This double-disc firestorm was the first official live release from Vermont's favorite jam band, and it is both a roaring celebration of and, in many ways, a fitting conclusion to Phish's first decade of genre-bending, hea... more »d-popping rock. Recorded in 1994, A Live One finds Phish wringing everything they can out of every song (four clock in at more than 10 minutes, another at more than 20, and a sixth, "Tweezer," at more than 30), whipping themselves (and the audience) into a frenzy with a high-octane attack long on instrumental pyrotechnics and short on subtlety. By 1996 they had taken this no-holds-barred approach as far as they could, and they would begin to temper their frenetic energy with a mellower, airier, and funkier approach. But this collection remains a vital snapshot of the band at its initial peak, a time when no studio could have hoped to capture the densely packed Phish experience. --Marc Greilsamer« less
This double-disc firestorm was the first official live release from Vermont's favorite jam band, and it is both a roaring celebration of and, in many ways, a fitting conclusion to Phish's first decade of genre-bending, head-popping rock. Recorded in 1994, A Live One finds Phish wringing everything they can out of every song (four clock in at more than 10 minutes, another at more than 20, and a sixth, "Tweezer," at more than 30), whipping themselves (and the audience) into a frenzy with a high-octane attack long on instrumental pyrotechnics and short on subtlety. By 1996 they had taken this no-holds-barred approach as far as they could, and they would begin to temper their frenetic energy with a mellower, airier, and funkier approach. But this collection remains a vital snapshot of the band at its initial peak, a time when no studio could have hoped to capture the densely packed Phish experience. --Marc Greilsamer
Penny M. from ALBANY, NY Reviewed on 11/24/2006...
disk 1 only
0 of 5 member(s) found this review helpful.
Capturing Phish At Their Best - Live
M. Scagnelli | Brandon, Florida | 01/01/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If you are fan of Phish, and want to get a CD of them live without going into Bootlegs, there are three choices. First, there is Slip, Stitch and Pass. This a great live album, but not the best. There is Hampton Comes Alive, which is a six CD box set containing two full live shows. It is really great, but it may be too long and expensive for a casual fan or for someone starting out. In my opinion, A Live One, is the best one available. It is 12 great songs on two CDs for a good price. It has Phish's long, intricate jams, like You Enjoy Myself and the 30 minute Tweezer. It also contains their more simple and shorter songs, such as Bouncing Around The Room. In my opinion, the best songs on this album are Bouncing Around The Room, which is the best version of the song I've heard, Chalkdust Torture, Wilson, Tweezer, and Simple. All the songs are great. This is also a great starting place for Phish."
If you are new, this is THE album to buy. It is amazing....
wilson17 | Indiana University | 10/09/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"When you talk to Phish fans, one of the first things they will tell you is how studio releases are nothing compared to the live scene. 100 % true. This album is the quinessential official release however. Even live releases, Slip Stitch and Pass and Hampton Comes Alive dont compare musically to this album. Some people will say this doesnt even compare to a bootleg of a whole show and thats where I differ. Some live shows are going to have songs that are just "time fillers" and don't feature that great of songs or playing. This album, however, combines the best performances of different songs from 1994 and while the Tweezer might be too long and feature some pointless noodling, all the songs are a work of art. Bouncing Around The Room: Most fans dislike this song, or atleast say they do. But, I like it alot and while after hearing it a few times it does get old, it is a great song and its fun to listen to every once in a while.STASH: Yikes! This song is great. The whispered lyrics, the crowd clapping, and the jam are awesome. Definitely one of the better Stashs you will hear.GUMBO: This rare song was perfect for this album. The mellow jazz in this song is intoxicating. The a capella section is very nice and the chorus is catchy and fun, but not too catchy, which is a good thing. MONTANA: This is a portion of a Tweezer from Montana. It is only 2 minutes long and is a nice little dark groove. Sounds like 4 guys just sitting in a room practicing. YOU ENJOY MYSELF: This is without a doubt the quinessential Phish song. It takes a while to figure it out. The first time I heard it, I didnt pay much attention, but this is just musical mastery. Page's piano solo in the middle, the vocal segment is great, The jam is very layered and has many different themes and the vocal jam is very entertaining. Mike's bass is very potent in this