9-18-00 -- Blossom Music Center, Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio
review submisions to me, dan schar at email@example.com
Date: Sat, 7 Oct 2000 03:24:46 EDT
Subject: 09/18/00 review
I should preface this review by saying a few things...
First of all, I'm 23 years old and this was my 22nd Phish show, so I decided
it'd be cool to take my 53 year old mother with me (believe it or not). But
she is the hippest lady you'll ever want to meet. And I don't mean hip in the
way you're thinking. She doesn't smoke pot, and no, she doesn't wear
tie-dyes! She's just the nicest, most down to earth woman you'll ever want to
meet and also loves good music.
A couple years ago we we're riding in my car together and listening to YOU
ENJOY MYSELF. Right before the "Boy!" part she turned to me and said, "Cris,
this song is beautiful!" Ever since then she's always said that she'd like to
go to a show with me sometime. I was amazed! I said, "Mom, I don't think
you'd be up for that kind of thing". I mean, she didn't know what it was
exactly like... the lot scene, the drugs, the crowd... the flying glowsticks.
But this time around I had no one to go to the show with, so I thought "Why
not?" And besides... she did treat me for my ticket!
So on the 40 minute drive to Blossom I'm prepping her about what will go on
and how crazy I can get, let alone everyone else. When we pull into the lot,
she's like "Oh my God! Oh Cris, I don't know if this was such a good idea..."
I laughed and told her to relax, and we were early so I decided to get us a
couple beers to drink before we went in.
Soon after I got back to my car with the drinks, we saw one of the most
disgusting sights both of us had ever witnessed. As you may have seen, there
were security guards and police on horses walking through the parking lots.
Well, a couple of them clip-clopped past us as one of these big steeds
decided to take a huge shit on the gravelly road. Ok... understandable... but
this isn't the gross part (even though it wasn't pretty). The gross part was
when a few minutes later, this lonely old dog wandered around and started
checking out this monstrous pile of dung. Then we saw him start sniffing
it... then we saw him start licking it... then we proceeded to see him start
munching on it. Oh it was foul! We were so grossed out. My mother rolled down
her window and yelled "Puppy No!!!" But he just kept on keeping on. God it
was sick, but I couldn't help myself from chuckling a little bit. Then this
very mutt walked over to some heads that were tailgating right in front us.
My mom rolled down her window again and said, "He wants to give you a kiss!"
That's when my chuckling turned into hysterical laughter... I mean I was
busting up. But I digress, so let's get on with the show. I just thought it
was an amusing, although disgusting, little anecdote.
Anyway, this was my first show since 07/15/00 at Polaris, which was pretty
disappointing (except for scattered highlights). Now some of you might have
read my review of that one and I got plenty of hate mail because of it. So
please, don't e-mail me all over again bitching about my opinion of that
show. Grow up. Being a fan means you can praise, as well as criticize, when
and where you see fit. And I doubt my review of this show will get much
negative attention, considering I thought this show blew Polaris out of the
water (settle down people, this is just my two cents... remember?).
Well here we go! Front of the lawn, in the center. Not bad considering that
Blossom absolutely sucks if you're in the middle to the back of the grass.
You can't see dick. And when those lights went down, my mom seemed as pumped
as I was. I was a little upset that they were coming out so late. It's as if
we got two nighttime sets. I like to have at least one by twilight when it's
an outdoor venue. But no fear, that didn't affect my enjoyment of the show
So the boys came out and didn't waste much time before unleashing a raucous
version of CARINI. Awesome! As soon as it started I went berserk and my mom
started to giggle at me. But I was jazzed because I love CARINI and it was my
very first one. When they were playing it I actually said to myself, "This
show is gonna rock!" I knew right then and there... sometimes you just get
that feeling. Trey began it by singing: "I saw you with Carini and a naked
dude... I couldn't eat my food," or something to that effect instead of the
original "I saw you with Carini and a piece of ass, you filled your house
with windows but those windows had no glass," line. Weird shit... I was like,
"I didn't see a streaker". But really, it was insanity. I just love how a
good CARINI can sound so god damn evil and wicked sometimes (i.e., 04/03/98).
And the jam to it was nice and tight, with Mr. Page dropping in those sweet
keyboard fills... the ones that sound like lasers firing or something. I love
Next came the obligatory, but always fun SPARKLE. This had my mom a-clappin',
which I was hoping she wouldn't keep up for too long (it was a little too
loud and a tad embarrassing). But then I thought of how cool it was that she
was having a good time, that I wasn't gonna have the gall to tell her to
chill out. She of course stopped after about the first verse. Good SPARKLE
though. The lights were always great, especially during the fast and furious
ending part. Mom also brought the binoculars (the yuppie she is) so we could
see a lot of the onstage action better.
THE SLOTH then rose up out of the ashes of the SPARKLE finale. I like how
this song kind of just fades in (duh duh duh DUH DUH!). It was a kick ass
version though. No mistakes or anything from what I can remember. I'm also
glad they played it because I've only recently started to really enjoy this
song. Don't ask me why. What's weird is when Trey said, "Italian spaghetti!"
it made me think of the "Lots of spaghetti" line from HALLEY'S COMET. Mmmm,
maybe a sign, a hint.. some kind of foreshadowing of what's to come...?! Ahh,
I got that thought out of my mind. You never want to get your hopes up when
you're wishing for a HALLEY'S.
A hot MAZE slowly began to gel after the loud "Oh!" to end THE SLOTH.
Everyone went off on this song, but I remember it being a tad messy once in a
great while. But you know what, performing mistakes here or there don't
bother me. Now if they persisted throughout the whole show, that'd be a
different story. But then again, I don't think Phish has the capability of
coming close to doing that. MAZE was led by Trey and Page though, with Page
hogging most of the spotlight. I don't think he can help it. That song is my
favorite when he's doing most of the hot-dogging.
Another of my all time faves, GUELAH PAPYRUS, was at the plate next. It was
my first since my very first show, the beloved 11/07/96 in Lexington. That's
a pretty notable gap. And this GUELAH was tight... maybe even flawless with a
perfect, note for note ASSE FESTIVAL segment. My mom loved this tune,
especially when Mike and Trey did their little GUELAH hop dance (I was hoping
they'd do it... God I love those guys!). She watched them through the binocs,
This set was so fun already, and I was hoping for a good bluegrass tune to
throw into the mix. "A coal sack full of GINSENG" is always nice. But instead
we got the equally adorable MY MIND'S GOT A MIND OF ITS OWN. I love this song
for some reason. The lyrics are just so cool, like "I can't count to one
without thinking twice." That's sweet. I like how MIND OF ITS OWN plays
around with words and opposites, fire and ice, night and day, that sort of
SAMPLE IN A JAR followed and was the first notably sloppy song of the night.
When they did the heavy guitar lick crash (or whatever) before the "I wheeled
around.." part, they were noticeably off, more than once even. But it was
still fun and I hadn't heard it in a while (I missed the one at 07/14/00
because I was stuck out in my car trying to get into Polaris during that
monsoon). And by the time Page's "You tricked me like the others.." line came
around, this SAMPLE was red hot. But it almost seemed like the best part of
this SAMPLE was when it dastardly segued into RIFT. I mean this is a solid
double arrow segue people, and it was fucking sweet. This RIFT snuck up out
of nowhere and had the crowd fully psyched about it. But this RIFT might have
been a tad sloppy here and there too, during the vocal exchanges especially.
But for me RIFT is always fun and exciting anyway, plus it's the title track
from my fave Phish album.
SLEEP was next... This song is ok I guess. I don't mind hearing it on tapes.
But at shows it's kind of a yawner. Thankfully it's only three minutes. Maybe
they play it to give Fish a breather (not like he ever needs one or
anything). I like how it went along with the sleeping motif of RIFT though.
I was hoping they'd pick it back up before the set break, but the mellow
PRINCE CASPIAN began. I don't really get into this tune till the end when it
starts rocking with the false ending and all the surrounding chaos. The jam
is definitely better than its meaningless, redundant lyrics. I was thinking
they wouldn't end the set with CASPIAN, because that's not very normal fare.
Maybe a nice CAVERN or FRANKENSTEIN... and hopefully no CHARACTER ZERO (or
CHARACTER HATING IT as my friends call it). But no, they just ended with
CASPIAN. That was all right though. It was a solid version and an unexpected
closer to a great set.
The second set started after a shorter break than I'm used to. In fact, I was
just making it out of the pisser when they fired up BOOGIE ON REGGAE WOMAN.
