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SPAC1 Recap

Posted 1 year ago by bertoletdown - 53 comments Link: http://phi.sh/b/51d79f38

Phish is sort of like golf.

It’s hard to step onto the tee box after six months without swinging a club and blast a drive right down the middle. Hitting buckets in the off-season can help keep the swing in tune, but sometimes it’s hard to make time for that when you’re a parent, or you just debuted your first Broadway musical, or there are elite symphonies who want to play with you. That kind of stuff.

Phish didn’t slice one out of bounds in Bangor on Wednesday, but let’s just say they missed the fairway wide right and dropped an uneven tour opener that was destined to be largely forgotten by time Dick’s rolls around, save for a few sparkling moments. But if anybody deserves a mulligan now and then, it’s Phish, no?

Fore!

A cooling evening thunderstorm gives way to clearer skies, but not before forcing lawn patrons to the balcony for shelter and delaying access for those headed in. Phish tweets from its official account that fans are welcome inside (subtext: Let’s get this show on the road) and takes the stage around 8:23, give or take.

A two minute conversation yields a concise “Kill Devil Falls” opener, which is followed by a greasy and kinda sloppy “Moma.” Mike and Trey try valiantly to hook up, and to punch through with an idea or two, but it never quite gels. This is followed by a weird-but-not-in-a-good-way “Sample” that fumbles along through the final chorus and attacks the outro solo tentatively and quietly. Perplexing.

Roses Are Free” proceeds like most 3.0 versions (i.e., eschewing improv) but delights the SPAC crowd no less. A punchy “Birds of a Feather” gears things up a half notch.

Yarmouth Road” makes its debut next, two nights after being sound-checked in Bangor. This new Mike number stirs up a sunny Caribbean vibe not unlike “Sugar Shack” – and at this point, any brand new material is welcome evidence of creative collaboration among the band. More, please!

On paper, “Bathtub Gin” looks like a likely candidate to rescue this wayward set, but is retired before it can realize the peak it seemed to have in its sights for a time. A satisfying “Nellie Kane” pairs up with a pristine “Army of One,” which remains one of my very favorite Page tunes for its elegant changes and poignant, personal lyrics.

Trey struggles mightily through the opening section of “My Friend, My Friend,” which is ironic given how perfectly practiced he is with it in a symphony setting. “Cities” builds to a nice boil before surrendering to a “David Bowie” that once again finds Trey fumbling on the fretboard throughout the composed section. The jam is bright and lovely, however, and flirts briefly with true greatness, tacking a confident finish onto a halting set with lots and lots of songs but not much command.

But ask for redemption... and ye shall receive.

Enter set two, which opens with a cover of “Energy,” a tight little pop bauble by a Denver indie band called The Apples In Stereo. This fetching tune features rich harmonies reminiscent of “Golden Age” and yoganic lyrics like the ones in “Light” – which is what arrives next.

“Light” spent 2012 cementing its status as the baddest jam vehicle of Phish 3.0, and there’s a lot of pressure for this one to perform tonight. But perform it does, eventually, exploring a variety of themes and delivering a generous dose of hard-won, technicolor glory at the peak. It’s one of those great moments at Phish shows that lash out and eat all of the less-than-great moments around it.

“Light” segues into “Mango Song,” which is interestingly placed and quite well-played. “46 Days” is a fucking workhorse, and the band delivers a hot, purposeful version that yet again segues perfectly into “Steam.” Trey beelines for his Whammy here, and summons the whales for a jam that convincingly marries blues, space, and soul.

Phish buries the accelerator now and charges into “Drowned.” Trey leads the jam for a spell, then hands the baton to Page, who soon hands it off to Fishman for a change of tempo. The jam is yet another whale-hailing affair for Trey, but it’s patient, free-ranging, and ultimately fulfilling.

Slave to the Traffic Light” is yet another perfectly placed song in a well-constructed and well-played set. It’s a soaring, tear-jerking version... which is to say that it’s a perfectly average “Slave.” A smoking “Character Zero” closes out the frame.

In the end, it seems to me that the SPAC audience got to hear two bands for the price of one tonight. Granted, the first band had an off gig.

But the second band breathed fire and took names.

Comments

bark_obama Reply
Nice review. Pretty spot on with the second set/encore. I thought the Moma Dance was above average. I love the end of that song and wish they would give it proper jam treatment, but at least Trey kept it going for a few extra bars. Gin was average/good, but yea it had potential for more.
Score: 4
WickerAndCork Reply
WickerAndCork I especially was moved with the beautiful, patient and yet funky segue from 46 Days to Steam. Also, I think we will get bigger things from Steam this year and I sure hope that it gets into more regular rotation.

