouncing, I think it's a good call here. Then we get Oh Kee Pa into an almost maniacal Suzy closer. It's pretty great The encore is good, the crowd loves it.

I say you should hear this Mike's Groove but that the show overall is mostly middle-of-the-road on tape. There is enough here that you wouldn't want to write it off completely, and I get the sense that it was probably a special show to be at but it doesn't really translate the way so many other shows do.
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