Phish delivered some more surprises during the second night of their sold out, tour-opening stand at the Les Schwab Amphitheater in Bend, OR yesterday.
A rare first set-opening “Stash” got things going before Mike Gordon took the reins for the band’s first-ever rendition of “How Many People Are You?,” a new Gordon/Scott Murawski track that the bassist debuted on his most recent solo band tour. The Fuego track “Winterqueen” was then followed by yet another Phish debut, though this time it was the Page McConnell number “Heavy Rotation,” a track from the keyboardist’s eponymous 2007 solo album.
Phish kept the solo debuts coming after “Back on the Train,” as the band went into the Trey Anastasio Band tune “Scabbard.” The song, which was the first single off Anastasio 2012 release Traveler, features some interesting melodies that warmed the crowd up for the “Maze” that followed. Next came came the night’s only full on debut, an 11-minute, Anastasio/Tom Marshall-penned groove called “Mercury” that featured some marimba lumina work from drummer Jon Fishman. Finally, the set came to a close with “Possum.”
A jammed out “A Song I Heard the Ocean Sing” opened the second set before segueing into an equally jammed out “Waves.” “Wingsuit” marked the night’s second Fuego track, while a solid solo highlighted “Farmhouse.” However, the biggest moment came in the form of the classic improv-vehicle “Simple,” which stretched out to 14+ minutes, while occasionally veering into dark territory. A rocking “First Tube” then closed out the set, and the band returned to the stage for yet another surprise—the first “Bathtub Gin” encore since their July 12, 1996 performance at Melkweg in Amsterdam.
Phish will continue their tour tomorrow night at the Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View, CA. Who knows? The band may end up debuting a Touchpants track just to keep things even.
Here’s a look at last night’s setlist via Phish.net:
Set I: Stash, How Many People Are You?, Winterqueen, Heavy Rotation, Back on the Train,Scabbard*, Maze, Mercury^, Possum
Set II: A Song I Heard the Ocean Sing > Waves > Wingsuit, Farmhouse > Simple, First Tube
Enc: Bathtub Gin
Notes: This show was webcast via LivePhish. This show saw the debut of Mercury, and the Phish debuts of How Many People Are You? (Gordon/Murawski), Heavy Rotation (McConnell), and Scabbard (Anastasio). Do You Feel Like We Do was teased after Maze. Trey teased Little Drummer Boy at the end of Gin.