A Show For Your Weekend: UIC ’94

June 18, 1994 contains some serious music. In a month where Phish could do no wrong, Phish went further and opened their second set with one of the most impressive offerings of the era.

The Peaches en Regalia > David Bowie -> Mind Left Body Jam -> David Bowie is stellar. After the wonderful improvisation contained in Bowie, the band interjects a sort of buffer with Horn > McGrupp. The buffer gave us time to get ready for the strong closing section. The classic combo (one I wish would come back) of Tweezer > Lifeboy right before YEM with an exceptional vocal jam and an unusual CDT closer.

Set 1: Wilson, Rift, AC/DC Bag > Maze, The Mango Song > Down with Disease, It’s Ice, Dog Faced Boy, The Divided Sky, Sample in a Jar

Set 2: Peaches en Regalia > David Bowie -> Mind Left Body Jam -> David Bowie, Horn> McGrupp and the Watchful Hosemasters > Tweezer > Lifeboy, You Enjoy Myself, Chalk Dust Torture

Encore: Bouncing Around the Room, Tweezer Reprise

Don’t assume only the first set is strong; the second set boasts my favorite Divided Sky ever. UIC’s Divided Sky is so powerful and explosive. Trey flies off the handle in the second half of the song which is only intensified by a raging Fishman. Fishman’s playing is truly powerful in this Divided Sky, rolling and crashing everywhere.

The other first set gems include:

  • Great Wilson, Rift, AC/DC Bag > Maze to start the show
  • The serious duet of Mango Song > Down with Disease; perfect for 1994
  • It’s Ice reminds you of how the song used to be played
  • Dog Faced Boy is always welcome

The UIC Pavilion is located in the middle of downtown Chicago. It’s a great urban setting for a concert. While the lots are small, the fun is large–much of the parking lot overlooking the freeway. The last time Phish played at the UIC was in November of ’98. I have been itching for them to return for years. Facebook petition, anyone?