Spring 1990 (The Other One) Box
Less Than 500 Units Left.
•144-page paperback book with essays by Nicholas G. Meriwether and Blair Jackson
•A portfolio with three art prints by Jessica Dessner
• Replica ticket stubs and backstage passes for all eight shows
•8 complete shows on 23 discs
•3/14/90 Capital Centre, Landover, MD
•3/18/90 Civic Center, Hartford, CT
•3/21/90 Copps Coliseum, Hamilton, Ontario
•3/25/90 Knickerbocker Arena, Albany, NY
•3/28/90 Nassau Coliseum, Uniondale, NY
•3/29/90 Nassau Coliseum, Uniondale, NY (featuring Branford Marsalis)
•4/1/90 The Omni, Atlanta, GA
•4/3/90 The Omni, Atlanta, GA
Recorded by long-time Grateful Dead audio engineer John Cutler
Mixed from the master 24-track analog tapes by Jeffrey Norman at Bob Weir's TRI Studios
Mastered to HDCD specs by David Glasser
Original Art by Jessica Dessner
Individually Numbered, Limited Edition of 9,000
Announcing Spring 1990 (The Other One)
"If every concert tells a tale, then every tour writes an epic. Spring 1990 felt that way: an epic with more than its share of genius and drama, brilliance and tension. And that is why the rest of the music of that tour deserves this release, why the rest of those stories need to be heard." - Nicholas G. Meriwether
Some consider Spring 1990 the last great Grateful Dead tour. That it may be. In spite of outside difficulties and downsides, nothing could deter the Grateful Dead from crafting lightness from darkness. They were overwhelmingly triumphant in doing what they came to do, what they did best — forging powerful explorations in music. Yes, it was the music that would propel their legacy further, young fans joining the ranks with veteran Dead Heads, Jerry wondering "where do they keep coming from?" — a sentiment that still rings true today, a sentiment that offers up another opportunity for an exceptional release from a tour that serves as transcendental chapter in the Grateful Dead masterpiece.
With Spring 1990 (The Other One), you'll have the chance to explore another eight complete shows from this chapter, the band elevating their game to deliver inspired performances of concert staples (“Tennessee Jed” and “Sugar Magnolia”), exceptional covers (Dylan’s “When I Paint My Masterpiece” and the band’s last performance of the Beatles’ “Revolution”) and rare gems (the first “Loose Lucy” in 16 years) as well as many songs from Built To Last, which had been released the previous fall and would become the Dead’s final studio album. Also among the eight is one of the most sought-after shows in the Dead canon: the March, 29, 1990 show at Nassau Coliseum, where Grammy®-winning saxophonist Branford Marsalis sat in with the group. The entire second set is one continuous highlight, especially the breathtaking version of “Dark Star.”
For those of you who are keeping track, this release also marks a significant milestone as now, across the two Spring 1990 boxed sets, Dozin At The Knick, and Terrapin Limited, the entire spring tour of 1990 has been officially released, making it only the second Grateful Dead tour, after Europe 1972, to have that honor.
Now shipping, you'll want to order your copy soon as these beautiful boxes are going, going, gone...
Listening Party: 3/29/90, Nassau Coliseum With Branford Marsalis, Set 2
Enjoy the 2nd set of 3/29/90!
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The post I was specifically referring to has been modified
Its all fun and games until ?
This Box Set Flat Out Kicks Ass !
That's cool you like the box set and the music, but why boast about rushing the stage ?
For quite some time I viewed the Without a Net release as showcasing an era I was not that interested in hearing. I was into the 1969-73 version. 90s wasn't entirely lost on me, but I never played it. It took awhile for me to come around. This set makes the case that they were on their game big time.
I just thought of one caveat to my issues with HD audio. If they were offered at the same price (as the Hyperion label frequently does) as the standard 16/44.1 files, then I'd say GREAT! There's certainly nothing WRONG with getting higher resolution files. It just doesn't make sense to pay more for them when it appears virtually no one can really tell the difference. Maybe in the future, with bigger storage capacities, higher bandwidth, etc., higher res recordings will be the only thing available. Again, as long as you're not paying more for them, then great! More expensive then 16/44.1, then silly.