And I don't usually venture anywhere for anything when I think a set's close
to starting. But oh well. For some reason I've become an absolute REGGAE
WOMAN magnet ever since I've heard them break it out at 12/07/97. But I think
a lot of people probably feel the same way since this song has officially
become overplayed. Nevertheless, it's a good tune and always fun to groove
to. My mom was digging it too... God she's so funny. I just looked over at
her and saw her dancing to REGGAE WOMAN at a Phish show and I thought to
myself, "This is priceless". Ha!
After a while the REGGAE WOMAN theme segued into a peculiar little JAM (not a
very long one) with Trey getting on his small keys. Now I don't wanna sound
rude or anything, but what the hell is he doing over there? Isn't he supposed
to be doing what he does best, i.e., playing the Languedoc? I mean sometimes
he can come up with some cool sounds on that thing, but he should leave the
keyboards to Mr. Page... seriously. Trey, please chuck that Casio (or
whatever it is) out the window after this tour. If you want to do something
besides play guitar, at least bring back the snare and woodblock from the 96
But Trey had to dilly-dally for a while before leading us into TWIST AROUND
territory. Being one of my fave songs they've penned in recent years (SPOCK'S
BRAIN and VULTURES are better) I don't mind hearing this. But it's also
become officially overplayed. And I know some people will probably think I'm
crazy when I say this, but I like the younger versions from 97 better (the
same goes for GHOST). This TWIST, or the TWIST jam thereafter I should say,
was really long and stretched out. Almost too long.
Right before it got really boring, I started to hear hints of something
Gamehendge-ish. I thought it was gonna be TELA, which would've been lovely,
but instead it turned out to be McGRUPP. Not as much of a fave as said TELA,
but it's a beautiful song with some lovely melodies. Mom thought so too as
she got a kick out of the "He looks too much like Dave" part.
The McGRUPP was gorgeous and of epic proportion, one of the longest
renditions I've ever heard. When it concluded, I noticed Trey walk over and
take a sip of his drink. And this, my friends, diverted my attention just
long enough from center stage to not see Mike casually step up to the mic and
start doo-wopping. Oh shit! It was indeed HALLEY'S COMET! I went absolutely
apeshit. I couldn't believe it. They blessed crummy old Blossom with the
first HALLEY'S of the tour -- very tight!!! This HALLEY'S was magical though,
everything a HALLEY'S fan could hope for. The lyrics were perfectly executed,
and of course, the hair raising HALLEY'S jam that followed was exquisite. It
flew well out of control just like the tail of that very comet is right now
out in space. It was the definition of outstanding and lasted for at least 20
minutes. With a nice glowstick war to accompany the spacey, climactic
meltdown of the jam, by the end I felt like I was the one orbiting, then
exploding, bit by bit out in space. "Even Carl Sagan can't shine my
shoes..."... Oh yeah baby, take those words to heart! This is a must hear
By the time it finally wound down, I really thought I heard the beginning of
FEE. But they just let the storm of the jam fade away, while eventually
leaving the stage. Weird! Since when do they just end with HALLEY'S?
Ironically, a HALLEY'S > FEE was played later this tour. But it was ok, they
could've honestly not even encored after that HALLEY'S and I still would've
been satisfied. I think that was the craziest my mom had ever seen me get. I
mean I danced for the whole fucking thing. And it was even fairly cold that
night and I was still sweating bullets. Yow! I remembered telling my mom
before the show that that's what I wanted to hear most... and I got it! How
often does that happen? She said, "Cris, that song was so fun! Do they always
throw the glowsticks during it?" I told her no and she was like, "Well they
should, they look like little comets!" I then proceeded to laugh out loud.
God she's so cool!
The encore began with AXILLA I. Man I love this stuff! This show was already
so good, and what an unexpected encore. I was hoping to hear Trey sing
"Summer sitting out by the pool" instead of "I dropped a buzzard in the
sand", but can an AXILLA fan like myself really complain? I think not. But
since it was an odd choice for an encore, I thought that maybe they'd finally
give us the much desired AXILLA I > AXILLA II combo. But no, it was not meant
to be.. not this time anyway. Maybe one day though. TASTE then found its way
out of AXILLA's conclusion (no part two ending though) and was icing on the
cake to one of the best shows I've seen all year. I don't care for many of
their newer songs (i.e., post-Hoist material), but TASTE is wonderful. This
version was a tad on the short side though, and considering that it was
already after 11 on a Monday night in Cuyahoga Falls, it's briefness was
understandable. I'm guessing they exceeded the curfew this night. Oh well...
fuck authority. It was sooooo worth it.
But all and all, mom loved the show and said she'd gladly see them again. How
awesome is that?!? She finally understands what it's all about. She's like,
"You have to make me a Phish mix tape now Cris!" No problem mom... after all,
she did carry me in her womb for nine months and buy me my ticket for this
great show! And kudos to the fans around us who were polite and talkative,
making her feel right at home. It was just an all around great show and great
night, and an experience I'll never forget in more ways than one.
Walking out I asked who impressed her the most. "Well they were all
excellent, and obviously great musicians," she said, "but Page is just
fabulous!" ...Ha! She's learning already!
Date: Wed, 20 Sep 2000 13:44:33 -0700
From: Brad Wolf firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: review - Blossom 9-18-00
to start off, I was very impressed (as some have already said) that the venue
was as calm and comfortable as it was. there was little searching, if any
(just backpacks I think), and it was very relaxed and laid back......this
made the night go very smooth.
as usual, my friends and I made our predictions for the night. I had said to
them that I had some really weird feeling that they were going to play rift
and probably halleys.....and to my surprise, I was correct. around 7:45 or
so we went in and found our spot on the lawn in the center....we had a great
first set :
carini - this was a great set opener. I noticed that they came out and
instead of waiting until the crowd died down a bit they started right up when
everyone was still cheering. this definately got everyone up and moving.
got a lot of really great sounds from trey during this, and they really did a
great job playing right into....
sparkle - always a favorite....fun to hear, fun to watch......props to CK for
the lights on this sparkle, probably the best I've seen yet for that song
sloth - I love this song and when the first notes started to come out, I was
very happy.....they jam was decent, and it went very well with the theme of
the night (which seemed to be a kinda enegetic funky jam style)
guelah - I really enjoyed this song.....though I have heard it before, I was
very excited to hear it again. they were really on fire during this
point....if seemed that they weren't missing a thing, the jams were comming
together really well and everything to this point sounded great....the
dancing on stage was nice, kinda funny
my mind - wow!!! I was very impressed with this song....have never heard it
in concert, and was really happy. really fast paced, and very energetic,
they were cruising along really well here
sample - I love this song.....have heard it before, it was nice to hear it
again.....I did notice a couple little slip ups, but it was definately a well
rift - I just had this feeling that they were going to play it.....and to my
surprise, those first couple notes made my night. they were going at mach 3
and it amazing....as I said before, they just weren't going to stop and they
just kept crusing through the songs, playing one good one after another
sleep - I like this song, a great slow song to break it up a little
bit.....it really was a nice version
caspian - very good chioce for a closer. I've heard it before and it always
excites me to hear it......I don't think I heard trey say anything after the
song was over like he normally does.....it really ended in a mellow mood, no
really big loud notes to end it
very good first set, I was really happy with everything so far.....during set
break, I went looking for my roomates sister, and we found her talking to
some friends from some previous shows.....we hung out fir a while and then I
went back up to where we were sitting. I talked with the ones around me,
waiting for the set to start.....I was thinking they were going to play
another versitile set with tons of songs and lots of variety.....boy was I
set II + encore:
boogie - came out with a great opener. everyone was dancing their hearts out
around me, I'd like to assume it was the same everywhere else. this is
probably one of my favorite songs and I was really happy they opened it with
jam - this was really nice funked out jam with some really fat riffs by both
trey and mike and page was really playing great.....I heard some great jammy
beats from fishman....all in all, with trey on keys for a little bit, this
jam was great and it playe dvery well into....
twist - I really like this song, probably my favorite off the new
album....glad to hear it.....it was beautiful, very slow and sounded great.
mcgrupp - how could you not like this song....it fun, it funny, and its just
a great song to boogie down to. I was loving the jamming that was going
on....everything was really funked out and sounded awesome....then....
halleys - yes!!! yes yes Yes YEs YES!.......this was awesome.....I'm loving
everything about this....the jamming, the songs, the mood, the glowstick
war....everything was great....what a great way to close a show
axilla 1 - this was extordinary.....very happy to hear it, as were most of
the people around me....the crowd was really pumped up, I saw tons of people
jumping around and really getting down hard core.....they were on fire with a
prefect lead into
teste - this was just done beautifully.....they played it soooooo well, just
like the rest of the songs they played that night.....
all in all, this was an amazing show, especailly the second set.....I stood
in the lawn for like 20 minutes after the show with like 30 people talking
about how in awe they were from the show.....I almost had some sensory
overload, everything was just spectacular
can't wait for tonite in cinci.....glad I got to goto blossom, definately
worth the drive and time spent and I'm looking forward to some really fat
jamming tonite also
hope to see you all there
Date: Tue, 19 Sep 2000 21:40:55 EDT
From: phil silak email@example.com
Subject: Cuyohoga review
It seems that most people have failed to mention the strangest occurance of
the evening. During the setbreak music the cd started skipping, and sounded
a lot like the beginning of NO2 imo, and continued for about two minutes
before the staff changed the music, to a hilariously loud ovation...and that
was a phat ass haley's.
