, attached to 2013-07-10

Review by mattyb5000

mattyb5000 A solid 4-star show. The boys are proving that 2012 was no fluke. The momentum they carried all through leg II of summer 2012 right through the Denver and MSG runs has continued with the first shows of 2013.

In general, I found both sets to be about the same in terms of how well the songs were played - most are very good versions with a few standouts in each set.

Set I was devoid of any extended jams, instead favoring quick pop-mart versions of contained, inside-the-box type I jams lasting just a few minutes each. Things started off pretty well, then I found myself a little bored by the succession of Halleys - Bathtub - Lawn Boy - Ya Mar. All versions were generally well played, but all those 1950s feeling loungey-type songs with lots of down tempo moments left me really wanting an energy boost. It finally came in the final three songs of the set, Stealing Time, Theme>Suzy, all above average versions that got my blood flowing again. Suzy was especially a high energy, fist-pumping version that I'll be adding to my Summer 2013 playlist.

Set II starts off with the highlight of the evening, and dare I say the highlight of the tour to this point, in the form of Crosseyed and Painless. A solid 15+ minute song with a shift into Type II jamming about 8-10 minutes in, which led the boys into deep waters of exploration. My favorite moments were at the blissful groove around 12:30 and then when Mike starts dropping bass bombs via his distortion pedal around 13:30. That got the hairs on the back of my neck to stand up. Bring it, baby.

Next, a well-played but ultimately average Hood, followed by a kick-you-in-the-ass version of Axilla with Fish playing an almost Punk drum beat the whole way. His sticks were flying!

Next up, a killer version of Sand that worked its way into a mellow, chill groove with everyone taking a step back and listening to one another. Aside from the C&P jam, this song is a great moment to listen to the guys listening to EACH OTHER. Except, well, Trey does that whole "ripcord" thing at the end and VERY AWKARDLY smashes his way into Light while the rest of the gang are contentedly jamming out on Sand. Trey, Trey, Trey. Come on.

Light. Okay, I'm going to be the contrarian here. This version didn't do it for me. It was fine. Average. But I've listened to it three times now and honestly, Trey is just noodling around for the first half of it and the jam doesn’t get any sea legs till the final 3 minutes, when the guys finally coalesce around something worth exploring.

Then it's on to a playful portion of the evening, which consisted of not one, not two, but THREE false endings. Good Times, Bad Times has been a reliable set-closer for a long while, so when I heard Trey go into it I was thinking "wow, that was a short 2nd set." Then, after a very good rendition, it's on to "Slave." Okay, I thought. Nice song to close out the set. But no. Then it's time for Rocky Top. Now I know it's not the end of the set, but it kinda seemed that way near the end, didn't it? Nope. Finally they bust a nut with "Cavern" and the place went wild. Nice solid ending and an above average version of Cavern to boot (or should I say, taboot.)

Possum was a nice encore song, a good way to close out the night.

Anyhow, in all it was a very good show. In the long run it's going to be forgotten in favor of other shows with more meat to them, but it's another example of how even an "average" show for Phish in 2013 still means fans will walk away with permagrins as they exit the venue.

Phish on!

Good Times was fun, as always, lots of energy there.


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