From Nick P@21:1/5 to All on Tue Mar 26 13:45:00 2019
Many people disagree with me, but I think Fuego is the best Phish album. I think it suffered from initial disparage as the surprise "Wingsuit" Halloween album, which was a slight disappointment for a lot of people, mostly because the expectation/
speculation for a classic rock cover album. Although parts of the title track are disjointed, and almost seem like they were glued together in editing, it remains one of the better compositions of 3.0, and even though you may hear groans when the opening
piano notes start, everyone is into it by the time they get to the jam. The rest of the album features Trey in an almost Phil Collins-esque role, coming into his form as a fully realized contemporary pop-rock songwriter, especially on songs like Waiting
All Night, Devotion to a Dream, and The Line.
While the lyrics on Joy were mostly based on the emotional struggles of Trey through sobriety and the loss of friends and family members along the way, Fuego sees Trey and Tom back in their old form with quirky, allegorical, and engaging lyrics. The
fairy tale nature of Winterqueen, the tongue-in-cheek nonsensical fun of Wombat, the airy Pink Floydian vibe of Wingsuit, all indicate a slight return to the stylings of Rift and Picture of Nectar. 555 and Halfway to the Moon are a more accurate
reflection on the band as they exist today, playing in a more laid back, groove- focused mode.
Last but certainly not least is the influence of producer Bob Ezrin. I don't think many of my peers (3.0 noobs) know who Bob Ezrin is, but i'm sure the vets do. At least they should. Ezrin most notably highlights Trey's vocals throughout the album, as
well as getting a little something extra out of Page, and shining his piano tones in unprecedented light. The vocals interplays are the best Phish has ever recorded. The rhythms are unlike any in the band's history, especially on Sing Monica and 555. It'
s clear that Ezrin brought out the best in each band member.
It's a shame this album has a stigma attached to it. Truly an underappreciated gem, and definitely my favorite Phish album.