Note on the webcast: new camera angles and more cameras made for a much more interesting couch experience however I did endure a few pauses and two times where I had to restart the connection. Overall, though I really liked the webcasts direction, quality and variety.
Score: 2
frankstallone Reply
frankstallone I think they knocked all the rust off in Bangor. Tonight sounded like the band that left off in 2012. Really enjoyed that 2nd set it had a great flow. Light continues to deliver and I loved the 46 days
Score: 2
bertoletdown Phish.net Staff Reply
bertoletdown @WickerAndCork said:
I especially was moved with the beautiful, patient and yet funky segue from 46 Days to Steam.
With good reason. The segues in the 2nd set were great tonight and this one was the best.
Score: 2
Cantaloupe Reply
Best show since Dicks. No question.
Score: 3
FACTSAREUSELESS Reply
Trey beelines for his Whammy here, and summons the whales for a jam that convincingly marries blues, space, and soul.

so what's the verdict? Has Trey switched guitars again, or what?
Score: 0
Mcbuckeye45 Reply
Mcbuckeye45 Couch tour steam echoed much of the same vibe. The new lighting seemed vibealicious but won't be able to see 1st hand until Atlanta.

Yarmouth - redic!
Score: 1
yembbq Reply
yembbq @Cantaloupe said:
Best show since Dicks. No question.
lol
Score: 0
NigelTufnel Reply
NigelTufnel You guys are insane. I thought Bangor was an excellent show, and I will comment more in detail as to why I think that in an upcoming show review. I have not heard last night, but the setlist looks decent and I'm excited about the new tunes. Are they playing the tightest, unflubbed songs ever? No, but even when they do and tack a fiery type 1 jam on it you guys consider it a "standard" rendition. Perhaps it is...but I think you also may be setting your sights a little high.

I have been as critical as anyone out there of this band in 3.0, peaking with the early Summer 2010 run and persisting through the debacles of 2011 when they played inconsistent, with the highs being some of the watershed (or should I say, Storageshed?) moments of this era.

But in time I have realized that comparing shows and stacking them up against each other from a musical standpoint is a waste and an unnecessary exercise. Every show is unique, from the setlist to the versions therein and to the audience's experiences, which obviously cannot be captured on tape. To say "Worcester was a better show than Bangor or Bethel or (fill in the blank)" is inaccurate. It may be that you prefer listening to that show, for whatever reasons. But that's where it ends.

And that is where my criticism of the band ends as well. If they are New Years '11 unrehearsed, that is one thing. But if they play an enjoyable show that is musically decent with some really fresh playing and they're happy, that's all that matters. Case in point: my codeword with friends for when I think a show is bad is "they dropped a Darien". However, I know of many people who think highly of this 2011 show, just as I think highly of Bangor. It's apples and oranges on a large scale day to day basis.

Anyway, I hope everyone in attendance enjoyed the show and for those going tonight, I'm jealous but also happy for you. Live it!
Score: 8
Skiguy Reply
Skiguy Nice start! Of course some rust needs to be cleared but no complaints here! Two cheers for Yarmouth Road! Whoop Whoop
Score: 2
RyanF Reply
Agreed, Nigel. After listening to Bangor, I really don't know what the complaints are. They sound tight as hell, with a high level of group dynamics/feeding off each other. Just because a jam doesn't go all over the place doesn't mean it isn't a great, cohesive example of why we love this band. Cheers!
Score: 2
april81972 Reply
Mango was "quite well-played?" It was horrific! Holy moly. Couch tour for me and I literally thought they might stop this one in the middle. Poorly placed and not a good version at all.

And the whale calls gotta go.

Sick Slave though.
Score: -1
fluffhead108 Reply
fluffhead108 After listening through this morning, it's a solid show. A step-back from Bangor, I'd say, which was very well rounded and well played. This one has a lot more "oops" and "uh oh" moments. They don't ruin things, but they're there.

Light is great, especially the mellow outro. Overall I'll take the Bangor GA over this Light, but it's nice to have a couple of stand-out highlights already. 46 Days> > Steam is the other highlight to my ears, but to be honest I think I come down on the "worried" side of the Steam jam debate. That song has so much potential, but if Trey is going to play like that in the jam, I just don't see myself going back to it to relisten.
Score: 0
CmdrDarklighter Reply
CmdrDarklighter A little rusty, but they will get there!
Score: 1
whatstheuse324 Reply
whatstheuse324 I had lawn last night. I thought Bathtub was the highlight of the first set. Even with a flub or two, I had a good time doing my stab-motion/thriller dance during My Friend, My Friend. Bowie went on an interesting tangent into a major key for a little bit instead of the standard minor key jam.

