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Grateful Dead: Beyond Description (1973-1989) [CD]

Grateful DeadAudio CD
4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)

Price: $105.78 & FREE Shipping. Details
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Rock's longest, strangest trip, the Grateful Dead were the psychedelic era's most beloved musical ambassadors as well as its most enduring survivors, spreading their message of peace, love, and mind-expansion across the globe throughout the better part of three decades. The object of adoration for popular music's most fervent and celebrated fan following -- the Deadheads, their ... Read more in Amazon's Grateful Dead Store

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Frequently Bought Together

Grateful Dead: Beyond Description (1973-1989) + The Golden Road (1965 - 1973) + Grateful Dead: All the Years Combine: The DVD Collection (14-DVD Box Set)
Price for all three: $318.23

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Product Details

  • Audio CD (October 26, 2004)
  • Number of Discs: 12
  • Format: CD
  • Label: Grateful Dead / Wea
  • ASIN: B0002NUTS8
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (28 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #31,375 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

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Editorial Reviews

Product Description

12 CD box-set.

As the Grateful Dead story continues with this 12-disc sequel to the equally outsized The Golden Road (1965-1973), the band leaves the relative comfort of the '60s (hey, it suited them just fine) and heads into a period that will provide them with greater rewards as a performing outfit, and greater challenges as a studio entity. The post-'60s Dead floundered nearly as often as they soared--at times haphazardly trying to play the game as defined by more disciplined bands of the '70s and '80s, at other times succeeding almost in spite of themselves. This was a time when they allied themselves with such unlikely coconspirators as hit-minded mogul Clive Davis (after their own label fell by the way) and Fleetwood Mac producer Keith Olsen. They consciously reached for commercial gold and fell short, then found it on their own terms--by recording the 1987 studio album In the Dark in a vacant auditorium.

As with the first Rhino box, Beyond Description (1973-1989) gets the kind of state-of-the-art remastering one would expect from the sonically ambitious bunch. Again, each disc is fleshed out with smartly selected outtakes, demos, and live recordings. Two thoroughly annotated and strikingly illustrated booklets pull the package together. This is where the long, strange trip leads, and if there were some wrong turns along the way, so be it. That's what happens when you don't follow the map. --Steven Stolder

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
26 of 27 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Incredible remastering August 11, 2005
Format:Audio CD
Absolutely incredible remastering of these tracks. I am
listening to Shakedown street as I write on a Conrad Johnson
tube amp with an HDCD player and really good loud speakers.

This is an amazing job by Rhino. Rhino is always pretty cool
but on this one you can tell the engineers wanted to do a really
good job on the mix. It is clean as hell

5 stars and that is before the 10 star bonus tracks which are
too many to mention. Terrapin Station with Catfish John. Dang it
buy this thing

On Terrapin they added some reverb. I keep coming back to this disc. I really thought the analog mix was great but this HDCD rendering is amazing. Why can you only give 5 stars this is better than that. Respect was paid to the Dead by Rhino. I want some Rhino stock. Rhino rules
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31 of 35 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Second Half Dead December 30, 2004
Format:Audio CD
This twelve-disk box set of the second half of the Grateful Dead's recording career is a glorious triumph of the spirit of the band. As with most of the Dead's studio efforts, the albums themselves are an uneven affair. But the shear scope and meticulous detail of the set override any musical inequities. 1975's Blues For Allah is the best of this set and rivals American Beauty as the best Dead album. Combining with 1973's Wake Of The Flood & 1974's Grateful Dead From The Mars Hotel, it was their best run of albums in their career. "Franklin's Tower", "King Solomon's Marbles" & the title suite standout from Allah, "Here Comes The Sunshine" & "Eyes Of The World from Flood & "US Blues", "Scarlet Begonias" & "Ship Of Fools" from Mars. The subsequent three studio albums, 1977's Terrapin Station, 1978's Shakedown Street & 1980's Go To Heaven have some good cuts, but the overall quality pales next to the other disks. The band took a seven-year recording hiatus, but returned with 1987's superb In The Dark. People often mistakenly dismiss this album as the Dead going commercial, but that is unfair. The album is strong from top to bottom and includes one their best songs, "Throwing Stones" and their only top ten single, "Touch Of Grey". It was also their lone top ten album. The band couldn't sustain the commercial and creative success and unfortunately their recording career ended with the poor 1989's release Built To Last. There are two excellent live collections, both from 1981, the acoustic Reckoning and the amazing Dead Set. Beyond Description is a must for all Dead fans as the albums are all remastered for the first time and the sound quality is amazing.
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35 of 40 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars WOW!! - Beyond Description - another RHINO masterpiece! October 29, 2004
Format:Audio CD
The sound quality on these "new" transfers done by RHINO are absolutely incredible.

I recommend this set as a worthy purchase even if you already have the earlier cd releases. After hearing the first box done by Rhino I was anticipating this one for a long time.

Remasters have become very popular, but not always are they done with the highest respect for the music. This package eliminates that factor and you come away with a satisfying new experience.

Rhino is currently the king of remasters!

