AHHHHHHhh Back to reality today as I have now spent a full two days back in the real world after a unbelievable weekend at SuperBall IX at Watkins Glen. After consuming roughly 190 beers and 65 hot dogs/cheeseburgers/quesadillas/sausages (estimates), my July 4th was spent driving down from Watkins and then sleeping in a bed for 14 hours. So many highlights to talk about so let’s get it started:
-This place couldn’t have been better for the amount of people that showed up. Estimates are coming in at around 30,000 and everything flowed and was easily accessible. The walk to our campsite was about 15 minutes which gave us the right amount of time to pick our jaws up off the ground after Phish had completely blown our minds on three consecutive nights.
-The Phab Phour rocked Watkins to heights it hadn’t seen since Summer Jam back in ’73. Obviously feeding off the energy of the crowd, Day 1 featured ripping versions of many staples as well as a few bust outs in “Life on Mars” by David Bowie as well as “Peaches En Regalia” by Frank Zappa.
Day 2 was the first 4 set phish show in history (I think?) and it did not disappoint. The day set started off with probably one of the coolest things I’ve ever witnessed. Walking in I noticed everyone was blowing up beach balls which normally would piss me off because I find them incredibly annoying. Then Trey ripped that opening note in “Tube” and the place ERUPTED. Literally a couple thousand beach balls began to fly from everywhere. It was at that point I lost my collective shit and gave new meaning to the phrase “Page Side, Rage Side.” Set 1 closed with a song that I had been wishing Phish would play for some time now. “Monkey Man” by the Rolling Stones brought a smile to my face that could not have been slapped off.
HE'S GOT BIG BALLS, SHE'S GOT BIG BALLS
Set two started off with “Runaway Jim” which honored the top four finishers in the Runaway Jim 5k race that took place earlier that morning. I can only imagine how cool it must have been to walk out on that stage and have 30,000 people cheer for you. Just an observation about the winners: they were not the “fittest” people ever. They just had the motivation to run fast as hell on a hot summer morning to meet their favorite band. Inspirational stuff, training starts tomorrow.
Set Three featured a cover of TV on the Radio’s Golden Age. Now just to let you know, Hipsters just annoy the fuck out of me. That being said, Phish ripped this song and made me hate PBR and American Spirits a little bit less that day. An encore of Loving Cup–>Tweeprise blew the roof off the ridiculously huge stage that Phish was using and we were all sent home happy…or so we thought.
I must pre-empt this next paragraph with extreme disappointment in myself. I walked all the way back to our campsite, when I found out that Phish was playing a “secret set.” My legs denied me the right to go back and check it out. Although all of my friends did and came back with the common thought: “Holy shit those were the weirdest noises ive ever heard, but also the coolest shit I’ve ever seen.”
Day three started off with a downright sexy version of “Soul Shakedown Party” that got everyone in the right state of mind for the rest of the evening. “A Song I Heard the Ocean Sing” got me and my amigos pumped as it was one of the few songs that we have yet to hear live and it did not disappoint. The real fun started at the beginning of the second set though when phish debut the AC/DC original “Big Balls.” Not only was this hilarious, it just summed up the general feeling from the whole weekend. Phish was there to throw a huge party for us and have a fucking blast doing it, and they couldn’t have done a better job. They ended the weekend with a rousing version of “First Tube” that featured a fantastic fireworks display that made everyone remember: “Hey it’s the 4th of July!”
Phish is known as the pre-eminent party band of the times, and let me say; they do not disappoint. My friends and I had so much fun; we are already planning on how to do it better next year. Until then, see you at Outside Lands!