Phish Plays +25-Minute ‘No Men In No Man’s Land’ On Fall Tour 2018
This year marks 25 years since Phish’s historic Fall Tour 1995. In recognition of that noteworthy tour and to make up for the lack of shows this fall, JamBase presents a daily retrospective highlighting a noteworthy moment from a Phish fall tour concert that took place on that date over the past 25 years (read a note on Fall 1997 here). The 25 Years Of Phish Fall Tour series runs each day between the start of Phish Fall Tour 1995 on September 27 through that tour’s finale on December 17.
Phish played their second of three Fall Tour 2018 concerts at Rosemont, Illinois’ Allstate Arena two years ago today. The show was highlighted by a +25-minute version of “No Men In No Man’s Land” that scored high marks on both the quantity AND quality scales.
More 25 Years Of Phish Fall Tour on JamBase
The quartet’s performance at the Chicagoland venue was one of five to take place on October 27 over the past 25 years. Additionally, Phish made an appearance on The Late Show With David Letterman on this date in 1998. Allstate Arena first hosted the group on Halloween 1995 when it was known as Rosemont Horizon for a show that included a complete performance of The Who’s Quadrophenia as the band’s musical costume. Seven Phish concerts at the venue followed with a 15-year gap between their February 2003 visit and the three-night stand in October 2018.
Phish got the action underway in Rosemont with their first “Stash” opener since July 22, 2015. The rest of the set was chock full of tour debuts with only two of the frame’s nine songs played during the eight concerts that started the run. Of note was Phish’s first cover of “Roses Are Free” by Ween in 45 shows. Both “Blaze On” and the set-closing “David Bowie” gave the band a chance to stretch out.
A straightforward “The Moma Dance” kicked off the second set but the “No Men In No Man’s Land” that followed was anything but straightforward. Read a description of the instant classic Rosemont “No Men In No Man’s Land” via The Skinny:
Though Phish kept between the lines for “Moma,” the “No Men In No Man’s Land” that followed was the improvisational centerpiece of the concert. Last night’s take was a must-hear “No Men In No Man’s Land” in which the band had plenty of chances to pull the plug yet kept digging into the multi-faceted jam. Periods of five minutes would pass without any member of the band soloing as they continued their egalitarian ways. While no one musician was leading the action, the jam was far from directionless as Phish touched on ambiance, funk, arena rock, buttery bliss, psychedelic reggae and spacey territories over the course of the instant classic “No Men.” A particularly impressive segment of the jam came just before a transition into “Steam” as the band laid the groundwork for a spot-on move into the Anastasio/Marshall classic. This was “Team Phish” at its absolute best with many jaws agape at the band’s improvisational prowess.
2018 was all about equalitarian jamming with “NMINML” a fine example. As noted above, “Steam” emerged out of the wild “No Men” before a quick run through “Chalk Dust Torture.” The seven-song set continued with a slightly expanded “Fuego” and “Joy” filling the ballad slot. Phish then delivered a crowd-pleasing “Suzy Greenberg” to close the frame. For the encore, the four-piece honored Lou Reed on the fifth anniversary of his death by covering The Velvet Underground’s “Rock & Roll.”
Watch the full second set queued up to the breathtaking version of “NMINML” from two years ago today below: