, attached to 2010-08-09

Review by waxbanks

waxbanks The second set, particularly the Sand > etc. > Mist run, is on par with the second sets from the Greek. And that's saying something! There's no one jam to equal the stunning 8/7 Light, but the overall flow of this set is uncanny. The most interesting moment is the 'Mind Left Body' jam during the Caspian outro, which has all the barely-contained intensity and eerie psychedelic menace of the original Paul Kantner song (especially powerful after Trey's delicate quotation of the Caspian vocal melody at the onset of the jam). But there are otherworldly moments throughout the set: Page's improvised tenor harmony line on the final Number Line chorus, Trey and Fish's nasty unison rhythms during the Tweezer opening, the effortless modulation to signal the Boogie On segue, the blissful final minutes of Piper, the way Mountains in the Mist emerges from Trey's guitar wash like a certain distantly-remembered Lady with a Fan, the joyful encore...

The first set is studded with gems too: Stash, Light Up, the whole shebang. Even Summer of '89, which many fans openly despise, fits right in here - Trey's solo is emotionally open and lively. The jam still hasn't quite found its final shape, I think, nor its ideal length, but it's pretty and admirably forthright (not to mention a clever left turn away from the rhythmic tempo of the vocal section).

Don't let anyone tell you the early segue out of this (goopy, funky) Tweezer is a problem. (It might be a disappointment, but that's got more to do with the listener than the music...) It's all part of the bigger picture. After one listen I think this second set is stronger, end-to-end, than any closing set of 2009, and worthy of the already-epic Summer of '10.


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