Volume 94, Issue 70

Friday, January 26, 2001


The Ashgrove's show is the thing

Phish phan phun

Fashion for a good cause

Bubba will survive

Phish phan phun

By Nina Chiarelli
Gazette Staff

Got a hankerin' for some seaphood? No worries, Phish is rolling in to London.

Opening tonight at the Capitol Theatre and running until Febr. 1, producer/director Todd Phillips presents the Canadian premiere of Bittersweet Motel – a rockumentary spotlighting supergroup Phish on their 1997 European and American tours.

"We really felt that the students would enjoy this film," said Dan Weiner, promotions and publicity manager for Somewhere North Promotions, the company responsible for bringing Bittersweet to Canada.

"I'm hoping the film will appeal to the fans, but I'm also hoping to intrigue those who maybe haven't heard of Phish," Weiner continued.

Phillips, a gradute of New York University's film program, is probably best known for his indie films, Hated and Frat House and the recent Road Trip, which featured Canadian shock-comic, Tom Green.

This time around, Phillips presents an 80-minute backstage and often unseen side of Phish and its four members – guitarist Trey Anastasio, drummer Jon Fishman, bassist Mike Gordon and keyboardist Page McConnell.

"Phillips wasn't a fan of Phish before this film," Weiner explained. "He didn't really know about them, so because he wasn't a fan, there's not a skewed reality."

"It's great," said third-year Western student Andrew Hummel, who admitted he hasn't seen the film yet. "I like any situation where you get to see the band in the studio."

For those who have never heard Phish's music, the film features some of the band's best performances both live in concert and in the studio. Songs like "Golgi Apparatus," "Down with Disease" and "Tweezer" help to highlight one of the best years in Phish history.

"It's always a treat to see a technically proficient band perform music they obviously care deeply about, in front of fans who care so much about [the music,]" said third-year Carleton University student, Alan Dodson, who is travelling six hours from Ottawa just to catch the movie's opening night.

Although the film follows Phish in 1997, most fans will agree that the film is still relevant. Hummel explained that with over 1,000 songs in their repertoire, any chance to hear Phish is always a new experience.

Dodson agreed, saying there is a connection between Phish's cult-like following of fans and the band itself. "The positivity among fans and band alike is a rare thing in the music business today, and it's something that needs to be recognized."

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