, attached to 1999-12-15

Review by Dundun

Dundun Thought I'd go back and review my first show ever:

I was 16 when me and a buddy hopped the MARC train from Baltimore down to DC to catch our first Phish show. I'd already been decently active on r.m.p and had a couple shows on tape but we were way pumped to finally see the real thing. Being noobs, we got to the show a little before ticket time.... the only person in our section were a father and his 8-year old son who we're looking for their first YEM in 12 shows.
After about an hour, the boys came on and Mike dropped the bass line...
**DwD** - a great way to start off a show for me- got the energy kicking and the crowd coming alive. This version is just over 15 minutes long and has lots of energy, but the jam doesn't go anywhere special.
**Farmhouse** - I believe it was a single at the time and Phish played it ALOT during this tour, so everyone in the crowd knew it well and may have been a bit disappointed.
**Bathtub Gin** was next, and at just over 17 minutes this is a pretty solid version for a first show. I remember totally being lost in the song and asking my friend "What song were they playing". First time at a show I was lost in the Type II.
**Wolfman's Brother** - The jam for this one almost sounds sleepy and stalls for a bit before heating up near the end. Not a very notable version.
**Guyute** - a straight forward and clean version.
Train song - I'm a fan of this ballad and wish they played it more. Not quite as long as some of their other breathers but nice and dreamy.
**YEM!!!!!** Awww man, our whole section was going nuts for the kid and father in front of us. This song really brought out the immense difference between "being there" and listening to the tapes... the tramps, the colors, the vocal jam with CK5 swinging the lights around the arena as the boys put on a Doppler effect. The version is solid, definitely not as good as the one played on 12/18. Trey almost flubbed the BMGS segment, it went something like this "Boy...........Man........Shhhhhhhhiiii---God......Shit".

Setbreak... I'm at a phish show and having a blast.

Set II:
**Sample** opener- noob friendly straightforward.
**Maze** - Man.... the lights... the lights... I was sucked into trance by Mike's bass line and just totally digging this song. The jam is definitely type I, features some nice build + release.
**Free** - nothing to see here.... WAIT, WHAT? This is an absolutely awesome version of Free clocking in at about 16 minutes. At about the 4 minute mark, Cactus does his best PIMP impression and starts slapping the hell out of his bass, it goes on for a couple minutes until Trey joins in with some broken time-machine effects on the mini-keyboard he had during the fall tour. Short notes, really groovy, almost a carnival-like quality. I'm not exactly sure if this qualifies as type II since Mike stayed in key for almost the whole jam, but if not- it's type 1.9. Stays pretty much clockwork (looping and grooving) until about the 11/12 minute mark when Trey and Page start to do interesting things on top of the underlying pattern. Right about 12:30, you can hear Fish try to steer the band back into Free and after a few measures Trey joins back with his guitar in STYLE. Some beautiful playing for the next two minutes until they're "floating in the blimp a lot". Really a great, must-listen-to version.
**Dirt**. A much needed cool down after the last two grooving jams. Nothing out of the ordinary here though.
**Reba** - it took me a long time to warm up to Reba, and to this day I'll still skip over the first two minutes or so of it until they launch into the jam. This is a really nice, but typical Reba jam. Beautiful to be sure and worth a listen.
**Halley's Comet** - they jammed the hell out of this song a week before but unfortunately this version is pretty standard. A welcome song none-the-less
**Suzy** - Ms. Greenberg always pumps up the energy in the room and ends a show pretty well. This typically high energy version features some nice Page work in the middle. To my ears, this was the only segue of the night.
**Frankenstein** - Edgar Winters' "They Only Come Out at Night" was one of the first 10 CDs I bought, I had no idea Phish covered this song. Some more typically great Page work in this version. Such a great song to see live.
**Rocky Top** - Fun song to close out the show, some ending Frankenstein teases.

Overall - Because most of songs were in heavy rotation, this isn't a show that sticks out in this tour. But, featuring about 5 songs that go over 15 minutes, a YEM, and a contender for best-version-ever (Free) it's not a bad show to be my first.


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