photo by Rene Huemer (via Phish From the Road on Twitter)
After kicking off their Halloween run in Las Vegas on Wednesday night with a surprise set of all-new material disguised as ’80s Scandinavian rockers Kasvot Växt, Phish returned to the stage at MGM Grand Garden Arena on Thursday for night two of four, offering a less surprising but solid two-set performance, continuing their 2018 trend of some extended first-set improvisations and returning to some of their current favorite setlist choices.
The band eased the crowd into the night with “Everything’s Right” to open the first set, building to a nice early set peak, with Page McConnell switching between organ and clavinet during the finale, which died away to make way for a quick, rocking “AC/DC Bag” and first-set staple “Wolfman’s Brother.” Phish took a turn from the rock with the bluegrassy “Nellie Kane,” followed by “Funky Bitch” and another first-set favorite, “Chalk Dust Torture,” which was stretched out to nearly 16 minutes with dynamic Rarer tune “I Been Around” then made just its sixth Phish appearance, before the set closed out with “Joy” and “Walls of the Cave.”
One of the group’s favorite 2018 jam vehicles, “Blaze On,” kicked off set two last night with a bang, as the band delivered a 20-minute version that quickly moved from the bouncy main portion of the song to aggressive fretwork from Trey Anastasio, then into a subdued jam featuring bass and key interplay from Mike Gordon and McConnell, respectively, before a blissful peak topped off the tune. Another couple of songs Phish have recently leaned on, “No Men In No Man’s Land” and “Fuego,” emerged out of “Blaze,” followed by a “Twist” sandwich with a beautiful “Prince Caspian” in the middle. A classic “Bouncing Around the Room” then preceded set closer “Harry Hood,” which moved into type II territory improvisation and featured maybe the biggest climax of the night, with soaring guitar from Anastasio. Phish then returned for a two-song encore of “Contact” and “Rise/Come Together.”
See the full setlist below, along with some video from the night. Phish are back in action at the MGM Grand tonight for round three.
MGM Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas
Set I: Everything’s Right, AC/DC Bag > Wolfman’s Brother, Nellie Kane, Funky Bitch, Chalk Dust Torture, I Been Around, Joy, Walls of the Cave
Set II: Blaze On > No Men In No Man’s Land, Fuego > Twist > Prince Caspian > Twist, Bouncing Around the Room, Harry Hood
Enc: Contact > Rise/Come Together