Thanks for the kind words Dantian.
I guess the "one last time" is because I think that after the latest barrage of links, and my lengthy post, if I go back to this issue it'll seem like I'm on a campaign of sorts. I'm not. I just don't like seeing people plop extra money down when what they will get with the CD quality download (or the CD's themselves) is sonically equivalent to people. ESPECIALLY this release where the CD's sound so unbelievably fantastic to begin with.
I think that discussions of the music are far more important, along with discussions of why and how music, and in particular this music, has such a profound affect on us. I know someone for whom the kind of experience he often had at GD shows was so personally profound that it formed one of the reasons he chose to get a doctorate in religious studies and look at what these experiences were and why they are important.
Nice posts, but why "one last time?" Keep posting your very reasonable position, backed by scientific evidence, whenever this issue comes up, as many people may not be aware of the studies that have been done.
I also have no problem if people want to pay more for what amounts to a placebo effect, that is their choice. But I would hate to see someone who already owns the physical box spend an additional $200 for the downloads because they were misled into thinking they are necessary for that super-duper listening experience.
huh - this pages says there are still "Less" than 1500 copies left (argh, FEWER!) but it also says "temporarily unavailable."
A discussion about the Archimago study titled:
Well-Crafted Study Shows Listeners Cannot Distinguish Between CD-Quality and High-Resolution Music Files
Here's one from someone who feels there IS a difference, but it's not until you get to the end where he tells you why (and it matters):
"Nevertheless, there could still be value to high-resolution audio, and the Boston Audio Society study offers a clue as to why. Toward the end of the paper, the authors suggest that sound engineers often put more care and attention into higher-resolution recordings than they do to mass market CD releases.
Dr. Sean Olive, President of the Audio Engineering Society and Director of Acoustic Research for Harman international, agrees. “I’ve heard some wonderful CDs, but I’ve also heard some wonderful 24/96 files,” Olive said. “I really think the difference is how well they’re recorded and mastered.”
I submit that since the HD files (vs 16/44.1) files that dead.net are making available for download ARE FROM THE EXACT SAME MASTERS, then the explanation given why HD might sometimes sound much better makes the argument for why it is a complete waste in this case to pay more for the HD file.
Here's a link to a very technical article on high res audio files. It's worth reading, but here's the end:
"III. Conclusion - Expectations for High-Resolution Audio?
So, let's try to answer the question posed above of what to expect from high resolution downloads in conclusion... I think the answer is simple: Not much if anything compared to a technically good 16/44 version or CD of the same mastering."
Paper titled: 24/192 Music Downloads..and why they make no sense
Here is a link to a detailed 2-page discussion of the Audio Engineering Society study:
I feel I should post about this one last time. Let me preface this by saying that anyone who wants to pay more for the HD files over standard CD quality (16/44.1) downloads is obviously totally free to do so, and if it makes them happier, than more power to them.
However, for those of you unsure, I post this. I am NOT attacking anyone for their preference. Just stating certain facts and opinions.
I have posted other links in the past about this:
This link is the abstract to yet another scientifically done study - this one by the Audio Engineering Society. It goes into the methodology in detail (you have to pay for the detail, though).
I feel the need to basically point out that although lots of facts and opinions abound about this topic, I am personally unaware of ANY study done using accepted scientific methodology and accepted by the scientific community (and there are at least over a hundred by now done by institutions like the above, as well as many universities - with a little googling you can find many of them online) that shows that humans can reliably detect the difference between CD quality audio files (16/44.1) and higher resolution audio files (usually 24/96 or 24/192).
There have been LOTS of unscientific tests done by individuals where they swear they can hear the difference. Many of the scientific studies point out the MANY pitfalls in doing these tests yourself - everything from using files mastered from different sources to not doing the tests double-blind and many others.
Again, I have read the detailed results of dozens of scientific studies and in NOT ONE of them were test subjects able to tell the difference between the HD files and CD quality files at anything over random chance.
Also, there has been quite a bit of confusion on this site, with some people confusing the lossy compressed (i.e. mp3) vs lossless (flac, alac, etc) issue with the issue at hand which has nothing to do with lossy vs lossless files.