Date: Tue, 19 Sep 2000 21:12:25 EDT
Subject: Blossom Music Center
Plain and simple. Mike left the stage in a fury. He ripped the amp cord our
of his bass and stormed off the stage at the end of the show (Taste). It was
very strange. Mike absolutely wanted to play more, or maybe something
special. We will just have to wait until Cinci to see what comes about. I
hope the time off for this next year will ease this tension. Good luck
everyone, good shows, travel safely, be smart. - Eric
Date: Wed, 20 Sep 2000 09:59:11 -0400
From: Jeremy Welsh Jeremy.Welsh@udapgh.com
Subject: Phish - 18 September 2000, Blossom Music Center
I really wasn't planning on going to any shows this Fall. The dates and
venues didn't seem to work with my schedule (work, not having a car, etc.),
and, to be quite frank, I didn't really feel that "drive" to catch some shows.
I am not sure why, but I didn't - I found the three shows I saw this summer
enjoyable (Star Lake, and the Polaris stand) and I knew the band is planning
on taking a hiatus, but I just didn't feel driven to find tickets, arrange for
a ride, plan a trip.
But early last week, as I started to read reviews and study the set
lists, I started to get the Itch. You know that Itch - the hunger for the
excitement of a live show, the fear that you are going to missing something
amazing, the desire to dance and smile and laugh. I thought, Maybe I should
catch just one . . . So I started looking for an extra and a ride to Blossom.
Only and hour and a half away from Pittsburgh, Blossom was definitely do-able
- even for a Monday night. Late last week, my friend Dave emailed me and let
me know he was going to have an extra, and he was planning on coming back
after the show. It was set; I was going to see Phish for the 21st time, at
the Blossom Music Center.
Although neither of us had been to Blossom before, Dave and I were
thinking it would take about two hours to get to the venue. So we left
downtown Pittsburgh around 4:15 and made it to the Ohio Turnpike without any
problems. I had a ball of excitement stirring inside of me - I couldn't
remember the last time I went to a Phish show on "the spur of the moment."
The Polaris shows were a full trip - renting a car, camping with my brother
and sister, spending the night. This show was the complete opposite - the
ticket wasn't in my possession, I wasn't driving, we weren't spending the
night. It was kind of refreshing, actually.
Before the show, as to my normal ritual, I delved into the previous
shows' set-lists and tried to get focused on what I should expect. I was
excited by the variety in the Tour's song selection thus-far - maybe a Mike's
tonight, or a Stash, or, after listening to 12.31.95 set II (thanks, Greg!),
maybe the first Jim of the tour? I wanted to hear Stash and Runaway Jim
(would have loved a Jim!) and my long shot was McGrupp - I was really hoping
to hear McGrupp at Polaris and it didn't happen.
The night proved to be one of pleasant surprises - as Dave and I neared
the venue, we were surprised by the lack of traffic. It was rather amazing
that we were able to drive right into our spot in the lot, without any sort of
wait, and without having to pay anything! We were smiling before we got out
of the car . . . The lot we were placed in was pretty close to the venue - I
guess most of the vending and such was being done up above our spot in the
grass lots. We walked up there to just take a look, but nothing really caught
our eye - for the most part, everyone seemed to be relaxed and mellow. There
was a really nice vibe floating around, with a lot of identifiable students in
the crowd. As we made our way through the check-points (around 7:15), we
couldn't stop commenting on the surroundings - Blossom very well might be the
most beautiful place I have ever been for a show. The surrounding trees, the
wooden pavillions, the rolling hills - it was gorgeous! And the weather
wasn't so bad either. Didn't get patted down at all (wasn't hiding anything,
but I still noticed . . . ), and even though police were definitely visible,
everyone seemed really calm and relaxed.
The entrance is to the right of the stage - Dave and I agreed that we
weren't used to being on that side of the stage, so we made our way along the
expansive hill of a lawn and found a spot near the pavilion, just left of
center. Again, we marveled at the beauty of the place - the hill was great,
with pleanty of room, and the shed definitely caught my eye, for its shape and
use of materials (I am an architect - forgive me).
Pre-show: Tom Waits' Mule Variations
Set One (8:10) Carini, Sparkle, Sloth, Maze (13 min.), Guelah Papyrus, My
Mind's Got a Mind of its Own, Sample > Rift, Sleep, Prince Caspian (9:11)
I was really pulling for the Runaway Jim opener; Dave was thinking of
something a bit "weirder," responding to the Tom Waits that was piped over the
PA. I guess he gets a point as my first Carini began around 8:10. This was
definitely enjoyable; they rocked-out pretty hard and got everyone off to an
enegetic start. Not the "boogying" sort of opener (I really didn't know how to
"dance" to Carini), but a good one none-the-less.
As Sparkle began, I didn't really know how to react. But I guess it did
a good job of keeping where Carini left off.
The Sloth put the first big smile on my face - I was hoping to hear this
one over the summer, so this was a nice surprise. Many in the crowd were
singing along to this Gamehendge tune. (I never remembered what was after
"Spends his nights in bars!" until last night - "Glasses tinkle!" Right?)
As Maze began, I headed up the hill to visit the rest room and try to
surprise my sister with a phone call - she didn't know I was going last night.
It wasn't that I don't like Maze, but after the very cool Maze->Shafty->Maze
from Star Lake, I was expecting a standard version. The Page organ section
was pretty good, as was the Trey shred section. But as I settled on the
wide-open hill to the left of the stage, I realized that they were really
playing hard! It was very cool to watch the action on my own section of
grass, away from the crowd - I could see the band right under the edge of the
shed's roof, and I could see the lights play across the expanse of crowd on
the hill. A great way to listen and watch this jammed-out version of Maze.
Trey just wouldn't stop! This was stretched to around 13 minutes.
As I stood up, planning to make my way back to our spot, I was shocked -
and pleased - to hear the opening notes to Guelah Papyrus. What a great song
choice! I can't get enough of this PON tune, and this didn't disappoint at
all. The beginning included a neat little intro section, forcing me to skip
and dance and boogy my way back to Dave. Trey's pause at the end seemed to be
drawn-out a bit. I had never realized Mike and Trey had a dance for Guelah, so
that was fun to watch. Very cool . . .
What next but bluegrass? My Mind's . . . fit this slot rather nicely.
Many in the crowd were doing their own versions of jigs during this one (can't
help but think of that classic Bugs Bunny episode where he leads those
brothers/cousins/? in sqare dancing . . . ). This was my second First Ever of
As I mentioned above, last night was a night of surprises - one of the
nicest things about last night was experiencing the "beauty" of songs I really
don't think about. Sample in a Jar is one of those songs. It never is on my
list of "Wants" but last night once again proved it to be a song that I can't
help but enjoy. A definite crowd pleaser. It was pretty standard until the
end when it became rather spacey . . .
. . . out of which appears Rift. Damn! Just another choice in this set
where Dave and I just look at each other and laugh. I couldn't tell you the
last time I heard this one. (10.19.96, to be exact! 18 shows ago . . . ) I
really love the alternation between Page and Trey in this song, both in the
vocals and the playing. Page milked his pause at then end for all it was worth
("Silence contageous . . . " was accompanied by lots of roaring from the
crowd; kind of ironic). *Somewhere in here, Dave leaned over to me and said
that Halley's Comet would fit perfectly in this set. Well, I guess he would
just have to wait an hour or so. ; )*
The Sleep was a nice break. The only Farmhouse song of the set . . .
