A Picture of Nectar
|A Picture of Nectar|
|Studio album by Phish|
|Released||February 12, 1992|
|Genre||Alternative rock, jazz fusion, jam|
A Picture of Nectar is the third official studio album and first on a major-label by the American rock band Phish, released on February 12, 1992, through Elektra Records. The album is dedicated to Nectar Rorris, the proprietor of Nectar's in Burlington, Vermont, where Phish played their first bar gig followed by a series of monthly three night stands, saying that the experience "taught us how to play".
There are two versions of the album's cover. The first printings of the CD were issued in longbox format, and the title of the album was not printed on the CD insert itself. Later printings came in shrink-wrap format, and had the band's name and album title printed directly on the insert.
The songs on A Picture of Nectar explore a variety of musical genres, including jazz, country, calypso, rock and roll and neo-psychedelia. Tracks 2, 8, 9 and 14 are instrumentals. The song "Manteca" is a cover of the song by jazz trumpeter Dizzy Gillespie; in Phish's short version, the melody line is sung as a goofy nonsense phrase. "Poor Heart" is written in bluegrass style.
All songs on the album have been performed live by the band, though the instrumental tracks have become relative rarities after the mid-1990s. The short instrumental, "Faht", written by drummer Jon Fishman, has only been performed live twelve times, the last in 1995. Several live versions of "Catapult" have been performed in the middle of another song, such as "Run Like an Antelope", "David Bowie" and "Simple".
Allmusic staff writer Jim Smith gave the album four and a half stars out of five, noting the variety of musical genres explored on the album and calling it "a surprisingly tight record for a band that built its reputation on endless concert jams". Music writer and historian Piero Scaruffi wrote that "The album enhances the eclectic style of the group... What kept Phish from acid-rock of the 60's was the 'classical' touch, the clean sound, and the impeccable musical patterns. The spirit was not one of hippies but of polished performers."  He went on to include the album at thirteenth place on his list of best progressive rock albums of all time.
In an April 2, 1992 review, Billboard magazine raved that A Picture of Nectar "...should be required on all college listening lists. The songs are all over the place from whacked-out rock to bluegrass to jazz. The constant is the high quality of musicianship and spirit that runs from track to track."
- "Llama" (Anastasio) – 3:32
- "Eliza" (Anastasio) – 1:32
- "Cavern" (Anastasio, Herman, Marshall) – 4:24
- "Poor Heart" (Gordon) – 2:44
- "Stash" (Anastasio, Marshall) – 7:11
- "Manteca" (Fuller, Gillespie, Pozo) – 0:29
- "Guelah Papyrus" (Anastasio, Marshall) – 5:22
- "Magilla" (McConnell) – 2:46
- "The Landlady" (Anastasio) – 2:56
- "Glide" (Anastasio, Fishman, Gordon, Marshall, McConnell) – 4:13
- "Tweezer" (Anastasio, Fishman, Gordon, McConnell) – 8:42
- "The Mango Song" (Anastasio) – 6:23
- "Chalk Dust Torture" (Anastasio, Marshall) – 4:36
- "Faht" (Fishman) – 2:21
- "Catapult" (Gordon) – 0:32
- "Tweezer Reprise" (Anastasio, Fishman, Gordon, McConnell) – 2:39
- Trey Anastasio – guitar, vocals
- Page McConnell – keyboard, organ, vocals
- Mike Gordon – bass guitar, vocals
- Jon Fishman – drums, vocals
- Gordon Stone – pedal steel, banjo
- Michael Mills – art direction
- Tom Walters – assistant engineer
- Jon Altschiller – engineer
- Bob Ludwig – mastering
- B.C. Kagan – photography
- Joe Witkop – photography
- Kevin Halpin – producer, engineer
The song "Llama" is included in the music video game Rock Band 3, where it is the second song in the main-game series (not including DLC) to have full Impossible rating for all band members (Painkiller from Rock Band 2 is the first). However, it is the first to have a full Impossible rating with keys included. "Stash" and "Tweezer" were also released as downloadable content for Rock Band 3 in 2011.
- Phish.com: A Picture of Nectar Online. Accessed: August 08, 2011.
- Phish:net: A Picture of Nectar Online. Accessed: August 11, 2011.
- Smith, Jim. "allmusic – A Picture of Nectar > Overview". Allmusic. Retrieved June 8, 2009.
- Phish.net: Manteca Song History Online. Accessed: August 11, 2011.
- Phish.net: Faht Every Time Played Online. Accessed: August 11, 2011.
- "RIAA searchable certification database". Recording Industry Association of America. Retrieved 2011-12-17.
- "allmusic – A Picture of Nectar > Charts & Awards > Billboard Albums". Allmusic. Retrieved June 8, 2009.