FULL BREAK DOWN OF PHISH NEW YEAR'S RUN OPENER
[Photo by Scott Harris]
On Saturday night, Phish kicked off a four-night New Year's Run at Madison
Garden in New York City. The band made their 28th appearance at "The World's Greatest
Arena" since first performing at the venue on December 30, 1994. Opening night saw the
quartet find their footing as they worked through many heavy-rotation favorites and took
off on a few improvisational journeys during the cover-less show.
MSG has recently completed a three-stage, three-year renovation during which time Phish
has played the room each December for their New Year's Run, giving fans a first-hand look
at the major changes to NYC's most vital indoor venue. The changes this time around
included the addition of "Sky Bridges" towards the top of the arena, a renovated lobby and
a brand-new scoreboard. Many fans entered the venue early to get familiar with the venue
that will host them this week.
Phish stuck with a close-to-the-vest setlist (no covers and no songs which hadn't been
performed this fall) for Night One of the run. One of the bigger surprises of the night
came right off the bat when the Vermonters opened with "The Wedge" for the first time
since August 8, 1998. "Stealing Time From The Faulty Plan" was representative of most of
the tunes Phish played in the opening stanza as it featured little nuances from each
member of the band that showed they were still as locked in as they were when they
completed their fall tour back in November. Sudden tour staple "Mound" gave way to a tight
"Axilla" and a ferocious "Birds Of A Feather." "Wolfman's Brother" was the improvisational
highlight of the first set as guitarist Trey Anastasio utilized a new analog delay effect
with aplomb. Keyboardist Page McConnell hopped on electric piano for the majority of the
jam, which even included a piano spotlight breakdown before Anastasio led his mates to a
huge arena rock peak. Wingsuit track "Monica" was the first of the
songs debuted on
Halloween to make its return. This time around "Monica" was performed with each member on
their usual electric instrument as opposed to the acoustic take on Halloween. Tight and
bombastic takes on "Seven Below," (besides a rough landing) "Tube," "Free" and "Julius"
brought the first set of the
run to a close.
The quartet came back for Set Two with three songs off Farmhouse in
and "Back On The Train." Phish stuck mainly to the main theme of "Sand," before veering
off towards deep space for the last few minutes of the jam. "Piper" saw the band explore
three different jam spaces over the course of nearly 10 minutes. After a straight-forward
take on "Back On The Train," Anastasio kicked off "Tweezer." 2013 has been an amazing year
for "Tweezer" giving fans high hopes for the NYE Run version. However, the band never
really found their footing and explored aimlessly for a while until Trey made the decision
to bail out on "Tweezer" for "Backwards Down The Number Line." Any disappointment was soon
forgotten when the Vermonters delivered an outrageous "Steam" that contained impressive
improvisational contributions from all four members of the band - a must-hear version.
Once again "The Horse" was nowhere to be found as "Silent In The Morning" was performed
without its old pal. The ethereal "Waiting All Night" was the evening's second
Wingsuit song and was a bit more developed than its Halloween debut. A typical
Like An Antelope," complete with powerful peak, ended the second set on a high note. A fun
and funky "Suzy Greenberg" led into "Tweezer Reprise" in the encore slot. Phish returns to
MSG tonight for the second of the run's four shows.
here to view the
breakdowns of every show Phish
has played in 2013 including setlists, recaps and our statistical rundowns.
Here's The Skinny from Phish's first of four shows at MSG...
- Venue Capacity / Attendance / Type: 20,000 / 20,000 /
- Previous Shows at Venue: 27 Shows - 12/30/94, 12/30/95,
12/31/95, 10/21/96, 10/22/96, 12/29/97, 12/30/97, 12/31/97, 12/28/98, 12/29/98,
12/31/98, 12/31/02, 12/02/09, 12/03/09, 12/04/09, 12/30/10, 12/31/10, 01/01/11,
12/28/2011, 12/29/2011, 12/30/2011, 12/31/2011, 12/28/2012, 12/29/2012, 12/30/2012 and
- Number Of Songs / Length – First Set: 11 / 8:18 - 9:33 (75
- Number Of Songs / Length – Second Set & Encore:
11 / 10:09 - 11:43 (94 Minutes)
- Total Number of Songs / Covers / Originals: 22 / 0 / 22
- Biggest Bustout: Steam - 11 Shows (LTP - 10/19/2013)
- Average Song Vintage: 1997
- Debuts: N/A
- Weather: 41°F and Clear at Showtime
- Average Song Gap: 3.55
- The Spread: 4 - Misc., 3 - Farmhouse, 3 - Rift, 2 - Joy, 2 -
Hoist, 2 - Picture of Nectar, 2 - Wingsuit, 1 - Round Room, 1 - Story of the Ghost, 1
Billy Breathes, 1 - Lawn Boy,
- Longest LivePhish Track / Shortest LivePhish Track:
Sand 12:59 / Axilla 3:25
- Audio: Live Phish
Phish From The Road Photos...