. . . was to be followed by the only Billy Breathes song of the set,
Price Caspian. This version was very nice and deliberate - they took their
time in building and Trey was restrained. Page really shown on this song, and
had some really nice "helix" interaction with Trey (spiraling in and out of
each other). I guess Page has a new piano? - well, he really worked it this
evening, and stood out even more in the second set. About 8 minutes into
Caspian, they turned directions and the song began to rock out. I really
wasn't expecting the set to end, but Trey said something into the mic as
Caspian ended, and that was it. Around 9:11 . . .
All in all, this was an incredibly fun set. So many surprises, a great
selection of older songs. I really wasn't minding the shortness of it,
expecting some more treats in the second set. The crowd really seemed into
it, with lots of balloons filling the air and cheers going up from different
groups of students (lots of cheering from the Oberlin contingent). Break
lasted about 40 minutes, with Dave and I taking up most of the time talking to
Aaron (good to meet you). I kept trying Phil on his cell, but to no avail -
one of these days, Phil!
Set Break: anyone know if that was Marc Ribot and Los Cubanos Postizos?
Set Two: (9:53) Boogie On Reggae Woman (around 14 min.)->Twist Around (9
min.), McGrupp (w/ reprise?), Halley's Comet (8 or so min.)->jam (10 min.; ending
Encore: Axilla Part I, Taste
I was still hoping for Runaway Jim, or maybe a Tweezer, to open the
second set. But I was certainly not disappointed to hear Boogie On Reggae
Woman. While the Star Lake Boogie On->Funky Bitch was very well done, the
Polaris version was a little lacking - I was holding out for something big.
And boy oh boy did the Boys deliver. Mike was nice and fat, very clear coming
over the speakers, and was very funky. As the song began to jam, around nine
minutes in, the song took on a bit of a reggae feel and Trey really started to
work his wah pedals. Soon after, I thought I heard the song moving in a 2001
direction (Trey distaining the notes, Mike heading that way . . . ); but
Fishman must have had something else in mind because he started to play a bit
of a marching beat. 12 minutes in, Trey played around a bit on the keys;
Twist appeared around 14 minutes or so.
This segue was very well done - Trey began to play lead maybe 30 seconds
or so before the main theme of the song was played, and the rest of the band
seamlessly transitioned into Twist. Having not heard Twist since Big Cypress,
I noticed a bit of a restructuring in the chorus section. Five minutes into
the song, it became really spacey with some stacatto playing by Trey. This
was followed by some really outstanding playing by Page - his piano was nice
and clear as his playing was really jazzy. Very, very good. The rest of the
band joined-in on this jazz sort of theme. And about nine minutes into the
song, after this little jazz section, the band went back into Twist. Whew.
What a way to start the set!
After a little discussion, I briefly thought I heard the first few notes
of Lawnboy come from Trey. But no! It was McGrupp! Wow, was I happy - as I
said above, I was hoping for this since the summer, or maybe even Big Cypress.
I thought this was a very good version - Trey seemed a bit off on some of the
composed guitar parts, Page more than made up for it (and the vocals were dead
on). Page's section was, well, as I wrote in my book, "glorious." His piano
playing went on a lot longer than I was expecting (seemed longer than my last
McGrupp, 07.05.98 in Prague) - and I was eating all of it up. Mike was
accopanying Page in a wonderful way, playing some really good notes in a high
octave. And near the end of the solo, Fishman added some beats on the toms.
As the main theme of the song ended, they started to explore a bit of space;
this was around 14 minutes in. As the space slowly faded out, Trey again
played the main melody of McGrupp - a reprise?!
At this point, I could have probably cared less what they played next.
I was really lovin' it. And in thinking about this show, trying to "prepare"
myself, I really didn't think about Halley's - not until Dave suggested it in
the first set. So after Trey talked with Mike, and they all stepped to the
mics to start the opening vocal jam, Dave and I just went crazy. Jumping up
and down, hootin' and hollerin' - I was going to get my first Halley's!
(just for the record, I still have yet to hear Scent of a Mule and Squirming
Coil, and have only heard one Tweezer and Cavern). The vocal section was
really well done, as was the main section of the song. At about eight
minutes, it really took off - not too sure what came first, the glow-sticks or
the band rockin' away. But as the glow sticks began to fly, the band seem to
turn things up a notch. I wasn't close enough to see if any were heading
towards the stage, but quite a number were flying through the lawn. The band
continued to rock even as the glow sticks slowed down - it almost sounded like
an Antelope jam! Great stuff . . . Trey was rocking back and forth on his
feet, and as usual, Fishman was a machine.
And without any warning, Trey walked off the stage. Dave and I looked at
each other, not knowing what was going on - was he using the bathroom? was he
getting another guitar or something? It couldn't be over, could it?
Clocking in at 58 minutes? The jam was still going! Without any word or
acknowledgment, Trey walked behind Fishman and left. The rest of the band
jammed a bit longer, and then stopped and left as well. I don't even think
Page waved to the crowd. Very strange . . . does anyone know if there was a
curfew they were worried about? (If so, how about they start on time and
don't take as long of a set break! Just venting . . . ).
Dave and I were a bit shocked; oh, well. We started to make our way up
the lawn, anxious to get a head start out of the venue to beat the traffic.
As we were walking up, we heard a good version of Axilla, pt. I. Always have
enjoyed pt. I more than pt. II.
We waited to see if there would be a second song - when we heard Taste
begin, I told Dave I wanted to stick around through Trey's solo - I am a very
big fan the Taste solo. I love the way Trey makes his guitar "talk"on Taste
(actually, I like most of the Billy Breathes guitar work). This Taste was
good, and I was intrigued by Trey's restraint during his solo - he was playing
rather quietly and intently. Interesting . . . As soon as the solo was done,
we made our way to the car.
Getting out of there proved to be pretty easy - we had to watch for the
fans who were crossing the street in the dark, but that wasn't too hard. We
made it back to Pittsburgh around one or so . . .
All in all, I found this show to be very enjoyable. I am a bit curious
about the short sets, but I am not letting that dampen the great time that I
had. The song selection was great, the jamming was very well done
(interesting, broad in style, upbeat - not too atmospheric at all), the venue
and weather was perfect, the vibe was chill . . . And one of the most
important high-lights was that Page was clear and active! I really enjoyed
his piano work though-out the night. Good to see him back!
Thanks for reading; for all of you catching any of the remaining shows, be
prepared to have a great time! Take care all, and be good family.
"I call Architecture frozen Music."
-Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, (1749-1832)
Date: Fri, 22 Sep 2000 21:08:22 -0400
From: Bigswifty Bigswifty@buckeyeweb.com
Fact: My first phish show in 5 years.
Fact: I own an Hammond
Fact: The first solo I hear on a Hammond from my boy Page is uhhh ummm what
the hell is he doing and why for so
hmmmmm. I know my vision was blurry but I could swear that the rest of the
band was just staring at Page waiting for him to stop. Then that vibe seemed
to permeate through the rest of the set.
Fact: Second set was SHORT! A real blast, but short.
Date: Thu, 21 Sep 2000 13:37:53 -0400
From: Carl Persson firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: 9-18-00 Blossom
Well, It's been a few days since the show, but I am still hearing it in my
head! What a beautiful night! The scene was friendly, but the COPS! Geez!
It's always this way at Blossom though. No hassles from what I could see...
but there are always tons of cops at Blossom. We got into the lot no problem
by using the back "local-yocal" entrance :-) and found a spot to chill for a
bit before the show.
We headed into the venue at about 7:30ish and found our seats. Not bad ones
inside the pavilion, just to the left of the soundboard. I knew the sound
would be great and it was! Those of you who have commented that they needed
to play louder were most likely in the grass ;-). Blossom is a gorgeous
venue, with the hills, trees, etc... and the structure is a neat
architectural sculpture as well, but the sound has a hard time getting out
of the pavilion as the roof comes down very close to the ground. Anyhow -
ONTO THE SHOW!!!
What a show. My wife and I have been going to shows for the past 8 years (or
9?!? who can remember) and to too many shows to keep track. But this was a
special night. Definitely a top performer. They pulled out a lot of old
school tunes - Lucy w a Lumpy head ( Carini ) which I have never heard live
:-) and didn't actually know that they have pulled back into circulation.
