3 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Garcia for hire,
This review is from: Garcia (Compliments) (Audio CD)
Whilst the Grateful Dead's 1973 album Wake of the Flood was an artistic success it was an financial disaster. The band decided to self release the album on their own label, Grateful Dead Records, as they were sick of record company politics. Unfortunately for them, the album was widely bootlegged, resulting in a large monetary loss. The label's plan of action to balance the books was to rush Jerry Garcia into the studio to record a covers album, his second as a solo artist. The result is an album that comes across as exactly what it is: a cash in and a rush job.
Having Garcia record a covers album was not a bad idea in itself: covers were a staple of the Dead's sets and made up the bulk of the material of Garcia's solo performances. However, presumably due to Garcia's hectic touring schedule, John Kahn (Garcia's principle collaborator outside the Dead) was asked to select and arrange the material. Garcia was, in effect, a session singer and guitarist on his own album.
The end product is a lifeless album with barely a single memorable moment. Even the more impressive moments ('That's What Love Will Make You Do', 'Mississippi Moon') were improved on numerous times by the Jerry Garcia Band in concert. For completists only. Newcomers should head to Garcia's eponymous debut, Reflections or Cats Under the Stars.
The remastered and expanded edition more than doubles the length of the album, adding another 10 covers. Whilst this does give you a much better value package the extra material is equally dull.