June, 2014

  1. America’s Favorite National Pastime: Hating moe.

    June 27, 2014 by RobertPalmerPlore

    I’ve held off on writing about moe. for a decade — or about the length of the average Recreational Chemistry— so as not to offend anyone. But enough is enough. Any growing interest in moe. can only be a sign of the nation’s moral decay.

    Bassist Rob Derhak asleep at a recent moe. gig

    Bassist Rob Derhak asleep at a recent moe. gig

    • Individual achievement is not a big factor in jam bands. In a real jam band, players rock vacuums or fight bells — all in front of a crowd. When Trey Anastasio rip chords into Backwards Down The Number Line, he knows not to check his Twitter page. But there’s also individual glory in muumuu’s, solo projects, and being able to eat more buffalo wings than that one dude in Widespread Panic.

    In moe., the blame is dispersed and almost no one scores anyway. There are no heroes, no losers, no accountability, and only Topper’s self-esteem is bruised. There’s a reason perpetually alarmed fans are called “moe.rons,” not “close family and friends of the band.”

    Do they even have MVPs in moe.? Everyone just runs up and down the fret board, every once in a while, Chuck kicks Al’s ass on a solo. That’s when we’re supposed to go wild. I’m already asleep.

    • Liberal moms like moe. because it’s a band in which musical talent finds so little expression that their ex drummer is welcome to come back and beat on some bongos. No serious band has a bongo player, unless of course his name is Domingo and he is old enough to collect social security.

    • No other jam band play the same exploratory jam over and over as much as moe. This was an actual marquee sign by the freeway in Long Beach, California, about a moe. show last week: “2nd set, 11 minutes left, still nothing interesting about a Seat of My Pants jam.” Two hours later, another moe. show was underway was on the same screen: “1st set, 8 minutes left, Rob looks bored during Buster once again. If Michael Jackson had treated his chronic insomnia with a tape of 6/22/2002 instead of Propofol, he’d still be alive, although bored.

    Even in the Disco Biscuits, there are very few boring jams — and it’s a lot harder to see that band when a half the group is playing in a new band called Conspirator.

    • The prospect of either personal humiliation or major injury is required to count as an improvisational jam. Most jams are sublimated warfare. As Lady Grace Potter reportedly said after moe. covered Ween some years ago: Don’t worry. After all, twice in this century Phish covered a far superior song from Chocolate and Cheese.

    Phish and Umphrey’s McGee present a constant threat of personal disgrace. In String Cheese Incident, there are three or four times a set where you may get hit with a hula-hoop. — and it’s not a stroll on beach to be Kang with that tiny mandolin and a giant piece of plastic flying at your head. After an Avicii gig, ambulances carry off the wounded. After a moe. gig, all 75 fans in attendance get a ribbon and a juice box.

    • You can’t sell out tiny venues when you are moe. (Thus eliminating the danger of having to order your tickets in advance.) What sets moe. apart from the other bands, besides talent, is that we have to fight scalpers just to get lawn tickets. Here’s a great idea: Let’s create a band so boring that there are always plenty of tickets available at the door during the night of the show.

    • I resent the force-fed aspect of moe. The same people trying to push moe. on Americans are the ones demanding that we love the band Haim, the traffic getting into Lockn Festival isn’t that bad, the Washington Redskins name praises indigenous persons, and Michelle Bachmann’s husband looks manly wearing a salmon colored shirt. The number of Buffalo News articles claiming moe. is “catching on” is exceeded only by the ones pretending Michael Franti & Spearhead is fascinating.

    I note that we don’t have to be endlessly told how exciting Phish is.

    • moe. is foreign. Hell, they are almost from Canada. In fact, that’s the precise reason the Buffalo News is constantly hectoring Americans to love moe. One group of jam band fans with whom moe. is not “catching on” at all, is the Gov’t Mule fan base. They remain distinctly unimpressed by the fact that the fine folks of upstate New York like it.

    • moe. is like the metric system, which East Coasters also adore because it’s European. Naturally, the metric system emerged from the French Revolution, during the brief intervals when they weren’t committing mass murder by guillotine. Speaking of mass murder by guillotine, that still sounds better than any version of St. Augustine.

    Despite being subjected to Chinese-style brainwashing in the public schools to enjoy the album Tin Cans and Car Tires, ask any moe. fan for the temperature, and he’ll say something like “almost as hot as Mexico.” Ask how far Boston is from New York City, he’ll say it’s just far enough to not travel to the next moe. show.

    moe. fans get angry and tell us that the bands jam style is more “rational” than the ones other jam bands employ. This is ridiculous. Meat makes Rob Derhak’s thumb far stronger than Meat has made Mike Gordon’s thumb, yet Rob is still rocking Mike Gordon’s hand me downs from the late 90’s. moe. fans claim it’s easy to visualize 32 Things, but how does one visualize STS9? Is that algebra or something?

    • moe. is not “catching on.” Headlines this month proclaimed “moe. jams with Kate Hudson’s sperm donor” — again about the “growing popularity of moe. in the United States.”

    The moe. vs. Umphrey’s garbage at Summer Camp was impressive, garnering 18.2 million dab hits during the weekend. This beat the second-most dabs at a show, which just so happened to be a Foster The People performance during the second weekend of Coachella.

    Run-of-the-mill, regular summer Phish shows in places like Ohio average more than 20 million users of the popular Live Phish app the next day; while West Coast Phish gets get 30 to 40 million listeners the next day; and this year’s New Year’s gig had 111.5 million listeners. Yet you can’t even convince a homeless person at the end of the freeway off ramp to take your old CD-R’s of moe. 2/27/99 since most recycling plants just laugh and turn them away.

