KANSAS CITY – Phish played a sold out show in Kansas City show August 22nd at Starlight. I have been a Phish fan for around 7 years, but it was my first time seeing them live. It was one of the tightest, most skilled musical experiences I have ever seen. The crowd 10,000 was in party mode all night.
The setlist seemed to favor many classic Phish tunes. Songs would effortlessly flow from genre to genre. They weave textures together in ways only Phish can. Phish still has an unmistakable and unclassifiable sound. The interplay between the band was tight all evening, however, they stopped after almost every song.
“Chalk Dust Torture” started the show strong and got the crowd dancing. “Rift” led the band into joyously trippy space hoe-down territory. “Stash” rode a heavy Latin-tinged funk groove. Rare versions of “Skin It Back” and a faithful, rocking version of Lynyrd Skynyrd’s “The Ballad of Curtis Loew” made appearances in the first set. The often-underrated “Kill Devil Falls” and an intense version of “Funky Bitch” both featured rocking Page solos. “Run Like an Antelope” closed out the first set with a fiery finish. The song exploded into a blistering reggae-rock freak out, which showcased Trey’s ripping guitar work and oddball lyricism.
An extended, beautiful take on “Tweezer” opened the second set. It served as the longest jam of the night, clocking in at just over 15 minutes. A funked out “Mike’s Song” was excellent. The crowd blissfully danced to the world music groove of “Bouncing Around the Room.” The poppy “Backwards Down the Number Line” finished with soaring guitar work from Trey. The ballad “If I Could” was a change of pace from the heavier jams. A funk-laden “Weekapaug Groove” was a perfect fit for the summer dance party vibe. The dubbed out intro to the shape-shifting “Harry Hood” kept the crowd dancing hard. A raucous “Suzy Greenberg” expanded to jazzy-rock solos. It was a great, uptempo way to end the 2nd set.
A cover of the Rolling Stones’ “Loving Cup” was hard-rocking. The band closed the show out with a reprise of “Tweezer,” sending the crowd home happy.
It was a lovely evening of inspired playing from Phish. I will definitely be back for more.
I: Chalk Dust Torture; Skin It Back; The Moma Dance; Rift;
Bathtub Gin; Stash; The Ballad of Curtis Loew; Kill Devil Falls; Funky
Bitch; Run Like an Antelope
II: Tweezer; Piper; Mike’s
Song; Bouncing Around the Room; Backwards Down the Number Line; Heavy
Things; If I Could; Weekapaug Groove; Harry Hood; Suzy Greenburg.
Encore: Loving Cup/Tweezer Reprise.
Set 1: 8:00pm-9:35. Set 2: 10:04pm-11:35pm