Tag Archive: Tweezer

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I’ve been majorly slacking on this blog,  but I have good stuff lined up if I can find the time. I generally try to focus on older stuff than ’94, but this is such a good show and today being the anniversary, it seems appropriate.  I didn’t get to see a lot of shows on this tour (or 1994 for that matter) but I am glad I caught this one.  Pretty much everyone is familiar with this show, but it’s as deserving of a post as any.

Basically a hometown show, this show was only 25 minutes from my parent’s house (about 5 minutes closer than the Cap Theatre was).  Big Birch (now Thunder Ridge, lol) was a teeny little ski hill that had a concert tent in the summer.  I’d seen Phish there in ’92 on the Santana tour and grew up skiing there countless times as a kid. It was a small hill, but the surrounding area was beautiful. I was living with my parents at the time since I was broke as hell.  I drove to the show with my friends Cutty Sark and Cliff. Neither of them liked Phish or had any real interest in the show but came along because it was something to do.  You had to park at the very top of the ski slope and walk down to the base lodge (shack) area where there was a good size tent set up by the double lift.  It was like a smaller Darien Lake, except there were no seats.  We were walking down the main front slope to buy tickets when they started Buried Alive.  We went up to the lift ticket window and bought tickets, and you could pretty much see the band and hear them so clearly from the ticket booth.  Even though we had tickets, the only barrier to the venue was a yellow rope that was 18″ off the ground.  We stepped over that and were in.  The setlist reads like a dream come true:

Set 1Buried Alive > Poor Heart > Sample in a JarFoamThe Mango Song,Down with Disease > Fee -> It’s Ice > Fast Enough for YouI Didn’t Know,Split Open and Melt

Set 2PossumCavern -> Wilson-> Cavern > NICU -> Tweezer -> Julius -> Tweezer-> Big Black Furry Creature from Mars -> Tweezer -> Mound >Slave to the Traffic Light > Suzy Greenberg

EncoreMy Sweet One > Tweezer Reprise

The show was super empty because everyone and their brother had gone to Vermont for the first GD shows at Highgate.  We walked right to front of the stage during Sample and stayed there for a while, there was a ton of room everywhere .  Foam really drops down nicely and the Mango Song is super fluid as well.  The Disease is crushing.  A great (fairly) early version.  Burning and a definite set highlight. Fee is always good and the It’s Ice breakdown is a great one with Page leading the charge.  I probably complained about Fast Enough For You when they went into it, but listening back to it now, it’s pure candy.  Like Fee, I Didn’t Know is almost always a winner in my book. When it features Greasy Fizeek on trombone, it’s extra rad.  Split is a cool choice for a set closer and this one is charged from the start.  Another first set highlight and a foreshadowing of the madness to come.  They are so linked up and so disjointed all at the same time, it’s hard to even figure out where they’re going or where they are, but that’s what rules about it. 1994 was monster year for  Split.

The second set is almost beyond description.  While the playing is loose (some would say sloppy), the chances they take during this set are almost unmatched.   The opening Possum keeps building and building and a small misstep at the close of the song leads to a classic vocal jam that propels this version even higher.  One of my all time favorite Possums. I probably groaned again when they started Cavern, but as soon as they started the Wilson lyrics, my frown turned upside down.  When they went back to the Cavern vocal reprise, I was on cloud nine.  My friends of course, were unimpressed.  NICU is a great version that gets crazy at the end.  A solid vehicle to drive us up to the Tweezer.  Basically, this whole show dissolves into a massive Tweezer sandwich with a sick Julius, a C&W Big Black Furry, a Slave, a Suzy that is half Slave and a bunch of other awesome other stuff (like Mound) .  Just go play it.  Words can’t do it justice, so I won’t try.

We hiked back up the ski hill to my car but I was too drunk to drive.  I took off my backpack and laid on the ground looking at the stars and tried to wait it out until I could drive.  Finally, Cutty Sark said he could drive so we all hopped in and took off.  The traffic was still terrible getting out of there and we went about 1 mile in 30 minutes.  It was after 30 minutes that I realized I left my backpack in the parking lot.  Cutty pulled a u-turn and we headed  back to the venue.  When we got back up to the top parking lot, it was completely empty, not even any staff around.  My backpack was sitting in the middle of the field, untouched. Phew.  We pulled back down but decided to go right out of the parking lot this time instead of left because of all the traffic we had before.  I found out the next day the traffic was because of a giant DWI roadside check and people were getting fully yanked from their cars.  Phew.  Anyway, it was a great, great show.  A little ragged at times, but I never get tired of listening to it.  A classic for sure.

