This show included some funny stage banter, including Trey’s announcement after TMWSIY: “That was called ‘The Man Who Stepped Into Yesterday... and I’m going to get my head sharpened.” Lushington did not contain any lyrics. A set break was announced after Ya Mar, so this is the complete first set. The songs listed as in the second set are believed to have been performed in that set, though it is unknown whether more songs were also performed in the second set, and if there was a third set as well. This show featured the first known performances of The Man Who Stepped Into Yesterday, Divided Sky, Harpua, and Bundle of Joy, as well as the first known Phish performance of Avenu Malkenu. The keyword for Makisupa was "Woke up in the morning, dioxin on my head / Woke up in the afternoon Gaddafi in my bed."
Jam Chart Versions
Debut Years (Average: 1985)

This show was part of the "1987 Tour"

Show Reviews

, attached to 1987-05-11

Review by markah

markah I was intrigued by Trey's "I'm going to get my head sharpened..." so I looked it up. According to "A Dictionary of Catch Phrases, American and British, from the Sixteenth Century to the Present Day" by noted slang researcher Eric Partridge, this was a phrase used by members of the United Kingdom's Royal Air Force in the 1950s and 60s.

The only other thing that stood out to me in this show is Trey's first solo in Clod. Holey moley, if you're looking to erase any doubt that he had IT even back in 1987, then check out this Clod!
, attached to 1987-05-11

Review by SlavePhan

SlavePhan The second night of a 2-night stand at Nectar's, Phish by this time had been playing at Nectar's monthly since February and some regulars had become familiar with the band. This show has lots of banter and interplay between the band and audience members, who seem to know many of the band's songs and request a handful of tunes. The band certainly is more comfortable on this date than they were several months ago.

Audio quality of this show is...well, pretty awful. Mike and Fish are so far down in the mix, the first several songs almost sound like duet recordings of Page and Trey. This will likely keep 98% of most listeners away from the show, but for the devoted, I'll wade through what is there.

YEM opens the show. The audio is absolutely terrible for this opener, so it's pretty hard to hear what is happening at all. That being said, this YEM is really sub-par, with not even an inspired ending jam.

Lushington, which, at this point had lost its scatalogical lyrics, consisted of just 'the Chase' and no lyrics, followed YEM. Interestingly, though, after 'the Chase', the band breaks into Lushington's rolling chords for a couple of verses, but no lyrics are sung. Then, the band moves into the jazzy bridge that is normally found in 'Dog Log' for about 30 seconds, before finding their way into the chords to Possum, but not before Trey teases Camel Walk for a good 20 seconds. It's clear at this point that the band has several sections and parts to songs that they don't quite know what to do with and are trying to find ways to make them all work.

Possum is standard after which drunken audience members yell for Page to sing and Mike confers with Paul about the sound. Trey remarks that 'you missed last night', so it's possible that the band played Ride Captain Ride or Curtis Loew the previous night. Trey decides on Slave, though, which is again pretty standard.

After Sneakin Sally, Trey introduces Clod, which is well-played and the band remarks how much they like it afterwards. Mike suggests Peach>Punch, but the band wonders what they can do with Punch. Trey asks the audience if they want to hear 'the Sloth', but they don't play it. So, it seems like the band had debuted the Sloth earlier than there is a record.

Peaches flows into TMWSIY, the first ever. Makisupa is interesting in that it contains a very weird cheesy keyboard tone from Page. It almost sounds like what you'd expect from a low-budget keyboard in the mid-80s. This version is quite spacey, though, and actually, were the sound better, may be more interesting. At one point, though, Trey breaks into some volume swells that listeners may recognize also being in the 3/13/92 Antelope>BBFCFM>Antelope breakdown.

"Moving from Jamaica directly to the Bahamas," the band plays Ya Mar. The band takes a break and says they will return for more, but no tapes exist.

Really, the audio quality of this show is so bad, that only people with a high tolerance to hiss and fuzz should seek out the show. Of the show, the odd Lushington/Dog Log love-child is interesting, as is the effects-ridden Makisupa. Everything else, though, is not particularly note-worthy and is fuzzy.
, attached to 1987-05-11

Review by dr_strangelove

dr_strangelove A historically significant show with debuts of many loved tunes. Unfortunately, the recording I found was pretty awful and is missing a few songs (e.g., "Clod" and "Ya Mar" are missing from set I, and the encore is unavailable). However, despite the problems of technology, we thankfully still have some of this history preserved. The only other thing I'll note up top is that this is the first performance of "Lushington" without lyrics! No!! This marks the beginning of the end for this awesome song (although it remains at least somewhat intact as "The Chase" segment in modern versions of "Fluffhead"). Highlights:

1) YEM: The band really hits the groove on the jam of this YEM, getting slightly weird in a few spots but then coming back strong into the funk. It's soul warming and chill, just like an early May show should be.

2) TMWSIY > Avenu Malkenu > TMWSIY: First performance, and the beauty of TMWSIY already shines through. I think it will take a few more showings before the Avenu Malkenu segment really coheres

3) Makisupa Policeman: Dub space, really great zone to be mentally. Page uses some effects on these early versions that really allow the echoey space vibe to ring out.

4) Divided Sky: Another debut, and such a brief taste of Divided Sky that one aches for the now typical 10+ minute version complete with extended held note and ending peak. None of this is present yet, but the essential skeleton is here and for what it's worth, it sounds great

5) Harpua > Bundle of Joy > Harpua: Another significant debut, with a "Bundle of Joy" sandwich. No "Oom-pah-pah", but otherwise the intro of Harpua is the same as current versions. The second half of Harpua is where the composition gets a little different. It is basically a continuation of the first segment with an extended jam. I.e., there is no mention of "Jimmy" or "Poster Nutbag".
, attached to 1987-05-11

Review by DollarBill

DollarBill This recording is pitiful, but I'm glad it survived as a record of this early performance at Nectar's. There were a few bright spots of good playing among a rather average set. The Makisupa jam is incredible and I believe it could hold it's own up against the space laced late nineties jams. I'm assuming it was Paul adding the extra delays to Fish's kit, but Trey really takes this one out there. The stage banter was great too.

I would've bumped this up to three stars for the Makisupa jam, but the recording is just so bad that I can't highly recommend this one.
, attached to 1987-05-11

Review by SlavePhan

SlavePhan ETA: This should read - the second night of a three-night stand
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