There has also been some confusion about the difference between 24-track vs 2 track, and the debate at hand which refers to the 24-bits vs 16 bits used in HD vs CD quality audio files. The fact that the number 24 comes up in both issues is coincidence as they don't have anything to do with each other.
If anyone finds a study which shows people being able to tell the difference between CD quality files and hi-res (HD) audio files I am more than willing to check them out. I would actually be excited to do so, and if it pans out would look forward to investing in whatever I can afford to enable me to take advantage of the fact.
However, even if one does not accept the results of ALL of the studies that I am aware of to date, it is clear that the difference to human ears, if not zero (which it looks like it is to me) is at least small enough that if you haven't already invested VERY significantly in higher and higher end audio equipment (speakers, amps, phones, quality of DAC, cabling, etc.) I submit that doing so has FAR MORE immediate impact on the experienced audio quality then HD vs CD audio files.
While it is COMPLETELY clear that upgrading your speakers or phones to higher end ones that sound better to your ears (exact choices obviously subjective) - no one disputes that almost everyone can IMMEDIATELY tell the difference in sound quality as they move to better speaker systems - why on earth would you bother with HD vs CD audio files unless you already have the highest level of audio equipment available? And, if you already have the best you can afford, why are you paying more for HD files instead of saving the difference so you can afford better audio equipment with an IMMEDIATELY recognizable improvement in audio quality.
While I submit that it IS significant that EVERY scientific study (that I have found) has come to the same conclusion (the test subjects can't tell the difference between HD and CD quality files), even if you don't agree (for whatever reason), isn't the fact that other factors clearly matter so much more an almost CRITICAL consideration into where you are putting your hard earned money - better audio equipment vs hi res files?
One last thing - I notice that on EVERY site where people DO hear a difference (I'll include a link for one of those below also), the testing is NEVER done scientifically with double-blind testing, massive number of listens spread over large variety of equipment and environments, various control sets to offset variables like age, type of music, and a million other factors). Here is a link to one of the many of those:
You will notice that (as usual) in this "test", the participants were aware of which files they were listening to as they were judging them (one of the most glaring errors in methodology) allowing expectations to influence the results. It appears they used a VERY few number of audio samples, very few people involved, and it would also appear that they used commercial CD's vs 24-bit studio masters apparently without any verification that the CD's were from the very same masters. This is typical of EVERY "study" I have seen where people swear they hear the difference. Usually they swear a VAST improvement in warmth, depth, clarity, etc. I find the vast improvement idea particularly unbelievable, or there would be at least SOME ability to discern the difference in a scientific setting. In my opinion, it seems reasonable that if the differences are VAST then SOMETHING should register in the scientific studies however small those difference might be. This has not been the case.
Those of you thinking TPTB may remix the first box set using the 24 track tapes ($$$$$) and send new discs to all 9000 buyers of that box for free ($$$) are dreaming.
Hey, maybe the next box set of slightly different Bob Marley tracks or Beatles re-re-re-releases will be given away on iTunes like the new U2 album! ;-)
I finally made it through all 8 shows from this box. Besides the extremely magical night with Branford, my favorite shows are 3/14 & 4/1. I think all of the shows from this tour are great but 3/14 & 4/1 are both really strong shows from beginning to end. Some of the shows lose some energy post drums/space, in my opinion. Who couldn't love the post drums/space Truckin>Stella Blue from 4/1? I also really enjoy the Victim>To lay me down. On 3/14 they start the tour coming out of a cannon...really high energy in the 1st set and flawless, beautiful jamming in the 2nd set. And the excellent Black Muddy River encore, nice.
Thank you for a real good time...24 years later!
These FLAC HD's are 24 Bit, 192 kHz sample rate. CD is 16 bit, 44.1 kHz sample rate. If you have an HDCD player/decoder, it will "decode" the CD at 20 bits, 44.1 kHz. The Apple lossless files are 16 bit, 44.1 kHz (CD quality).
The bit depth refers to exactly that, more depth in the music. Bit depth that is 24 bit sounds a lot better in my opinion regardless of sample rate on a system that supports it.
