Date:    Fri, 12 Dec 1997 15:47:50 GMT
From:    John Beatty 
Subject: Rochester 12/11 Review

Ouch...  Getting up this morning was not fun, but I had a class at 9...

Disclaimer: This review, like any review, is highly subjective, blah
blah blah.  This is my first review, 6th show, and I have, umm, a box of
tapes.  It's almost full, however many that is.  :)

When we were planning this trip, we were hoping to get up there
amazingly early so we could get right in without pushing through crowds
of people and get a nice spot reasonably close to the front.  So, of
course, I was running late and so we left 40 minutes late (I swear I'll
be on time tonight for Albany.)  When we got to Rochester, we pulled
into a parking garage a couple blocks from the arena and got stuck
behind a bunch of teenagers who were attempting to push their
(apparently) dead car up the ramp.  The attendant finally saw them and
made them push it out of everyone's way, so the line behind them could
park.  We walked over to the venue into a huge crowd of people.  We
managed to get through that without too much difficulty and walked right
up and sat on the floor about 20 feet back from the barrier or so.
Jesse made a quick look around for the people we were supposed to be
meeting, and for the third time, couldn't find them.

After the usual round of discussions about the upcoming show (including
Matt's thought that the GA shows were usually more high energy and our
collective desire to see Limb by Limb and not to see Ghost, although I
warned we were very likely to see it) and a nice wait, Phish hit the
stage with:

PYITE: Always a nice choice to open.  This was very nicely played and
was a great opener.  Towards the end, Trey walked over to Mike and said
something to him.  Mike nodded and Trey signaled for the end of the song
to be held.  They milk the ending with the big rock & roll drum fills,
etc.  Mike looks over to Trey and

DOWN WITH DISEASE: I smiled.  I always liked this song anyway, and these
days means we're in for a nice early bit of jamming.  The song went as
per normal for the first 10 minutes or so with a Type I jam that was
more an extended guitar solo than anything, but the band started slowing
down and started grooving more.  I thought at first they were going to
go into Cities, but they continued with the groove.  They gradually
slowed it down, then Trey yelled something to Fish and made a gesture
with his hand that looked like hitting a high hat.  I thought, "must be
Maze."  Sure enough, Fish starts the high hat pattern and Trey kicks on
the delay, they flow into

MAZE: Pretty standard Maze, perhaps a bit more hyper than normal.  Trey
was all over the place.  He was totally in Heavy Metal mode all night.
I was half expecting to hear Highway to Hell sometime during the night.
They went again into a slower jam at the end of Maze that quieted down
and became

DIRT: Dirt is, well, dirt.  A pretty little song, and a pretty good
breather after a pretty hyper Maze.  Matt was thinking it was about time

LIMB BY LIMB: Ahhh, there it is.  This was pretty much along the lines
of the Went Limb (I've only heard one other, at Darien Lake, which
sounded to Jesse and I like Spyrogyra).  It was nicely played and
thoroughly enjoyable.  At the end of it, I figured there would be one
more quick sendoff song, then setbreak.

LOVING CUP: And what a sendoff song.  I think this is the best song the
Stones ever wrote, and these guys do an incredible job with it.  They
got to the end and Trey started counting something.  Cool, one more.
Sounds like Scent...  Oh, no, not

ROCKY TOP: Why did they have to go and wreck a perfectly good set?  I
really don't care much for this song.  I will admit that I enjoyed it
more than I usually do, but I still would rather have heard Old Home
Place or Uncle Pen.

All in all, this was a pretty good set.  The whole thing flowed nicely
and Down With Diease and Loving Cup were both excellent.  I'd give it
7.2 on Ye Olde Concert Scale.

After, we proceeded to get squashed for almost the entire 15 (45) minute
set break.  There was a guy in front of us trying to hold the crowd back
ny sheer willpower, which was quite funny, and some girl who was really
mad because she couldn't get any closer. Right before the set started, a
couple jocks pushed their way up front and were trying to pull their
friends up one by one.  More on these guys later...

Lights off and:
DROWNED:  Yes!  A couple of months too late, but here it is.  (Jesse and
I saw the Who August 8 or 9 at Darien Lake and then saw Phish on the
14th there and we were hoping for a nice Drowned at the Phish show.)  If
I can avoid getting crushed, then everything will be fine.  During the
guitar solo, the jocks and their friends keep puching everyone around
until finally most of the group give up and head towards the back.
However, the remaining couple keep pushing everyone, more or less
wrecking the song.  The extended guitar solo winds down into another,
but even cooler, slow jam.  Jesse and I both thought it was really good
and I was hoping they were going to stick with it for a while but after
what seemed much too short a time, they started a segue into

ROSES ARE FREE: (title obtained from the setlist on Andrew Gadiel's page
)  This was... different.  At first Jesse
thought it might be a Dead cover, but we decided not with those lyrics.
It was OK, but I wouldn't want to see it very often.  They get to the
end and I hear THE riff, the song I was mentioning at setbreak, jokingly
mentioning to Jesse that it hadn't been played yet this tour (during our
discussion on the amount of breakout songs so far that have been played
once or twice) to annoy him.  And here it is...

