Mike Gordon

Tracking (1994)

Directed by Mike Gordon
Released: October 1, 1994
Format(s): VHS

“While in the studio recording the album Hoister, I sported a video camera. Sometimes I pushed the record button. Others, the stop. Alas, I edited. Using machines small yet sweet, I assembled Tracking. This isn’t about railroad tracks or stuffing things up the tender nostril. It’s about 48 tracks of sound, adjacent on strips of plastic. Like mixing lilac petals, coriander, chunks of butter, and fennel into a soup, Tracking is the recording of different sounds, adjacent on strips of plastic. The sounds are adjacent on strips of plastic. (Am I confusing you? What are you, an ape child?) Anyway, I hope you enjoy this special new item.

This video was trashed in an early edition of the fanzine Pharmer’s Almanac, for it’s lack of band banter. After making a ’93 Summer Tour video for the band and friends, Mike realized he wanted to make something shorter, and raw with feeling. The idea was not to show talking, just flourishing emotions during the overdubbing and special guest phases of the production of Phish’s Hoist album. You see Jonathan Frakes from Star Trek playing trombone, Alison Krauss, Bela Fleck, The Tower Of Power horns, and unexpectedisms like walking slowly on stones for the song ‘Lifeboy’ or a an arcade game miked up for it’s beeps and whirs. Things start to peak when the one live jam on the album (A Cleveland ‘Split Open And Melt’ jam) provides the pulse behind shots of huge forest fires getting closer and closer to the studio, and Fishman’s car accident in the hills of Hollywood.” – Mike


Tracking is currently out of print.