Grateful Dead

Spring 1990, Volume One Box - SOLD OUT

Digital Download

What's Inside:
60 page hardcover Smyth-Sewn book featuring essays by Dennis McNally, David Lemieux, and Blair Jackson and photos by Jim Anderson & Mike Laurentis
25th Anniversary Tour Program
Official Band Letters
6 Ticket Stubs
6 Cloth Sticker Backstage Passes
1 Tour Laminate
Official 1990 Band publicity shot
6 complete shows on 18 discs
       3/16/90 Capital Center, Landover, MD
       3/19/90 Civic Center, Hartford, CT
       3/22/90 Copps Coliseum, Hamilton, ON, Canada
       3/26/90 Knickerbocker Arena, Albany, NY
       3/30/90 Nassau Coliseum, Uniondale, NY
       4/2/90 The Omni, Atlanta, GA

Box Dimensions: 12-1/8" x 3-1/8" x 12-1/8"
Recorded and Mixed Live by John Cutler
Mastered by Jeffrey Norman in HDCD
Original art by Wes Lang
Individually Numbered, Limited Edition of 9,000

Introducing The Next Box: Spring 1990!

And now for something a little different. This year's box set - Grateful Dead: Spring 1990 - offers six complete shows from the epic spring '90 tour, one concert from each city the band played, personally selected by Dead vaultmeister and archival release producer David Lemieux. The sizzling six are: 3/16/90 Capital Centre (Landover , MD), 3/19/90 Hartford Civic Center, 3/22/90 Copps Coliseum (Hamilton, Ontario), 3/26/90 Knickerbocker Arena (Albany, NY), 3/30/90 Nassau Coliseum (Uniondale, NY) and 4/2/90 The Omni (Atlanta, GA).

In his "Producer's Note" in the beautiful book that is part of the box, Lemieux, who attended the first 10 shows on the tour, states, "To my ears this was the last tour that was consistently great, where every show is excellent, not a dud in the bunch." And Grateful Dead historian Dennis McNally's comprehensive and informative insider's essay in the box is titled "The Last Great Dead Tour." These guys know what they're talking about.

Basically, the band had been on an upward trajectory since Garcia's return to the road in the spring of '87, following his near-death the previous summer. Of course, 1987 was a trip in itself, what with the unexpected mega-success of In the Dark and their first hit single, "Touch of Grey." But the momentum just kept building with each subsequent tour, as Garcia got back up to full speed (and then some!) and the group as a whole was as unified as they had ever been since Brent joined the band in the spring of '79. New original tunes were popping up and the old favorites were imbued with a freshness and spirit that was so uplifting and inspiring. The band was having fun again, and it was downright infectious.

The group's fall 1989 shows-as documented two years ago on the Formerly the Warlocks box (two shows from Hampton, VA, 10/8-9/89) and on the 2001 release Nightfall of Diamonds (a single night in NJ, 10/16/89)- kicked the energy level up another couple of notches, as the band reintroduced such loved classics as "Help on the Way" > "Slipknot!," "Attics of My Life," "Death Don't Have No Mercy" and "Dark Star."

And when the band hit the road in mid-March 1990, they had a bunch of other cool tunes to lay on their unsuspecting crowds, including the return of "Loose Lucy" (last played in 1974; it's not on this box), Brent's "Easy to Love You" (missing since 1980), a rollicking cover of the Rolling Stones' "The Last Time," The Band's "The Weight" (with all four singers taking a verse each) and a lyrically retooled "Black-Throated Wind" (absent since 1974), which elicited huge cheers every time it was played.

Over these six shows, most of the cornerstones of the Dead's repertoire from the era appear-splendid versions of "Scarlet Begonias" > "Fire on the Mountain," "China Cat Sunflower" > "I Know You Rider," "Playing in the Band," "Uncle John's Band," "Eyes of the World," "Estimated Prophet," "Truckin'," "Sugar Magnolia," "The Other One," "Terrapin," "Stella Blue," "Feel Like a Stranger," "Bird Song," "Let It Grow," "China Doll," "Box of Rain," "Morning Dew"; you name it. From the fall '89 breakouts come "Help-Slip-Frank," "Attics of My Life" and "Death Don't Have No Mercy." Among the still newish tunes are "Picasso Moon," "Blow Away," "Foolish Heart," "Just a Little Light," "Victim or the Crime," "Standing on the Moon," "We Can Run" and a couple that would get their final plays from the Grateful Dead on this tour-"Built to Last" and "Believe It or Not." There are stirring renditions of "Dear Mr. Fantasy" and "Black Muddy River," rockin' takes on "Gimme Some Lovin'" and "Iko Iko" and the only version of the full "Hey Jude" the band attempted in the modern era. And the "Rhythm Devils" and "Space" jams at the heart of each second set are as noisy-beautiful-scary-funny-intense-mysterious-wild as you'd expect/hope for.

