Monday, September 24, 2012

Grateful Dead Dick's Picks 1 & 2 On Vinyl!!!

I am lucky enough to be listening to Dick's Picks 2 on vinyl this afternoon.  On vinyl you say?  Why yes, yes I am.  The good folks at Brookvale Records will be releasing both of these albums on Tuesday, November 20th at Looney Tunes CD's here on Long Island and also at independent record stores around the country.  Both of these releases will be limited to 2000 copies, so you are going to want to look into this like yesterday because brother...they sound fantastic. 

Dick's Picks 2
Columbus, OH

1. Dark Star/Jam
2. Sugar Magnolia
3. St. Stephen
4. Not Fade Away
5. Goin' Down The Road Feeling Bad
6. Not Fade Away

This is the shortest of the Dick's Picks and it features a chunk of the second set from this show and it starts off with a stellar Dark Star > Jam.  Jerry just goes nuts on this one and leads the band into all kinds of tasty places.  I don't always dig where Dark Star goes but this one is a favorite.  This seems  a little short at one cd (57:39) but on vinyl it spreads out over two lps. You can't quibble with the set choices this night from a kickin' Sugar Mag right on though GDTRFB and Not Fade Away.  It jams, it rocks and it is all kinds of sweet.

So how is the sound on vinyl?  They sound really good actually.  These were originally two track recordings so there are limits to how much can be done during remastering.  The spacing of the instruments is fine, but I find the vocals to be a bit too "out front" which can't be helped based on the "warts and all" tapes.  Will it stop me from playing this one again...uh no it won't.

Dick's Picks 1
Tampa, FL

1.  Here Comes Sunshine
2.  Big River
3.  Mississippi Half Step
4.  Weather Report Suite
5.  Big Railroad Blues
6.  Playing In The Band
7.  He's Gone
8.  Truckin'
9.  Nobody's Fault But Mine
10.  Jam
11.  The Other One
12.  Jam
13.  Stella Blue
14.  Around and Around

DP #1 was never one of my's not bad rather it is a kind of weird place to have started the series.  I'll start off by saying the sound is very good, perhaps a bit better than DP #2 which was pretty good to begin with.  This was recorded towards the end of 1973 kind of in the middle of the endless track to support Wake of the Flood.  This is a different Dead than you had only a year or so earlier.  PigPen is gone and the band is less bluesy and psychedelic and more jazzy sounding.  The 60' are now clearly over and the 70's are in full swing with the Dead morphing along with the times.

This set has some great moments in Here Comes Sunshine, a great jam during Playing in the Band and a wonderful He's Gone.   What was great about the Dead is that they played a lot of these songs over their entire career and they had a different vibe in different eras.  Many of these songs would take on a whole new feel in a couple of years and its great to have such a wide selection to compare, contrast and enjoy.

I'm glad to see the Dick's Picks series getting a vinyl I want DP #8!!!

Go down to Looney Tunes or visit them online and grab yourself both of these fine additions to your Dead collection.

Here's a link to pre-order the lp's if you are so inclined.

1 comment:

  1. Hi!

    Thanks so much for the glowing review! If you liked Vol. 1 & 2, just wait until you hear Vol. 3 & 4. In case you weren't already aware, Dick's Picks Volume 3 and 4 are officially OUT NOW and ready for your listening pleasure.

    As you may or may not know, they were both mastered from the ORIGINAL TAPES by longtime Bay-Area engineer Jeffrey Norman. The inside art features some really cool images of the original master tapes. Enjoy. I welcome your thoughts and can't wait to hear your reaction!

    Phil McGonigle
    Brookvale Records Product Manager