Great jam at the end that just went on and on... at least in my ears! :-)
Sparkle is one of those tunes that surprises me every now and then... and it
usually has to do with my mood. I hated the song when it came out on album,
but it has tended to become more meaningful as I have grown older. This
night it was great - I was in a great mood... and it just fit nicely after a
Then came out the real specialness of the evening. The Sloth -> Maze ->
GUELAH!!! -> My Mind. Damn! What a list of great old tunes! If only they had
stuck a Jim or Reba in there! ;-) Anyhow, I got my self going on Sloth and
Trey and Mike were just kicking Maze around like a soft beach ball.... got
me going down and dirty with some ultra crazy jams. What is that? Can my
ears be correct? GUELAH?!? This was a surprise... not sure when they played
this last... but it's been years for me. Such a happy tune - and got the
I took a restroom break at this point after guzzling tons of water due to a
sore throat that's been bothering me... and I came out to My Mind. Nice
tune. Love hearing this one that gets the crowd into a great happy mindset.
Sample was pretty standard (isn't it always?). Then Rift was another great
surprise! :-) The opening notes immediately got me dancing my tail and same
with everyone around. The whole joint was bouncing and bopping... Chris'
light work was simply amazing for this song, as well as the rest of the
show - he got the top of everybody's head up front lit up just slightly...
like a thousand half moons moving simultaneously.
Sleep and Caspian were pretty standard, but great set closers. I have not
heard Sleep before... but it was just the ticket after an intense set.
Caspian was beautifully played by the boys.
The Second set would not disappoint either! Boogie On is such a great tune
from Stevie... and I cannot get enough of it. Mike just kept going and going
and going! Damn! I knew this set would be hot from the start of this tune.
All four kept that jam going for quite some time... Seemed like hours to
me... but ;-)... Gotta get a copy of this one.
I've only heard Twist a couple times, but it is slowly growing on me. I love
how the whole place erupts every few measures with a "WOO!" A fun song that
brings a lot of energy in with it. And followed by another surprise!
McGrupp! Wow - what can I say. My friend had never heard McGrupp and thought
it was a jam, and what a beautiful jam it is. Nothing can compare to the
4-8-94 McGrupp after that intense SOAM, but nobody has a decent recording of
that show... so this one will do! :-) Funky and nice... love the newness
that the band always takes on these old numbers.
Halley's Comet - another oldie goodie. What a fun tune - and they had a
great mellow jam going on in the end. Fun -> mellow jam by all four... but
what is this?!? Trey is walking off the stage? Page looked REALLY confused.
I'm not sure what happened. My wife tends to think that Trey just didn't
feel well or something - could be, as the same thing happened at the end of
a weird encore. Longer than normal and with Axilla?!? I bit weird - but a
great SHOW! I agree with the Quality not Quantity comment... but these were
very short sets. Perhaps my wife is right, and Trey just wasn't feeling
I look forward to seeing them tour again, after a much deserved break! Can
you imagine working every Christmas/New Year's for a decade straight?!? Have
fun guys! Hope that everyone was OK... Have a happy year!
Carl P, Cleveland OH
Date: Thu, 21 Sep 2000 10:40:35 -0400
From: Gary Nader email@example.com
Subject: review of 9/18/00
Finally Phish has come back to Blossom! The 95 Blossom show was my first as
well as many of my close friends. Little did I know that 6/20/95 would change
the way that I look at music, going to shows and just being w/ my friends at
a concert. I have seen the boys many times since then all over the place,
including some amazing international experiences!
Anyway- Blossom is a Great place to see a show- woods everywhere, pretty lax
staff and just a great place! My girl, two buddies from work and I left about
4:20 to make the 2 hour trek to Cuyahoga Falls. One of the guys I work w/ has
seen them before and the other had not- so this was his first show!
We finally got out of our car about 10 until 7, so met up w/ lots of friends
from Scool- Ohio University and had a blast. We went in about 8:00 or so. My
girl and I got Lucky from mail order and got 8th row seats, just a bit to the
left. We entered the pavillion and just kept walking closer and closer to the
We aere at our seats only about 5 minutes and the boys came out Smoking and
opened up w/...
Carini! I have always wanted to hear this as an opener. They just came out
and kicked ass. We had just heard this at Darien, but who cares? They really
seemed to be locked in and focused as well as having a good time! This Carini
was very good, Page was on and Mike was building a great foundation as he
always does. Trey was just rockin! Everyone around us was really into it.
Then they busted into....
Sparkle. I used to hear this all the time (95-97), but its been a long time.
This song really gets the girlies going so I am a fan of it. Its a really fun
song and gets everyone up! The Bam!
SLOTH! I always want to hear Sloth and I love it towards the beginning of the
show and thats what we got! "They call me the Sloth"...
Sloth rocked and Trey's loop started and that is always a good sign...
Maze! Maze always kicks ass and this one did not disappoint- this Maze was
better than the Albany Maze, in my opinion, They just kept stretching it and
taking ti further and further! Wow- it had to of been at least 12-15 minutes!
Trey built it and Page knocked it down!
Next was Guelah- 3 Rift songs in the first 5 songs- keep them coming. Guelah
is always great to hear. I love that dance that Trey and Mike do- the crowd
was loving it and so was the band! Just how we like it!Guelah was or at least
seemed a bit slower than usual, but it might have been me, it was a great
My Mind's got a mind of its own. I love all of the counrty ditties that they
play, Ginseng, Uncle Penn and this one. It just adds to the greatness of the
show when we get these! Mike was great!
Sample- was good. A good slot for Sample- we also heard this at Darien. They
jammed it very well. I am not the biggest fan of Sample, but they play the
hell out of it so its cool w/ me! Then bam!...
Rift! SWEET! Another Rift song- Thank you! Rift is Amazing Live! I havn't
seen it since 7/31/98 I believe, but could be wrong, anyway- this Rift was
great! This went into...
Sleep! I did not know what it was, but I really liked it. A dude next to me
and I thought that it was Mountains in the Mist b/c I never heard that, but
was Sleep. I really like when they play ballads- Trey really seems to get
into the ballads and I love that! then...
Caspian! In the first set! I was very happy w/ this! Caspian usually makes a
few appearences in the first set and I really like that! It was a very good
Caspian and a great way to close a GREAT set!
I really enjoyed the first set. Saw a bunch of friends that I have not seen
in a while- so that made my day! Hi Mook, Tina and Freed!
I have no idea how long the set break was , but it did not seem to long as
the band took the stage my girl and I got really close to the stage, but the
people around us freaked out so we went back to out normal seats. I
understand asking us to move, but chill out!
Boogie On brought the house down- everyone was loving it. This song gets the
crowd going and it great to hear! Then the jam started and it started to get
nutty! Teh whole band was in sync and totally clicking together! Fishman was
setting the tone and Trey was sliding right through Boogie On and Mike was
dropping some bombs! This Jam was great! I have never heard such a great jam
out of Boogie On, but it was very welcome! This jam ended up going into..
Twist! I have not heard this in a long time and was at the top of my list!
This Twist kick butt and totally rocked! This was a special show and was a
blast to be a part of! They were really smooth and sulky! Then the highlight
of the nigth came...
MCGRUPP!!!!!!!!!! Hell YES! We talked about McGrupp on the drive and I was
hoping to hear it. This McGrupp was by far the best version that I have
heard- they kept it going w/out missing a beat- Truly the highlight of the
Halley's!!!!! WOW- My girl was really psyched to hear this and so was I-
truly a great tune and the crowd was going nuts! The jam out of Halley's was
one for the books! Towards the end of the jam Tre walked towards Fishman and
I thought that we were going to get a Fishman song, but Trey took off his
guitar and left the stage. The rest of the band played for a few seconds then
left the stage. Was anyone else a bit confused? The set was Great!!!!
The encore was sweet as well: Axilla>Taste
I have never heard either one as an encore before and both songs were played
well, especially Taste!
I again thought that they were going to play another song, but no.....
All in all- it was a great, amazing, fun show! It was great to go back to
where I saw my first Phish show and watch them rock the house Down! We are
going to Chicago- 2nd night only, but we'll get to see the city and have a
Take care- Gary
Date: Thu, 21 Sep 2000 09:38:15 -0400
From: "Maruna, Timothy J." Tim.Maruna@SWAGELOK.com
Subject: Blossom 09/18/00 review
Stellar show. The more I think about it and the more reviews I read, the
more impressed I get. I can't add much to what's already been said.
However I must question Mr. Wolf for forgetting to mention Maze and its
incredible jam. You were probably just overwhelmed I'm sure. The only
major disappointment that I have in the show was the lack of a Hendrix tune.