Of course, we understand that some of you may have other favorite shows from this tour you wish were included on this box. Really, you can't go wrong with any of them. But at 18 discs, this is still the second largest Grateful Dead box (after Europe '72: The Complete Recordings) that's been released, and the non-inclusion of any other shows from the tour definitely does not preclude their future release! But this seemed like a more manageable way to go, while still giving a sense of the tour's amazing depth and breadth.

Besides the discs themselves, Grateful Dead: Spring 1990 has much to offer, including: a gorgeous 60-page hardcover book containing copious color photos by Jim Anderson and Michael Laurentus, unique artwork by Brooklyn-based fine artist Wes Lang, fascinating business letters and communications related to the tour, a detailed historical essay by Dennis McNally, a Producer's Note by David Lemieux and individual show descriptions by Blair Jackson; a reproduction of the Dead's 1990 tour program (printed and sold later in '90, for the fall and Europe '90 tours); tickets and backstage passes of all six shows; a band publicity photo from 1990 by Ken Friedman; Dennis McNally's tour laminate; and reproductions of the colored 8x10 sheets GDTS sent out with hotel, food and other information for each city on the tour.

With recordings made by longtime Grateful Dead recordist and producer John Cutler, mastered by Jeffrey Norman in HDCD, you just know it's gonna sound great-and it does!

So, that's the skinny this time 'round. This box is limited to just 9,000 numbered copies - please note, this is the only time these shows will ever be officially available on CD. There will not be an All Music Edition and single shows will not be available physically. Due to ship out August 31st, we anticipate that this extraordinary set will sell-out, so order your copy today!

If you're looking for more of a bite-sized taste of the '90s, Spring 1990: So Glad You Made It, a 2-CD set featuring a handful of favorites, will be in stores on September 18th.

-Blair Jackson

Listening Party

4/2/90, The Omni, Atlanta, GA

Foolish Heart>
Looks Like Rain>
He's Gone>
The Last Time

Click here for an archive of past Spring 1990 Listening Parties.

Spring 1990: A Look Inside The Box

Bob Remembers Spring 1990

David Lemieux on What’s Inside Spring 1990


Show #1
Capital Center, Landover, Md (3/16/90)

Disc 1
1. Let The Good Times Roll> [4:11]
2. Touch Of Grey [6:28]
3. New Minglewood Blues [7:44]
4. Peggy-O [6:34]
5. Queen Jane Approximately [6:15]
6. Loser [7:22]
7. Black-Throated Wind [6:03]
8. Bird Song [14:23]
9. Blow Away [12:02]

Disc 2
1. Scarlet Begonias> [11:21]
2. Estimated Prophet> [11:04]
3. Ship Of Fools> [7:39]
4. Man Smart, Woman Smarter> [6:55]
5. Jam> [5:24]
6. Rhythm Devils [9:37]

Disc 3
1. Space> [10:42]
2. The Other One> [6:55]
3. Stella Blue> [8:49]
4. Sugar Magnolia [9:16]
5. The Last Time [5:19]

Show #2
Civic Center, Hartford, Ct (3/19/90)

Disc 1
1. Hell In A Bucket> [6:43]
2. Bertha [7:10]
3. We Can Run [7:05]
4. Jack-A-Roe [5:13]
5. Picasso Moon [7:41]
6. Brown-Eyed Women [5:59]
7. It's All Over Now> [7:25]
8. Deal [8:41]

Disc 2
1. Box Of Rain [5:27]
2. Foolish Heart> [11:35]
3. Playing In The Band> [8:32]
4. Eyes Of The World> [14:41]
5. Rhythm Devils [10:26]

Disc 3
1. Space> [10:52]
2. China Doll> [6:13]
3. Gimme Some Lovin'> [4:31]
4. Goin' Down The Road Feeling Bad> [6:55]
5. Around And Around [6:36]
6. Brokedown Palace [5:48]

Show #3
Copps Coliseum, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada (3/22/90)

Disc 1
1. Feel Like A Stranger [8:12]
2. West L. A. Fadeaway [7:41]
3. Easy To Love You [6:14]
4. Beat It On Down The Line [3:34]
5. It Must Have Been The Roses [6:29]
6. The Last Time [5:40]
7. Picasso Moon [7:07]
8. Don't Ease Me In [3:30]

Disc 2
1. Scarlet Begonias> [8:30]
2. Fire On The Mountain [11:44]
3. Samson And Delilah [6:51]
4. Believe It Or Not [6:32]
5. Truckin'> [11:04]
6. Rhythm Devils [11:36]