Other remasters don't come close to the perfection brought by a Rhino HDCD transfer. I am so pleased to hear more than ever before the music behind the distortion of analog hiss.

thank God for Rhino


the Grateful Dead
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13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For completists and rarity collectors January 10, 2008
Format:Audio CD
Early in most Dead collectors history, they would forego the band's studio albums and seek out bootleg live material. This collection has two benefits. As a completist collector, it gives one the satisfaction of having ALL the Arista "albums". "Oh Babe It Ain't No Lie" has been returned to the Reckoning CD that was left off of earlier pressings. "My Brother Esau" is included on "In The Dark" which wasn't on all releases at the time either.
I personally bought this set for the bonus tracks added to each disc. There are some tasty cuts on here. One of my most treasured fillers on a live tape was Phil's demos of "Pride of Cucamonga" and "Unbroken Chain" acoustic. And here they are with no generation loss. "Distorto" is a thrashing instrumental version of "Crazy Fingers". "Hollywood Cantata" is "Music Never Stops" but with the Robert Hunter lyrics. There are many grooves and jams and check out unreleased songs like "Ascent" and "Equinox". Bobby's acoustic demo of "Weather Report Suite" makes me rethink my earlier Bobby bashing and recognize not many rhythm guitarists can stand next to Jerry for all those years. And the bonus material for both Reckoning and Dead Set are two entirely separate discs from the era.
So listen to the bonus material and treat your ears to a refreshing session of "new" Grateful Dead music.

Grateful Dead: Beyond Description (1973-1989)
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27 of 31 people found the following review helpful
Format:Audio CD|Verified Purchase
As I wrote in my review of The Golden Road, I am new to the Grateful Dead. Prior to this year, I only heard "Truckin'" and a few songs like that on the radio and I thought, "Ugh. Spacey music for Sixties drop-outs and wannabes."

But the more I got into "jam bands" like Phish, Umphrey's McGee, Particle, moe., and others, the more the roads led back to the Grateful Dead.

So two months ago I bought The Golden Road and started to listen with an open mind. I wanted to know what I'd been missing, if anything.

Holy crap! I missed a lot!

I was immediately hooked by The Golden Road -- especially by the live CDs in that set. Like all jam bands, the Grateful Dead excelled on stage. The studio albums are okay, but bands like the Grateful Dead were able to demonstrate their chops on stage.

I was so blown away by The Golden Road that, two weeks later, I bought Beyond Description.

As with The Golden Road, Rhino did a fantastic job with these CDs! Phil's bass lines are now right there where they belong. And the vocals are crisp and clean.

Also, as with The Golden Road, it's obvious Rhino approached this material with reverence, for the sound is just one of the outstanding elements of this package. Everything here is first rate. The box is first rate. The two booklets that comes with Beyond Description are first rate, loaded with pictures and information. (As with the booklet that came with The Golden Road, I poured over these for hours and hours, enjoying every word and photo.) Even the price for all of this was reasonable.

Beyond Description is a different sounding Grateful Dead. A different era. In many cases, their CDs sound more polished.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars No question, the best....
Stop reading reviews and buy this. Rhino restored it beautifully with endless live tracks. Sigh, a masterpiece.
Published 2 days ago by Heroine Press
5.0 out of 5 stars Long Strange Trip: Part Two.
Great collection of albums. These might not be the Dead's absolute greatest work, but each album is adventurous, wild and fun to listen to. Read more
Published 2 months ago by Mr. Benac
5.0 out of 5 stars Complete set for a beginner's collection
All of my purchases through Amazon have arrived promptly and undamaged. I wanted this set to have a somewhat complete collection to get my kids into the Grateful Dead. Read more
Published 6 months ago by William K Davis Jr.
5.0 out of 5 stars Wonderful Box
Picking up where the "Golden Road" boxed set leaves off, this box is "more of the same". In other words, superb sound and lots of great bonus tracks. Read more
Published 19 months ago by Robert
5.0 out of 5 stars Enough Said
Boxing these albums together (remastered as they are) was a stroke of brilliance. A fan who does not have the studio releases, or someone that just wants to know what the heck all... Read more
Published 21 months ago by DonkeyOdie
5.0 out of 5 stars The other side of the coin
Follow up to "The Golden Road". I prefer the older Dead material, but all of my many dead show attendence began in 1976, so thats how my brain is wired. Read more
Published on June 26, 2009 by Bill Clancy
5.0 out of 5 stars Its Great
This is
one of the best box set you could buy. I know you say well its $149.99 but add up the price of buying them single. Read more
Published on January 11, 2009 by Tim L. Crawford
5.0 out of 5 stars Exceptional Box
This is a must have for Deadheads and anyone who appreciates American roots music. The Dead have always been able to blend rock, blues, jazz, country, and folk... Read more
Published on May 10, 2008 by Anthony M. Zipple
3.0 out of 5 stars Great Music, Skittery Discs
This boxed set is a great collection, but I had trouble with skitter on a number of tracks. iTunes error correction corrected most of the issues except for the Shakedown Street... Read more
Published on April 14, 2008 by William Menton
5.0 out of 5 stars slightly weaker--still five stars
Okay , the Dead's studio material declined a bit between 1973-1989. So what.There's still a veritable treasure trove of previously unreleased material here. Hours upon hours. Read more
Published on October 11, 2007 by Jim Z
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