Mule and Poor Heart featured Pete Wernick on banjo. Mule also included a brief Foggy Mountain Breakdown tease. The jam out of Timber included a Frankie Says tease. Harry Hood was unfinished. Farmhouse was played in concert for the first time.
Foggy Mountain Breakdown tease in Scent of a Mule
Debut Years (Average: 1992)

This show was part of the "1997 Fall Tour (a.k.a. Phish Destroys America)"

Show Reviews

, attached to 1997-11-16

Review by VamonosPest

VamonosPest 6th row center. Amazing tix-thanks, Phish Tickets By Mail. The dude who carded me for a beer out in the concourse shouted "Idaho" (my driver's license was issued there) and the Phans took up an Idaho chant for a bit. On the way there my truck's alternator died in Laramie, Wyoming in a brutal blizzard but we got it replaced and still made it to the gig in time. Some ahole stole everything we had from my truck (both me and my buddy)....our backpacks, money we didn't have on us, extra clothes, tapes, weed in the McNichols Arena parking lot one of the two nights of this run. We still had phun. Terrific show.
, attached to 1997-11-16

Review by sprobeck

sprobeck This was my first Phish show and my first ever show at an arena. I was 17. It was with some help that my friend and I were able to me make it to the show. Neither of us had a car so my Stepmother drove us down to Denver from Boulder and his Dad picked us up in the parking lot at Midnight. We didn't really know anything about Phish at that point. I remember talking about the band with some kids in my math class in school. That was my introduction to the idea but my real introduction to the band came with their performance on this Sunday night. We were both blown away. Trey particularly impressed us. We kept saying "that guy is an amazing guitar player!"
, attached to 1997-11-16

Review by frankzappasmustache2012

frankzappasmustache2012 Set 1
NICU is a fun opener. My Soul is good, Trey's solo is solid. BEK is throws some funk into the mix. Farmhouse is awkwardly placed, but is well played and sung. I like Old Home Place, but this ensuing string of breather songs kind of diminishes the value. Cars Trucks and Buses is a great song, so even though it's another short/no segue song I don't really mind it. Page has an unusually long solo, and it's really good. Gets kinda abstract in the middle with a descending chromatic pattern. Scent of a Mule is next and only had a page solo. Pete Wernick adds some nice flavor to this version. Poor Heart is fun with the banjo. Taste is the first really high energy song, and is played very well. Both Trey and Page's solos are really tight. Page is really on in this set. Hello My Baby closes. One of the few skippable sets this tour. Not BAD by any means, just not great flow and not much jamming.

Set 2
Timber begins with a minute or so of space, follows with a minute or so of composition, then jumps right into a very heavy jam. It begins with a very nice Trey lead, and then turns into a wall of sound, and then peters back into space where Trey sorta clumsily makes his way into Simple. The jam has a very heavy psychedelic feel. It's not the tightest jam, but it's very ambitious and has some interesting work from everybody. Simple has a short "jam" who's only purpose is to segue into Wilson. Wilson is good and leads into a pretty decent Hood. All Hoods from '97 have great, emotive playing from everybody. This one has an especially powerful peak. The > Isabella is fun, and Trey goes machine gun at the end.

Cool to have Bowie as an encore. Not very exploratory, but has a couple type II excursions. The entire jam has a very heavy feel. Not metal necessarily...there's just a lot of things happening at once, and Trey plays around with what sounds like power chords for a bit.

First set doesn't do a whole lot, second set is decent exploratory '97 Phish. Timber is probably the only thing from this show that I'd listen to again. This is only a testament to how great the rest of the Fall was, because this is by no means a bad show.
, attached to 1997-11-16

Review by Tbone

Tbone Timber -> Simple was the highlight for me, it was great while catching it live and I wore out a tape listening to that second set over and over again.
, attached to 1997-11-16

Review by theothr1

theothr1 as my at-the-time-girlfriend and i were lazing around in our hotel room the morning of this, the first of a two night stand in the Rocky Mountain High, we were watching the Andy Griffith Show...knowing the "link" between the two bands, as the program progressed, i was utterly astonished when this particular episode featured the Dillards (as The Darlings) who penned my favorite Phish b'grass cover, Old Home we watched, i wondered aloud what the possibilties were that any of the band memebers were also watching this ol' slice of TV Americana and, if so, would it provoke them to throw down some hoedown*...well, hoedown they did as they treated me/us to the always welcome "OHP" (which i firmly believe was prompted by SOMEONE in the posse de Ghoti having seen Mayberry's finest that morning) that i think about it, i find it strange that they brought out Dr Banjo for "SOAMule" & "Poor Heart" but NOT "OHP"......things that make you go "hhhmmmmm", indeed

*--all apologies for the Hannah Montana reference!!!!!
, attached to 1997-11-16

Review by ADAWGWYO

ADAWGWYO 11/17's little brother aint too shabby. Spacey atypical intro to Timber to start set two. Also dig the Hood>Isabella although not as good as the Hood->Isabella from 7/9/98.
, attached to 1997-11-16

