Phish kicked off their 2018 fall tour on Tuesday night in Albany, NY, playing the first of two shows at the Times Union Center. Returning to Upstate New York not long after their canceled Curveball festival and performing for many of the fans who would have been at the event, the band delivered a two-set effort that featured extended improvisations in both sets and plenty of live staples to open their October dates.
Continuing a theme that they hinted at during some shows this past summer, Phish didn’t hold back on extending their first-set tunes, offering three songs that topped the 11-minute mark, including just the second cut of the night, “Tube,” which followed a tour opener of “The Moma Dance” and featured some patient, type-II band interplay. “Theme From the Bottom Then” led into a spirited “Free,” featuring a face-off between Trey Anastasio and Mike Gordon, followed by the first “Army of One” of 2018. Newer tune “Everything’s Right” got extended for the longest jam of the first set and led straight into Phish’s fan-favorite cover of Talking Head’s “Cities,” before “Walls of the Cave” closed out the first frame.
The band returned from setbreak with a 12-minute, energetic “Ghost” that segued into a “No Men In No Man’s Land” that was taken to a subtle, spacey improvisational section that in turn dropped into “Piper.” “Twenty Years Later,” the longest tune of the night, ended up being a highlight of the performance with dark jamming and plenty of contributions from each band member. “Show of Life” then offered some disparate sections, built up to a climax and then taken into “Also Sprach Zarathustra,” which paved the way for a second-set-closing run of “Character Zero.” The band then returned for a crowd-pleasing encore of “Harry Hood.”
See the full setlist below as it appears in our Box Scores section, along with a couple fan-shot videos from the show. Phish return to the Times Union Center stage tonight for round two.
Times Union Center, Albany, NY
Set I: The Moma Dance, Tube, Theme From the Bottom > Free, Army of One, Halley’s Comet > Everything’s Right -> Cities > Walls of the Cave
Set II: Ghost > No Men In No Man’s Land > Piper > Twenty Years Later > Show of Life > Also Sprach Zarathustra > Character Zero
Enc: Harry Hood