    If more “Americans” are listening to moe. today, it’s only because of the demographic switch affected by Ronald Reagan’s anti-mental health policies of the early 1980’s. I promise you: No American whose mental health is fine is listening to moe. One can only hope that, in addition to getting the help they need, these mentally-ill Americans will drop their moe. fetish with time.

    h/t Ann Coulter


  2. The Phunion Reviews ‘Fuego’

    June 24, 2014 by TreyAntipasta

    With Phish’s new album ‘Fuego’ being released today, we at The Phunion took one for the team and wrote the only review of ‘Fuego’ you need to read. Ignore than review in Relix. Disregard a review from Mr. Miner. Cast aside message boards. Read The Phunion’s review of ‘Fuego’. We think it’s better than Umphrey’s McGee’s new album, but that could be said about

    Fuego – Last Halloween, Phish pissed all over tradition and used the holiday for some serious market research. That market research showed that white people fucking love their Fuego’s. After all, it took hacks like Phan Art and that kid in Portland, Oregon or something seconds to come up with Fuego designs to sell to wooks from Walla Walla to West Palm Beach. While the 35+ crowd that makes up most of Phish’s fan base embrace the 3.0 Dad Rock era, we here at the Phunion have confirmed that this song does indeed make Vlad The Impaler roll over in his grave.

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    A better album cover

    The Line – Much like the NCAA, Phish is going to make loads and loads of cash off of Darius Washington Jr. with ‘The Line’. Yet, poor Darius once again won’t see a dime for his struggle. Even worse, the much rumored new “Halloween tradition” could see Phish actually crucify Darius onstage during the second set. Bet he didn’t see that in his future when he stepped to The Line.

    fuego_main_top_left

    A better album cover

    Devotion to a Dream  – No more promises that this song won’t suck live. This song is devoted to one thing – getting bros to like Phish, and with a Jack Johnson/O.A.R. poppy-bullshit sound, it’s going to do the trick. The whole sing-along thing is very mid-90s anyways. What is the dream they are devoted to? Ruining an album? Congrats. Mission: Accomplished.

    3916_ojos_de_fuego

    A better album cover

    Halfway to the Moon – So this is the ‘Page’ song on the album and we’ve heard it for a couple years now, knowing it is best enjoyed while taking a leak. Seriously, try it at home – you’ll never have a gentler stream. Anyways, Page wrote this while living in his father’s basement during the band’s breakup. Trey has that neat howling guitar which is meant to mimic Page’s tears at Coventry. Page sounds like he misses the good ol’ days with Vida Blue.

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    A better album cover

    Winterqueen – Why is a Trey Anastasio Band song on a Phish album? Can’t he just leave this for Chainsaw and J-Ha to sing on and make better? Incredibly, you can only hear Trey for the first two minutes of the song – gotta be the first time, right? This song should have joined ‘Snow’ and never been played by Phish and forgotten by the audience immediately. But it’s on the album so we have to pretend to like this when it ruins set 2 at DTE. Oh and nice fake wind sounds Ezrin.

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    A better album cover

    Sing Monica – Sounding a lot like a beach side city in Los Angeles County, Sing Monica truly a hot mess. Granted Phish was at their highest highs in the 1990’s when the hit TV show ‘Friends’ was on the air, everyone knows that Phoebe was the singer in that clique. Regardless of the fact it makes you think of ‘Friends’, the craziest thing about the song isn’t the simple catchy melody, as much as the fact that Phish is trying to get a woman to admit that they are wrong.

    Fresno-Fuego

    A better album cover

    555 – So this is the ‘Mike’ song on the ‘Phish’ album. Fishman has those distant vocals, then the backup singers kick-in. Why can’t we have them at Phish shows? Albums get all the cool stuff. 555 is not just the number of Mike’s locker at the local bus station, it’s also the cost of his Varvatos scarf. Enjoy seeing this song on Phish tour and on Mike tour, but really mainly enjoy it on Mike tour.

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    A better album cover

    Waiting All Night – Since Ween no longer makes music together, Phish has decided to channel their Quebec era sound on this laid back track. The band asks a lot of the listener as how can anyone believe that Fish would be Waiting All Night for someone to come home when he has more kids than Bob Marley? Perhaps this is why the song features the same fucking drum beat for five minutes.

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    A better album cover

    Wombat – When Abe Vigoda dies, his tomb stone will read ‘Danced On Stage With Phish In A Wombat Costume’ thanks to this manic break out single. In a shocker to many, the Fred Durst style flows of Fishman and Trey are not the most offensive thing Wombat has going. Nope, that would be borrowing ‘The Lovely Ladies’ from Dave Matthew Band stadium tours to sing backup at the end of the song. I guess Coran Capshaw must have gotten a two-for-one deal there.

    fuego-2019

    A better album cover

    Wingsuit – Trey sounds like he and the guys went to a ‘vision quest’ retreat together and ended up seeing wingsuits together, and it felt good so they wrote a song about it. ‘Wingsuit’ sounds like what Peyote feels like (we’re guessing). Thankfully the album wasn’t named ‘Wingsuit’ because all we can think of are condoms with the Fishman dress circles all over them. Let’s hope this becomes the next ’20 Years Later’ in that no one wants to hear the song but the jams turn out amazing after 3 years.