Photo Credit: Rene Huemer

On Sunday, April 21, Phish assumed the spotlight at Las Vegas’ Sphere for the final show in its historic four-night residency. To close out this legendary series, the band staged another thrilling themed show, pushing out to the furthest reaches of the venue’s technical and creative capabilities for a transcendent double-dose of psychedelia. The final Sphere show–for now–found its center in “Matter,” amassing cosmic classics like “Plasma” and “Divided Sky” alongside greener entries like “Oblivion” and “Ether Edge” to tell the fluid and amorphous story of a band that ceaselessly changes states. 

Phish took the stage to the sounds of a pre-recorded selection that resonated like Trey Anastasio original “Plasma,” forecasting the first cut for keen-eared fans just as it had on Friday. Following the far-out reflection on our capacity for growth, the band moved on to Anastasio’s 2020 original “Evolve,” building to the stirring, stomping funk of fan-favorite “Ghost,” which saw a visual highlight from the weekend with towering neon robots peering over the audience with spotlight eyes.

Next came the explosive, anthemic Junta classic “Divided Sky,” which sent the ensemble soaring into the stratosphere as clouds collected overhead, glowing with blots of color as the quartet ripped through an elaborate high-octane jam; when the song came to its quieting mid-point transition, the clouds suddenly stopped, then stormed along with the band through its final movement. “Shade” focused this frantic energy into a stripped-down, deeply moving iteration of this recent entry, which began with Anastasio donning his acoustic guitar before the dazzling image of an eclipsed star.

Phish continued with its fifth-ever staging of the 2022 Anastasio original “hey stranger.” To close out the first frame of its performance, the band delivered a thundering treatment of the certified classic “Character Zero,” with an electrifying, exploratory jam that tapped into the quartet’s four decades of expertise and let it all pour out.

The band returned to the stage after a brief intermission (which featured set break music from the late Richard Swift, per Karina Rykman) with the recent deep cut “Oblivion,” which became a springboard for yet another eye-widening jam that transitioned into the heart-pounding, rock-solid ripper “Down With Disease.” This face-melter primed the audience at Sphere for a monumental five-track medley, beginning with a staggering total segue between “Beneath a Sea of Stars Part 1” and “Also Sprach Zarathustra” that saw a twinkling canopy of stars turn to simulated stage lights overhead. 

This cosmic Kubrick homage moved into 2009’s “Light,” to which Mike Gordon tacked a tease of “Plasma,” followed by the band’s sixth-ever staging of Anastasio’s original “Ether Edge” and the essential “Piper.” The latter pair of tracks included floating umbrellas and raindrops hoisted above the crowd, just as puppeted jellyfish and lanterns brought a special Phish twist to Sphere’s production in previous nights. Finally, the band arrived at the last song of its second set with Farmhouse’s “First Tube,” which featured a true visual culmination of the series when a sprawling field of stars summoned a swirling vortex, drenching the dome in weightless streams of color that billowed and brightened as the band built on an unforgettable improvisatory run.

Before the encore, Anastasio took a moment to address the audience, thanking the Sphere production team that helped create the striking spectacle of Phish’s residency and mentioning that he believes the band will return to the innovative venue. After all was said, Phish closed out its series with “More” and “Slave to the Traffic Light,” then took a photo with the audience to commemorate this powerful moment.

Phish will return to the stage for its summer tour on July 19, with tours from Anastasio and Classic TAB and Gordon slated to tide fans over in the meantime. For more information on future performances, visit Until the band’s return, programming at Sphere will keep rolling, with Dead & Co.’s hotly anticipated 24-show residency arriving next from May 16 to June 13. Find tickets for this upcoming series at