Disc 3
1. Space> [8:14]
2. The Other One> [6:42]
3. Hey Jude> [4:53]
4. Dear Mr. Fantasy> [3:58]
5. Hey Jude> [4:31]
6. Sugar Magnolia [8:45]
7. It's All Over Now, Baby Blue [7:10]

Show #4
Knickerbocker Arena, Albany Ny (3/26/90)

Disc 1
1. Hell In A Bucket [6:53]
2. Dupree's Diamond Blues [6:08]
3. Just A Little Light [5:15]
4. Black-Throated Wind [6:32]
5. Big Railroad Blues [4:40]
6. Picasso Moon [7:17]
7. Row Jimmy [10:53]
8. Blow Away [11:31]

Disc 2
1. Built To Last [5:29]
2. Victim Or The Crime> [9:56]
3. China Cat Sunflower> [5:45]
4. I Know You Rider> [5:24]
5. Man Smart, Woman Smarter> [6:14]
6. Rhythm Devils [11:21]

Disc 3
1. Space> [8:29]
2. I Need A Miracle> [4:03]
3. Dear Mr. Fantasy> [5:20]
4. Gimme Some Lovin'> [5:09]
5. Morning Dew [11:57]
6. Brokedown Palace [5:37]

Bonus Tracks From 3/24/90 Albany
7. Let The Good Times Roll> [4:01]
8. Help On The Way> [4:05]
9. Slipknot!> [3:50]
10. Franklin's Tower [8:04]
11. Loser [7:30]
12. Tennessee Jed [7:53]

Show #5
Nassau Coliseum, Uniondale, Ny (3/30/90)

Disc 1
1. Help On The Way> [4:12]
2. Slipknot!> [5:49]
3. Franklin's Tower [9:39]
4. Little Red Rooster [9:13]
5. Dire Wolf [3:28]
6. It's All Over Now [7:18]
7. Just Like Tom Thumb's Blues [6:12]
8. Picasso Moon [7:56]
9. Don't Ease Me In [3:26]

Disc 2
1. Iko Iko [7:07]
2. Playing In The Band> [9:19]
3. China Doll> [5:41]
4. Uncle John's Band> [8:16]
5. Terrapin Station> [12:59]
6. Rhythm Devils [9:48]

Disc 3
1. Space> [11:30]
2. I Need A Miracle> [4:02]
3. Gimme Some Lovin> [4:55]
4. Standing On The Moon> [8:56]
5. Not Fade Away [7:40]
6. Attics Of My Life [5:12]

Show #6
The Omni, Atlanta, Ga (4/2/90)

Disc 1
1. Feel Like A Stranger [8:44]
2. Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodeloo> [7:02]
3. The Weight [6:34]
4. Queen Jane Approximately [6:13]
5. Easy To Love You [5:37]
6. Brown-Eyed Women [5:46]
7. Let It Grow [12:21]

Disc 2
1. Foolish Heart> [9:20]
2. Looks Like Rain> [8:26]
3. He's Gone> [8:59]
4. The Last Time> [5:43]
5. Rhythm Devils [10:42]

Disc 3
1. Space> [9:04]
2. The Other One> [6:24]
3. Death Don't Have No Mercy> [7:37]
4. Around And Around> [3:41]
5. Good Lovin' [7:12]
6. Black Muddy River [6:28]

Wes Lang Talks Grateful Dead


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Joined: Apr 23 2008
Work for free

To all those whining about Rhino (read The Grateful Dead) just want to make money when was the last time you worked for free

Anna rRxia's picture
Joined: Dec 25 2009
Hey! Move it to DaP 3 thread!

This is the Spring 90 Fuss Fest thread! Stay on topic.

Anna rRxia's picture
Joined: Dec 25 2009
Waiting on DaP 3?

My experience is that it takes no longer than 9 days for UPS Ground to go coats to coast That is the slowest way to go, bar none, even USPS bulk. Therefore, all of this did not go out the door on 7/30/12, guaranteed.

fourwindsblow's picture
Joined: Oct 13 2008
E72 Needs A Re-Do

Released in 24/96 FLAC'S.

Underthevolcano's picture
Joined: Feb 6 2008
sound quality

I must have tin ears because I think the sound quality of Europe 72 was terrific-especially for 40 year old tapes. I have generally thought the sound on all the releases was at least good to excellent given what the age is and the choice of recording medium. I'm listening through a system with tube amps and Klipsch old time speakers-either Heresys or Epics depending upon the mood. These speakers are revealing and dynamic so shit doesn't generally turn to shinola on them and I have been happy with the sound. I did think there were problems with the Warlocks box but, all in all, not bad. Judging from the comments around here I must have tin ears. I pity the "Golden Ear" folks-nothing is gonna make them happy.

