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Phish A Picture Of Nectar album cover
3.74 | 68 ratings | 12 reviews | 22% 5 stars

Excellent addition to any
rock music collection

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Studio Album, released in 1992

Songs / Tracks Listing

1. Llama (3:31)
2. Eliza (1:31)
3. Cavern (4:24)
4. Poor Heart (2:45)
5. Stash (7:11)
6. Manteca (0:29)
7. Guelah Papyrus (5:22)
8. Magilla (2:46)
9. The Landlady (2:56)
10. Glide (4:12)
11. Tweezer (8:42)
12. The Mango Song (6:23)
13. Chalk Dust Torture (4:35)
14. Faht (2:21)
15. Catapult (0:32)
16. Tweezer Reprise (2:40)

Total Time: 60:20

Line-up / Musicians

- Trey Anastasio / guitar, lead & backing vocals
- Page McConnell / piano, Hammond organ, harmonica (10), backing vocals
- Mike Gordon / bass, backing vocals
- Jonathan Fishman / drums, guitar & piano (14), backing vocals

- Gordon Stone / pedal steel guitar & banjo (4)

Releases information

Artwork: Mike Mills with Joe Witkop (photo)

CD Elektra ‎- 9 61274-2 (1992, US)

2xLP Jemp Records ‎- JEMP1081 (2014, US)

Thanks to ProgLucky for the addition
and to Quinino for the last updates
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PHISH A Picture Of Nectar ratings distribution

(68 ratings)
Essential: a masterpiece of rock music(22%)
Excellent addition to any rock music collection(51%)
Good, but non-essential (19%)
Collectors/fans only (6%)
Poor. Only for completionists (1%)

PHISH A Picture Of Nectar reviews

Showing all collaborators reviews and last reviews preview | Show all reviews/ratings

Collaborators/Experts Reviews

Review by Sean Trane
3 stars Phish's third album (I gather) is a complicated affair for someone unfamiliar to the band - and this is my case. Certainly it sounds like another Phish record but on this one not only are the Grateful Dead references still evident but it clearly appears those guys heard also the excellent A Pocket Full Of Kryptonite debut album from Spin Doctors.

Most of the songs on this album are very typical of Phish swaying from Country-rock to bluesish-rock to mainstream rock with good musicianship. The tracks are shorter than usual and only a few of them allow for much instrumental interplay that we are used as soon as you see them in concert. The three longer tracks (Stash, Tweezer & Mango Song) will appeal to progheads for obvious reasons, but progressive nirvana is not to be reached with such an album. Too many references to country music are made but in general musical directions are too wide and unfocused for this group to be relished by progheads.

As a confirmed proghead but knowing only five albums from them, I can assure potential listener that although good musicians, I have yet to really enjoy a studio album but I rate highly the live album. It seems to me that Phish's main appeal is as a live band.

Review by TCat
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
4 stars When it comes to bands that are into eternal jam sessions, Phish is the absolute best. It is amazing how they seem to be on the same "wavelength" when they are playing together in a live show and how well they know each other enough to carry each other through such diverse and long jamming sessions. The question always seems to arise, however, as to whether they are really a progressive band or not. Let me put it this way...sometimes they are and sometimes they are not. But that's okay. These guys are great at both, so they can get away with it. I can't say that they have ever done anything innovative in progressive rock, but they know the tricks of the trade and they do it well. Jamming is definately legal in progressive rock and is also welcome. Even though I do love my share of jam bands, I've always been more attracted to the complex structure of I guess I'm more into tight structure than loose jamming. For this reason, I have no problems with Phish's studio albums up through "The Story of the Ghost", so I am not the typical "Phish-head" because most die-hard Phish phans love them for their free form but I love them for the structure of their music. That being said, I absolutely love this's probably my favorite by them immediately followed by "Rift" and "The Story of the Ghost".

This album has everything and I love the variety here. Here is what you get with this album. "Llama" is just a fast, wacked-out song that demonstrates Phish's quirkiness. "Poor Heart" is a hilarious send up of country music. "Stash" is the prog-lovers dream. "Magilla" and "Land Lady" are both great jazz-rock instrumentals and I love the way they are "stuck" together on the album. "Tweezer" is a great sampler of what these guys can do with improvisation when they have a great riff to play off of. "The Mango Song" is at silly as it sounds but very enjoyable. "Chalk Dust Torture" is a little heavier and probably one of my all time favorite Phish songs. This is one that always sounds good live whatever they do with it. The album closes off with three short songs...the instrumentat and very funny "Faht" with all kinds of nature and acoustic sounds which if you listening too closely might end up making you jump out of your seat, the strange and short "Catapult" and then the reprise of "Tweezer" which I think is the perfect closer because of how it brings back the spirit of the album after the two "mostly" quiet previous tracks.

Overall, a great album that does better listened to as a whole and not in parts. This is another reason why I like this one more than their previous album "Junta" (which most Phish-heads would consider their favorite) because the tracks all sound better when they are listened to together. I really think this is what Phish was trying to accomplish when making an album, a way to tie all the songs together to make a "full-album" type listening experience, where in a live show, they try to give each song it's own individuality. They accomplish this very well on this album and also on "Story of a Ghost".

Review by Evolver
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Crossover & JR/F/Canterbury Teams
3 stars It's probably no coincidence that with their debut on a major label, Phish elimated most of the prog elements from their music. I can imagine some suits in the recording studio listening to them and telling them what not to play. But still, there is much to like about this album.

