Windy City Finale: Phish Returns To Wrigley Field In Chicago – Recap, Setlist & The Skinny

By Scott Bernstein Jun 25, 2016 8:56 pm PDT

On Saturday night Phish concluded a two-night stand at the famed Wrigley Field in Chicago. It was tale of two very different sets for the quartet’s Wrigley finale as the first set was a fun affair filled with staples and little improvisation, while the second set featured a dream setlist complete with standout jams, the return of beloved fan favorite and a bust out cover for the encore.

Phish nailed their “The Moma Dance” opener on Saturday adding flourishes, or “extra mustard,” to every section of the song. Another well played first set staple followed in “AC/DC Bag” ahead of a double dose of 2014’s Fuego, “555” and “Waiting All Night.” Guitarist Trey Anastasio then set a one-note delay loop signaling “Heavy Things” was upon us. Anastasio took a moment to acknowledge a sign in the crowd reading “Happy Birthday Richard” and asked the crowd to sing “Happy Birthday” with them in honor of tour manager Richard “Dickie Scotland” Glasgow’s birthday.

A straight-forward “46 Days” was up next and gave way to “I Didn’t Know” complete with the tour’s first vacuum solo from Jon Fishman. Trey told the audience to “feel the Bern” seemingly in reference to Fish’s support of Bernie Sanders. The guitarist recalled his days rooming with the drummer in which Fishman would use the vacuum to clean the dirt off the floor of their pad and then put the same vacuum to his mouth on stage. “It’s all for art!” Jon exclaimed. Phish finished off the set with two more heavy rotation classics, “Divided Sky” and “Cavern,” along with a cover of Led Zeppelin’s “Good Times Bad Times.” The “Cavern” was notable for Fishman screwing up towards the end of the song and taking a bow to acknowledge his mistake.

The Vermonters kicked off the second set with “Carini” which they used as a launching pad for exploration. Phish quickly moved from “Carini’s” typical darkness to a blissful, major-key jam space. Keyboardist Page McConnell mixed pretty electric piano work with swirls of synth, while bassist Mike Gordon propelled the action as Anastasio strung together one beautiful riff after another over the course of the majestic “Carini” jam. After the jam peaked Trey started up “Tweezer.” The guitarist focused on rhythm work on the dark and dirty “Tweezer” as Gordon and McConnell did the heavy lifting. Once the quartet had their fill of “Tweezer,” they engaged a transition into “Fluffhead.”

Trey recently spoke about how Phish had essentially forgotten to play “Fluffhead” last year and Saturday’s version was the first in 52 shows. The gap between “Fluffheads” was the second longest in the band’s history. Despite the long layoff there wasn’t much rust as the foursome nailed the song. A relentless and seamless start to the second set continued with “Piper.” Once again Anastasio focused on rhythm letting his mates take control of the jam. Fish was a beast throughout “Piper” changing up fills and patterns. The band eventually connected on the main “Steam” riff and soon thereafter began the song in earnest after milking the segue for all it was worth. After an action packed and intense first hour of the second set, Phish took it down a notch with the ballad “Wading In The Velvet Sea.” There was little rest to be had as “Harry Hood” was up next.

“Harry Hood” was highlighted by impressive interplay between McConnell and Anastasio as well as Fishman making full use of every drum in his kit. Perhaps the band felt curfew approaching as they ran through “Harry Hood” quickly ahead of a “Tweezer Reprise” set closer. The band had one more trick up their sleeves to end the show. A cover of The Beatles’ “I Am The Walrus” served as the encore. “I Am The Walrus” had only been performed once before, way back on June 29, 2010 (229 shows). Phish now heads to Noblesville, Indiana for a show at the venue best known to fans at Deer Creek on Sunday night and you know what they say about Sunday shows…

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RFwCLKrY0RM

The Skinny

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The Setlist

The Venue

Wrigley Field [See upcoming shows]

41649

1 shows — 06/24/2016

The Music

11 songs / 7:45 pm to 8:57 pm (72 minutes)

9 songs / 9:33 pm to 10:55 pm (82 minutes)

20 songs / 17 originals / 3 covers

1995

20.65 [Gap chart]

None

All

I Am The Walrus - LTP 06/29/2010 (229 Show Gap)

Divided Sky - 15:08

Happy Birthday - 1:32

Junta - 2, A Picture of Nectar - 3, The Story of the Ghost - 2, Farmhouse - 2, Round Room - 1, Fuego - 2, Misc. - 5, Covers - 3

The Rest

89° and Fair at showtime

Koa 1

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