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Review: Nothing Wrong With A Good Phish Show – Phish @ the Wachovia Center Pt. 2

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Anastasio was in fine form all evening and was even a bit frisky telling Gordon to take a Heavy Metal bass solo in Wilson and introduced McConnell as “Marco Esquandolas” in the Run Like An Antelope that ended the first set. Also of note was the electric debut of Anastasio’s Sleep Again from his 70 Volt Parade days. Unlike that band, this tune worked well with McConnell taking a concise piano solo. Another highlight was the second set Birds of a Feather opener in which the jam took an adventurous turn. Gordon added some funk tones courtesy of his Lovetone Meatball pedal while McConnell and Anastasio ripped it up.

You Enjoy Myself has been hit or miss since the band’s return; some versions didn’t even contain a real guitar solo. Last night’s version was a sensational hit. The band members expertly worked their way through the composed sections and the jam featured remarkable interplay between Anastasio and McConnell. Nothing was rushed as each segment was played to its fullest.

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Now, Philly Night Two was far from perfect. The placement of Time Turns Elastic was horrible, the ending of Farmhouse was badly botched and the transition from Halley’s Comet to The Divided Sky was poorly executed. Yet none of those miscues took away from the overall flow of the concert. Phish treated us to tight playing, a few inspired moments of improv, spirited banter and a beautiful cover for an encore. It wasn’t epic but it was a good Phish show.

The quartet has clearly gained confidence as the tour progressed and even though last night’s show didn’t have a dream setlist with big gun after big gun, Phish was on. Not every show can be “epic,” and there’s nothing wrong with a good Phish show. Phish’s Fall Tour continues tomorrow night at the Times Union Center in Albany, NY.

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Set 1: Kill Devil Falls, 46 Days, Sugar Shack, Halley’s Comet, The Divided Sky, Sleep Again, Ocelot, Train Song, Wilson, Run Like an Antelope

Set 2: Birds of a Feather, Farmhouse, Tweezer, You Enjoy Myself, Esther, Time Turns Elastic, Tweezer Reprise

Encore: Oh! Sweet Nuthin’

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17 thoughts on “Review: Nothing Wrong With A Good Phish Show – Phish @ the Wachovia Center Pt. 2

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  2. Ry Guy Reply

    Two things:
    1)I thought the divided sky, YEM, Tweezer, and Antelope were really really solid. (esther and train song were solid treats as well)

    2) When was the last Oh! Sweet Nothin played??

  3. Leif Reply

    Interesting take on Philly 2. I agree for the most part. It should be pointed out, though, that all the pictures that accompany the review were taken the night before, during set 1.

  4. Scott Bernstein Reply

    @Ry Guy = Last O!SNuthin’ was Merriweather this summer

    @Leif = I thought I made that pretty clear in the caption underneath the first picture.

  5. pietro Reply

    nice review scotty, thanks

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  7. Poster Nutbag Reply

    i sort of agree, and sort of don’t. yes, it was a great rock ‘n roll show with every song very well played. but during YEM i started to think “how can they possibly finish this set after this monster, mid-set YEM”? unfortunately, TTE was the answer and it was the complete wrong answer. almost anything could have been better than TTE. just killed the entire crowd. people sat down, went to the bathroom, and got more beer. the energy went from 11 all the way down to a 4. people couldn’t even get into esther because TTE had done its job. i also don’t think many people knew “oh sweet nothin” (i was the only one in my section who did) which just added to the lack of energy. they should have either saved the tweeprise for the encore or hit up a cavern (or a similar song) to finish the show after “oh sweet nothin”.

    like i said, i sort of agree with this review and i sort of don’t. yes, the show was well played, but TTE has the ability to make you forget about everything else that went on because it is such an energy-sucking black hole.

  8. goldnboy Reply

    Nice review Scott. i had similar thoughts after reading the Cobo review. Not every show can or should be “epic”. Thanks!

  9. Scott Bernstein Reply

    @Poster Nutbag – Worst placement of Time Turns Elastic ever, no doubt. But it was still a great show. I guess it didn’t kill my show like it did for you.

    I had a similar situation in my section with no one knowing what Oh! Sweet Nuthin’ was. These folks need to study up!

  10. Shayna Reply

    Looks like I made a good choice, Tuesday > Wednesday…

  11. Elastic Fantastic Reply

    Jeez, everywhere people are down on TTE from this show! Come on, this song is an amazing and complex composition along the lines of Guyute. It is a fine piece of music, and as they were bringing it home, I thought to myself, ‘how sweet would it be if they wrapped it up right into Tweeprise…’ and sure enough! It fit really well together IMHO – blending the new with a classic. What was somewhat disappointing was that with the Reprise out of the way, I thought they would have the freedom to do a 2 or 3 song encore. I was really hoping for an a cappella tune thrown in there (The Birdwatcher from Party Time would have been awesome!). The Sweet Nuthin’ was perhaps among the finest versions of the tune Phish have ever played, but I knew immediately it would just like Tuesday – a 1-song encore b/c they wouldn’t follow up a classic like that with anything else. Looking back on it over the past couple of days, I felt a bit greedy; I mean, with the holiday the next day, I’m sure the crew and band were looking forward to a day off. Overall, I’m very thankful for a 2-night, hometown Phish run!

  12. Papa Phunk Reply

    I love seeing Trey wearing a Philadelphia Flyers Jersey.

  13. Ry Guy Reply

    Thanks Scotty….see u at MSG

    GO RANGERS

  14. ericb Reply

    spot on review, scotty…however, one day, people will look at TTE as an epic Phish tune.. I liken it to Terrapin, which happens to be one of my top 3 dead tunes..loved it in philly, but would have preferred it in set 1 or after Esther…and night 1 was the best Phish show I attended, with the exception of the MSG “Freekapaug” show.

  15. RobD Reply

    Anyone need an extra for Philly night 2? I have a few….still… man that was odd. Never seen that before.

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