, attached to 2010-06-27

Review by Campster

Campster I am generally not a fan of 2010, but perhaps unfairly. So I went back to this show and gave it a listen.

Walfredo opens with a great nod to eating crabs at MPP. It's a decent little run through the tune & the band digs into the catalogue for the subsequent Mellow Mood. Tasteful playing by Trey (although there's a noticeable sour note) in MM & I like the laid back opening pairing. Stealing Time ratchets things up nicely before they kick into Divided Sky. This is a solid enough version (although unexceptional) and Tela follows, which is always welcome, if not perfectly executed. Interesting kind of vibe to this show, pretty mellow, but I actually like the flow up to this point. My Soul, Ginseng Sullivan and Sample is kind of an "off" run of tunes, which kind of don't fit and are more jukebox in nature. A run through a typical 3.0 (enjoyable) Gin, Brian and Robert, &(solid enough) Antelope closes the set nicely and brings the previously mellow vibe to a screaming conclusion. (B&R fits nicely between the two jammers, I have a soft spot for the tune). Antelope also contains some B&R teasing from Trey in the intro (not sure why not annotated?)

It's funny - I tend to appreciate a set I like this, perhaps due to personal association with airy outdoor summer shed sets at MPP. The set has good song selection and flow (aside from those middle 3 forgettable tunes), but generally speaking, I enjoyed this more than I thought I would. More sum of parts than any individual performances - which frankly you'll find better versions of every tune played elsewhere in Phish's storied career.

Set II is a fun and jammy set. A Wilson set II opener always sets the table nicely and I like it plenty in that slot. Meatstick to follow is not my favorite call, but this version is typical fun, a soaring Trey solo, with an added (& plenty nasty) outro jam that resolves nicely & surprisingly into Saw It Again. The 9th minute of the outro jam really showcases Trey and Mike exchanging some great phrases, before Trey starts the move (which is not exactly 100% buttery smooth, but hey). This initiates a wonderful segue-fest type set, with another pulsating, spacey outro jam bleeding into Piper. The ensuing Piper represents the best 3.0 version to date at the time, replete with a fine jam that is unfortunately not annotated in the setlist. The 13th minute has some very nice jamming, which moves towards deeper space (the last minute is very good spacey stuff). After some fun jamming we land in Ghost which is fun & cookin' and manages to be more of a launch pad into Jumpin' Jack Flash (perfect segue) which careens back into a Saw it Again jam completing a stellar & fluid segment. The resolution into Contact is always welcome and an enjoyable, in unremarkable YEM caps off a fine set in style. Fire rocks adequately in the encore slot.

Overall, I am happy I chose to dive back into one of 2010's finer shows, as this one really showcases an "ON" night for the band in their early 3.0 permutation. This captures the magic of Phish appropriately and rightfully send the community buzzing about a show that fits the bill as a 4/5 - which were not as common in those first couple years of the band's return. The style of Trey's playing leans on some of those pitch-bender Digitech Whammy fueled notes known as the "Whale-Call" but his mastery of the tool is actually quite impressive when removed from it's overuse. I'll also note, one reason why I didn't care for 2010 much is this tone/style, and Piper is a case in point here. It's a very good jam, but the opening jam really leans on the pitch shifter and the bends are just off enough to make it less than enjoyable at times. I should also note the soundboard on Spotify sounds excellent with Mike's depth really shining nicely.
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