Fuego is Phish's twelfth studio album and first in nearly five years following 2009's Joy. The songs for Fuego took shape during a series of visits to Phish’s longtime creative hub, The Barn, a rustic, reconstructed barn-turned-rehearsal/recording studio located outside Burlington, Vermont. There they explored dozens of ideas, which led to a notable shift in the band’s songwriting approach. While Fuego includes tracks that individual members brought to the table in usual Phish fashion, the bulk of the material was written by all four, working together at The Barn.
Before heading into the recording studio with producer Bob Ezrin, Phish took the new music to its fans on October 31, 2013. Breaking with the band’s Halloween tradition of donning a “musical costume” and covering another artist’s album in its entirety, Phish instead played their brand new album (as it then stood). In a live review of the show, which was the first of three sold-out nights at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, NJ, Rolling Stone praised the set of brand new songs, observing that it was “packed with all the punches you would expect from Phish – cow funk, prog rock, arena rock, roots rock - and elements that span the history of [rock] & roll at large...”
“For years, there’s been a distinct difference between how we did things live and how we did them in studio,” notes drummer Jon Fishman. “But the way we go about things live, the way the musical ball is passed around, is now happening much more in the studio - not because we’re trying to duplicate how we play on stage, just because this is how we operate as a band, period.”
Fuego was recorded at Ronnie’s Place and Anarchy Studios in Nashville, TN, Fame Recording Studios in Muscle Shoals, AL and at The Barn in Vermont. A variety of background vocalists and horn players contributed to the album. The title track was recorded at Boardwalk Hall on October 30, as Phish prepared for the Halloween show. Plated and pressed by Furnace MFG with lacquers cut by Bernie Grundman Mastering. Also includes a digital download of the album.