Review by JerrysMissingFinger

JerrysMissingFinger Set One Notes:
NICU starts things up with a nice and relaxed, goofy, stoner-vibe, a theme that I am going to feel run throughout this first set. This is a nice way to enter a show and get your head in the right vibe to get a little floaty and giggly. My Soul is one that I can take or leave, but by the time Trey is raging a solo, I am pretty much on board. BEK is the best of two performances so far, the band takes their time to build the groove upwards, getting pretty dirty. I love this groove, and I feel myself inhabiting a headspace where all I want to do with my life is dance to this grimy funk. The debut of Farmhouse is cool, I let myself go to the image it tries to create, taken to memories of warm orange Northeastern late summers, and Trey and Page’s outro is a warm, light rainstorm. The Old Home Place makes sense, then, thematically, and I am feeling a rustic, folksy vibe. The crowd sounded into the Billy Breathes call, and I really think this is a beautiful song, and it sounds great here. This show has settled into a light, lilting, warm haze at this point, and we are coasting along, nice low-key vibes. CTB seems to fit right into this feeling, being an up-tempo call that doesn’t seem to upset this mellow cloud that the set is on. SOAMule calls attention to the UFOs that were witnessed in Denver over those two nights. This is a great time in a set for a guest, and Pete Wernick’s banjo fits here. Check out this ultra-bluegrassy Mule Duel, with the Poor Heart continuing that rustic, folksy vibe from earlier. I assume that Taste is going to end the set. I think that this set, while solid, should definitely not be your stop if you are looking for classic Fall ’97 space jams. This set, though, has been a goofy, happy, stoned, nostalgic jaunt in the countryside. Trey’s tone and note selection on this Taste is immaculate, and this is a contained, but museum-grade Taste. Hello My Baby, and an acapella closer in general, is the right call after that set. It just makes sense, like happy-goofy-nice Phish.

Set Two Notes:
You love to hear the *other* “mule” song come out right here, Jerry, the source of that smell earlier, with that building, hypnotic intro. Before the song proper arrives, the aliens seem to be landing to deliver that old Arkansas mule to us, and as we embark into the jam, Trey is providing some engaging tension-filled lines. Soon, he moves beyond this, and begins messing around with dark wizardry, swirling your consciousness with his bandmates, all locked in, as a group of conjurers. The conjurers begin to open a portal, a three-dimensional window that we all step into, overtaken by views of flickering proto-stars in the young nebula now enveloping our view. All the while, we can feel Jerry pounding outside, on the outside of the portal, but we will never see him again. Our astral body is floating past a very-Frankie Says-sounding gravity well, but our speed increases as we are pulled away towards some obscured giant cosmic object. Suddenly, its illuminated, as Simple explodes into being. Simple was totally unexpected for me, I did not hear it coming until it was right upon me. As the jam out of it develops, I feel that I am riding warm waves of sound over Rocky Mountain forests full of happy little trees. The warm sun soon begins to become obscured by something. Wilson drops, and it is a nice return to structure, snapping me back to reality. It rages, and the false ending builds to a point where it is making my headspace really chaotic, but I’m having fun going crazy. It subsides, and Hood is a good call here. I want to head back outwards and Hood is a pretty choice vehicle. I am really enjoying this second set, it is absolutely drizzled in that special Fall ’97 Sauce. During the jam I feel myself being shrunk down to size, both in terms of my ego and with a physical feeling of heavy top-down weight in my body. Soon though, I am feeling very comfy in the jam, sitting in a warm aural blanket. The peak is nutty, glitching out. Izabella is just damn cool, a great call to close this set. Trey playing the rockstar, raging Hendrix-jams obviously on his brain all throughout this tour. Second set was the winner here folks. Bowie encore feels like an extension of the second set, and they don’t compromise its jamming potential by sticking it in the encore spot. No, this is a fully realized Bowie. The intro starts to part the clouds between the levels of my accessible consciousness, and as we move into the jam, the tension begins to get really serious for a few moments, we peak and descend into madness.

Second set is classic Fall ’97 goodness, first set is friendly but unrequired listening.
, attached to 1997-11-16

Review by Bob_Loblaw

Bob_Loblaw The first set from this show is the polar opposite of the following nights. NICU is a great starting point. But along the way you get a weaker than most version of BEK the brand new and understandably sloppy Farmhouse. Billy Breathes is likely the best thing from this set and is fantastic throughout this tour. The Banjo section is pretty forgettable especially the rough transition back to the end of ScentOAM.

The second set is decent and Timber gets a random jam out of it. However besides that and a very patient and well played Harry Hood, this set thrives on segues. And the segue into Simple (which the guys had down already for years) and Wilson (not so common and definitely not so easy) are fantastic. Izabella is a nice touch at the end.

Bowie is always a welcome encore and is pretty well played. But it's nothing special and nothing new, but it beats another Loving Cup encore!

Overall I'd say this show is one of the more "Average" of the tour which I guess you can consider a mild insult considering most of this tour is 4 star or more worthy.
, attached to 1997-11-16

Review by kipmat

kipmat Although the guest appearance is nice, this first set is my least favorite set of the tour. I like the segue into Izabella, and a Bowie encore is impressive, but the Timber is the only song I wanted to listen to a second time. Still, this show would have been a standout in '96 or 99-00, which says a lot about how great this tour was.
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