Jam titans Phish had a busy summer in 1997 as they embarked on a 19-show tour of Europe followed by a month-long U.S. jaunt. The band prepped to hit the road by coming together to create new material and showed off seven new originals and encored with a pair of cover debuts to kick off the European Tour on this date in 1997.
Phish began their first of two tour-opening shows at The S.F.X. Centre in Dublin, Ireland with “Theme From The Bottom” and then served up the debut of “Dog Stole Things.” Guitarist Trey Anastasio stepped to the mic and said, “we wrote about 15 or 16 new tunes over the last eight weeks and we’re going to be debuting a lot of them tonight” and shared the band’s excitement. A romp through Del McCoury’s “Beauty Of My Dreams” and the tender Phish ballad “Billy Breathes” followed ahead of the debut of “Limb By Limb.” The foursome took “Wolfman’s Brother” for a spin before slowing things down with the first ever “Wading In The Velvet Sea” and a “Taste” set closer.
While Phish kicked off the second set with a pair of classics, “Stash” and “Maze,” they then unveiled two more originals – “Water In The Sky” and “Vultures.” An emotional “Slave To The Traffic Light” came next before the quartet jammed “Chalk Dust Torture” into the debut of “Ghost.” Phish didn’t take “Ghost” deep on its initial play, but it wouldn’t be long until the song was a heavy hitter in the band’s repertoire. The rocking and short-lived “Oliva’s Pool” emerged out of “Ghost” and was the evening’s final original debut.
Trey Anastasio & Co. ended the second set in Dublin with “Character Zero,” but still had a few surprises in store for the encore. Phish began the encore with “Stand!” which to this date remains the only time the quartet covered the Sly & The Family Stone classic in public. The evening concluded with yet another cover debut as the foursome unveiled their rendition of “Izabella” by Jimi Hendrix. Although “Izabella” quickly became a fan-favorite, the song disappeared from the repertoire after the 10th performance of the tune on July 31, 1998. Phish returned to Dublin’s S.F.X. Centre the next night and debuted six more songs including “Dirt,” “Piper” and “Twist” making the run an extremely important one in the band’s history.
Stream a recording of Phish’s June 13, 1997 show in Dublin shared by From The Aquarium:
Setlist (via Phish.net)
Set One: Theme From the Bottom, Dogs Stole Things, Beauty of My Dreams > Billy Breathes, Limb By Limb, Wolfman’s Brother > Wading in the Velvet Sea > Taste
Set Two Stash, Maze, Water in the Sky, Vultures, Slave to the Traffic Light > Chalk Dust Torture -> Ghost -> Olivia’s Pool > Character Zero
Encore: Stand! -> Izabella
-  Debut.
-  Unfinished.
-  Phish debut.
Phish continued their tradition of breaking out new songs at the beginning of a tour; Trey announced after Dogs Stole Things that the band had written 15-16 new songs in the last eight weeks and that they would be debuting many of them at this show. The show featured the debuts of Dogs Stole Things, Limb By Limb, Wading in the Velvet Sea, Water in the Sky, Vultures, Ghost and Olivia’s Pool as well as the Phish debuts of Stand and Izabella. Stash was preceded by a Tequila tease. Chalk Dust was unfinished. Character Zero included a Jean Pierre tease from Trey.
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