60 minutes in length approximately. The sound is clean and warm. The booklet contains some of Greil Marcus' writing from the mono box set. Listed are song titles, album/release dates, and a list of musicians who played on each track. The photographs in this booklet are taken from those in the box set. The song, heard here, "Positively 4th Street", is not found on the box set.
Just a quick overview of this teaser set in mono. This is a fine sampler of the aural treasures found on the bigger set. For someone wanting to hear what all the hoop-la's about concerning Dylan's albums in mono, this will give you a good indication of the wonderful sounding albums in the box set. The tracks are judiciously chosen, but by virtue of being a sampler "best of", many, many songs aren't here. But if this set whets your appetite for the whole collection of (arguably) Dylan's best work, you'll need to hear all the albums in glorious monophonic sound.
Much like THE BEATLES mono box set, the sound approaches the original mono vinyl albums of years past. While I like the remastered stereo Dylan albums, I always held out with the hope of someday hearing these albums in well mastered mono. No left/right channels to break up the sound, no balance problems when listening-just pure balanced sound from the speakers. These mono tracks are close to what I would hear on my original mono albums so many years ago.
For those of a certain age, you'll know what I'm talking about. For those who weren't around in the beginning, this will be a real ear-opener. The power of Dylan's voice (especially) and guitar are here in great clarity- different from the stereo versions. When Dylan is playing with a band, the various instruments have a purity of sound not found on the stereo tracks. Is mono better? No, it's just different, the way this music was originally supposed to be heard. The way Dylan wanted it heard. In the beginning Dylan's albums were released in both mono and stereo, with most people wanting the (then) new sound of stereo. But there were a number of people (like me) who held onto their mono albums of Dylan (and other groups), hoping that, someday, they would appear in mono again. Now (along with THE BEATLES) my dream has been realized. If you want to hear this music in it's original sound, pick this sampler up. But beware, you just might find monophonic sound to your liking-and then want it all. Another incentive to purchase the box set (or Vol. 9 of The Bootleg Series) is that for a short time you'll also get, free, the previously unheard concert from Brandeis University, which, if you're an early era Dylan fan, you'll want.