|Toronto, Ontario, Canada
|Debut. Compact, and coyly > from Halley's Comet, playful licks, a meandering, breezy, and open-ended feel following the main chorus, offers a glimpse of what soons becomes a signature, second set staple.
|First improvisational version wastes no time delving into a dark swampy zone with Page's synths leading the way, Mike going to the envelope filter to add some extra filthiness. Fish picks up the pace and Trey moves to a nice low-key groove with some "Weekapaug"-y tones, with some "Crosseyed" quotes for funsies. The band gooses some woos, then finds a nice -> into "Twist".
|Smoothly pivots to a fuzzed-out and warm space, then grows darker and heavier with some real nice work from Mike in particular. Page flashes his stuff on the keys as the jam grows busier and more intense, and with a few strums of his guitar Trey moves the band into a quicksilver blissful upbeat hose jam. Things get murkier and heavier, a perfect setting for "DDHVL" to emerge.
|East Troy, WI
|An unflagging improvisational behemoth that moves from moody rocking out to a low-simmering groove to a propulsive Trey-led anthemic rush to swampy blissfulness to reggae (!) to motorized power riffing with a thrilling peak to ambient space to a surprising and welcome effects-laden gallop into the unknown to a breathless and ferocious finale (and second ambient deep space segment, for good measure) with neither muss nor fuss. At the time of writing, the longest modern era jam and seventh-longest ever to date, and not a second wasted on top. Listening to this masterpiece is non-negotiable.
|A wonderfully multi-faceted jam that touches on fiery effects-laden minor key grooviness, a twinkly Page-heavy relaxed jam, and a superb rockout that builds to a gigantic peak before coming to an echo-laden close. Right up there with any of the year's lengthier behemoths. > into "CDT".
|Moves from a warm and hearty jamming zone into something darker and Mike-driven, then Trey hits on a really nice repeating riff as the playing gets sparser and more delicate. The band moves smoothly into "rock out, man" mode, then an absolutely wild disco groove emerges, eminently danceable and tinged with weirdness. A thirty minute jam that feels like fifteen, one of the many hallmarks of 2021.
|"Ruby Waves" asserted itself early as a Phish staple, and the song's versatility, as evinced on 12/30/19, and again, here, seemingly cements its status as part of the new Phish order. Powerhouse play, replete with "Lizards" licks and impassioned improvisation, creates, a la "CDT," a new sort of joy, erasing anything by way of sentimentality and flips the set, which unfurls as if from an earlier era.
|Atlantic City, NJ
|Ruby emerges from the ether of a big "Down with Disease." This jam gallops along through various vignettes in butter-smooth fashion (including a brief passage of dissonant jamming) before the band lands on a super connected major key rock groove. Trey begins a repeated lick that builds patiently to an absolutely incendiary hose-y peak. Fishman kicks it into an overdrive with a tempo change and the band segues into the "DWD" ending in once again, butter-smooth fashion.
|Commerce City, CO
|The band is locked in early and gives us a series of scorching, rolling peaks that modulate and are eventually capped off by soaring trilling from Trey. The jam then downshifts into a not quite ambient section that maintains its forward momentum, growing more hypnotic as play gradually accelerates towards another peak and a clean return to end the song.
|New York, NY
|Cool version > from "YEM." Straight from the song, proper, Trey wastes no time, leaning into his solo, a shearing sort of sound carving up space and backed by great Fish. As play seemingly cools, Trey augments his tone, his play offset by Page's inspired, sonic soundwaves. Form and structure dissolve into wild and inventive improv, full-band jamming near raucous at times, celebratory, and ubeat. More patterned play, highlighted by dynamic Fish, breaks for a nasty "Heartbreaker" tease and a return to the song's riff, thus resolving another memorable MSG moment.
|Cancun, Quintana Roo, Mexico
|Veritable monster of a version. The band enthusiastically sets up a passage of dense, funky psychedelia off the back of Fish's propulsive engine. Inspiring play follows as Trey, Mike and Page all shine with affected tones and loops. Without ever dipping in energy, the band then patiently builds to a seriously rocking peak section before returning to the main theme of "Ruby Waves."
|A Fish propelled, space hopping rocket that sizzles thanks in large part to the drummer's restless shuffle. A big version that only gets bigger, gathering speed from a brief orbit near a certain planet, it explodes in loopy peaks before a full return.
|A multi-section monstrosity that features highly inspired melodic playing, atypical modulations, an extended passage based on either "Roll with the Changes" or "Paradise City", and a false ending that catalyzes a deep dive of inter-dimensional sonic alchemy rarely heard in the modern era. Must-hear.
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