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Nice to have but, not the best of the live 1968 releases
on 24 March 2012
As always it is nice to have another Janis Joplin/Big Brother live recording (or in this case, it is really a Big Brother with Janis show).
The previous release "Live at Winterland, 1968" has much more going for it than this recording:
- more interesting selection of songs (including an early version of "Piece of my heart")
- easier to listen to mix (rather than the awkward mono/left/right mix of this album
- better booklet that includes a copy of handwritten material by Janis
- a great cover (the new one does not really look like Janis, as good as the art is)
If you are interested in earlier live material (1966/1967) try, the previous release,"Ball and Chain" by Big Brother & The Holding Company. This is a great listen, even if parts of it are not quite as well recorded. It includes "Amazing grace", where Janis and the band deconstruct the song and give us a mix of gospel/punk/psychedelia/rock and roll. There is nothing quite like it on this new release.
I would urge you to consider buying the "Live at Winterland" or "Ball and Chain" first (called "Lost Tapes" in North America)and then PERHAPS the "Carousel" show. The "Carousel" release is certainly not the place to start if you want prime early live Joplin.
A side note, the European release of "Ball and Chain" includes two cd rom videos.