Golden Age

Originally Performed ByTV on the Radio
Original AlbumDear Science (2008)
Phish Debut2009-11-27
Last Played2024-04-20
Current Gap1
Recommended Versions2011-07-02, 2012-07-03, 2012-09-01, 2013-10-20, 2013-10-27
Last Update2016-11-06


Phish has played some unlikely covers over the years.  Songs like “Rhinoceros” (8/3/98), “Mirror in the Bathroom” (11/27/98), “Gold Soundz” (7/7/00) and "In the Aeroplane Over the Sea" (6/26/10) all fall outside the band’s general comfort zone of classic rock, jazz and bluegrass covers (of, course, there have been even stranger covers, but those were usually inspired by the presence of a guest, a particular occasion or just general silliness).  On 11/27/09TV on the Radio’s “Golden Age” took its place among that group. 

Unlike those other covers, however, the band really seemed to hit on something with “Golden Age” (and, in turn, “Golden Age” seemed to light a fire under the band).  Coming as it did roughly halfway through a fall tour some were criticizing as stale,  “Golden Age” (complete with an extended Trey solo) set the stage for one of the stronger sets of the tour and really seemed to act as a turning point for the tour as a whole.  Nearly all of the highlights of the 2009 Fall Tour both from a jamming perspective (“Ghost” > “-7” on 11/28 and “Light” on 12/2) and song selection perspective (“Crimes” on 11/29, “Peaches” on 12/2 and “Glide” and “Scents” on 12/4) would come after “Golden Age.”

Appearing on TV on the Radio's critically acclaimed album, Dear Science, (named best album of 2008 by Rolling Stone and Spin, among others), “Golden Age" is an unabashedly optimistic song on a mostly pessimistic album (the title of the album comes from a note band member, Dave Sitek, left in the studio stating, “Dear Science, please start solving problems and curing diseases or shut the fuck up.”). Anchored by a catchy bass line and bolstered by the addition of the Antibalas horns and a soaring string section, the original version creates a wall of sound that would be a challenge for any four-piece band to match.

TV on the Radio "Golden Age"

Luckily Phish proves up to the challenge.  For nearly a year, it seemed like "Golden Age" was destined to be a one-timer. Thankfully, though, on 10/11/10 in Broomfield, CO, "Golden Age" made a second appearance, taking its place among similarly unlikely covers like “Roses Are Free” and “Sabotage” that were so well-received that they made subsequent appearances. 

“Golden Age has since made the transformation from "rare treat" to a regular part of the rotation. Standout versions were played on 6/8/11 (where it was also teased later that show during both "Weekapaug" and "2001”); 7/2/11 (at Super Ball IX, where Phish began exploring the Type-II potential the song has oozed ever since its debut); 7/3/12 (beautiful ambient jamming from Jones Beach); 10/20/13 Hampton (17+ minutes, on the heels of an epic “Tweezer”); 10/27/13 (poly-rhythmic bliss from Hartford in one of the best shows from one of the band’s best tours, yet still somehow underrated); 7/18/14 Chicago (Fish demonstrating his MVP credentials); 9/4/15 Dick’s (peakless, but persistently awesome); and 10/28/16 Vegas (at 25+ min, the undisputed heavyweight champion… just relentless and not merely a top version of Golden Age, but one of the finest jams of the 3.0 era). 

"Golden Age" 11/27/09 Albany, NY

Submit notes/corrections 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.

Credits | Terms Of Use | Legal | DMCA

© 1990-2024  The Mockingbird Foundation, Inc. | Hosted by Linode