Phish fans entering MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas tonight were given comic books heralding a performance of Sci-Fi Soldier’s Get More Down as their musical costume for Halloween. The band resumes a tradition of donning a musical costume for their second set on Halloween, which this year comes as the final show of a four-night stand in Las Vegas and of Fall Tour 2021.
It appears Sci-Fi Soldier’s Get More Down is a suite of 12 new originals akin to the Kasvot Växt set in 2018. The comic book consists of 14 pages, including the inside front and back covers, which tells the origin story of Sci-Fi Soldier. References are made within to the Kasvot Växt set, guitarist Trey Anastasio‘s “Harpua” narration from Saturday night and the clones from New Year’s Eve 2019. A poster designed by Johnny Dombrowski was surprise-released this evening and put on sale at merch stands.
Surprise Halloween Drop! Here’s our fourth poster for Phish’s 4-night Halloween run in Vegas by Johnny Dombrowski (@jdombrowski). At merch stands now. 16″x20″ 4-color screenprint. Edition of 1,500. Tonight only. pic.twitter.com/lveKccGrgz
— Phish Dry Goods (@phishdrygoods) November 1, 2021
Dombrowski created the art for the comic book with the story credited to Phish and written by Steve Waltien with Jay Katsir and Rebecca Hanson. The band will don costumes designed by Aidan Vitti. Anastasio will be “Clueless Wallob,” keyboardist Page McConnell will be “Pat Malone,” bassist Mike Gordon will be “Half-Nelson” and drummer Jon Fishman will be “Paulie Roots!”
The comic book arrives after the quartet first started issuing “Phishbills” in 1996, when they covered Talking Heads’ iconic 1980 album Remain In Light at The Omni in Atlanta and have distributed their versions of Playbills at every Halloween concert since. While the quartet loves to screw with their followers, Phish has previously stayed true to the “musical costume” profiled in each Phishbill.
Phish began the musical costume trend on October 31, 1994; when they covered The Beatles’ White Album at Glens Falls Civic Center in Glens Falls, New York. Fans voted on the selection that year as they did on Halloween 1995 for a performance of Quadrophenia by The Who at Rosemont Horizon in Rosemont, Illinois. As noted, the first Phishbill heralded the Remain In Light set at The Omni on October 31, 1996. Phish then donned the musical costume of The Velvet Underground’s Loaded at Las Vegas’ Thomas & Mack Center.
It would be 11 years until the next Phish Halloween concert, which took place at the band’s Festival 8 event in Indio, California. The four-piece took on The Rolling Stones’ Exile On Main Street on Halloween 2009 with horns and backing vocalists. Phish then covered a live album for the first and only time on October 31, 2010 with a performance of Little Feat’s Waiting For Columbus at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. The tradition underwent a big change for the next musical costume on Halloween 2013 at Boardwalk Hall. This time around, Phish previewed their next studio album by premiering 12 originals, most of which would appear on their Fuego LP the following year.
Phish then created songs based on Disney’s Chilling, Thrilling Sounds Of The Haunted House sound effects album debuted on Halloween 2014 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. The same venue, where the band performs tonight, also hosted the most recent full-album cover as Phish played David Bowie’s The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars at the MGM Grand Garden Arena on Halloween 2016. Two years later, the group invented Kasvot Växt, a band said to originate in Scandinavia as part of an elaborate prank. Phish played í rokk on October 31, 2018 — a collection of 10 new originals.
Read the full comic book here.
Get More Down Tracklist
- Knuckle Bone Broth Avenue
- Get More Down
- Egg In A Hole
- Clear Your Mind
- The 9th Cube
- The Inner Reaches Of Outer
- Don’t Doubt Me
- The Unwinding
- Something Living Here
- The Howling
- I Am In Miami
Past Phish Musical Costumes
- 1994 – The Beatles – White Album
- 1995 – The Who – Quadrophenia
- 1996 – Talking Heads – Remain In Light
- 1998 – Velvet Underground – Loaded
- 2009 – The Rolling Stones – Exile On Main Street
- 2010 – Little Feat – Waiting For Columbus
- 2013 – Phish – Wingsuit
- 2014 – Phish/Disney – Chilling, Thrilling Sounds Of The Haunted House
- 2016 – David Bowie – The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars
- 2018 – Phish/Kasvot Växt – í rokk