Watch The Great Phish Jams Of July 31
For this installment of Sunday Cinema we’ve compiled video from this date in Phish history, which is quite a great one. Not only has the foursome dropped a number of stunners on July 31, but many are available for our viewing pleasure on YouTube.
July 31, 1993 – Split Open & Melt (Atlanta, GA)
While the real winner from this night was one of just two “Mike’s Song” > “Leprechaun” > “Weekapaug Groove” segments in Phish history, only a handful of songs from Atlanta’s Masquerade Music Park circulate in video form. One such tune was “Split Open & Melt.” While not adventurous, this “Split” features hard-hitting machine gun licks from Trey and a ridiculously tight Phish:
July 31, 1999 – Prince Caspian (Niigata, Japan)
While “Prince Caspian” is rarely a song that sticks out as the bigger winner from a Phish show, on this date in 1999 the quartet delivered a stunning and dare I say “epic” version of the song. Phish.net nails it perfectly when describing this as, “Ethereal version from Japan has an almost other worldly quality that captures the essence of the band’s sound and tone in ’99 and ’00.” Thankfully, “Caspian” was broadcast on Japanese television allowing us to witness what went down at the Field Of Heaven. Not Fish’s joyous yelps and the way Trey utilizes a tone that makes it sound like he’s playing backwards:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=EHiyKiPxvCU
July 31, 2003 – Harry Hood (Camden, NJ)
The second set Phish played in Camden 13 years ago today is filled with highlights. It ends with the tour’s fourth “Harry Hood” that goes well beyond the song’s normal boundaries of the five played that summer. The Camden ’03 “Hood” is exquisite with beautiful and diverse jamming that covers plenty of ground over 24 minutes. Here’s video of the whole second set, go to the 1:03:00 mark to start with “Harry Hood”:
July 31, 2009 – Drowned > Crosseyed & Painless, Tweezer and Backwards Down The Number Line (Morrison, CO)
Phish kicked down a fine second set, especially for 2009, at Red Rocks seven years ago today. Not only is the “Drowned” > “Crosseyed” sequence that opens the second set a winner, the “Tweezer” is a true Team Phish affair with Trey contributing chunky rhythms and leads, Mike unleashing wobbly bass notes, Page tossing in synth swirls and Fish keeping a steady beat. We’d be remiss if we didn’t mention a very interesting minute of music that comes within “Backwards Down The Number Line.” Check out the entire second set:
July 31, 2013 – Tweezer (Lake Tahoe, CA)
Three years ago Phish extended “Tweezer” in a magical way. The “Tahoe Tweezer” instantly became legendary and for good reason. Plenty has been said and written about the “Tahoe Tweezer” including what we wrote that night:
“Tweezer” opened the second set and it wasn’t long before the band broke through the song’s normal boundaries making for the most exploratory version of any song yet this tour. Around the fourteen minute mark, Phish settled in on an aggressive groove that along with the more spacey interlude that led to it made this “Tweezer” an instant classic and the version was far from over. Not content to move on yet, the quartet followed the anthemic peak with more ambiance and yet another blissful climax. A stunning 27 minutes into one of the more impressive pieces of improvisation of the era, the Vermonters involved the crowd with a start-stop segment that saw audience members squeal in delight during the breaks. Moving past the 30 minute mark, the band re-examined a couple of the jam spaces it has explored earlier including another start-stop bit and eventually returned to the Tweezer theme an unbelievable 36 minutes after they started the set. How do you follow a 36-minute Tweezer?
Recently, the best footage of the “Tahoe Tweezer” yet surfaced featuring multiple angles via madpicken:
July 31, 2015 – Kill Devil Falls (Atlanta, GA)
Phish kicked off the second set one year ago today in the ATL with the best “Kill Devil Falls” ever. The band busts through the song’s normal boundaries and for nearly 20 minutes explores various sonic terrain including a “Tweezer Reprise” esque space. The band quickly unveiled pro-shot video: