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Published: 2013/10/30

Phish Debut in Reading With Throwback Show

There are few places left in this country that Phish hasn’t played, but up until last night, Reading, PA was one of those places. Stopping at Reading’s Santander Arena before their Halloween run in Atlantic City, Phish delivered one of those statement shows to the folks who may have skipped this show to forge on to AC.

Opening with the semi-rare “Cars Trucks Buses,” Phish moved through cuts like “Stealing Time From the Faulty Plan” and “Ginseng Sullivan” to get them, and the crowd, warmed up. “Wolfman’s Brother” gave the band their first chance to lean into some familiar funk improv, and “Walk Away” served as a straight rocker before “Divided Sky” mellowed things out. The highlight of the first set, and potentially the show, came towards the end as “Split Open and Melt” jumped off the deep end into a dark, spooky territory fit for Halloween week. “Julius” eased the mood to close the set, with its upbeat finish.

The second set was a prime example of Phish putting its collective foot on the gas, and not letting up until it was time to go. The beginning “Down with Disease” proved to be one of the highlights of the tour as the band moved through a 21-minute version with precision, delivering one of the most fluid, natural jams since Tahoe’s “Tweezer.” After a well-placed “Taste,” the Joy cut “Twenty Years Later” saw one of its best versions yet, stretching out past the normal structure and giving way to some stellar improv.

Reading’s second set comes to a close with a “Piper,” “Backwards Down the Number Line,” “You Enjoy Myself” and “Grind” in the rare, set-closing a cappella slot. The encore once again featured multiple songs, a trend on this tour thus far, with “Bouncing Round the Room” and “Reba” making unusual appearances in the encore slot. “Good Times, Bad Times” brought the show to a raucous close as fans prepare to make the trek to Atlantic City, NJ for Phish’s annual Halloween show.

Here’s the setlist as it appears in our Box Scores section:

The Santander Arena, Reading, PA

Set I: Cars Trucks Buses, Stealing Time From the Faulty Plan, Ginseng Sullivan, Wolfman’s Brother, Sparkle, Walk Away, Divided Sky, Split Open and Melt* > Julius

Set II: Down with Disease^ > Taste, Twenty Years Later > Piper > Backwards Down the Number Line, You Enjoy Myself, Grind

Enc: Bouncing Around the Room > Reba, Good Times Bad Times

Notes: *Unfinished.
^Unfinished; Pop Goes the Weasel tease from Mike during intro.



There are 14 comments associated with this post

peachhead October 30, 2013, 10:57:20

Seems like a pretty standard 3.0 show to me

T October 30, 2013, 11:03:24

Hardly a throwback show… unless I am misinterpreting throwback. BDTNL is so terrible.

Sugar Mr. Poon? October 30, 2013, 11:11:56

Is the use of “raucous” a requirement in each Phish show review?

Jimbo October 30, 2013, 11:21:08

Of you Were at the show last night , You would not be telling yourself that it is just another standard 3.0 show. It was smoking. Hot hot fire beginning to end. The jams were focused and went somewhere, everything about it felt extremely old school. Best encore ever.

Freida's Boss October 30, 2013, 11:30:00

Reading Rocked Folks ! absolutely worth the $10 download on Livephish –

bow chica wow wow October 30, 2013, 11:30:31

Looked like a face shredder to me!!!! bring on Atlantic City!!!! For those of you that think its gonna be Eat a Peach, I got news for ya!!! The Allmans are better than ever right now or at least since duane was around…. no way in hell phish is going to try that… Derrick Trucks’s sound couldn’t be touched with a 10ft pole by Trey who is not gonna share the stage w/ trucks himself… get over it… listen to Phish’s whipping post from alpine 96 if you think phish can play the Allmans… Its horrific… Their styles clash and yes, phish is my favorite band… They are obviously gonna pick something they can do better than the original artist…. get fired up for a surprise!!!

Jope October 30, 2013, 11:30:42

As this was my first show in over 14 years, I felt like I never even left tour. Although it was smoking, it still felt like nostalgia, not old school. Predictable, methodical, and standard. I left thinking, man, I’ve grown up, now give me some freaking washboard.

dubs October 30, 2013, 11:33:58

Annual be a way to describe Halloween but not Halloweens that Phish plays. That’s somewhat less than annual. Has anyone officially said they’re performing a musical costume, this year ? I know thats the assumption but I don’t recall seeing anything official. And since 10/31 is not the actual close of the tour, I suspect it may be a bit anti-climatic. Here’s hoping I’m wrong.

TASS October 30, 2013, 11:40:31

I think the Velvet Underground choice will be the pick for Halloween in AC, it would be such a fitting tribute to Lou!!!

Blooby October 30, 2013, 11:45:42

Hot damn, that was the show I was waiting for this tour. I have liked many bits and pieces of shows, but I enjoyed the heck out of just about all of last night’s stream (Thank you Taper420). Need to get out of work to spin it again.

buttsurfer420 October 30, 2013, 12:34:49

“The second set was a prime example of Phish putting its collective foot on the gas, and not letting up until it was time to go.” Did you just copy and paste that from the Jambase article?

time to pay the staff October 30, 2013, 14:05:13

People love to rag on the spell checking and grammar errors that are constantly on this site. But buttsurfer420 points out some pretty solid plagiarism present here. Isn’t it time to quite using craptastic interns and get someone from the Relix staff with some journalistic integrity involved? Do we really have to rely on someone named buttsurfer to keep this in line?

BrianOC October 30, 2013, 16:58:52

Yes, Backwards is one hell of a crappy song. Almost as bad as Jennifer Dances.

Chrouton October 31, 2013, 00:02:16

I was at the show last night and while i had a great time i felt like all of the songs (except for DWD and Twenty Years Later) were uncomfortably untight. Mike looked confused at times, as well as Page… Again i had A LOT of fun and Phish playing a “sloppy” show is still better than a lot of music but I don’t think this was a show for the ages or anything. Divided Sky pause was epic.

smark October 31, 2013, 07:55:09

Throwback show ? Regardless of the quality of playing, that setlist is hardly a “throwback” show …

Oakley Sunglasses With G30 Lenses July 9, 2014, 06:03:56

When a blind man bears the standard pity those that follow…. Exactly where ignorance is bliss ‘tis folly to be wise….
Oakley Sunglasses With G30 Lenses

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