I was really hoping to hear one on the 30th "anniversary" of Jimi's death
(9/18/70). I thought there was a good chance because the band had spent
part of the day at the Rock & Roll Hall O' Fame where they just opened a
Hendrix exhibit. Perhaps they just went to see their giant flying hotdog
and oversized fries and soda stage props on display there. Anyway, did
anyone hear a hint of Crosstown Traffic during Sparkle? That may have just
been wishful thinking on my part.
Date: Tue, 19 Sep 2000 20:18:15 -0400
From: cmlareau firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: Blossom 09/18/00 review
Well, after a 6 hour drive, followed by a full day of work, and just
preceding my day's highlight of laundry and then my own gig, my thoughts
begin to flow...
As Falls Cuyahoga, So Falls Cuyahoga Falls...
Leaving Lexington KY at 10:45am I was ready to hit the road again...check
out another venue I've never been to and meet some new pholks. As I came
upon the Cuyahoga Falls sign, I was pleased to be driving through a modest
forest on a smooth meandering road...just follow the signs that say
"Blossom." It was a gorgeous day and a crisp one at that. How nice it is
to arrive at a venue around 4:30, with no hassles, drive right in and park
on a patch of grass...the "Grass Lots," as the signs proudly stated. This
venue is beautiful! Picnic tables, lots of trees and natural surroundings
sorely lacking from most outdoor ampitheatres...I was pleased to discover
that the surroundings carried right into the venue as well. And what a hip
structure it was! I bought a soda, and picked a spot on the lawn to settle
my belongings, discovering a sweet pair of RayBans on the ground. It's
gonna be a great show! I promptly walked down to my section on Treyfish
side and got ready...
I must say that there are two ways one can tell that Phish is in a mode
and that they are primed to groove and groove hard: Opening a set with
Carini and opening a set with Axilla...and we received both. Now I know
that they played Carini three nights before, but I wasn't there and I will
say it again and again, that this is my favorite tune to come out of the
past few years. It's so angry and direct. They came out firing and this
one sounded great. Atlanta 6/24/00 was good, but I was on the lawn. This
version had it all. Very tight and intense all the way through...certainly
a forshadowing of things to come.
Ahh, Sparkle...such a fun tune. and I can never get enough of Rift
music...I love that album. This Sparkle was quick paced and
bright...everybody was dancing and singing along. Still, holding to the
driving theme of the night that began with Carini...
Man, those initial chords of Sloth hit you where it matters most. Great
tune. Great transitions. Great all around. Page had a nice solo, slightly
extended compared to Sloths of the past. The ending resonating off the
mushroom-like cedar walls and ceiling. This theatre looked more hip than
the crowd it was consuming!
Next up, Maze...This was a wonderful version, not as long or dissonant
as Walnut Creek 6/25/00 and less push in this one by CK5 (remember spinning
white lights on 6/25 a la YEM vocal jams). But they said a lot and after 14
minutes we were all frantically trying to get out it. Still keeping the
intensity up and driving the sound to the top of the hill and into the trees
beyond. Trey does a great job of pulsing this one. His comping ideas have
gotten better and better with each tour these past few years. I love
watching him stare across the stage, almost daring Page to throw more his
way. Communication, folks. It's why this band grooves so hard at times
like these. Thus far, four tunes - 2 real angry, 2 real fast! Can they
keep it up?!
Ahh, the intensity falls into a deep funk. This, probably the slowest
Guelah Papyrus I've been privy to...and it sounded great at this tempo.
Everyone wanted it to speed up, but the refused. It just stuck there. This
allowed for the vocals to really soar and the Asse Festival hilarity to be
heard in all it's humor...and ohh, did I mention dancing? I love that l'il
ditty Mike and Trey perform as drum accompaniment. This is the Phish that I
truly enjoy -- All the intricate lines, the compositional abilities, and the
humor to break it all up.
Well, no KY show this year, but that doesn't mean we can't pretend. A
little bluegrass in My Mind's Got a Mind Of Its Own. In my humbled opinion,
the not-too-often played quickie is a gem. Mike gets to step up and lead
for a while and the trading of choruses is always a lot of phun. This one
is certainly anything but angry...but it's fast.
Ok, so the set is not without personal so-sos...Sample In a Jar was up
next. Just like the one at Walnut Creek, this one was short and quickly
done away with. As I said in my review of that show, Trey always seems to
love this tune. And besides, it is hard not to chime in with the chorus
every once and a while. I used to sit and rest til the jam portion made its
way out...now, with the short versions as of late, I stand anxiously
awaiting the next bomb to drop.
Rift! I have never heard this enough times...another from -- Rift.
Quick, bouncy, infectious, challenging, and very very danceable. The vocal
ping-pong with Page and Trey is always a joy to hear. Another up tempo
tune. Wonderful interplay in this one. Always makes me want to be flying,
or on an endless drive to anywhere. Page's solo again was nice and
long...hard to hear at times but what I did hear was great. He really seems
to enjoy playing with the general chord structure of a given tune...perhaps
intentional, perhaps not. Still, I like it. Then those bent notes of Trey
signal his turn and off we go. Page's voice sounded great on this one
too...it always does.
This led into the "break" of the set. Not a let down by any means, just
a calming of the nerves and fingers and dancing feet and adrenaline. I had
only heard Sleep on cd so for me this was nice. I will back up any quiet
Phish moment...something that they do best and too many seem to take for
granted...this was great. Smooth, and soft just as the lyrics lend
themselves...to fall asleep. A pretty lullaby to settle us all. You could
hear the crisp air swim through the piping and wood paneling as the crowd
swayed and packed up their stash(s).
The set was coming to a close...calmly, not like the electrifying energy
of Carini, but of the gratifying feel of Prince Caspian. It's a tune that
when done well, leaves you standing taller and it brings a set together. It
did back in Boston 12/31/96 and it will again next year. It's not my
favorite tune they choose, but it is like Sample in that fist-in-the-air
kind of way. Satisfying and convincing. This version wasn't long by past
standards but it did provide some good rock and roll statements from all
four of them. And in the end, Trey still throws us that angry little curve
ball in that last repeated lick...he thrusts his comping hand down on the
strings and tells us how it is, until it slows and their bow is taken.
Setbreak: We were treated to the second installment of cd skippin' techno!
Never heard a boo at a show til now. :-)
On a personal note, I had the Uno game of a lifetime, with
Adam from Oneonta and his gal in section 22...it started in
the break and went til the lights went down. As Adam proudly exclaimed,
"We're all champions!!" Indeed we are...
I could not have come up with a better, heavier set that this at all
this summer/fall. Now Boogie On Reggae Woman was awesome in Dayton
11/07/97, but it never quite got moving. This version didn't stop moving.
After the wonderful Stevie Wonder lyrics, Trey falls back and settles into
that great comping style of his...changing patterns and outlining the form
well. It just went on and on. I love when they are in no hurry at all.
They were just content to stay there for awhile...amidst the boogie. As
Trey likes to do, he meandered over to his set of keys and toyed a bit. It
wasn't too discernible from my end but again, it fit well and blended in
with Page. Just over 15 minutes, this just had all in a trance. Instead of
bringing it back around to the final round of vocals they just let it slide
into the next selection.
Twist Around...that way. a great play on words that when played well,
directly reflects what I feel is symbolic of the title. This tune is best
when it takes it's time to arrive...this one did. It reminded me of
Shoreline in the summer of 97. I remember dancing and strolling around for
what seemed like hours during that version...it just kept going. This Twist
did too. The vocals came in well and the crowd gladly obliged with the Woo!
shout. This version was around the same length as Boogie and stayed close
to the theme of the tune. It cruised around. I had no idea what to expect
next. This seemingly new group creation onstage that they're been doing the
past few years is wonderful. No rush, not all loud heavy stuff (after all
that was what the 1st set was all about!) and seemless stretching from one
to the next.
McGrupp and the Watchful Hosemasters...my goodness! No one expected
this beauty to resurface tonight! It's been what since October of 99 or
something like that? Again, another intricate tune with beautiful
harmonies, lifting lines and soaring melodies! Farmhouse, it most certainly
isn't. The twists and turns of this tune heal the soul and warm the body.
I still haven't actually met Dave, but I sing along anyway. this was an
excellent choice on this fall night. The tension and release in this piece
of music is what most other bands can't seem or aren't able to produce...and
thank goodness for that. Thanks guys.
And now, for the caveat of the evening. They had come full
circle...high energy, soft sheets of sound, and mythic painting had all led
up to this special moment in the Fall 2000 tour. Halley's Comet. Halley's
Comet!!! Halley's COMET!!! Man oh man...the crowd erupted for this one.