Joined: Jun 6 2007

Don't suppose I should wait by my UK postbox for a little while then.

Joined: Aug 9 2012
dp 3

i'm in ny and dp3 hasn't arrived here either. jennifer c at customer service said 10 - 12 days delivery they used to be quicker

unkle sam's picture
Joined: Oct 3 2008
got an email, 24 vs 2

After one year almost to the day, I Got an email from rhino saying, we are sorry and am now offering to replace your defective discs. Ha, I've heard that before, they just want to shut me up cause they know any bad publicity will cost them sales, which is what it is all about to them. I haven't replied to their vain attempt to appease me cause I can't and won't go thru all that again, I will just keep what I have and not deal with them. man, I'm so glad I waited for the reviews, this hasn't even been heard yet and we now know that it is not 24, it's 2. What a joke, they've got the master tapes in 24 track and they give us 2 track mix downs. Rhino, you are the worst example of American business practices ever. Hey everyone, this release isn't worth 20 bucks, well alone 200. A friend of mine asked me to go in with him so we could get this release, I laughed so hard at him and told him to just listen to the e72 discs and from those, determine if you are gonna get a quality product, after a few cuts, he reniged his offer and said "thanks" for making me listen. Too bad, too sad, rhino, I wish you had never been given such a gift, the dead vault, for you to shat on, and maybe soon your envolvement with the best music ever made will come to an end. Ripoff money grubbing capitalist, your karma will catch up to you and when it does, I hope I'm still around to see your demise.

gratefaldean's picture
Joined: Jun 22 2007

Also not arrived in NC. Aside from the whole USPS question, I'm thinking that since the release sold out, it's shipping all at once...more or less. I'm imagining one guy with a stack of boxes on one side, a conveyor belt with CDs on the other, and a little routine like the "I Love Lucy" assembly line thing happening (sorry for the way-ancient TV show reference).

It keeps me amused while I'm waiting.

Underthevolcano's picture
Joined: Feb 6 2008

No DP3 in CT yet either. I was thinking the postals lost it but as a lot of you aren't receiving it i guess its just a general snafu of the mail. I have always chosen the cheap option and received it within 3-5 days in the past.

Joined: Jul 6 2007
The Truth is out there!

I have been ordering stuff since late 89, back then it was cassete tapes, grateful four cds. i noticed1990 box didnt sell out in the record time inwhich europe 72 did. the winner is e72, sofar, i would like to see afull box release of april 1971, it would sell out, as far as comparing the era's of to eachother is pointless none are greter or lesser than eacother in my opion, i have been hooked ever since i bought touch of grey single on tape with brother esau, i want to hear it all so there are afew blemiched recordings sound quality isnt perfect . i went to 9 shows in the ninties and i enjoyed them all i dont compare or judge them they are what they are and i love them all, but to be able to go online and listen to those shows is invaluable i hope that ability never goes away unless they are officially realeased which is probally unlikly , i have enjoyed reading the comments hopefully mine can entertain too.
PS. I Love the Grateful Dead

poetry420's picture
Joined: Mar 9 2012
4 posts of not receiving dp# 3

no such thing as coincidences! LOL

poetry420's picture
Joined: Mar 9 2012
reply to sometimesagreatnotion

my comments have nothing to do with the release,i want to hear everything eventually also,60's,70's,80's,and 90's.release it all,just get rid of the bells and whistles has to do with dave's statement which i feel is more on the business side of selling the box set and not a true feeling of his.of course we will never really know.if it had been a late 80's release would he have compared that tour to the ones he mentioned in the video.they were on fire during this time,brent and jerry had a good blend.i love the videos-view from the vault,the way jerry and brent feed off of oneanother.just like you said in your post,bobby said pretty much the same thing about when they were in their just questioning his statement.i hope he does really feel that way to be honest,who wants someone making statements like that based on trying to sell new releases.

Joined: Jun 4 2007
This, That & the Other Thing...

As far as Dave's Picks vol.3, I'm still waiting for my copy here up by the Great Lakes as well. Hopefully tomorrow!

@ One Man, until the day somebody invents a way to absorb this music through osmosis, I'm afraid that I am stuck listening to it with the two holes on the either side of my head. If the sound quality doesn't meet the criteria of your high standards, don't buy it and quit sniveling.

To me, all of these releases sound great. Truckin' up to Buffalo, Crimson White and Indigo, the Warlocks Box, Nightfall of Diamonds, Terrapin Limited, Dozin' at the Knick and the Nassau Birdsong & Copps Scarlet >Fire blurbs on the So Many Roads set all sound top notch.

I wonder if the demons Brent was dealing with, if in relation to the stigma of being "the new guy" is what had finally caught up to him? Whatever energy that inspired his playing over those last several was nothing short of phenominal.He went out at the top of his game.

