What can I say about this album? In my opinion it's one of the best Dead albums ever made. I know that's up for debate, because they made so many albums, but this one seems to have such a cohesivness and rock solid feel to it, it's hard to think otherwise.
I've been a dead head for a long time, at least since the very early stuff they did. For starters, I've never seen another band that in my opinion is as versital as The Grateful Dead. Start with their first album. They just seemed to be kicking to get out of the stall. Then get into Anthum of the Sun and Aoxomoxoa. Now, down the road here we get back to their roots and have an album called American Beauty, and boy what a beauty it is. What a colection of songs, finely crafted and very cohesive together. Still, they have the variety and style of the one and only, Grateful Dead. How could you not like a song like Sugar Magnolia, or the bluegrass oriented Friend of the Devil. It's almost too much fun for one album. Then you get soulful with songs like Box of Rain and Ripple. In the words of good old American slang: "It just don't get no better than this". These guys can play their ass off on songs like Dark Star and Turn on your love light, then turn around and do something like Box of Rain or Ripple. What a nice transition. To me this just shows the incredible versitility of the band called "The Grateful Dead" Long live The Grateful Dead. They'll stretch you're musical horizons.