Phish Kicks Off 2018 New Year’s Run: Setlist & Recap

Phish returned to the stage on Friday night to the first of four New Year’s Run concerts at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The show was the group ’s 57th at the historic venue since they made their MSG debut on December 30, 1994. While the performance was light on deep improvisation, Phish delivered a night filled with high-energy arena rock.

One of the big questions coming into opening night was whether Phish would include songs from their Kasvot Växt Halloween place in the run. The quartet answered that question with a resounding yes right away by kicking off the concert with all “We Are Come To Outlive Our Brains. ” Phish extended the song with a short but sweet jam with a mix of blissful and dark melodies. While last night’s variant was only two minutes more than the debut in Vegas, “We Are Come To Outlive Our Brains” revealed real potential as a jam car and wouldn’t be the only Kasvot Växt song to produce the setlist on Friday at MSG. Next up was a visit back to the group ’s 2014 Halloween musical costume using a particularly perky “Martian Monster. ” The high heeled beginning to the concert continued with straight-forward takes on principles “Axilla I,” “Free” and “The Wedge. ”

The highlight of Friday’s set came as Phish paired “Meat” and “Ghost” from 1998’s The Story Of The Ghost. “Meat” featured just a funky breakdown after another and beautiful interplay between band members as they expertly worked through each section of the song. Meanwhile, “Ghost” saw Phish move from a dark jam space to a beautiful chord progression. Keyboardist Page McConnell directed a construct to a crowd-pleasing summit, whilst guitarist Trey Anastasio was content to focus on rhythms. The four-piece followed closely by blissful jam by setting the groundwork for a spot-on glimpse into “Sparkle. ” A focus on substance from the mid-90s continued using the first-ever “If I Could” at MSG and a typically intense “Maze. ” Phish shut out the frame with a romp through “Walls Of The Cave. ”

Phish came from the gates to the next group with a few of the latest songs, “Set Your Soul Free. ” The exploratory 17-minute variant featured the egalitarian style of jamming exhibited so often this past summer and autumn. No one member led the improvisation for an extended period of time as instead the band volleyed thoughts at one another and masterfully made the first must-hear moment of the run. As in “Ghost,” the jam had been dark at first before the quartet modulated keys to blissful land. Finally, Anastasio began the first “Swept Away” > “Steep” since the “Baker’s Dozen” residency in 2017. Phish played the run of songs in 1996’s Billy Breathes pretty straight unlike the standout model from the “Baker’s Dozen” residency.

Trey was a chunk of energy during the evening and had a pleasant smile plastered on his head as Phish made their way through the night ’s next and closing Kasvot Växt song, “The Final Hurrah. ” He seemed excited to sing that the “Faceplant into stone ” lineup he hardly got the words from his mouth. Drummer Jon Fishman and bassist Mike Gordon supplied a deep pocket during the marginally prolonged jam as Anastasio and McConnell traded leads that were strong. While Phish did show some rust at their first show since November 3, they nailed the “Fuego” that followed “The Final Hurrah. ” Anastasio headed a construct to a few of the more intense orgasms of the day before beginning the ballad “Shade. ” Phish picked the energy back up to end the group with a euphoric “Bathtub Gin” and rocking “Possum. ”

Phish returned to the stage to begin the encore using “Bouncing Around The Room” before bringing the night to a close with a typically gorgeous variation of “Slave To The Traffic Light. ” The band continues the jog on Saturday night at MSG. A webcast can be obtained via

The Skinny

The Setlist

The Venue


Madison Square Garden [See forthcoming displays ]


56 reveals — 12/30/1994, 12/30/1995, 12/31/1995, 10/21/1996, 10/22/1996, 12/29/1997, 12/30/1997, 12/31/1997, 12/28/1998, 12/29/1998, 12/30/1998, 12/31/1998, 12/31/2002, 12/02/2009, 12/03/2009, 12/04/2009, 12/30/2010, 12/31/2010, 01/01/2011, 12/28/2011, 12/29/2011, 12/30/2011, 12/31/2011, 12/28/2012, 12/29/2012, 12/30/2012, 12/31/2012, 12/28/2013, 12/29/2013, 12/30/2013, 12/31/2013, 12/30/2015, 12/31/2015, 01/01/2016, 01/02/2016, 12/28/2016, 12/29/2016, 12/30/2016, 12/31/2016, 07/21/2017, 07/22/2017, 07/23/2017, 07/25/2017, 07/26/2017, 07/28/2017, 07/29/2017, 07/30/2017, 08/01/2017, 08/02/2017, 08/04/2017, 08/05/2017, 08/06/2017, 12/28/2017, 12/29/2017, 12/30/2017, 12/31/2017

The Music

First Set

11 songs
/ 8:16 pm to 9:42 pm (86 minutes)

Second Set & Encore

10 songs
/ 10:27 pm to 11:56 pm (89 minutes)

Total Songs

21 songs /
21 originals /
0 covers

Average Vintage


Normal Song Gap

9.29 [Gap graph ]



Tour Debuts


Biggest Bustout

Swept Away > Steep – 47 Shows (LTP – 08/01/2017)

Longest Song

Set Your Soul Free – 17:02

Shortest Song

Swept Away – 1:09

The Spread

Lawn Boy – 2, Rift – 3, 5 Hoist – 1, 2 Billy Breathes – 3, The Story of the Ghost – 2, Round Room – 1, 1 Fuego – 1, 1 Misc. – 8,

The Rest


57° and Rain at showtime




Capacity: 20,000

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Phish From The Road Photos


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