I was happy to hear Mango Song, but Steam> 46 Days> Drowned was the bomb. Character Zer0 encore felt like it had some extra oomph in the jam. Good times. Luckily the rain held out until the show ended despite all the lightning that was blasting over our heads during the last half of set 2. Got drenched walking back to the car but it was all in good fun.
Score: 0
MajorPayne Reply
MajorPayne Did nobody notice how sick the Cities jam before Bowie was? I feel like its not getting any love here...Light jam/segue into Mango Song reminded me a little of San Fran night 3 last year and the segue from 46 days into Steam was funkalicious! See ya in Chicago!
Score: 2
mmbyem Reply
I wish I could put my "senses" from the shows in words like many of you! I have the ears just did not pay attention / practice enough in English class. Good review! As a once pretty good golfer (NCAA D1 Scolarship achiever LOL) I really enjoyed the Golf analogy and can totally relate! You can hit balls at the range (even in VT) all winter long, but when spring and summer come, "you step on that tee box", and look out at the environment or ultimate goal in front of you, it is going to take a few rounds to feel comfotable regardless of how many years you have been doing it. The band has not been playing TOGETHER in FL all winter. One last thing to add to the golf reference that I learned a long time ago..you can start of a 4 day tournament (or 3 Day Run) with a fairly poor round or 9, but hang tight, loosen up, make the cut, and win....or for the band bring it home and just have a fucking ball or why play!!! (Thank you PHISH and Thank you all!)
Score: 2
spaced Reply
spaced @NigelTufnel I mean this in the nicest way possible, but what are you doing here if you think comparing and analyzing the merits of shows is pointless? That's what this place is for. But of course, you clearly don't truly think that, since (a) you're here, and (b) you disagree with OP's assessment of Bangor, so you obviously have evaluated its merits yourself. It sure seems to me that your dismissal of the idea of Phish criticism is being selectively applied here.
Score: 3
MajorPayne Reply
MajorPayne @Cantaloupe said:
@yembbq said:
@Cantaloupe said:
Best show since Dicks. No question.
lol
What's funny about that?

Really? It's only the second show since Dick's...
Score: 1
phunky58 Reply
Not the greatest show and not the worst, just an average show imo. Hopin they pick up the exploration bigtime (5 song sets). Though in all fairness I give the boys a pass it is only the second show of tour. That being said I can't wait to get to Holdmel already.
Score: 1
twitty Reply
Average show at best I'm sorry to report. Thought Trey was extremely sloppy and over used his whammy/whale bar. Watched the webcast and just re-listened to it and other than Bowie and Slave the show was kinda of a trainwreck. Just my opinion. Hoping they iron things out by Chicago.
Score: 0
makisupaman Reply
makisupaman No discrepancies from this reader. I did notice, via webcast, that Steam had been sped up ever-so-slightly and appeared tighter than its previous incarnations. If they haven't already recorded that track for the new album, they seem to be gearing up for it (maybe during the layoff between Hollywood and Dicks?).

Definitely some struggles last night, but, as @bertoletdown elegantly phrases it, the Light was, "one of those great moments at Phish shows that lash out and eat all of the less-than-great moments around it." As this weekend progresses, the ratio of great to less-than-great will no doubt shift in the faithful's favor. Song selection was pretty great last night, too, considering it's only the second show "on the course," to continue the golfing analogies. Looking forward to tonight!
Score: 2
Pauggroove Reply
Pauggroove @MajorPayne said:
@Cantaloupe said:
@yembbq said:
@Cantaloupe said:
Best show since Dicks. No question.
lol
What's funny about that?

Really? It's only the second show since Dick's...
I seem to remember some shows in New York City at the end of last year...
Score: 7
twitty Reply
@FACTSAREUSELESS said:
Trey beelines for his Whammy here, and summons the whales for a jam that convincingly marries blues, space, and soul.

so what's the verdict? Has Trey switched guitars again, or what?
I think so.
Score: 0
Fleezer Reply
Fleezer Another new guitar for Trey? Anyone else notice this?
Score: -1
bertoletdown Phish.net Staff Reply
bertoletdown @april81972 said:
Mango was "quite well-played?" It was horrific! Holy moly. Couch tour for me and I literally thought they might stop this one in the middle. Poorly placed and not a good version at all.
I wish I had takesie-backsies on this one. You're right and I was overly generous.

