Tour Recaps: Summer Tour So Far – Highlights and Not-So-Highlights []

In sum? The tour has been pretty good so far. “Phish 3.0” continues. I respectfully disagree with those who think Phish’s music has changed in any meaningful way this year. (Please re-listen to the mid-to-late October 2010 shows, and the NYE run, especially the 1/1/11 MSG show, for perspective.) Trey may be using the Digitech whammy less often, and the sound and light shows may be better, but I don’t hear anything dramatically different, show to show, than what we’ve heard from Phish in the last year. There have not been many debuts, nor have the newer songs (from the album Joy, or otherwise) been played much if at all. But what this tour has arguably lacked in novelty, it has made up for with improvisations like the Bethel2 “GoldenGinTeca,” and the Pine Knob (Clarkston) “Down with Disease,” as well as entertaining setlist calls — many of them thanks to fans bearing signs — including “Daniel Saw the Stone,” “Instant Karma,” “Buried Alive,” “Lonesome Cowboy Bill,” “Icculus,” and “Bike.” The “Bathtub Gins” and “Rebas” from this tour also have been consistently marvelous, and all are worth a listen.

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