Added sample rate is a huge bonus in my opinion, sounds more realistic/less edgy. I prefer 96 (typical BluRay or DVD-A) or 192 even though most live recordings are done in 48kHz (typical DVD sound quality).
And last but not least, equipment plays a big part in all this, a good DAC will blow away a top of the line CD player any day.
introduces the possibility that ultrasonic intermodulation distortions might be reproduced in the audible range by your amplifier, resulting in poorer fidelity, the opposite of what you think you're getting from Uber HD.
But in any case, even if no ultrasonic distortions become audible, you are still paying extra for something that you will never obtain any additional benefit from.
edited out "or 24/96" after Dead.net released specs.
Ripping from the discs will yield 16 bit FLAC or 20 bit 48khz FLAC at best. The downloads are 24-192khz, something you won't NEVER get from the discs. Uber HD. The download files are from the remastered tapes w/o a disc gen in them.
If you have the physical box you don't need the downloads. You can rip the CDs to Apple lossless in iTunes, or rip to FLAC using another program such as EAC or foobar.
...TOO does sound better. TPTB could release another set of cd's for the heads that purchased the first box set. Some people made a lot of money from these two boxes, and cd's are inexpensive in regards to the physical media. Ship another set of 24-track discs to the fans......that would be uber-cool...
You guys are comparing and looking at 2 entirely different things. The 24/96 is just the resolution of the download files, whether they be high definition (which is I think24/96) or ALAC (16/44.1) or mp 3 which I think is lower, all that tells you is the bit rate and the sample rate of the files. But at this point all the spring 90 files from either box are the same in that regard.
The difference in sound has to do with the mixing process. For whatever reason, TPTB decided to use John Cutler's live 2 track recordings as the source for Spring 90 box #1. For those to sound like the second box set, they would have to hire Geoff Norman ( I think) to come back, take out the 24-track masters, and re-mix them. That is not cheap and I doubt they are doing it. And given that there are 9000 copies of a beautiful, well-done, limited edition boxed set out there, redoing them to make them sound alot better opens a gigantic can of worms that they are not opening. I would look at it like this: they could have just decided that remastering THIS second box set would open said can of worms and so instead opted to go with the 2 tracks again. Lesson learned.
Also no way are there free downloads if you bought the set and if there were they would just be mp3 anyway which is lossy quality and who wants that?
If the first box is made into downloads from the multi track. I would hope dead.net could give a download voucher with proof of purchase provided. I'm not sure what can of worms that would open with logistics, but it would make a nice gesture. Since it seems to me the shows from the first box have better moments of playing. But the 2nd box sounds way better. Is that too much to ask for ? Personally I would feel a bit cheated if they offered the first 6 shows from Spring 90 box in multi track after paying for the original box. Seems to me it would be sort of an audio upgrade.
ppenock is correct - that's a loon on the cover of the Hamilton show, not a duck. additionally, the flower is a trillium, which is the official provincial flower of Ontario.
Are you saying they made the first spring box downloads in 24 track like spring too
If you've purchased the Spring 90 Box sets (which I have), are you eligible for a free digital download of each box?
If so... how do you go about accessing the files?
Don't know for sure about this second box, but I downloaded the first and it's 24/88.2.
Has remastering specifications re the newly available HD FLAC files for Spring 1990/ Spring 1990 TOO been published?
The "more info" link is simply an FAQ; absent anything relevant to the file mastering. Note that the "Wake Up to Find Out (3/29/90)" digital files via dead.net are also missing the bit-depth/sample rate specs. The latter is available in both 24/96 and 24/192 downloads at HD Tracks. Will purchases made through dead.net provide the same options? As there is only one price for the download via dead.net, it's doubtful. Clicking through the ordering process does not reveal any more information and would be quite a financial gamble if you're hoping for a specific resolution.
Can any one shed light on this?
Good point about the Road Trips. My pet theory about what happened with that series is that, uncharacteristically, the first release had a lot of issues which set a negative tone for the series (even though later releases addressed the issues)
1. The packaging was not good at first. The first release (Fall 79) had rough, unpleasant cardboard which can scratch discs. It was too tall and narrow. The graphics were, IMO, flat out ugly.