But I stand by the rest of the recap. :)
Score: 2
MajorPayne Reply
MajorPayne Haha, whoops. I kinda realized that after I posted it...
Score: 0
kiddomarink Reply
I really enjoyed the slower, more patient approach to the outro solo on Sample. What you called "perplexing", I found to be WAY more effective than the usual balls-to-the-wall guitar that usually heralds the ending segment. I remember thinking at the show that this was the first time in a long time I've been really impressed by Sample.

Also, as usual in 3.0, mango was butchered right from the get-go. It's baffling that Trey would call for it despite the fact that he very rarely nails the guitar part throughout the chorus and the vocals are usually pretty shaky.

Good review altogether. The highlights of this show (Bowie, Light, 46> Steam, Drowned) definitely made the 4.5 hour trek from Philly worthwhile.
Score: 0
pronice Reply
pronice In reality, it should have been Bangor nights 1, 2, and a possible 3rd night. A night off at the start of a summer tour and in between shows 1 and 2 may(?) have changed the momentum a bit. I felt as though the band was playing great & the Bangor show was beautiful! I'm definitely looking forward to Fall tour. I hope the boys play the 'new' Bangor Auditorium. Or at least come back to Portland or Augusta!!
Score: 2
elfinito Reply
@twitty said:
Average show at best I'm sorry to report. Thought Trey was extremely sloppy and over used his whammy/whale bar. Watched the webcast and just re-listened to it and other than Bowie and Slave the show was kinda of a trainwreck. Just my opinion. Hoping they iron things out by Chicago.
A sloppy Mango sure...and more whale call then I like...but there were some deep interesting movements through the entire set..,way more latter set exploration than I have seen in a while.

Saying Light, 46days, steam, drowned, and slave were train wrecks is a stretch to the say the least.
Score: 1
frankstallone Reply
frankstallone @bertoletdown just wanted to say I really like your reviews and always find them to be pretty spot on. exactly what i'm looking for in a show recap, thanks
Score: 0
ivy_light Reply
ivy_light A little rusty maybe, but if they remain headed in the same direction that they took with last night's show, I will be very excited.

It's easy to shake off the dust but more difficult to change the characteristics that define a tour.

Does that make any sense?

Nevermind. Enjoy this video, which was my first and only encounter with the music of Apples in Stereo before last night's show. It's from a compilation disc from the Csartoon Network's Powerpuff Girls. And, yes, I paid full price for the CD and still have it my collection.



Score: 1
bertoletdown Phish.net Staff Reply
bertoletdown @frankstallone said:
@bertoletdown just wanted to say I really like your reviews and always find them to be pretty spot on. exactly what i'm looking for in a show recap, thanks
Thank you, kind sir. Really do appreciate that. They're fun and fulfilling to do.
Score: 1
AlbanyYEM Reply
AlbanyYEM @ivy_light

Yes. That makes perfect sense. You can tell they're trying to do that with some new material and 2nd set tinkering. It's the 1st sets that could use some work imo...
Score: 0
ivy_light Reply
ivy_light @AlbanyYEM said:
@ivy_light

Yes. That makes perfect sense. You can tell they're trying to do that with some new material and 2nd set tinkering. It's the 1st sets that could use some work imo...
Precisely. I hope the learning curve is positively inclined from here on out. I kind of feel that last year started out really strong in Worcester but plateaued a bit in AC.

It doesn't have to be steep, but consistent positive development is more important to me over the course of a tour.

$0.02 and all. I'm still very much a noob.
Score: 0
ivy_light Reply
ivy_light @ivy_light said:
Precisely. I hope the learning curve is positively inclined from here on out. I kind of feel that last year started out really strong in Worcester but plateaued a bit in AC.

It doesn't have to be steep, but consistent positive development is more important to me over the course of a tour.

$0.02 and all. I'm still very much a noob.
EDIT: I wanted to add that consistent improvement over the course of a tour is more important to me because I think it means they're constantly working. If they're interested in what they're doing, I'm definitely going to be interested as well and engaging the audience is what it's all about, right?

.net Overlords: Why can't we edit comments on blog posts? Am I missing something?
Score: 1
Flufftube Reply
Flufftube A very criticism review, not in a bad nor good way, but straight forth. The guys have their moments when they all can sync together and when they don't.