I don't know if this has been mentioned yet, but it's interesting that, like the 7,200 steamer trunks for the E72 box, they chose to grace the Spring '90 Box with 9,000 units.

Joined: Sep 14 2009
DavePick 3

For what it's worth, I'm in GA & I'm waiting to receive it as well.

Joined: Nov 1 2010
Dave's Picks Volume 3 Delivery

My copy of Dave's Picks Volume 3 hasn't arrived yet either and I'm in California. I'm in Los Angeles though, so I'm not worried. The package has to go all the way to So Cal, stop at some major sorting house bureaucracy, probably go from there to LA, more bureaucracy, then finally go out with the mailman making his rounds to my apartment building. Judging by Europe 72 things tend to arrive about a day or two after the first people get it on the east coast.

@ Poetry: Go easy on Dave, Bobby said pretty much the same thing in his little promo interview video. There are probably more people whose favorite era is the 70's than anything else, but there are plenty of Deadheads who swear by the Brent era. And Brent is on fire here, just listen to the latest sample from 3/19/90. It may not be your favorite tour of all time, but they had already released a lot from 72, 73 and 77, and it makes sense for the first mega-box after E72 to be non-70's especially considering that Dave's Picks Volumes 1-3 are all from the 70s albeit very different eras of the 70's.

poetry420's picture
Joined: Mar 9 2012
spring 1990 listen and look video

everyone has their opinion but for david lemieux to say the spring 90's are has good has the europe 72',fall 73' and spring 77' is would have to say that is a man trying to make some he did say-the best tours in grateful dead history,maybe he was there on all those tours and had a great time but as far as music goes-your own opinion or someone else's-no freakin way do they compare to the 90's.spring or any other david,really?

mattthrelkeld's picture
Joined: Jun 18 2008
To poetry

I literally got the exact same email from customer service today. Signed by Andre as well. I have been ordering for 10 years, I have ever once had an incident before. But like you said it usually takes 4-5 days. Every time, release after release. Good luck on yours, I'm hoping it is just taking a whole to get to the East Coast. I know the USPS is going under but come on now. Next time I will go with UPS for my releases

poetry420's picture
Joined: Mar 9 2012
to matthrelkeld

what up,i'm here in pennsylvania and i too am still fact i emailed customer service yesterday because i never had to wait this long.yes i know a few more days is not that much but have been ordering for 15years i know how long it usually is what customer service said,right from my email-Dear,Sam

Your order was shipped on 7/30/12 please allow 12-14 business days to receive your order due it being shipped by usps and their is no tracking number,because the order is a lite package.Thank You
Sincerely, Andre Customer Service
1- 800-225-3323 now that you have not received yours in georgia is i hope nothing more than coincidence.peace-though i don't believe in coincidences

mattthrelkeld's picture
Joined: Jun 18 2008
Dave's Picks volume 3

I know this is off topic, but is anyone still waiting on Dave's Picks volume 3? I'm here in GA and it has not yet arrived. I am trying to gauge if anyone else out this way is still waiting on their copy as well. Thanks and have a good evening!

One Man's picture
Joined: May 17 2011
Listen With Ears Please

Spacebrother, I don't know which organ you were using to listen to those mixes, but I find the ears work best. (The two holes on either side of the head where sound goes in.) The Warlocks box sounds like a mix by someone in the first semester of audio engineering school. The worst offense is that the vocals are often buried, especially Jerry's. There are many other imbalances, unpleasant dynamics, and the whole thing sounds harsh and very cold compared to any other multi-track mix released thus far.

Compare this to the amazing job Jeff Norman did on the Movie Soundtrack. Even Phil and Owsley could not make a listenable mix from those tapes (hear Steal Your Face) yet JN worked wonders because he had the time (budget). That release sold (and still sells) for less than $12 per disc, about the same we are now paying for vastly inferior audio products.

Compare also to Two From the Vault, where Dan Healy worked tirelessly to correct time smear by running each track through different delays, to re-focus the sound. This kind of effort will NEVER HAPPEN AGAIN because we accept the rush jobs we are now fed with regularity.

So no one cares. Too bad for people with ears.

Underthevolcano's picture
Joined: Feb 6 2008
new box

I ordered this as soon as the announcement hit. I have been mmore than happy with sound qauulity on most of the past releases other than some of the eartl road trips keep them coming andd thank you David et al

Joined: Jul 17 2007
Very grateful

It may sound cliched, but I'm very grateful for this release, these will be nice upgrades as to what is in circulation. Can't believe this hasn't sold out yet, really thought it would sell out after two days.....

