One of the breakout years for Phish was 1992, just early enough in their career after being signed and really ramping up the touring that all that hungry energy was still there. Truly some of the first times the band was able to stretch their wings a bit and show new fans what’s what, so it’s super exciting to see this new LivePhish release being announced.
On May 17, 1992 Phish played at Achilles Rink – the Union College hockey arena opened in 1975 with a capacity of about 2,500. Schenectady was the second-to-last date on a 53-show spring tour that hit 24 states and the District of Columbia with five shows in Colorado, six in California and seven in New York before wrapping up in the band’s hometown Burlington, Vermont. The show is available for download now and streaming via the LivePhish App: http://livephi.sh/ph920517
The 1992-1993 shows can be some of the most adventurous and wild you’d ever hear, especially if you’re newer to the band or only got to see them in 3.0. Definitely need these released for the newbs.
Phish’s third studio album and Elektra debut, A Picture of Nectar, had dropped in February. Fans benevolently plastered promo stickers depicting Nectar’s face from the album cover on toll booths and highway rest areas from coast to coast. Spring ’92 featured the new Minkin Lexan backdrops, a big batch of new songs that would form the basis for Rift, and the band inviting the audience to share in the Secret Language.
Those backdrops they mentioned are mostly something that new fans would have never seen either. Check out the photo below for an idea of what they looked like.
Love how they remind people that the internet still hadn’t really caught on enough yet to really be credited with the band’s rise; this show was all word of mouth, baby.
Phish.net (and the Internet in general) was just starting to catch on, there was no official taper’s section yet, and word of mouth was key. The Schenectady show – with a ticket price of $5 – was a prime example as it was not listed in the Phish newsletter or hotline. It was a Sunday night, Page’s birthday, and the band was almost home after more than two months on the road.
Can’t wait to hear this “The Curtain > Possum” combo…
Highlights of the Schenectady ’92 show included The Landlady > Llama opener, Stash, and Chalk Dust Torture from set I. The Curtain > Possum kicked off set II with a concentrated barrage of Secret Language and teases of everything from Rocky Mountain Way to China Grove to It’s Ice and Divided Sky during one of the all-time far-out Possums. Brother went completely unhinged and led appropriately…perhaps inevitably to Sanity, before Fish took over vocal and vacuum duties for Syd Barrett’s Love You. A standout Harry Hood rounded out set II and continued the show’s Outward thrust. The Schenectady ’92 release includes filler selected from the tour-closing show the following night – 5/18/92 at The Flynn Theatre in Burlington. Download the show now: http://livephi.sh/ph920517