song. He is a mad man!CHALKDUST TORTURE: Straight up rock and roll! The lyrics are great and the jam is fun and somewhat short, but definitely worth listening too.SLAVE TO THE TRAFFIC LIGHT: This is my favorite song next to YEM and this version is one of my favorites. It is strong to start out then mellow and then builds up to a beautiful climax at the end. If you don't like this song, there is something wrong with you.DISC 2:WILSON: In the same league as chaldust torture, even though chalkdust is a much better song. This is a rock and roll song and is very fun in the fact that, like Stash, the crowd participates and you can hear the chants of "Wiiiiilson" in between the opening licks. Very energetic.TWEEZER: Many people are divided on this song and while I like Tweezer, this one is not for me. It drags on too long and while it sounds different throughout and has a lot of improvisation and experimentation, it can get boring at times. There are so many better versions out there. SIMPLE: This song is short, sweet, and simple. Nowadays it has a longer jam and the ending vocals is no longer am a capella ending. The guitar riff on this is very catchy and strong. The vocal harmonies are beautiful and this song is, in my opinion, still underrated today.HARRY HOOD: Some people think this is the best version ever. Back then it probably was, but this is still a top-notch song. The lyrics dont make sense unless you know phish, but are still fun to saing along with, and the composed and jam segments are very beautiful. Definitely worth the price of the 2nd disc.SQUIRMING COIL: This song is pretty straight forward and in a good way. It is a very beautiful song and catchy in a way. The ending piano solo is almost 5 minutes long and is absolutely the best 5 minutes of anything on this disc. Listen yourself and you will be amazed. All in all, this disc is definitely worth buying. It was the first Phish disc I ever bought and while it may take a couple times of listening to, to get used to, it is without the best official from the regular-joe, Vermont jam-band. Buy it if you haven't heard it."
Not a good "convert" album??
M. Scagnelli | 09/28/1999
(4 out of 5 stars)
"There was a posting that claimed that "A Live One" isn't a good Phish "example" to draw new fans, especially those accustomed to listening to most of the drivel that passes for music on radio and MTV. I couldn't disagree more. While I don't personally like every song on this album, a every single one showcases Phish's musical ability. I have never seen/heard a band (the Dead included, and I am a Dead fan) that could match them when it comes to creativity and new ideas, (whether they throw a brass band in to mix it up or even a fu%^ing vacuum!) In the past few years I've traveled throughout Latin America, Europe, and most recently Australia and New Zealand. "A Live One" is one of the cd's I've always carried, and everyone who heard it for the first time was impressed to say the least. (I had countless offers to buy it from me, especially down under.) A lot of people knock this album because it's not a bootleg, like that automatically takes away from its "coolness." That's ridiculous. "A Live One" is a great gateway to Phish."
Without a doubt, Phish's best album
DK de la Mar | Florida | 12/18/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This was the first Phish album i ever bought, and i bought it solely on the fact that Trey Anastasio was on Guitar World's 100 Greatest Guitarists List (of course, Billy Corgan was also on that list, but that's another story...). How presently surprised i was when i popped disc one in my cd player! Sure, "Bouncing Around the Room" is a little too "pop-y" but it grows on you. But the song that instantly attracted me was "Stash", the cool intro, the whispered lyrics, and especially the seven-minute guitar jam just pulled me in. Next comes "Gumbo" and "Montana" which i can't say much for other than they're cool too. "You Enjoy Myself" is thought by many to be the quintessential Phish song and i agree with that, nothing says Phish as much as that song, and this version is absolutely amazing. The first disc ends with "Chalkdust Torture" (big rock song) and "Slave to the Traffic Light", both great songs as well. The second disc, to me isn't as great as the first but it's still highly enjoyable. "Wilson" is another big rock song and it's great. "Tweezer", the reason that some people say the disc drags on too long, is simply amazing. Although i don't like this word, i'll say it--it's a great "jam" and if you're really involved in the music and not weened on eMpTV style pop songs, the length doesn't even affect you. I'm not a big fan of "Simple" or "Squirming Coil" but they're still listenable. My favorite song on disc two is "Harry Hood", with its three lines of lyrics and incredible music, it just...uh, i don't know...has to be heard i guess. All in all, this double live cd is excellent and could make a Phish fan out of you (if you're not already)"