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Before the Flood (Audio Cassette) Import


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Product Details

  • Audio Cassette (Oct. 17 1990)
  • Number of Discs: 1
  • Format: Import
  • Label: Sony
  • ASIN: B0000025OV
  • In-Print Editions: Audio CD  |  LP Record
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (51 customer reviews)


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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Bud Sturguess on Nov. 28 2003
Format: Audio CD
The sheer fearlessness of The Band in this 1974 live performance is so confident that it makes one wonder how they ever could have caught their famous case of 'Stage Fright.' "Before the Flood" is the live document of Bob Dylan's tour for his "Planet Waves" album, joined by his one-time backing outfit, The Band. At the time, the tour was one of the most successful ever. It couldn't have come at a better time for both parties; Dylan had staggered musically as he entered the 70s, releasing the ill-fated "Self Portrait" album, and fans of The Band were disappointed that they hadn't released any original material since 1971, their latest album having been a collection of covers, the "Moondog Matinee."
"Before the Flood" captures the electrical bond that had linked the two legends together in the first place, something missing from earlier classic Dylan/Band efforts like "The Basement Tapes." The Band (unintentionally) upstages and outshines their former mentor, being the more thrilling of the two, but Dylan finally demonstrates the sincreity and power of his cross from folk to rock. But here, the response from fans surely isn't the boos it met in 1965; Dylan compositions associated with his folk period are given a more exciting life, notably 'It Ain't Me Babe' and 'Blowing In the Wind,' as he soars on 'Rainy Day Women,' 'Knockin' On Heaven's Door,' and 'All Along the Watchtower.' The Band however steals the show, even though there are more Dylan compositions on the album; they captivate with such paintings of rural life as 'The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down' and Richard Manuel's shiver inducing vocal on 'I Shall Be Released.' "Before the Flood" also contains the most thrilling and rambunctious live version of the raw 'The Shape I'm In.'
This album packages one of the best live performances in rock and roll. "Before the Flood" is an absolute necessity for Dylan/Band fans and concert experts in general, and it's a pleasantly affordable necessity at that.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Courteney A. Coady on March 2 2010
Format: Audio CD
I highly recommend this album to ANYONE! Since I was little, I knew Levon Helm as the singing drummer, but OMG! THIS GUY CAN DRUM! and this album is proof of that-a particular favourite is the devine vocals of Rick Danko on 'When You Awake'-This album is a must!
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Arthur C. Wilson on April 30 2004
Format: Audio CD
"Before the Flood" is a great album, and the Band's best live recording, with Dylan and alone. The best track is the Band's "Endless Highway", which most other reviewers didn't mention.
I vehemently disagree with other reviewers, including star rock journalist Greil Marcus, about the Band's "Rock of Ages" -- I have never liked it. The guest horn section sounds like they aren't even playing in the same concert as everyone else.
Of the other Dylan & the Band live recordings, "Live 1966" and "The Last Waltz" are mediocre. One exception on the "The Last Waltz" is the wonderful version of Rev. Gary Davis's "Baby Let Me Follow You Down", which really rocks. Few people remember Dylan's odd "Self Portrait" album, but it has four excellent live tracks by him and the Band -- "Like a Rolling Stone", "The Mighty Quinn", "Minstrel Boy", and "She Belongs To Me".
Dylan and the Band did studio recordings together, too. "The Basement Tapes" is stellar. "Planet Waves" is very good. And, of the 5 of their songs together on the "Volume 2" disc of Dylan's "Bootleg Series", 3 are quite good.
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Format: Audio CD
When these recordings were made, the Band had been backing Bob Dylan on and off for nine years, so they were used to his idiosyncrasies, and they provide superb, muscular backing all the way through.
Dylan, as usual, significantly alters some of his songs, ending up with a somewhat harsh version of "Lay Lady Lay" and a slightly tuneless "Ballad Of A Thin Man". But almost everything else is great, or at least good.
He does three acoustic solo tunes at the beginning of disc 2, of which "Just Like A Woman" is the best and "It's Alright, Ma" the worst, but everything else is band-backed (in more ways than one!).
And the Band are a joy to hear. They bring out the best in Dylan on fiery live renditions of "Most Likely You'll Go Your Way", "Rainy Day Women", "Highway 61 Revisited" and "All Along The Watchtower", as well as the inevitable "Like A Rolling Stone", which almost matches the power and majesty of the so-called "Royal Albert Hall" version.
Robbie Robertson provides excellent guitar work, particularly on "It Ain't Me Babe", Levon Helm was always one of the greatest rock n' roll-drummers, Rick Danko's bass playing on "Knockin' On Heaven's Door" is masterful, and Garth Hudson's organ provides texture and the characteristic, swirling sound of Bob Dylan's greatest-ever backing group.
The Band's own songs generally work very well also. "Endless Highway", "Up On Cripple Creek", "The Weight" and "The Shape I'm In" are the best (this is not the first time I've wondered why the late Richard Manuel sang "I Shall Be Released" in a falsetto), and even though the songwriting of Robbie Robertson and that of Bob Dylan are quite different, they don't clash too badly at all.
The sound is very good, and both Dylan and the Band play with lots of energy, making this a thoroughly enjoyable documentation of the last coorporation between Bob Dylan and the Band.
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