I agree with Nigel, every show is unique in its own way. Don't put pressure on the guys saying that, oh this show sucked compared to this show(their own favorite). They know their own mistakes or when they felt they were playing a little sloppy. You don't have to call them out on it.

Overall a great show! The guys played very well! Kudos on the 46days, liked very much!

I hope everyone enjoys tonights show, as of myself as well!
Score: 1
AlbanyYEM Reply
AlbanyYEM Overall I thought song choice in the first sets of 12 was not great, but they PLAYED the songs a hell of a lot better than in previous 3.0 years. The two shows so far seem to be more about finding a comfort zone and then exploring rather than jumping into the deep end immediately. Also, I think that we may have been spoiled by 97 and the 97-style dick's night one in terms of expecting too much from the 1st set. For me it's more about breathing life into the songs instead of which songs/set flow/big jams. Don't get me wrong, I'd love to hear those nuggets from above type set ones but it's just unrealistic to expect that even somewhat frequently. Either way I think I agree that a slow build style learning curve along with some new stuff might help us avoid some lulls over the course of a tour a la 8/21-29 last year.
Score: 0
Graavy48 Reply
I am old fashioned I guess as I loved Bangor and thought last night just slowly faded away. Granted, the lawn section I was in transformed from a happy family/little kid jumping around festival to a madcap post-apocalyptic war zone, but still, I found the second set lacking and overall loved Bangor. Reminded me somehow of the Essex Junction/Vermont flood relief show I attended two years ago. I am getting too old I think for the tour and maybe need to take to the couch and Hoodstream or webcasts...
Score: 0
Scott Reply
No, Mango song was not well played. It was a catastrophe and it threw off my grove. Such a nice treat, but wasted. Parts of the Light jam, Slave, and especially the 46 Days-> Steam were stellar, but overall, I agree with the jist of the review, this was an inconsistent show.
Score: 1
Runaway_Jeff Reply
Runaway_Jeff Show was ok. Always nice to see phish back so I don't complain tooooo much. That said they're clearly workin out some kinks. In theory the set lists these past couple shows were fine for me. I catch up from pnc on. Hope things start rolling downhill. But again it's all good. Me and my people are old, and we've seen plenty good shows from 95 to 13. Damn.
Score: 1
deBebbler Reply
deBebbler First two shows of this tour were better than most of the summer 2009 shows.

Not a fantastic start, but in the right direction.

Good recap.
Score: 0
TwiztAround Reply
I get so frustrated at phish 'fans' who constantly complain about the set lists or about how every song isn't a '95-style epic 45 minute jam. I've never seen a group of people who claim to love a band but yet bitch about them more than complement them. Chances are, most people in this category aren't musicians and have never played at a bar on an open mic, much less in front of 20,000 people 5 nights a week. I challenge any of you to

a) name another band with a list of roughly 500 tunes in their active repertoire
b) physically play a tune as hard as MFMF or mango and play it perfectly every time
c) play any of said 500 tunes with a multi million dollar light display going on in the background less than 10 feet behind you
d) come up with a set list featuring variety and change, EVERY SINGLE NIGHT

As a professional musician, speaking from experience I can tell you that not every note in every show is going to be perfect. It is these less than stellar moments that make the amazing moments possible. If every note was played perfectly every time and every song raged for 40 minutes, as some 'fans' expect, then there wouldn't be any amazing moments at a phish show because there would be no difference between anything. It's the yin and yang of Music. If they didn't play, say, BDTNL (a song that takes a lot of heat from people), then the raging Reba that might follow it wouldn't have the same effect. On 6/23/12 in burgettstown, the first five or six songs of set 2 absolutely raged. It was 45 to 50 minutes of pure phish genius. Once that 7th song started, in this case Bouncing, 'fans' started to whine about it. That BATR was an absolutely perfectly placed song though. If every single tune was a complete smoking rager all the time it would become monotonous and boring. That breather tune perfectly set up the killing Julius> slave that ended the show. Had it just kept on rocking hard throughout the whole set, it would not have had the same effect.

