Phish 2009-12-29 20.10.39
Set 1: Golgi Apparatus, Maze, Driver, The Connection, Wolfman's Brother, Ocelot, Reba, Access Me, The Divided Sky, Cavern

Set 2: Kill Devil Falls > Tweezer -> Prince Caspian > Gotta Jibboo > Wilson -> Gotta Jibboo -> Heavy Things > Also Sprach Zarathustra > Slave to the Traffic Light

Encore: Sleeping Monkey > Tweezer Reprise

After the first night, I was pretty excited about the second show of the New Year's run. They
hit it full on with an uptempo Golgi Apparatus to open and then got into the jamming quickly with Maze.

A couple of slower, shorter ones followed including only the second performance of the lone single from 2004's Undermind album, The Connection. The rest of the set was mostly either long jam or long composed songs broken up by another second-ever performance of an Undermind track, Mike Gordon's Access Me, one of my favorites from that album. The Wolfman's Brother and Ocelot on the front-half felt like 1997 again as they pulled out the funk (yes, Ocelot is new, but the jam out of it could easily have been from summer 1997). The Reba and Divided Sky after were fairly tight, with a quite good solo in Reba. I particularly enjoyed this bit of the set, as it was Reba that first really got my attention. At the time I heard it, I was listening to a lot of Frank Zappa and Trey's composition at that time was heavily influenced by Zappa's work. Divided Sky is similarly constructed and as a bonus is a song I hadn't heard since my first Phish show.

Phish 2009-12-29 22.18.07

The second set started out with a high-octane Kill Devil Falls, from the new record which slammed straight into Tweezer. Tweezer was an example of the concise jamming that Phish is engaging in. There was little long-windedness in the jams on the entire run. Tweezer faded into Prince Caspian which kind of stumbled into Gotta Jibboo. Jibboo picked up the tempo and eventually wandered its way into Wilson. Trey teased Jibboo in the Wilson outro and eventually they segued back into the ending of Jibboo which in a kind of sloppy fashion gave way to Heavy Things.

Liz was definitely enjoying the poppier tone of the previous night, what with all the pop classics on display, as opposed to this show which featured the two overplayed Phish singles from 2000 and 2004. She spent a lot of time home in Virginia Beach, a place where Phish is actually heard on the radio, those years and had her fill of The Connection and Heavy Things. I have no such problems, but I thought Heavy Things was a little on the sloppy side. The set got back on track with the funky cover of Deodato's arrangement of Also Sprach Zarathustra. This, much like Tweezer was concise. There was nothing wasted as they laid down some funk, dropped into the theme and then built up to big crescendo, falling away into a pretty Slave to the Traffic Light to end the set.

The encore went into silly with Sleeping Monkey before the inevitable Tweezer Reprise to end the show.

We finished the evening at the arena with a trip to the merch booth, where some girl had just bought a shirt, walked away from the counter, dropped the shirt and had someone grab and run off with it. We all talked about how lame that was. It was eerily prescient as we arrived home to find someone broke into our house while we were a the show and stole some stuff. So, then instead of getting some sleep after another good show, we spent some quality time with the police before spending the rest of the night unable to sleep. Unfortunately, the memory of this show may always be marred by this (mostly) unrelated event, and definitely affected us for the remaining shows.