Now, for me it wasn't necessarily that that played the piece perfectly or
that this tune simply kicks nor was it that Mike's deep voice bounced off
the cedar like his bass in set 1 and cracked me in the chest...nor was it
the happy silly chorus that we all love to sing - and I'm a vegetarian ta
boot!...Nope, it was what came after that did it for me. I have been
privileged to see a handful of Halley's in my following and each time I wait
for that chord progression to lead into some amazing territory...And just
like my overly played tape of 12/31/93 it quickly jumps into Poor Heart. I
love Poor Heart, but the possibilities for this section to reach are
astounding. Finally, they had answered my plea. The jamming out of this
was awesome. Back to the hard driving, fierce energy in which they began
the night. This was too intense for the room. Ever have that experience
when you're not smoking or tripping or doing that drug of choice but the
music moves you so much that you feel those synthetic feelings through the
natural high of what's shooting out from across the stage? If not, well I'm
sorry...if so, and you weren't there, well, I'm sorry again. This jamming
was so good. Trey was pulsing back and forth pushing the group to keep
going. It was nuts. To those of you who were with me in Boston (12/31/96)
to hear the best Disease ever, you know what I'm talking about. When Trey
went into that hard Jimi comping and wouldn't let up...the whole place was
freaking out. Jump back to last night and the saem thing happened...only
this time it was out of Halley's and it just didn't stop!! He was becoming
more and more angry and the sound was incredible. At some point he moved
over to the keys but almost didn't bother with em. His guitar was saying it
all. 20 minutes of some of the most intense Phish I've heard in a long
time. Just like that ol' Disease, I was waiting for that segue into
Isabella - the best Jimi tune they do, in my opinion...they never went
there, but Trey hinted at it a number of times and his comping easily
slipped in and out of that Jimi groove that he has nailed so well. In fact,
at one point, I was actually singing Isabella...I can't begin to explain
this stuff. It was too strong a jam, too heavy a groove, and definitely too
bad to be good. I was worn out at the end of this...as was the crowd...and,
strangely enough so it seemed with Trey too...
He seemed to say all he could and when he was done, band still
pumping...he quickly left the stage...some thought he was goin for the
acoustic, some felt he was kicking Fish off his riser...nope, he just split.
The crowd was puzzled. For what we thought was an hour long jam only took
up barely half of the set. Extremely short. Personally, I didn't care at
all. It was soo good that they didn't even need to return to satisfy me.
Of course, they did and like I said at the beginning, they went out just
like they came in -- Axilla. This tune pumps and this version was no
exception. Trey's guitar slides were shearing through the fall air. And
the thrashing began. I've never heard it as an encore. Powerful, it
certainly was...we were all waiting for the calm after the storm but Trey
brought them, with the help of Fish, into the entry chord of the Fog, er
Although it seemed like an odd placement, it served as a release from
the anger and downright meanness of Axilla. We were all still quite
puzzled, as the set had barely made it to an hour...but the ascending chords
of Taste made us feel alright and gratified that this night of Phish was
like no other. This tune seems to complete things -- build and build and
then ride the wave til the climactic ending...A fantastic venue and a
fantastic show to be a part of...as Mister Minor will most certainly
recommend, the first half of set I is a must for all ears, and the entire
set II needs to be heard. That Halley's is some fine fine music!
I can't wait for Cincinnati tomorrow and then....Woo! It's off to Vegas!
See ya'll there!!
Date: Tue, 19 Sep 2000 16:18:32 EDT
Subject: 9/18/00 blossom
blossom is a sweet venue about 30 minutes from my home in the suburbs of
cleveland, so i was pumped to see the boys here for the first time.
traffic into the venue wasnt too bad. i arrived with a friend at about 4:45
and got a parking spot pretty quickly. shakedown street was hopping, and
although there were some cops on horseback, they didnt seem to be regulating
that much, so all was cool. we got into the venue at about 6:45 and walked
around until the pavillion started to fill up at about 7:35. our seats were
prime! closer to the stage than the soundboard, directly centered in the
stage, ample room in front of the seat, so i was happy about that. venue
didnt fill up until about 8, and the boys came on later than expected, at
carini opener was above average and completely unexpected. jammed out more
than i had heard previously and a great way to get the energy up. energy
remained up for sparkle, which was nice to hear. the sloth was my 2nd in my
last 2 shows, but it was rocking and also unexpected. always a treat and got
everyone more excited. now we were ready for some jamming, and we
got...maze. sweet version, jammed nicely. good work from trey and fish in
here. fish was excellent the whole show, very delicate yet driving rhythms,
good stuff. again, very sweet maze, especially it being this early in the
show. guelah was sweet, fun to hear, nice and funky. mmgmoo is my favorite
bluegrass tune, so i was happy to get that. sample was standard but got made
everyone happy. i love rift, so i was happy to hear it. trey had a couple
flubs in his composed section, but other than that the song was well
executed. sleep was beautifull with delicate work from all. caspian was
great, although im not too fond of the song. i didnt want them to end the
set with it, but it was still a great version, nice and extended.
first set was solid but nothing out of the ordinary...kind of a set up for
what everyone hoped would be an outstanding 2nd set.
boogie on was a sweet opener. i was craving a 2001, but it was not to be on
this night. ive never heard the chula vista boogie on, so i cant compare
this verion to that, but i will say that this was a sweet version that
hovered close to boogie on territory for most of the jam while simultaneously
going places ive never heard the song go. im almost positive that it segued
into twist (a good segue at that). i thought twist was well executed with a
good jam that didnt neccessarily peak but was still enjoyable. there was
definite hose going on during this set, you could feel it in the boogie on
and in the twist, and we felt it in the mcgrupp too. mcgrupp was a complete
suprise, executed flawlessly. i love the song, so i was flipping out.
page's solo section was WONDERFULL. page was working the grand hardcore and
after 5 or so minutes, trey, mike and fish were all improvising with him.
very delicate, awesome. halley's comet was huge. i felt that it would
either make or break the set, and it made it in my opinion. great jamming,
flawless, high energy, crowd going nuts, and i loved the glow stick/ring war.
it created one of those 'moments' for me when everything just seemed
perfect. the band was raging, kuroda was going off, and glowsticks were
flooding the pavillion. halley's started to wind down, and as it seemed like
the jam could start to head in another direction, trey took off his guitar
and walked off stage. there was no inter-band conflict that was evident to
me (and i was pretty close to the stage) it just seemed that trey felt the
set was over, so he walked off stage. the 3 others just kind of looked at
themselves and said, 'ok' and followed trey. the encore seemed like a bit of
a waste, although taste was nice to hear. after taste, trey once again
initiated the ending of the show by taking off his guitar. i really dont
think that anyone was mad or anything of that nature, i just think trey felt
the show should end. anyway, thats how i see it. 2nd set was an awesome set
of music. quality over quantity.
take it easy
Date: Tue, 19 Sep 2000 14:04:46 -0400
From: Dan Robertson
Subject: Blossom 9-18 review
Let me begin by saying that this was my 39th show spanning from 8/12/93 to
9/18/00 and I am always completely positive because I've never seen a truly
poor show. Some better than others, but never a bad one. This show was the
strangest that I've ever seen bar none. Which IMO isn't really a bad thing,
just at certain points I was a little puzzled.
Carini - My first and I was loving it. This song is so intense and serves as
a great opener.
Sparkle - Sparkle
The Sloth - Now were talkin'. This was hot and I could not help but feel
like the band wanted to "rock out" with the song selection and the heavier
selections kept coming with...
Maze - By far the best Maze I've heard. They were tearing this apart and I
almost felt like they took the jam into different places and at one point
thought they may even take it into Shafty, but no.
Guelah - Hell yeah. One of my favorites and they nailed the Asse Festival
My Mind's - Always a favorite of mine and a rare one anymore.
Sample - They really hit this one tonight. This song follows me everywhere,
but I always enjoy hearing it.
Rift - Always fun to hear. I really don't catch it a lot anymore.
Sleep - Beautiful song. Not much else to say.
Prince Caspian - Never used to be a favorite and I really was hoping this
would not end the set, but it did.
Overall, I really enjoyed this first set and was hoping for a long second
set, but there is a thing called a curfew.
Boogie on - This was amazing. I've been blessed to have seen this several
times and this one just cooked!!!! I was in a state of euphoria and I
thought they were going to slide into something real funky like a Ghost or
2001, but the jam toned down and did stop to my recollection.