Moral of the story:
These four men are absolutely fantastic musicians, and part of being a fantastic musician is making mistakes. It happens. So what that SPAC's mango song wasn't the tightest? You try playing any one of 500 random songs from memory. Can't we just enjoy our favorite band for what they are? Incredible innovators and improvisers? After 25 shows since 1997 (I know many of you have seen many more than me) which include the Hampton comes alive shows and New Years '10, I finally realized that 'set list chasing' ruins the show. They'll always play things that you weren't expecting and things that 'disappoint' you if you worry about the set list. Instead, focus on each individual show as a personal expression by the band, and enjoy every tune. In Charlotte '12, they played a bunch of classic ragers. Fluffhead, Bowie, Crosseyed> McGrupp, Tweezer> Hood just to name a few. These tunes were all amazing,but what set that show apart for me were the 'breather' tunes. The energy during heavy things (much to the disdain of the whiners) and the horse> silent made that show. It made all the other amazing tunes have those phishy moments that we all know and love. Look at the bigger picture, folks! They're not always going to be perfect, but that imperfection is what makes the other moments possible.

Lets all just be glad that our favorite band is still touring 30 years later with all the original members (sorry daubert/holdsworth you guys don't count). How many other groups can say that? Not many. And let's be honest, who wouldn't rather see phish struggle through mango song than see some other crappy band? I'd take the struggling mango any day of the week.

My fellow phishermen/phisherwomen, please keep this in mind the next time the boys play a sour note. The bottom line is you're still at a phish show. Life could be much much worse.

See y'all at merriweather!
Score: 4
Greasykeys Reply
The Mango was awful. They screwed the ending up six ways to Sunday and they were begging Paige to end it with everyone in time. The shows in SPAC are largely forgettable and they seem so much more rusty than in 2012. Trey and Fish seem confused and not at all in tune with each other. Some of the jams seem to go nowhere. The shows have been a C+ at best.
Score: 0
FACTSAREUSELESS Reply

a) name another band with a list of roughly 500 tunes in their active repertoire
b) physically play a tune as hard as MFMF or mango and play it perfectly every time
c) play any of said 500 tunes with a multi million dollar light display going on in the background less than 10 feet behind you
d) come up with a set list featuring variety and change, EVERY SINGLE NIGHT

right on, bro. Preach it.
Score: 0
AlbanyYEM Reply
AlbanyYEM "Complaining" about flubs and miscues isn't quite the same as pointing out there existence while reviewing a show. Part of that process is obtaining some sort of objective standard by which one is able to compare to other shows. As there is a subjective element to which jams move you, the review has to be more focused on "facts" like literally what songs were played and how well they were played. We all know this isn't 95 and no one expects it to be, however, a fair comparison (@Greasykeys) is how tight they were last year compared to so far this year. And they are much less tight. I'm willing to give them the benefit of the doubt because the year just started but then again they were pretty tight on the opening run of last year.

Bottom line is that I think you may have conflated criticism and complaining. Overall, at least the complainers are paying attention and give someone an objective basis instead of naive fluffery. If each show is such an amazingly unique and only positive experience then we cannot review any of them.

Seems completely fair to me to hold the band to the very standards they created, especially in this era. As for "a"-"d," yes of course that's true and part of the reason we all love phish. But does it follow that, therefore, we can't point out any of the negatives of any show? In fact, maybe we should just copy and paste that list as the review for every show.

You've set up a false disjunction so either a) WE LOVE PHISH AS MUCH AS YOU DO AND WOULD NEVER "COMPLAIN" or b) don't appreciate phish because we ever say anything negative about a song/performance.

Seriously, can't it be both? Love phish and because we love em are totally willing to point out the lows as well as the highs?
Score: 2
bertoletdown Phish.net Staff Reply
bertoletdown @TwiztAround:

I play music as well. Would you agree that there is a minimum standard of competency that you would hold yourself to when it comes to your command of a song before you'd step onto a stage and play that song (knowing that mistakes will always happen)? There is for me, albeit far lower than Phish's.

Phish trusts their fans and sometimes they lower the bar and take a flyer with a tune they haven't played recently, or practiced, hoping that muscle memory will carry the day. Sometimes it does and sometimes it doesn't. Noting that in a blog or in discussion comments is pretty much the norm around here and has always been. Phish obviously doesn't care one way or another, so I'm not sure whose delicate sensibilities you're trying to protect.
Score: 3
phunkycold Reply
@Fleezer said:
Another new guitar for Trey? Anyone else notice this?
I think he's gone back to the old orange Langedoc he played from '96 - '10.
Score: 0
noisyjon Reply
I thought it was an older Languedoc, too. Had Paul's signature on the machine head. No Ocelot or Mar Mar....and NO WHAMMY BAR!!! Where is THAT coming from? Was SPAC epic? No. Didn't need to be. Just glad to see the boys again, as always....back on the train, as it were.
Score: 0

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