BUT, by the last year they had totally fixed these issues - the covers of most of the Road Trips were spectacular, they shortened them and made the spines wider, allowing for easier insertion / removal of discs, and a more flush appearance on the shelf (to collectors like us, that is not a minor point).
2. Sound quality on the first release was not pleasing to the ears, harsh, too bright, seemed overly loud (like something mixed for MP3) and was apparently not pitch-corrected.
This was also addressed on later releases.
3. I agree with Deadheadbrewer that the compilation idea was a good one. I've always said I like good compilation releases AND good full show releases - I don't know why a series has to be one or the other. But the first compilations seemed more scattered than something like, say DP18.
All of this set a tone which, unfortunately, led to the abandonment of the idea. Too bad. I would be fine if DaPs were compilations once and awhile. So for example, if that's what it takes to get something released from 84, then bring it on...
mpace--The past year or so I've been trying to keep notes every time I listen to a CD, GD or no. I have so much music, and to hone in on the best of it, I'm feeling like I need to be more critical. So for things like Van Morrison's Astral Weeks and Moondance, I don't take notes, because those are classics--everything is fantastic. But I give grades for the songs on his next three or four CDs, and keep the notes in the CD cases, so that the next time I pop in those discs, I can program the player to play only the really good tracks.
Same thing with Dead shows--I'm trying to be diligent about grading the songs on the non-perfect shows, so that I can listen to the best of the best. I'm one of those folks who wishes that most Dead releases were thoughtful compilations, as I would rather have the best three hours from a three-show run than have one complete show from that run. With my notes, I can skip a bunch of mediocre performances from a release, which gives me more time to hit the high points of another release. The Road Trips series had the right idea, IMHO, but they jumbled things a bit too much and turned the tide against compilations.
Wow check this out!
Yeah jpreston, I agree, this is an awesome box. The sound is outstanding. Peak 90's Dead.
I'm musically in fantasy dead heaven.
Sorry for the confusion- Yes I agree pitch or speed of tape should be corrected when necessary (wish that was done with the RT from Cornell).
I'd like them to keep the off note parts to maintain the integrity of the recording. I'm sure there is so much technology that could make lots of changes, but I think that works against the whole concept of live recording.
I realize mostly all bands that officially release live recordings do some doctoring - even the original Europe 72 is famous for the re recording of vocals and organ - I guess I was just hoping to have just a mastered version of the original live recording without any changes.
Pitch correction is necessary when the machine recording the tape, or one along the chain of a vine - is moving at too slow or too fast a speed. So guys like Charlie miller and Hseamons have to either slow down or speed it up. But all the tracks have the problem. So if you were trying to play along on your guitar. It would sound like they were playing eyes in the key of f instead of e, and it would sound faster. Rev it up another half step and they start sounding chipmunk like.
So you slow the tape down until what you know is an e chord sounds like an e.
Unless Bob was singing the whole thing a half step off ) which is pretty much impossible to do, heaybe just hit a few bum notes) pitch correction would not solve your problem, he'd have to go into the studio and redo the part. And I think some of the vox on the original Europe 72 release they did that. But not here.
Does anyone know if the sound quality of HD FLAC is better, equal or worse than HDCD?
Thanks for checking!
Just listened to one of the AUDs on archive.org. I'm no Randy Jackson, but Bob didn't sound particularly pitchy to me on Eyes. Maybe there is a vast conspiracy where Bob's vocals have been corrected on the AUDs as well?
What is the OP's evidence that this was done? As I recall reading, the OP says something like (I'm paraphrasing): I heard an AUD of this show a long time ago and, if memory serves, Bob was out of tune. Ok, sure: Bob is occasionally off-key. I doubt anyone would deny that. Is there a link to the AUD in question on the archive? Has anyone compared that AUD to the new release? What about to the prior Without a Net release. I understand the OP says this is where all the pitch correcting started. Is there some published source where pitch correcting is acknowledged? This seems kind of like bullshit to me.