BBFCFM: More heavy metal!  Personally, I think this song is funny and
actually seeing it is even more amusing.  There's just something about
seeing Trey run laps around the stage while the strobes flash...
Somewhere during this, Jesse finally got annoyed at being elbowed by
annoying jock man and grabbed him by the collar of his canvas pullover
and yelled, "I'd appreciate it if you would get your 
elbow out of my sternum, friend!"  I laughed.  (BTW, this was after
about 25 minutes of obnoxious pushing, elbowing, etc. of several people
up front and was not completely unwarranted.)  The guy got mad because
his necklace got broken, but his friend manage to calm him down.  (At
this point, we figured out the guy was pretty drunk, as opposed to being
just a jerk, he was a drunk jerk.)  I told Jesse that now that we'd seen
it once, he'd probably never have to suffer through it again.  One we'll
most likely have to suffer through again, though, is

GHOST: Sorry, I don't like this, it's boring.  The jam is nice, but the
song is dull.  I liked Matt's idea: "Can we just hear the jam without
the actual song?"  The song was dull, the jam was kind of interesting.
It got really quiet for a while, then built back up into this Type I
groove that sounded oddly familiar.  It went on for a while and then
Trey started to play a line.  Is that the Weekapaug riff, no, duh, it's

DOWN WITH DISEASE REPRISE: Back into the DWD from the first set.  I
thought they were going to actually sing the last chorus, but all of a
sudden Trey goes into:

JOHNNY B. GOODE: Well, this song is OK, but there's others I'd rather

Then, the wait.  I said, "This better be good, because the set was so

WASTE: Bleah.  I would rather have heard Bouncing.  Oh, well, could have
been worse.

I would give the second set, oh, a 6.0.  Mostly because of Drowned,
BBFCFM and the DWD Reprise.  What I caught of Drowned was really good.
I'll probably try to get the tape, just so I can hear that again without

Show overall: 6.6  Pretty good, but could have been better.  This is the
worst show of the lot that I've seen so far (although that Kesey thing
at Darien pushed my patience.)

Almost time for my 11:00.  See yas in Albany.  Ominous Seapods are
playing at Bogie's.  I think we're all going over to check 'em out.  If
you see a guy there with a Satan shirt, say hi.  (It's better than it
sounds, you have to see the shirt...)




Date:    Mon, 15 Dec 1997 20:01:36 GMT
From:    Redbeard 
Subject: This Weekend in Phish (Reviews)

hi.  I've reading rmp in digest form (first rosemary, now benjy) for almost
a year now, and this is but my second post and is my first review.  I had
tickets for three shows (thurs rochester --> sat albany), but I was in a
play on friday night and had to give away my ticket for friday night
albany, and I had a dress rehearsal on thursday and was late in rochester.
but saturday night blew me away (as I will get into) and I got over the
jaded feeling that rochester left me with.

but anyway, just for clarification and so y'all don't think me a rambling
moron who can't write a non-runon sentance to save his life and has zero
experience writing about shows who is a no-good filthy bastard, I'm a
student at Hamilton College in Central New York, originally from the
NYC-area and I've seen 14 shows and have roughly 100 hours on tape.

***12/11/97 Rochester, NY  The War Memorial***

I: PYITE, DWD-> Maze, Dirt, Limb By Limb, Loving Cup, Rockytop.

II: Drowned-> Roses are Free*-> BBFCFM-> Ghost -> DWD Jam -> JBG

E: Waste

* Cover of Ween song

We left Clinton, NY at roughly 6:30, knowing we'd be late for the show, but
missing the opener, in my book, is better than missing the show.  arrived,
amazingly, around 8, and got in just to hear the final chorus to DOWN WITH
DISEASE (I found out later that we'd also missed a PUNCH YOU opener, which
had been on my wish list along with Gumbo, Tube and BEK, and I was pretty
pissed).  The bouncy feel and the lyrics "this has all been wonderful, but
now I'm on my way" completely broke me out of the funk I had been in all
week (what, with the play and four papers to write) and I was grooving with
the band and the crowd.  The jam got kind of "out there," as is expected
with DWD, and I thought for a minute that they were going to into 2001.

Then, fishman brought the hi-hat into the jam, and I thought it might be
the bowie intro, but with some fat bass, I realized it to be MAZE.  Nice
maze, it surprised me a couple of times, and I suppose that it could be
called a good 97 maze; they seem to have put the emphasis on the building
and release of tension by all four band members, rather than trey's hitting
of the high notes, and I guess that fits into their whole new perspective
on jamming (see SS&P).

