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Trey Anastasio Launches Tour in Portland, Maine

February 21st, 2011

State Theatre – Trey Anastasio – February 18, 2011

(Photo: Gregg Greenwood)

(Photo: Gregg Greenwood)

On Friday night the vibe at the State Theatre was one of anticipation as those in attendance waited for Trey Anastasio to take the stage and begin his new tour. He played most of the first set—mainly Phish originals—alone. Some acoustic highlights included a sublime version of “Cavern” and an energetic “Suzy Greenberg.” Eventually horns came out and then the entire Trey Anastasio Band closed the set with a raucous cover of OutKast’s “Hey Ya.” The singer-guitarist beamed while his energy inspired the crowd, which responded with its own intensity.

Before the second set, Anastasio said, “We are going to play some loud rock and roll.” And with the full TAB lineup on fire, that proved to be true. “Acting the Devil,” played for the first time in almost nine years, was a big surprise. Perhaps the words had referenced Anastasio’s past situation, but that was all clearly behind him, and he let everyone know. His perfect rendition of “Sand” drew excited roars from the crowd. Another inspired bust out came in the encore with “In the Wee Wee Hours” getting played for the first time since 2002, prompting a boogiefest. All in all, Anastasio was on a mission, and he let the music (and energy) speak for itself. —Rob Arken