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Alembic Club » Miscellaneous » Archive through September 06, 2014 » Grateful Dead at the Beat Club Bremen 4/21/72 « Previous Next »

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Senior Member
Username: edwin

Post Number: 1801
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Thursday, July 17, 2014 - 9:22 pm:   Edit Post

Just got back from a screening of the movie made from the video. They used the mix from the Europe '72 box set, so the audio was great (and being mastered by David Glasser, next to whom I got to sit, it was the best concert audio I'd heard in a theater. Absolutely unsquashed, clear and full).

The audio has been out for a while, but the video was a great, if a bit busy with the cuts in parts of it. Great shots of Alembic modified gear, including a bunch of Phil's Starfire. It was really great to see them in the prime of their youth, although Pig was pretty gaunt and pale. Although there are no plans, I really hope it comes out on DVD. I found it to be an even more enjoyable set than Sunshine Daydream, performed 4 months later. The between song banter was pretty cool and it was great to see how much energy they could muster with no audience but the TV crew.

Interesting Phil note: The secret to one of my all-time favorite tones was definitively revealed. He played with his fingers. Bertha, Sugaree, and maybe some more. It's that same tone that's all over the Wharf Rat, etc., from the Skull and Roses album.

Compared to later GD, their listening back then was almost louder than the music. I really hope this gets released.
Intermediate Member
Username: mtjam

Post Number: 174
Registered: 11-2011
Posted on Friday, July 18, 2014 - 2:32 am:   Edit Post

Glad to hear it was as awesome as I expected it would be. Wish I could have seen it. The closest theatre showing it in my area is 90 minutes from home, and it's been a busy week, so no Beat Club for me! I really enjoyed the clips I have seen from it. What an outstanding era for the band! I really would like to see The Other One from that show.

I'm also hoping for an eventual DVD release of this. I know they've said there are no plans to release it, but I can't imagine why they wouldn't. I'm sure it would be a hot seller!
Username: davehouck

Post Number: 11432
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Friday, July 18, 2014 - 6:43 am:   Edit Post

Harry posted a link to an excerpt, Playing in the Band, in the AB&G section. Great version of the tune; and you're right, great playing, and great listening, for standing around in a studio. Very tight. The audio is excellent; and the video is pretty good too.
Senior Member
Username: edwin

Post Number: 1802
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Friday, July 18, 2014 - 9:08 am:   Edit Post

The reason it's not being released right now is that they don't own the video, it was just licensed. My guess is that a one shot license fee for this showing was much, much cheaper than negotiating a license for release on DVD. I'm not that up on German IP, but my bet is that they are sticklers for asserting rights like this and not giving things away.
Advanced Member
Username: 5a_quilt_top

Post Number: 329
Registered: 6-2012
Posted on Friday, July 18, 2014 - 10:00 am:   Edit Post

Truckin - jam (drums) - Other One - jam - Other One was outstanding.

Excellent example of the uncanny telepathy that existed between the individual players. Frequently through this sequence, it seemed as though they shared one mind and had 12 arms / hands available to execute a common musical idea. Amazing.

Unfortunately, the film ended just as another interesting jam was forming.

Oh well - always leave 'em wanting more!
Senior Member
Username: sonicus

Post Number: 3534
Registered: 5-2009
Posted on Friday, July 18, 2014 - 10:17 am:   Edit Post

"One in mind , many in body"
Senior Member
Username: edwin

Post Number: 1803
Registered: 5-2002
Posted on Friday, July 18, 2014 - 11:22 am:   Edit Post

"Uncanny telepathy" or just paying attention? :-) For jazz and other improvisational music, this level of communication should be a baseline. Not that it manifests all the time, and most of the time, it's just interplay between a soloist and a band instead of the whole band interacting at once. But it shouldn't be that rare, right? I think it's just noteworthy here because we don't expect it of rock musicians. I had a chamber music coach in the 70s when I was a teenager who had gone to several Fillmore shows in the late 60s/early 70s. The only ones he like were the GD shows because he said they played with the same intensity as a string quartet. That is very evident in this video.

If you notice, Jerry was heads up for most of the time. For a supposed band leader he sure was great at following what everyone else was doing.
Senior Member
Username: hieronymous

Post Number: 1396
Registered: 1-2005
Posted on Friday, July 18, 2014 - 1:03 pm:   Edit Post

Hey Edwin, we posted at almost exactly the same time! I swear I checked before posting mine:

I'm glad I wasn't the only one surprised that Phil was playing with his fingers! I thought maybe he forgot his picks somewhere but he uses it for some of the material.

I was really impressed with the way Jerry stood towards the back most of the time, behind Donna when she's singing! I was also impressed by her pants, by Phil's strap and Jerry's strap - are those red & yellow roses?

Oh yeah, did anyone else notice that near the end of the jam heading back into the last verse of The Other One, the film gets out of sync with the audio by about a second? Really bugged me, I had to close my eyes, fortunately it flips back before they start singing again.

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