Looking forward to this and the impending Dave's Picks Volume 4....

fluffanutter's picture
Joined: Feb 25 2012
In 8 days since this release

121 different people commented. About 100 positively. 23 people commented multiple times. Of those who commented multiple times, 3 people tied for the most comments with 7 each. The overall rating for response to this release is "lukewarm". Given the comments so far for DaPs, it is hard to understand this tepid attitude. So many people wanted something from the 80s or early 90s. I think this is in large part due to the price tag.

It looks to be a long way to a sellout. I would think something like 90 days at least.

Joined: Nov 1 2010
Possible reasons there is no digital release for now

Reading the description it seems pretty obvious that at some point down the road they are planning to release this digitally. "This is the only time these shows will ever be officially available on CD" so the strong implication is that it will be released digitally at some point down the road. I don't know anything more than any of you but I believe there are probably a few reasons behind why they chose not to release the digital version at the same time. For one thing releasing them side by side decreases demand for the physical version and if they don't sell out quickly then they have the cost of storage, which is the same reasoning behind all of these "limited edition releases". Also when they do release it digitally, without the book or all the knick knacks, it will probably be at a cheaper price, so if that was concurrent it would further drive down demand. Then there is the issue of piracy. With a physical only release it takes more effort to make pirated copies online. It will still probably happen but I would guess they have figured that doing it this way they will cut down on the amount of piracy. Lastly, because of the Dead's earlier origins than Phish the overall demographic is older and the older the demographic the more you find physical medium purists. Plus, I think that when they did the digital download series and and the Road Trips digital stuff they didn't have as many sales as they were hoping for.

Anyway that's what I speculate. Regardless of that stuff, I am very excited about this release and appreciate all the transparency and clarity about what we're getting and what's being released now and in the future.

Joined: Nov 1 2010
Accidently Double Posted

I accidentally double posted. Powers that be feel free to delete this post.

marye's picture
Joined: May 26 2007
asked and answered

above, per David Lemieux.

frunobulax's picture
Joined: Jun 13 2007
Why is Phish so far ahead on the digital front?

Well, I got mine. But its tough for some of us to come up with $213 on little more than a few days notice. OK, overall, I get the limited edition CD thing. What I don't understand is why the Dead put so much stock in physical media. Maybe it made sense for E72. That was a beautiful box. But if you're going to offer a late-model, incomplete tour this way, why not offer a digital-only FLAC download for a lower price, so everyone can partake (on their own schedule)? For years, we've been able to buy every single Phish release (from the White Tape to Party Time) digitally via Phish clearly understands the way this thing is headed and they make it easy for their fans to have physical releases, or instant gratification. So why are the Dead stuck with a 20th century distribution model?

Joined: Jun 4 2007
handjive, I must agree...

...I prefer the stripped down box sets like the Fillmore West and Winterland Complete. (which we need more of, namely 2-74 and 3-77) Especially if it'll bring the price down a bit. Extra pictures and a deluxe booklet is all I need along with the music - - definitely not 'replica' items. That said, I think I'll like the book.

Joined: Jun 18 2008
Complain, complain

LOL@"The E72 box was rush mixed and sounds that way." The set sounds great. It's the greatest collection of music ever released in one shot. Some people are never satisfied.

Joined: Mar 2 2008
17 euros for each cd

here in Europe and they are not even "multitracks"?
wow! nice shot!

Joined: Jun 4 2007
A/B'ing Without a Net versus The Warlocks Box

After doing some comparisons between Feel Like a Stranger from these two releases, the immediate differences in the mixes I notice is that Jerry's guitar is hotter, Phils bass is punchier and has better definition and clarity and the drummers overheads and rides are hotter. The overall mix on the Warlocks Box sounds bigger. The drummers high hats are more noticeably prominant on Without a Net. Personally, I think they both sound great. Just different mixes.

It's the same case with Althea in respect to Without a Net versus Terrapin Limited.

I trust that this box will sound awesome. I just hope we don't have to wait too long to get the rest of the tour in another Spring '90 box.

handjive's picture
Joined: Nov 3 2010
too much crap

How much for just the disks wrapped in brown cardboard?

I want to buy this music, not the big pile of pseudo-memorabilia. Jeeez.

Somebody's MBA marketing whiz is making everyone look like assh0les

antonjo's picture
Joined: Jun 4 2007

RE: point # 2

In all fairness, the mixing of the Europe '72 box ~ that would be the entire Europe '72 tour ~ came down to logistics. Jeffrey himself said from Day 1 in the interview posted on this site that there was no way he was going to be able to give every song/show/an entire tour the same care he did for, say, Rockin' At the Rhein or any single-show release. It would've taken five years, and is more, I think, than even the audiophiles among us could reasonably expect.