LLama is about as energetic as a Phish song can get, and is a great rock tune. And while the live versions of these are much better, Stash and Tweezer on this album have some fine jamming. Other fine songs on this album are Guelah Papyrus, The Mango Song and Chalk Dust Torture.

So while this isn't one of my favorite Phish albums, there is still plenty of music worth listening to on it.

Review by Easy Livin
SPECIAL COLLABORATOR Honorary Collaborator / Retired Admin
3 stars Phull of phun

Phish have been around since about 1983, this 1992 release being their fifth studio album. In some ways though, this is considered to be their first album proper the previous four being a trio of self releases and one further album on a minor record label.

Consisting of some 16 tracks ranging from under half a minute to nearly nine minutes, diversity appears to be the order of the day here, both in terms of styles and quality. While the entire band contribute to the songwriting, it is Trey Anastasio who is by far the major writer.

In terms of the music, the songs tend to be built upon the lush organ playing of Page McConnell. Song structures are generally pretty straightforward with strong pop leanings, the aforementioned overall diversity being the main source of any prog sensibilities. Some here will inevitably baulk at tracks such as the country/bluegrass "Poor heart" written by Mike Gordon, and it does indeed seem rather out of place on an otherwise rock album.

The 7 minute "Stash" on the other hand is something of a cornucopia, ranging from a smooth Latin style, to clever Dickie 10cc patter. The track contains some nice Santana like lead guitar work too. An undoubted highlight of the album for me is the lead guitar instrumental "The landlady", where the comparison with Carlos Santana is even more appropriate. The only complaint about the track is its brevity.

The other track which purports to have prog credentials is "Tweezer", which runs to almost 9 minutes, and also enjoys a further 2 minutes of reprise to close the album. Unfortunately, the lyrics on the track are the most trite on the album, rhyming tweezer (is there such a word in the singular anyway?) with freezer and Uncle Ebeneezer. Admittedly, this is clearly intentional and meant to be humorous, but before long it simply becomes irritating. On the plus side, the track does feature some fine, rock orientated guitar.

"The mango song" offers further hints of 10cc, the mild calypso basis of the song supporting a pleasantly inoffensive long pop song.

Overall, an interesting album which contains something for everyone. That though is also its weakness, as the overall result is rather unfocused. On the plus side, this is a well performed and recorded album, which demonstrates that there is considerable talent within.

Latest members reviews

5 stars Phish's third effort was not far off the line of it's two predecessors, especially in the line of 'progressiveness'. Sure, Junta was a great debut album that was full of prog rock, but Lawn Boy and A Picture of Nectar didn't fall short from the line at all. I've actually had more of a history ... (read more)

Report this review (#1345904) | Posted by aglasshouse | Thursday, January 15, 2015 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Phish's studio output was always spotty to say the least. A stunning track on one of their albums is typically followed by an unimpressive one. That is the case with "A Picture of Nectar". Some great stuff on this album, of particular note are "Llama", "Cavern", "Guelah Papyrus", and "Chalk ... (read more)

Report this review (#118279) | Posted by Disconnect | Friday, April 13, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Here is one band I wish had written serious Prog. There is no doubt they could have done it and this album shows perfectly why. Now, before you go on thinking Phish is a Grateful Dead wannabe, just check that pre-conception at the door and listen to this album. Especially if you are one who is ... (read more)

Report this review (#117396) | Posted by StyLaZyn | Thursday, April 5, 2007 | Review Permanlink

3 stars HAVE I MISSED ANYTHING? First of all, I'd like to say that I do consider Phish as a prog band. Being the third deliver from these American Band, I expected so much more.In fact this album contents awesome songs with the unique Phish style, but in my opinion there are too many fill songs th ... (read more)

Report this review (#110372) | Posted by MadcapLaughs84 | Friday, February 2, 2007 | Review Permanlink

4 stars Another excellent Phish album. Tis was their fifth album, and third officially released. By this point Phish was starting to become popular among college circles. Their songs were shorter now, and a little more accessable here, but still undeniably Phishy and quite progressive. Probably th ... (read more)

Report this review (#72485) | Posted by Gianthogweed | Tuesday, March 21, 2006 | Review Permanlink

4 stars While most fans of Phish on this site, I have noticed, reguard their debut album Junta as Phish's best effort. I disagree. Not to say Junta is bad, it's just that A Picture of Nectar is so magnificant that it just surpasses Junta in every way. If you are in any way familiar with Phish's live s ... (read more)

Report this review (#40262) | Posted by stonebeard | Monday, July 25, 2005 | Review Permanlink

5 stars Absolutely fantastic, one of my favorite albums of all times! YOU MUST LISTEN TO!!! Genius at his best, nothing similar since Frank Zappa's masterpieces! So, now get your ass into a cd store to buy a Picture Of Nectar: you wont be dissapointed! ... (read more)

Report this review (#33637) | Posted by | Thursday, March 24, 2005 | Review Permanlink

4 stars This is a great cd even though phish are losing touch of their progresive rock weirdness but still keep some of the abstract craziness from junta and lawnboy on here with songs like Stash and Tweezer witch both have awesome riffs. This is probbably my 2nd favourite phish album with Junta as #1 ... (read more)

Report this review (#33635) | Posted by | Thursday, January 6, 2005 | Review Permanlink

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