Monday, May 26, 2008

Boot Tracker, August 1st 1976, Monmouth Arts Center, Red Bank, NJ

As much as I like the Fanatic releases, fanatic as I am, every once in a while Rob Oslan releases one that tests even my patience. This is not a good recording by a long shot. Another one from the box of Joe Kivak, but it sounds like Joe had an off night. Aside from the recording being muddy, it is more than a little messy. The tape is filled with drops and microphone interference. At essential moments this unfortunately disrupts the flow of what looks to be a killer show. Especially the encores suffer from these disruptions. Which is a real shame, because it is often in the encores where the more muddy Kivak tapes redeem themselves. This recording for example has the unique and very infectious "She's Sure The Girl I Love" based on Phil Spector's classic Crystal's single. While the recording of that single song is intact, the interference in the tape takes the pace out of the encore. Where on most Fanatic releases you can get caught up in the exitement of the show, the interference prevents you from doing so here.

Question is, should such a tape be released. Shouldn't some tapes simply be left in the boxes. I for one don't think Rob should discriminate. Bad as the tape may be, it is still part of the larger Springsteen story. The mentioned unique performance of "She's Sure The Girl I Love" still makes this tape worth while collecting. This is also the show where "Something in the Night" and "Rendezvous" debuted. Especially with the first it is interesting to hear how it started out and compare it with subsequent versions. Few artist did work in progress on stage like Springsteen did in those early days and it is fun to track his final works to it origins. I applaud Rob for his Kivak master project. I do not think Rob's intention is to only release high quality stuff, I think his intention is to tell a story, to show how Springsteen's career developed. From that perspective this tape might even be essential because of the debuts and the one time cover. This tape tells an important part of the story, at least of how some of the songs turned out. Another possibility of course is that he's just more of a fanatic than I am. Either way, I continue to applaud his work.

"She's Sure The Girl I Love"

MP3 File

Download the show in mp3 here
A small request, only burn mp3s for personal use, but never use a mp3 based CD in a trade. The Quality of mp3s deteriorate rapidly every time a CD is ripped. Using high quality music files such as FLACs is essential in keeping the trading pool healthy.

Recording: 1,5 out of 5
Show: 4 out of 5
Artwork: 4 out of 5

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