Without a Net -
is a mix of live songs that were recorded between October 1989 and
April 1990 at various venues. The material is put together in a
sequence that is typical of their concerts. What this recording has
is a great song selection and some great versions of them.
What this CD lacks is the flow of a concert.
I pull Without a Net off
the shelf I usually do not play it through non-stop, but put on a
few tracks that I am in the mood to hear.
The first disc, which covers set one material is good, but
particular standouts include "Althea" and "Bird
Song." Many of the
Bob Weir songs are great too. Usually I skip over, "Mississippi Half Step," this
song sounded better in the 1970's and with Brent in his early
tenure, particularly with the pairing of “Franklins Tower” >
“Mississippi Half Step.”
second disc is outstanding. There is not a bad version of a song
here. "Victim or
the Crime", a song I generally don’t like, is electrifying.
We get to hear Brent sing on a great version of Traffic's "Dear
Mr. Fantasy." Even the over played "One More Saturday
Night" is noteworthy, this version really picks up the energy
and builds to a powerful plateau; to me, that is what this songs is
version of "Eyes of the World." is from the March 29,
1990, from Nassau County, NY. It includes guest Branford Marsalis on
saxophone. This is the first of several times he sat in with the band.
It sure didn't take him long to find the melody and add his touch. This CD is worth buying for
this one song.
a Net is
without a doubt solid and a worthwhile selection. by Barry
Grade B +