One Man's picture
Joined: May 17 2011
More on Audio - (See bluedognever's Earlier Post)

Hey, bluedognever:

1. True, the GD archival program is unparalleled. There's not even a close second. That is because this band uniquely speaks to a deep niche of listeners AND they were smart enough to record so much of their live work. Don't forget that no other band would attract this kind of dedication. We are the other half of this equation and we understandably expect to be treated like critical listeners.

2. Wrong. Rhino is NOT going to try to produce the "best" product. They have proven that conclusively. They are going to try to maximize profit, and that is to the detriment of any listener who cares about audio quality. The E72 box was rush-mixed and it sounds that way. Same with the Warlocks box. These are not the best audio that could have been produced, given the available sources. This new Spring 1990 box probably could be mixed better from the multi-tracks but Rhino won't allow a professional audio engineer the budget to do it. It is hard to believe that mixing this properly would put much of a dent in the $1.8M take.

3. Not buying is always an option, especially as the bar is lowered on audio quality. There is so much out there for free that sounds about as good as these latest releases that folks must be asking themselves why they are paying large sums of money for minor (if any) upgrade to audio quality.

Tapers have always been interested in the best possible audio. We will settle for what we can get because we love the music. It is frustrating that top-notch sound quality is traded for higher profits.

fluffanutter's picture
Joined: Feb 25 2012
Yes, Rhino is reaping on this one

Because they took a hit on the last one (E72). No one should feel there is any altruism here. These are purely business decisions.

It must be a businessman's dream to have a fan base which you can pull 1.8 million from any time of the year... Would there ever be over-saturation?

fluffanutter's picture
Joined: Feb 25 2012
Glad you love

The "steaming" audio, bluedognever. As somebody said pre-release, this product would be reviled! Too funny!

fluffanutter's picture
Joined: Feb 25 2012
Love yer comment Mat

Right on. Those are very sensible words, Whenever your having a bad day all you need to remember is that you reach into your stash of Rhino releases and come up with something that eases the head-ache of it all. How great is that?

mattthrelkeld's picture
Joined: Jun 18 2008

Spring 1990!! Awesome! Look, here's the deal: i will purchase and gladly enjoy any releases from 1965 - 1995. That's all there is to it. We get multiple releases and a box set every year, that's insane! My worst fear is that i wake up one day and they announce the final release they ever plan to release. Lucky for us, I don't see that happening anytime soon.

We have enough to worry about in day to day life, don;t worry about the music too! Just enjoy it. My kids can't stand when a package shows up at our front door or in the mailbox with a return label from California, they know that brand new grateful dead music will be gracing their ears on the way to school, on the way to soccer practice, on the way to basketball practice, on the way to hike on the AT, etc. They say "Don't you ever get tired of hearing the same thing over and over?!?!" And here's the catch: I never get tired of it. With multiple releases a year we are afforded the opportunity of constantly adding to our collection of shows. It is a true luxury to have!

Dave: keep the picks coming, keep the videos coming, keep the box sets coming!! For every complaint you read i promise you there are ten more of us who greatly appreciate the time, effort, and dedication yall have displayed over the years. It will always be appreciated!!

Folks, enjoy the music, it's hear to add to our lives as opposed to take away from our lives

hbob1995's picture
Joined: Jun 26 2007
Dead community

It does have to make one laugh!. Here we have our most favorite band, putting out a plethora of quality shows & music, and still the complaints rain down. NO OTHER GROUP even attempts to do what the Dead do. I have a friend who is a Stones fan and he is always complaining about the lack of live shows that are "officially" available. The Dead continue to surprise & amaze me with the quality shows they offer from all time areas. It is just awesome! You can take what you want and leave the rest. There will be more coming all the time. I am very happy to de a Dead Head and will always be thankful for what is available now and what will be available in the future. I do not have enought hours in the day to listen to what I already have but I am always up for more! Go DL! Keep them comong.

Joined: Jun 4 2007

I can't help but think while reading some of the incessent posts full of 'wants' and 'demands' that this is revealing the underbelly of addiction...
Alot of these posters need to calm it down and breath.
If we were all as particular with real aspects of our internal lives as we are with our 'wants' we'd be making major breakthroughs.

Music is supposed to enhance your life.

rrot's picture
Joined: Oct 3 2009

It's only "taper friendly" if you use the source tapes *I* think you should have used, and even then only if you mix them the way *I* think sounds best.

Anything else is just worship of Mammon.

Of course if you do it my way, you'll raise the price.

And that's just worship of Mammon.

What happened to love of the music?

[/entitled Deadhead]

Joined: Jul 4 2007

The steaming audio sounds FANTASTIC, so it's really disappointing to see all of this whining about which tapes they used or didn't use.

Consider these points:
1. How many bands even have the ability, desire, dedication (no pun intended) to CONTINUE to offer live shows from 20+ years ago? VERY FEW!. Yes, there's profit involved. Welcome to the real world. Stop for a few minutes and really look at the catalog of live shows that are available - it's unparalleled anywhere.

