After two long years, Phish returned to Las Vegas, NV for an exciting four-night run that leads into the holiest of jam band holidays, Halloween. After a brief fall tour that has been highlighted with great playing, Big Boat material and a sit-in from the Grateful Dead’s own Bob Weir, all eyes have been on Vegas. Fortunately, Phish got started with a bust-out heavy opener to set the pace for the weekend to come.The band introduced their four night stand at MGM Grand with a nod to their 2014 Halloween trip to Las Vegas. The space ship immediately blasted off; excitement was in the air with the initial notes of “Martian Monster.” With “No Men In No Man’s Land,” Trey Anastasio came down hard with the gritty licks. The band picked up on it, and fed from the fruits of their own energy. Off the bat, the spirit was high, and then the band kept things exciting with two big bust outs in a row! They broke into the first “Dogs Stole Things” since 2012 (182 shows) and the first “Beauty of My Dreams” since 2010 (227 shows), and these led into the relative rarity and crowd favorite, “Destiny Unbound.”While the audience was initially a bit apprehensive toward the new song “Home,” the Big Boat tune evolved into an excellent jam, complete with Mike Gordon bass bombs galore. Los Lobos’ “When The Circus Comes” was a nice sentimental moment in the first set, but it was the impressive “Steam” that really picked things up at the MGM. The standard “The Wedge” came next, and the set closed with a solid “Walls of a Cave.” Coming off of a highly energetic introduction, the crowd sank right in with the flow of the show.The second set began with a rarity, “Crimes of the Mind,” which hadn’t been played since 2009 (283 shows). Phish extended that energy into an improv-heavy “Golden Age,” reaching a next-level 25-minute mark worth recording, then shuffling into a dimension that brought “Simple” to a “Light” for the ages. Joy track “Twenty Years Later” provided a breath of fresh air, before “Blaze On” and “The Squirming Coil” became an excellent end to the second set.The band returned for a brief “Bouncing Around the Room” before closing with Jimi Hendrix‘s “Bold As Love.” The TV On The Radio original, “Golden Age”, was the absolute takeaway, especially after their previous, jam-less show in Grand Prairie, Texas. The improv-heavy 25+ minute jam more than proved that Phish is still on their game, with three more nights to look forward to.Watch full videos of the first night, courtesy of Tom Rowles on YouTube. You can navigate through the playlist using the icon on the top left.Check out the full setlist from Phish at the MGM below, courtesy of Phish.net. Viva Phish Vegas!Setlist: Phish at MGM Grand Garden Area, Las Vegas, NV – 10/28/16Set I: Martian Monster, No Men In No Man’s Land, Dogs Stole Things, Beauty of My Dreams, Destiny Unbound, Limb By Limb, Home, When The Circus Comes, Steam > The Wedge, Cavern, Walls of the CaveSet II: Crimes of the Mind, Golden Age > Simple > Light > Twenty Years Later > Blaze On, Squirming CoilE: Bouncing Around The Room, Bold As Love[Photo via Dave DeCrescente]
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