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Wild Wolf 6701-6705 5D

Basement Tapes (Saugerties, NY); summer-fall 1967

DEEP: A reissue of the original Scorpio release presenting the legendary Basement Tapes sessions in the best quality around. Over 100 tracks spread nicely over 5 disks, including unreleased gems and many wild, alternate versions as well as numerous covers. Each disk is stellar and the set as a whole is required listening. Disk 3 is now in stereo. Quality is very good to excellent throughout, though certainly not official quality.

BIAB: The music is all available here on five CDs called "The Genuine Basement Tapes," and genuine they are. No overdubs and no cleaning up - just the way they were recorded. Some tracks cut off just as they get going, others begin in the middle of verses, and others are merely tryouts that never got beyond the initial runthrough stage. Some of it is in very clear mono, and some is distorted and full of hiss, but mostly the sound is superb. Many people have complained about the stereo sound, with Dylan's voice on one channel and most of the instruments on the other (much like the early Parlophone Beatles albums), but I actually like this sound myself. I get to hear Dylan's voice in isolation and Garth Hudson's organ is much more prominent. Also, some of the harmonies that weren't apparent on the official album and early bootlegs can now be heard for the first time.