2. They're going to try to produce the best product they can because they're professionals AND because it's good business.

3. Grow up! If you don't like the way they sound, then don't buy them. I am CERTAIN that it won't hurt anyone's feelings

fourwindsblow's picture
Joined: Oct 13 2008
A roll of the dice...

Could have take all the time in the world and been as careful as one could be and still screw up the down-mix of these multi-track recordings.

When down-mixing the multi-track recordings please mix them as to preserve the feel of the live show. Thank you.

Joshua_me's picture
Joined: Jun 24 2007
Thanks for the Quick and Kind Response...

"We are using the live John Cutler mixes for this box set, owing to the fact that we feel that sound is as good or better than anything we could have replicated in the studio by remixing the multi-tracks. The Grateful Dead's longtime engineers, John Cutler and Jeffrey Norman, spent considerable time checking out these live mix tapes, and they decided that these recordings are as good or better than can be reproduced with a remix."

This was the best decision on which recordings to release."


But, respectfully, the above comments are nonsense,

OF COURSE the sound quality would be far superior if the time (and expense) had been taken to remix the multi-tracks.properly.. There's a reason they were recorded on 24 tracks in the first place.

Given the time that has passed and the price being asked for these discs, there's no excuse to release anything but recordings of the highest quality,

No offense, Mr. Cutler, but it was no secret that you were not especially "taper friendly" back in the day, and it saddens me to see that condition continue long after Jerry's passing.

I think of you each time I have to EQ the HISS out of my Cal Expo '93 Road Trips discs, (all the while looking at my stack of bootlegs from the run of shows that sound FAR better.)

And frankly, I won't get burned again.

How sad to think that 24-track pristine recordings of all of 1990 (and some of '89) exist, but we won't be allowed to hear them, except on rare occasion when the "powers that be" see fit.

As always, the profit margin wins again,

Ms. Koons must be laughing all the way to the bank.

8Limbs's picture
Joined: Nov 23 2011
Thanks for clarification!

I don't dispute that this box set will sound amazing but it seems like a short cut to not use the multitracks for this release. Without a Net still sounds better to me than anything else that has been released from this era.

Joined: Jun 18 2008
1970 box

Pretty good idea. It would be even better if, somehow, 9/20/70 could be part of it.

Joined: Jun 4 2007
Interview transcript of Davd Gans, Phil Lesh and John Cutler...

""Gans: The "Dick's Picks" stuff is stereo master recordings that were made at shows on reels, or DATs, or whatever. The stuff in *this* series is from multi-track material, and it's from a much more limited collection of possibilities, obviously --

Lesh: That's right.

Gans: -- but there was some stuff from 1971 that became the "Skull and Roses" record; there was a bunch of recording in 1980 of acoustic and electric material; '89 and '90 was the stuff for. . .

Cutler: "Without a Net."

Gans: "Without a Net," and from which you took this. Are you, every time you go for one of these, are you examining the entire body of stuff, and choosing something, or were you --

Cutler: Well, again, it depends on who the "we" is, because now Phil is hopefully coming in with a couple of choices we have to decide between, to get going and mix; Dick listens constantly to everything, he starts filtering stuff through Jeff and myself; or I, who was lucky enough to have recorded a lot of this multi-track stuff, at least since the '80s, kinda know what's there anyway, and so we go through it. We don't necessarily -- we couldn't have listened to everything from "Without a Net," that was like 50 shows I recorded for that, so there's lots of stuff there to come out. I think now, we're always faced with the fact of, if a "Dick's Picks" comes out, and there was five songs on there that are also gonna be on the Vault release, that are *also* on the video -- I mean, it gets very difficult. We try to orchestrate it so we're not putting out the same stuff at the same time, from various eras. We'd rather put out --""

the rest of the interview can be found here...

Joined: Jun 30 2007
The NEXT next box set

OK - here's MY totally unrealistic choice for the next box set ... ALL of 5/15/70.
On this day, there were Early and Late shows at the Fillmore East, each of which featured and Acoustic GD set, followed by a New Riders set (this is Pre-Buddy Cage - Jerry's on Steel!) and then an Electric GD set.
Truth be known, I've already put this together for myself, from the LMA, and it's a GREAT listen - around 8 hours worth! I say it's unrealistic, because Rhino does not have a deal in place with the New Riders, but maybe they could get it together with the "co-operation" of Kufala, the outfit that DOES have the Riders archival franchise.
So ... No prayer, right, Dave?

fourwindsblow's picture
Joined: Oct 13 2008
I agree...

The E72 box and Warlocks box could have sounded a lot better .

Added to Cart Spring 1990, Volume One Box

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