Check out this first set Split Open and Melt: 

The BBFCM is epic: 

I don’t know about too many sources of this show, just the FOB B&K, which sounds like a board, and the board, of which I have only seen the second set circulate.  The B&K might as well be a board though it sounds great and I prefer it.  There is some confusion out there though and some people think there is a matrix source.  They all sound good, so I don’t care.

The mp3 can be found at : http://www.mediafire.com/?f92yl448oj9xu

Lossless is here: http://bt.etree.org/details.php?id=556737

12/31/91, The New Aud, Worcester, MA

With all of the hubbub surrounding the coming 2011-2012 New Years run, I thought I would reach back to showcase an older New Years show.  Following the fiasco that was New Years 1990, everyone had high hopes for the 1991-1992 celebration in Worcester.  Couple that with the fact that Phish was coming off a year that saw their popularity  and playing level growing exponentially, we hoped we were in for a biggie.  This show was by far the biggest Phish show to date and I will never forget my amazement when I found myself in a show with 4000 people.  Just a short year ago, that would have been unthinkable.  It just seemed gargantuan at the time.  The New Aud is an old building from the Thirties with giant columns on the outside and ornate fixtures inside (more on those later).  It was a freezing cold night, as we made our way from our hotel which was located in a super sketch part of town.  Funnily enough, the band was also staying at the same cruddy hotel.  The show was a 3 set affair, with mostly typical ’91 song selection:

Set 1: Possum, Foam, Sparkle, Stash, Lizards,Guelah Papyrus, Divided Sky, Esther> Llama, Golgi Apparatus

Set 2: Brother, Bouncing Around the Room, Buried Alive > Auld Lang Syne > Runaway Jim, The Landlady > Reba, Cavern, My Sweet One, Run Like an Antelope

Set 3: Wilson > The Squirming Coil > Tweezer > McGrupp and the Watchful Hosemasters > Mike’s Song > I Am Hydrogen > Weekapaug Groove

Encore: Lawn Boy > Rocky Top >Tweezer Reprise

First set saw the band finding their groove and learning (with the audience) how to fill a room that big.  Second set highlight was obviously the new years countdown with the fantastic selection of Buried Alive>Countdown/Auld Lang Syne>Runaway Jim.  Considering Buried Alive is one of my very favorite songs, this is one of my favorite all-time countdowns.  The other set highlight is a burning Antelope which kicks into gear after an initial misstep.  The third set was the bomb drop.  Opening with a funny version of Wilson (with the “Fuck You” talkbox keychain) and an oddly-placed Coil, the set proceeded to slaughter faces with an insane Tweezer>McGrupp>Mike’s Groove to finish it up.  The Tweezer set a new standard for Tweezer and I think is possibly the longest one to date at that time clocking in at over 13 minutes.  The Tweezer had the whole venue fully locked in and I felt like  my feet were floating about 6″ off the ground.  Same exact thing happened to me during the Albany ’95 YEM.  The Mike’s Song is banging too, and during that, the winged bird above the stage (see pic below) seemed to multiply and start flying around the stage in circles.  It was sick.  Also of note, this was the first show where they showcased the new plexi-glass backdrop which they used for a few years.  I actually missed the old roll-up melty one, but the plexi one was dope too.  The next day we were leaving our hotel and Phish had parked their van next to ours and were leaving at the same time.  I told Trey how my feet levitated off the ground during Tweezer and he seemed to get a kick out of it.  Maybe he was just laughing at me?  Who knows.

Sadly, The New Aud has fallen on hard times and is now used to house all of  Worcester’s court records going back to 1900.  What as shame.  As you can see, the place was really nice inside and a very cool place for a show.  Check out all the court records and the cool bird thing that flew around for me:

This Tweezer is not under the radar by any means, but if you have never heard it, you are in for a treat.  If you have not heard it in a while, it deserves another listen:

MP3 of the whole show is here: http://www.mediafire.com/?sharekey=e64969679d601a07ab1eab3e9fa335ca58e06906cd39ec0f

Lossless not currently on etree, but possibly coming soon…..