DIRT was dirt.  pretty little song, but I could have done with another
upbeat tune before a throwaway like this.

I can't quite describe the jam out of LIMB BY LIMB (third in past four
shows), but I definately liked it better than either darien ctr. or the
went.  Melodic and happy.

I was expecting maybe the beginning of Split Open and Melt here, or maybe a
Fluffhead.  I was surprised to hear the piano opening to LOVING CUP.  One
of my favorite covers phish does, I was psyched to hear it, and it was a
nice comedown after the limb by limb jam.  But, did that mean the end of
the set already?  What about all the relentless jamming that I was hearing
about on Benjy's?

ROCKYTOP set-closer confirmed it.  I like rockytop a lot (I like bluegrass
a lot), and I shook my ass to it, but I was hoping for a little more.  5.5
set (out of 10) because of the DWD, Maze and Limb By Limb jams that made it
an averagely-well-jammed set, and the Loving Cup pulled it up another half
a point.

during set break I looked for some friends at the greenpeace table, didn't
find them, filled up my water, hopped the barrier into GA, chatted with
Mimi Fishman,  sparked a bowl =-) and waited.  and waited.  long set break.

I didn't reconize DROWNED until the second verse, and, by the time I did, I
was thoroughly impressed.  Not quite the level of NYE '95, but strong
opener and well played.  Jammed for a while, then they started singing the
lyrics (I guess they had already segued into the melody of) a ween song
called ROSES ARE FREE (first time?) and trey teased BBFCFM and I remarked,
wouldn't that be crazy? and he did it again, and fishman went crazy and
insanity ensued.  It made me very happy, and seeing trey run around and
around the stage will always bring a smile to my face.  Big Black Furry
Creatures From Mars was definately the highlite of the show for me.

GHOST started up (again) and I thought, this won't compare to Star Lake,
challanging them to prove me wrong, and I wish I hadn't, because they
didn't.  The jam was really funky at first, but got kinda tedious, and I
found myself wishing they'd segue into something already, and it was cool
when the jam went from being dark and spacy to being a reprise of the DWD
JAM, and I jumped up and down a little, hoping for some killer jam to
follow with an encore that would knock my teeth out.  something like Funky
Bitch -> 2001 -> Camelwalk, and then a Guyute-> Antelope encore.

The Down With Disease jam segued into Johnny B. Goode, which, I'll admit,
was the coolest JBG I've ever heard, with a segment of spacy fall 97 jam in
it, but did not make my night.  not at all.  the WASTE encore was just
that, a waste.  I'm sorry, but this song has never done it for me, and
never will, especially as an encore.  Maybe if they change its melodic
progressions so we could have a fifteen-minute slave-like Waste, I'd like
it, but I just find it sappy and it doesn't really go anywhere.

second set 4.0 -- bolstered only by strong drowned and the insanity of
bbfcfm.  Overall, I was kinda disappointed by the show.  I thought it weak
on the whole.
oh well, hope they don't play tube friday night, I've got to write a paper
on marilyn frye's radical feminist philosophy and I've got my play.

Subject: Comments for HFB on 12-11-97 Rochester, NY
Date:  Mon, 02 Mar 1998 22:54:58 -0500
From: AWhiting 

The Dec 11 - Rochester show was one that I'll never forget. It was one that
really proved to me how truly talented Phish is.  Every song played that
night was played flawlessly. So let me tell you a little about the show.
The first set opened with PYITE.  It was masterfully done and it got
everyone in the whole arena into the groove right off the bat.  At the end
of the song Trey worked his guitar magic by conjuring up some awesome
special guitar effects with his plethora of effects pedals.  Next was DWD
with a SWEET jam, next an incredible version of MAZE.  This one hypnotized
everyone in the crowd.  Also I heard perhaps the most incredible organ
playing by Page on this one.  Next Dirt, they played this one briefly and
didn't seem too intent on extending it in to a long jammed out version,
still was good.  Limb by Limb, a new good song, Loving Cup and Rocky Top
ended the 1st set.

The second set was cool.  They opened with Drowned then played into Roses
are Free which is a Ween cover. (Not a bad song) Next was BBFCFM which woke
everyone up! Trey was up to his on stage antics with this one when he ran
around the stage about five times in the middle of the song.  That was
cool.  After the hysteria, they moved into Ghost, a promising song which I
have found to be one of my favorite new Phish songs.  After this they
played into a DWD Reprise.  Then the set conluded with Jonny B. Goode.
Trey WENT OFF on his guitar like I have never seen on this song, UNREAL.
The encore was Waste.  

Well thats about it, all I have to say is get the show on tape you'll
definetly enjoy it.  Later.