There is always some kind of special aura that follows a tour closer, and on this slightly chilly, but comfortable summer night the expectations for Phish were extremely high. They had been formed long before this throwdown on the south shore of Long Island. Just a few minutes before entering the venue, I was told to look at the absolutely stunning and beautiful orange sunset in one direction, followed by a perfectly flowing rainbow in the other. The colors seemed to be aligning for the end of the Phish summer tour 2010.
After coming to terms with the scenic surroundings, it was time to go Phishing. Just as the night before, as I enter the venue the band takes the stage with another fan favorite, and Mike Gordon slaps that bass and enters “Down with Disease”. I was thrilled to see this as an opener because this is a song the band almost always seems to nail, and opening this night was for a lack of a better word awesome. As the band flew through a really fun version they slow things down to a nice sing along jam in “Sample in a Jar”. Now I was not expecting this as a follow up to that rocking opener, but they seemed to play a very solid version of it. Following this they play a very fun version of “Guelah Papyrus.” I personally really like this song, and was thrilled to see it. I thought Trey Anastasio’s small little licks and jams were spot on, and again gave me chills thinking of the night ahead. Coming out of this nice little jam, they break out into “Poor Heart”, which really got the crowd dancing. The hoe down commencing in my section was a lot of fun and looking around it seemed to really bring the energy of the venue up a lot as a whole. After the high energy “Poor Heart”, they break out in a song off the new album called “Ocelot”. Now just as with “Sample in a Jar”, I was a little confused by the timing as it did not really allow much flow, but I was pleasantly surprised as the band really played a great version of “Ocelot”. It is clear the band really enjoys playing and jamming to a lot of their newer tunes, and I thought this was played really well despite the awkward timing. As soon as the “Ocelot” jam ended they picked up the pace again with a really highflying “Chalkdust Torture”. It is in songs like this where it is easy to sense if Trey is on that night, and he delivered the energy this set was needing when busting out the line “Cant I live while I’m Young?!” This set began to take off after this song, as following a really strong jam, they go right into one of my favorites “Bathtub Gin” This “Bathtub Gin” was really tasty as the jam left me in awe of the incredible job done by Phish light man Chris Kuroda. There is absolutely no comparison to any other band with the stage set up this band has because of the work he does every single show. Following this “Bathtub Gin” the band busts out into “Tube” where Trey fumbled a little at the beginning, but came on strong at the end, always a fun song to see. Next came a song called “Destiny Unbound” which I am not really a fan of in general, so I will not pass my judgment on this song. Next came “”Joy” which was solidly played, but all through this song it was pretty obvious that we were all about to “Run Like an Antelope” to close out this set. As soon as this song began to click the crowd started building with excitement, as this set was a little slow thus far, despite pretty solid playing by the band. As the song pushed on the collection of glow sticks through Jones Beach Amphitheatre began to become more and more obvious and as the build up began the crowd was really digging. The band was really nailing this, and the crowd was feeding off this energy as the peak came and the glow sticks flooded the air. The fans were waiting for this type of an explosion all night and it really came during this set closer, as the band really left the people in the crowd with no choice but to dance. I for one could not stand still if I tried. A great finish for a set that sounded good, but needed that energy.
Unfortunately during set break there was a man who jumped about 25 feet from the top of the amphitheatre critically injuring him and giving minor injuries to others. The reason for him jumping is not known and purely speculation at this point, but please people look out for your friends in the audience, this type of thing should not happen.
Anyway back to the music, finishing off that first set with the high energy, fast paced “Run Like an Antelope,” the hope was to keep the party going. The band takes the stage for what is there last set of the summer tour and bust out into the high-energy song “Axilla I” This is the exact kind of start I wanted for this set, and the band really hit it. With energy at a high pace, the band breaks out into “Timber.” This is another fun song, not really expected but played very well. It is blatantly obvious the difference in comfortably with each other from the Summer Tour of 09 to the Summer Tour of 2010. Coming out of “Timber” the band busts out into “Light.” This jam may have been the most exploratory, dark jam I have heard Phish play. This has quickly become my favorite song off their new album, as the 13-minute “Light” jam was crushed. The sounds, bends and noises coming from the stage were spine tingling in the best way possible. Breaking out from the weird psychedelic noises, the band busts out into a rocking version of “46 Days.” The flow of the set was really starting to form at this point and the band seemed to have found their groove for the night. Next to my pleasant surprise was “My Friend, My Friend.” This was a song I did not expect to hear that night, but coming from “Light->46 Days > My Friend, My Friend” really flowed perfectly. The transitions were hit perfectly and the band was really rocking a heavy rock and psychedelic vibe simultaneously. Carrying the fire vibe this second set was having brought on another personal favorite of mine in “Harry Hood.” The instrumentals, intro and jams during this Hood were incredible. This was one of the best versions of “Harry Hood” all summer and really in quite some time. The jams and peaks during this song once again brought the glow stick wars at Jones Beach Amphitheatre to life. How can the last show of the summer tour 2010 not have a “Tweezer” in it? Coming out like fire out of that Hood, the band busts out into a great rendition of “Tweezer.” The heavy jam continues the pace of the set and really just keeps the rage flowing. After about 25 minutes of jamming between “Harry Hood” and “Tweezer” the band kept its flow going, with really solid versions of “Horse” and “Silent in the Morning.” It was apparent the set was beginning to come to an end when these two songs were played, but nonetheless they played them to perfection. Finally to end the last set of the summer tour the band comes out and rocks a 19 minute “You Enjoy Myself” that left the crowd raging and on their feet wanting more. The band was clearly having fun jumping around the stage, and feeding off the crowds energy. One of the reasons why I love this song so much is it encompasses all of Phish in a single song, as the band jammed, took us into space, showed off their voices in a great a capella that completely blew me away and had so much fun on stage while doing it. Coming back onto the stage for their last encore of the summer, the band seemed to end the summer tour with the 2 songs that seemed to follow me around this summer. “Suzy Greenberg” > “Tweezer Reprise” seemed to describe me and my friends summer in a nutshell and having this end the tour was icing on the cake to a great run at Jones Beach. For the haters that complain about a lack of bust outs, I am sorry, these two shows were a great time to be at, and I can not wait to see you all on Fall Tour!
Set 1: Down with Disease > Sample in a Jar, Geulah Papyrus, Poor Heart > Ocelot, Chalkdust Torture, Bathtub Gin, Tube, Destiny Unbound, Joy >Run Like an Antelope
Set 2: Axilla I >Timer (Jerry) >Light > 46 Days > My Friend, My Friend, Harry Hood > Tweezer > Horse > Silent in the Morning, You Enjoy Myself
Encore: Suzy Greenberg > Tweezer Reprise