Twist - Not my favorite and the jam was very mellow. Not much to it and it
went for way too long. They really should have cut it short so more songs
could have been played, but oh well.
McGrupp - I was telling my friends all day that this was all I wanted to
hear and they did it! Unreal. I was in awe during Page's solo. Back in the
woods of Blossom they touched upon some Gamehenge.
Halley's - Nuts. Incredible. I was stunned. This was the best Halley's that
I've witnessed, but for some reason Trey just took off. I was wondering what
the hell was up, asked my buddy the time and it was 10:42..curfew, but to
just bail like that was kind of shady IMO.. WTF!?! They could have and
should have closed with a Cavern or something quick and popped out a one
song encore but....
Axilla - Again WTF?!? Strange choice for an encore IMO and not my favorite
song taboot! I think Trey was pissed about something, maybe for running off
the stage and leaving the rest of the band standing there and the crowd
Taste - Also a little strange and standard. I liked the 7-14-00 version much
better. I believe that Taste was the real set ender according to Trey's
setlist and they came on too late (8:10). So much for that Axis: Bold as
Love for Jimi.
All in all a very weird show. The setlist makes you want to drool and as
normal with Phish some points of ectasy and some not so hot. This will be
my last show until the hiatus is over and I think that they need it. For the
community and most of all for themselves. Have a great vacation...we'll see
you down the road.
Date: Tue, 19 Sep 2000 11:21:44 -0400
From: Thomas A. Janci Jr email@example.com
Subject: Blossom review 9-18-00
Blossom was my first show since Starlake (7-7-00), and my only show of the
Fall tour, thanks to a new job and a horrible school schedule. Anyways, here
THE VENUE: Blossom; amazing place to see a show, the grounds were in great
shape, and security was rather lax. They really only seemed to be searching
people with bags. A very bassy sound system, so I knew Gordom would sound
OPENING MUSIC: 1st set - Tom Wait's "Mule Variations", 2nd set - Marc Ribot
1st SET: BLEW MY MIND. Tons of energy, Trey RIPPED a phatty on Maze. Sample
really got the crowd going. An amazing, phun-philled set. How would they top
2nd SET: Boogie On was a good way to keep the vibe going from the first set -
pretty extensive jam, into a bogged-down Twist (I have no desire to hear a
recording of last night's rendition ever again) - the rest of the set was
kind of a blur until Page decided to give us all a lesson in Modal Jazz, a 6
or 7 minute solo which nearly brought tears to my eyes. It reminded me as to
just how talented Page and the rest of the boys really are... overall, a very
very mellow set, some good points, some bad points, but it's all Phish, so I
Encore: Axilla had lots of energy as we were gathering up our things for the
trip home. Great show by the boys - wish I could go onto Cinncinatti, but
that's life. Thanks to the band and crew for another great experience, and
also, a quick thanks to the guy who walked around the lawn section about a
hundred times warning everyone about undercover cops at Blossom - it's nice
to know that there's still people out there who care.
Date: Tue, 19 Sep 2000 15:19:18 GMT
From: Matt Pryor firstname.lastname@example.org
Subject: Phish review for Cuhaygoa Falls
Well...let me begin this review by saying that I believe that every I did
have a good time last night and that I vow to never complain about a show
because I think those guys are sharing something beautiful with all of us
and we should always be grateful for that. But, with that said, let me say
I left last night's show completely confused at what happened. The first
set was all right for me- but very chill- I mean 4 songs off Rift in
addition to "Sleep" with a closer of "Prince Caspian"- this set only clocked
in at just over an hour so everyone was left with the hopes of an incredible
second set- kind of the reverse of the night before in Maryland.
Well, it was happening...at least for a little while. The opening notes
of "Boogie On" sent the crowd into a slight frenzy and this ended up being
the best version of this tune I've ever heard. Around fifteen minutes in
length with a seguing jam into Twist. The guy next to me called Twist as
the second set opener and wasn't too far off- the jam in Twist, however, was
pretty mellow and never really built up into many of the pre-Farmhouse Twist
jams with which I am familiar. McGrupp- well, what can I say about this
song- I absolutely love it and was one of the only people in the center of
the lawn screaming my lungs out as the flowed through those beautiful
opening chords- my last McGrupp was 07/19/98 Shoreline so I was stoked to
hear it again tonight. It was beautiful as always with a slightly longer
piano solo by Page than I have ever heard (much appreciated by the way).
And then to close the set came a ripping Halley's. This is where confusion
settles in- just as it seemed the crowd was truly getting in the groove at
what proved to be the end of the Halley's jam- Trey walks off stage. No,
thank yous to the crowd or anything- he just leaves and the rest of the band
then quickly finishes the jam and leave as well.
As if blowing off some anger they come back on stage and plunge through
Axilla for the encore and then lead into a fairly standard "Taste". After
that song, however, it still seemed like they may play some more and no one
immediately put down their instrument, until Trey, once again decides it's
over and leaves. I looked over at Mike and he looked to Page in apparent
confusion and then they all left as well. A quick 55 minute second set with
a 14 minute encore and you could fit the entire show on 2 74 minute discs no
problem. I am not complaining here, just confused as to what was going on
with Trey and the rest of the gang tonight.
If they weren't feeling it from the crowd that is understandable because
the music wasn't loud enough for those of us on the lawn and there were no
tv screens to show us what was going on onstage. Does anybody else feel as
though something just wasn't right with this show?
Date: Tue, 19 Sep 2000 13:55:25 EDT
From: Ryan Hobbs email@example.com
Subject: Blossom review
I too left this show feeling confused. I just got this wierd vibe when Trey
just left the stage during Halley's. The Hally's jam was unbelievable, I
was so pumped and when it started to slow down, Trey started hitting this
one chord pretty powerfully and looking over at the other guys, I don't know
what he was trying to say to them, but all of the sudden he unplugs and
walks off stage. They finished the song, and kind of looked around for a
bit, looking confused themselves, and then took a bow and left. I don't
know what happened, but I can't say enough about that second set, it was soo
good, despite whatever happened at the end.
Date: Tue, 19 Sep 2000 11:38:00 EDT
Picked up a ticket last minute and made the drive with a couple buddies
up from University of Dayton to Blossom. Driving into blossom was a cool
feeling driving through the woods and winding roads. The lots that we were in
were pretty quiet as cops looked over with watchful (foreshadowing) eyes. 1st
time at blossom and thought the bathroom lines were a little outdated but we
managed. We found our seats and my brother from Columbus and had a nice
little patch of lawn front and center.
Carini was a very interesting start, a nice way to pick up the crowd. The
sweet singing of Sparkle made a good transition of the mood and told the
crowd that phish was settling in for the night. The Sloth made its debut
appearance on this tour with the song a lot of character as it was evident
trey was having a good time on stage. The Sloth was probably one my
highlights of the night. This is where they started to pick it up as the
busted into Maze with a lot of steam. The first three songs had been very
clean and tight but the crowd was already for a monster jam, and that they
did. After a long jam phish had to bring us back down to earth as they played
a very funky version of Guelah Papyrus. Phish then followed up with My Mind's
Got a Mind of its Own, Sample in a Jar, Rift > Sleep. Phish brought a nice
feeling to a end of a good first set as they ripped the first few chords of
Caspian and the crowd knew phish was sending them out with a nice first set
closer. Fist Set Grade :B +
Will submit second set later
Date: Tue, 19 Sep 2000 10:08:23 -0400
From: Brian Lammers firstname.lastname@example.org
First set was high energy and fun.
Second set was unbelievable, I can't believe how small the second set looks
on paper, it just destroyed Blossom.
Boogie, McGrupp, and Halley's had HUGE jams that stay tight but flowed.
You must hear the second set on tape if you were unable to attend.
Date: Tue, 19 Sep 2000 11:12:14 -0400
Subject: 9-18-00 blossom music center
that maze, that maze, that maze, wow, what can i say, mike, you are just
incredible, and we got sparkle, wow, only phish can make a town like
cleveland fun for a single night, and boys, please, please, please,
please, just play louder man, LOUDER!!!!!!
Date: Tue, 19 Sep 2000 08:55:21 -0400
From: Arturo-Peter Blohm email@example.com
Subject: 9-18-00 -- Blossom Music Center, Cuyahoga Falls, Ohio
McGrupp, Halley's Comet, Oh my Lord!!!!! Super Dank! WHAT A GREAT SHOW!
Blossom is Phat!
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