Whole Lotta Led Zeppelin at Phish
Trey Anastasio by Chris Paul
Phish continued to tease fans throughout the second night of its three-show Halloween run at Atlantic City, NJ’s Boardwalk Hall. Building on a rumor that this year’s musical costume is a Led Zeppelin album—spread by area radio personality Pinky Kravitz—the band dotted its setlist with covers and teases by the classic rock band. During a particularly energetic version of “Chalk Dust Torture” first set, the members of Phish busted into a verse of Led Zeppelin’s “Whole Lotta Love.” As if to accent the evening’s prank, after completing “Chalk Dust Torture,” Phish broke out “Ha Ha Ha” for the first time since August 15, 2009. “Bathtub Gin” also continued a few “Whole Lotta Love” teases.
The Vermont Quartet continued to pay tribute to Led Zeppelin throughout its second set. After opening with “Tube,” Phish teased “Whole Lotta Love” during both “Possum” and “Tweezer.” The group jammed on “Tweezer” for a few minutes before segueing into a bit of Led Zeppelin’s “Heartbreaker.” The song quickly morphed into Led Zeppelin’s “Ramble On” and “Thank You” before returning to the “Tweezer” theme. The “Tweezer” jam came to a close with the second section of Led Zeppelin’s trademark “Stairway to Heaven.” At the close of the song Trey Anastasio joked, “Happy Halloween. We’ll see you next year.”
After Joy‘s “Backwards Down the Number Line,” Phish closed its set with a Zeppelin song already in regular rotation, “Good Times Bad Times.” A slow-closing version of “Tweezer Reprise” also contained “Whole Lotta Love” teases, and the evening’s post-show music was a reggae version of the same Led Zeppelin song.
It remains to be seen whether the show’s pronounced theme was meant to squash rumors of a Led Zeppelin cover or prepare fans for tomorrow’s musical costume. The performance also featured a jam-heavy version of “Wolfman’s Brother,” complete with a playful vocal jam. Phish will close with fall tour in Atlantic City tonight.
Here’s a look at last night’s setlist via Phish.net
Sat, 10/30/2010 Atlantic City Boardwalk Hall, Atlantic City, NJ
Set 1: Kill Devil Falls, Cavern > Foam, Guelah Papyrus, Chalk Dust Torture -> Whole Lotta Love1 > Chalk Dust Torture, Ha Ha Ha, Walk Away, Wolfman’s Brother2 -> Undermind > Bathtub Gin3, The Squirming Coil
Set 2: Tube > Possum4 > Tweezer3 -> Heartbreaker5 -> Ramble On -> Thank You5 -> Tweezer -> Stairway to Heaven5, Halley’s Comet > Also Sprach Zarathustra > David Bowie, Show of Life, Backwards Down the Number Line > Good Times Bad Times
Encore: Sleeping Monkey > Tweezer Reprise3
 One verse only.
 Vocal jam.
 Whole Lotta Love tease.
 Whole Lotta Love and Sneakin’ Sally teases.
 Phish debut; Incomplete.
Notes: Whole Lotta Love was incomplete (one verse only) and was played for the first time since March 1, 1991 (1,033 shows). Wolfman’s contained a vocal jam. Gin, Possum and Tweezer and Tweezer Reprise all contained Whole Lotta Love teases. The incomplete versions of Heartbreaker, Thank You, and Stairway to Heaven were all Phish debuts. Ramble On was played for the first time since August 12, 1998 (305 shows). After Stairway to Heaven, Trey joked, “Happy Halloween! See you all next year.” Appropriately, Whole Lotta Love was also the post-show music. From the soundcheck, Ramble On and the second and third versions of Whole Lotta Love were incomplete. Destiny Unbound (in the soundcheck) was played by only Mike and Fish.