Reviews on the fan message boards are mixed, but I had a blast at Phil Lesh‘s Halloween party on Wednesday night. Halloween’s a major head holiday, and how could you not have fun getting down to Sympathy for the Devil with a room full of hippie witches, blinking aliens, Imperial stormtroopers and the usual assortment of wookies? Phil’s new line-up features the very talented Jackie Greene along with Particle’s Steve Molitz and regulars Larry Campbell and John Molo, and the show was a little heavier on blues jams than on the usual psychedelic freak-outs.

The Werewolves encore was a safe bet, but I don’t think anybody saw the cover of Phish’s Ghost coming. There was an unusual number of first times played (Don’t Let the Devil Take Your Mind, I Put a Spell on You, Boris the Spider, and Sympathy for the Devil) and the second set achieved lift-off with Caution > Voodoo Chile. I’m very much looking forward to the rest of the run, even if my chances of catching any of the rumored sit-ins — there’s talk of Bob, Bob, Ryan, Warren, Levon, and Trey — are pretty slim. I’ll keep adding setlists to this post as we make our way through the Lesh Marathon of 2007.

Phil and Friends, Nokia Theater, NY, NY
Set 1: Shakedown Street> Loose Lucy> Don’t Let the Devil Take Your Mind, Candyman, I Put A Spell on You> Jam> Story of the Ghost> Casey Jones

Set 2: Phil Reads from “The Pit and the Pendulum”, Cryptical Envelopment> Boris the Spider> Caution (Do Not Stop on Tracks) > Voodoo Chile (Slight Return)> The Other One> Cryptical Envelopment> New Speedway Boogie> Fire on the Mountain, Sympathy for the Devil> I Know You Rider

E: Werewolves of London

There are no torrents up yet, but here’s the Grateful Dead playing Warren Zevon’s Werewolves of London on Halloween ’91, a show that also featured a truly frightening guest appearance by Ken Kesey, reciting e.e. cumming’s “Buffalo Bill is Defunct” mid-Dark Star to commemorate Bill Graham’s death. You can download the entire show from nugs.net. and archive.org.

[audio:Werewolves of London-Grateful Dead.mp3]