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Sunday, November 25

Bobby Martin's Hopeful Phishing Trips: Wishlist for NYE 2012

With Phish’s perennial New Year’s Run at MSG a little over a month away, many are waiting in anticipation for what’s up the band’s sleeve after the historic run in Colorado this past Labor Day. That’s right. I said it. It was historic and I am completely ashamed for not buying the ticket and taking that ride straight to Denver.

But there is always MSG. However, as many remember, Phish sucked the big one during the New Year’s run after ripping apart Colorado last year. Let’s hope we don’t have a case of déjà vu.
Here are a few wishes I have for this run.
1. Don’t blow it:
Plain and simple. Don’t freaking blow it. Phish doesn’t need to put up multiple 20 minute jams (even though I’d like them to) like they did at Dick’s, but they damn well better jam and leave the horrible flubs as a thing of the past. (See most of 12/30/11, especially Axilla and Vultures.)
2. Play inspired:
Last year’s run went on such a downhill slide it was confusing. Something was clearly off, there was very little improvisation and it truly showed in the music. Set aside 12/30’s Piper, most jams can be overlooked. Some will say that Carini, Tweezer and Weekapaug got to that point that we all look for, but the truth is that there were several versions this past summer that blow each of those right out of the water. They need to play inspired to keep us interested. That’s a fact.
3. Play Down With Disease early in the run:
My good friend Cready made the point that it would be excellent to hear an early DWD because it would ensure we get something different going into the New Year. DWD is and has always been an excellent choice to ring in the New Year, but it has run a little bit stale after being played in this slot six NYE’s and each of the past three.
4. Hit the 30 minute mark:
First of all, QUANTITY DOES NOT ALWAYS MEAN QUALITY when it comes to Phish jams. That being said:
Phish showed at Dick’s that they have still have the musical prowess to take jams to the next level by stretching out songs past the 20 minute mark multiple times during each night of the run. In fact, there were even more songs over the 15 minute mark and fans were delighted by their willingness to jam as well as their ability to pull it off without sounding like a slop fest. We don’t need to jam the whole time, but let’s get a 30 minute jam.
The last jam getting over 30 minutes was Coventry’s Split Open and Melt, which is actually outstanding considering all the shit that came from Coventry. I know quantity does not always mean quality, but a 30 minute Tweezer would be a breath of fresh air to see that they can still get there and achieve lift-off.
5. Announce a Spring Tour:
Wouldn’t it be great to be there and just hear Trey say, “Thank you. It’s been a great year. See ya in the Spring.” I think I can speak for most people by saying that Phish plays best when they are on a roll. Nobody wants to wait five months to hear them again. Having a Spring tour, even if brief, would greatly benefit the following summer and so on. At Indio in ’09, those who were there learned about NYE in Miami through an advertisement in the Phishbill. Let’s get that snowball rolling somehow.
What are you hoping for during the upcoming run? Feel free to let me know. The shows are right around the corner and I know I can’t wait.
But… who’s got my extra? (Seriously)
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