I really can't believe this box set has not sold out yet I mean this is the best music that has ever been released if you have not purchased this box you must you will not be disappointed
I really can't believe this box set has not sold out yet I mean this is the best music that has ever been released if you have not purchased this box you must you will not be disappointed
Sorry for the double post
To get all three bonus discs. I got one with Fall 77. I had a feeling more were floating around. I ordered Fall 79 next and no Bonus. I had Feb. 68 (no bonus) before they started to restock ( or discovered more in the warehouse).
I did notice at one time those 3 volumes went out of stock and then came back a week or so later. So they may have found more in the warehouse or printed more by mistake with bonus included. I'm not sure if they have more than one warehouse. It may be where you live also that will depend on getting a bonus in one of these. If there is more than one warehouse.
I live in Ohio and my packages all seem to originate in Hebron, KY when I order from dead.net. And with limited edition releases. My number is usually always in the middle of the run.
A few weeks back I ordered MSG 90 and the package got lost. Dead.net replaced the order, but I still wonder if that MSG 90 that was lost had bonus disc included. The one I got did not have
Sorry for the drama, but I think this is important-
From what the person said in the wake up to find out thread - Bob's EOTW vocals during the chorus were originally out of tune, but in this release it has been corrected. So its the pitch of the vocal - but maybe auto tune is a better way to say it.
This box is awesome no doubt about it - but after what I heard about the Going Down the Road song incident in the '77 box, this seems believable (also heard some magic was done on the E72 box)…. Anyway I just hope that those who make these releases do not confuse trying to get something sonically right with changing the performance. I for one like a performance to be released with warts and all - performance wise. If there are wrong notes, bad vocals thats fine and if pieces of a performance missing I would prefer just supplemented with an AUD recording, etc...
Isn't pitch correction meant to fix problems caused by the recording process (speed of recording is off) rather than fix problems caused by the performances (forgetting words, guitar out of tune, missed note, etc.)?
I don't see why someone would object to a recording error being fixed.
....but I do know awesome sound....Spring TOO is an example of the finest mixing and production of a live recording I have ever heard.....simply jaw dropping. Best $ ever spent.....I'm sure you all feel the same....if you want to turn someone onto the Dead, play this box of this tour...universal if you ask me.
p.s. I may be biased a bit...Play Dead!!
I saw on another thread that there may have been some pitch correction done on the 3/29 show. Does anyone have any info on this? I guess its on Bob's vocals during eyes?
I hope thats not true - if it is can the TPTB just leave us alone with all this commercial garbage- we want the whole shows, no alteration, no gimmicks, just good ol grateful dead- the way it happened. end rant.
On a lighter side- anyone else keep a notebook on the shows in their collection or the ones they have heard? I was thinking of starting one with this tour and the E72 and then going into the whole collection and wonder if anyone else does that now and if they have any cool systems for recording their thoughts. Reading about Dick L really inspired me to get my own notes going for constructive listening and being able to pin point what I want to hear in my collection at a certain time.
I'm enjoying this box so very much..haven't had a lot of time to really get into it..but have had a fair share of listening moments. So nice to have a couple of days off from work finally to dive Into this big ole box! Thanks for making this happen!
On the posts about bonus discs coming with road trips..I ordered both winterland boxes over the past year and received the bonus disc with both boxes. Just a thought..wish my random road trips would have come with them also, oh well!
I bought from dead net Road Trips Vol. 1 #1, Vol. 1 #2 and Vol. 2 #2, and all three had the bonus CDs!
I don't understand the bonus CD concept anyway. You make a limited number of CD sets with a bonus CD, those sell out, then you have the leftovers that don't sell as fast. Why not make 'em all that way, with the extras? They're already tooled up to crank out the CDs and print the covers. ???????????
iTunes can do this, assuming you are ripping the tracks from a disc. It's pretty simple actually: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E9FYN9giFHM
Is there a website that has the proper timings for seamlessly joining GD tracks once you upload them to iTunes? A rather specific request, I know, but some epic sequences need to be joined (looking at you, Dick's Picks 4 and Dick's Picks 16).
That would be especially helpful on the TOO box between the end of disc 2 drums and the beginning of disc 3 space.