The Daily Ghost

The Daily Ghost #127 08/02/2014 Oak Mountain Amphitheatre, Pelham, AL

Background (Set: 2 of 2 – Song: 2 of 8 – Show Gap: 5)

From yet another Carini!  Bet the exacta of “Carini>Ghost” for days.  This segue is a serious ripchord.  Real ugly.

Intro (8:251-11:-29)

After Trey forces “Ghost” down the band’s throats, an uptempo pace emerges. I am digging the upbeat flow– it has a bit of bite to it! The solo section continues the punchiness, although nothing groundbreaking happens. The lead in is solid and the drop in is a bit rough but certainly not the ugliest effort we have seen. Ok intro after the brutal segue…

STRONG, Badass, and Killer from the Start!  (11:30-14:59)

This “Ghost” jam immediately gets going as the composed section finishes. No messing around here. In fact, from the first note in this jam, things are rocking. One of the best jump-offs I can remember. (I just googled “jumpoff” to make sure it was a word…) Apparently it means “a sexual partner who is more than a one night stand but with whom one does not intend a long-term relationship.”  I didn’t mean it that way….but I am always looking for some of those.

A strong, strong bassline from Mike and a forceful clav from Page get this jam headed in the right direction. Around the 12 min mark, Trey finds his footing and lays down a gorgeous section. The interplay between Trey, Mike, and Page here is serious quality. Each one is playing lead and they are intermingled to produce an outstanding jam.

This early jam has some funk, stank, and some bliss all in the Phish melting pot. It has an inherent danceability to it and I am find myself rewinding and getting down! Trey gets a case of the power blues and lays down some serious Ghost-sounding power licks at about 13:30.  Trey’s timing is on point early on in this jam. Just as I say that, Trey finds a lick that he repeats for a while and Page starts going nuts on the piano. Page finds the magic at 13:58 with a run of notes written by Cleopatra. (She was a looker for you all you noobs.) With Page leading the way, Trey sits back and reemerges at 14:26.  

Yet another clever melody from Big Red and he slides back to a more rhythmic position.

Segue Time? Nope! Let’s Go! Nope! Umm, Where Are We Going? (15:00-17:14)

The jam breaks down at the 15 minute mark and it sounds like another segue might be coming.  This time, the band decides for the better.  At about 15:20, Trey starts almost DEGing and it’s just the jolt the band needs. Fishman picks the pace up measure by measure and Page jumps on the piano and we are off!!!!

Then something weird happens… Trey backs off the gas. He doesn’t have it. Page however does! At 16:15, Page carries the load and Mike jumps on his back. The two of them lead and keep this jam rolling while Trey figures out where to go.  

Fish maintains the pace so there is no room to bail here. Finally, at 17:13, Page decides how this going down.

The Land of Love Brought to you by the Guru of Red Headed Guitar (17:15-20:30)

Page rocks down some chords, and Fish hits the cymbals and it’s now officially on. Peak time!  Trey finds himself immediately and plays wonderfully. No rush here. Instead, he has found a tone that adds intrigue to this peak and he adds texture to the full-band throwdown. At the 18:00 mark, after a Fishman fill, Trey begins his accent. It’s not flawless at first but after one more killer Fishman fill at 18:40, Trey unleashes what we have all been waiting for.

The Guru of Red Headed Guitar (#trademark) saves his best for last (#nottrademark). Trey finds those notes that make you get all the feels. The notes that make you throw your hands in the air.  The notes that make you hug your show buddy and the people you have never met around you.  The notes that can heal all the pain.  The notes that remind you what it feels like to be alive.  The notes that remind you why you don’t wear sweatpants at a show.  

Damn, Trey! The section of 18:40-20:00 from this Ghost is one of my favorite minute and a half sequences from our lead guitarist. That just got multiple relistens.  After things fizzle out, Trey plays “Simple” before, for some reason, the band left turns for “Mike’s Song”?  Another weird segue.

Final Thoughts

Ugly segues in and out of “Ghost” probably left a bad taste in my mouth when the Oak Mountain “Ghost” took place.  Two and a half years later and isolated on its own, I am loving this version.  Particularly strong on the bookends of the jam, and especially by Trey.  This has a nice hard rocking funky tone and a gorgeous finish.  It doesn’t find any ground that hasn’t been explored before, but it’s killer to listen to.  Great under-the-radar version.

Score: 8.7