background | album facts | Track Listing | Listening Party

Grateful Dead 12-CD Box Set

Beyond Description (1973-1989)

  • 10 Classic Albums on 12 Discs Featuring Over 15 Hours of Newly Remastered Music - Including 7 Hours of Previously Unreleased Bonus Material From the Vaults!

Background :

This monumental 12-disc assemblage presents the band's amazing, long strange trip from 1973 to 1989, encompassing the albums released on their own Grateful Dead Records label and later Arista.

It's an essential companion to their first 12-cd Dead box, THE GOLDEN ROAD (1965-1973), which spotlighted the entirety of their early Warner Bros. output and concurrent evolution from a scruffy hippie outfit in the Haight to one of the biggest bands on the planet.

Including studio masterpieces and live landmarks alike, BEYOND DESCRIPTION enhances this repertoire with the sonic brilliance of 2004 mastering technology and a wealth of newly discovered supplemental material. It's an extraordinary portrait of a legendary band.

"Over the years I had simply stopped remembering how good, how essentially musical this band has always been... their mythology is founded on real substance... opening the vaults... is as close as we get to stopping Time."

- from Peter Coyote's liner notes for WAKE THE FLOOD, BEYOND DESCRIPTION's first disc

Album Facts:

  • 10 Classic Dead albums from '73 to '89 - 15 hours of remastered music on 12 discs - In one mammoth, collectible box.
  • Each title expanded with rare and previously unreleased material fromhe vaults - in all, 65 bonus tracks totalling 7-plus hours!
  • WAKE OF THE FLOOD was the first LP on the band's own Grateful Dead Records. Following the passing of "Pig Pen" the Dead used Keith Godchaux exclusively as their keyboardist. The original album introduced favorites "Eyes Of The World" and "Weather Report Suite" - now three newly added bonus tracks include a revelatory live version of the former and a three-part studio outtake of the latter. Accompanying the reissue is a heartfelt rememberance by actor/activist Peter Coyote.
  • FROM THE MARS HOTEL (1974), one of the Dead's most acclaimed studio releases, features Phil Lesh's masterpiece "Unbroken Chain," plus the Hunter/Garcia classics "Ship Of Fools," "U.S. Blues," and more! A newly added bonus stash - seven cuts worth - included an extended live take on "Scarlet Begonias," the only live version of "Let It Rock," and an acoustic studio demo of "Unbroken Chain." San Francisco Chronicle music critic Joel Selvin offers incisive commentary.
  • The inspired BLUES FOR ALLAH originally came out in 1975, released midway through the Dead's 18-month tour hiatus after a week of celebrated Winterland shows. Among the LP's highlights are the immortal Weir/Barlow composition "The Music Never Stopped," plus "Crazy Fingers," "Help On The Way/Slipknot," and "Franklin's Tower" - an experience now augumented by six rare instrumental studio outtakes aned revealing notes by Rolling Stone's David Fricke.
  • Their first album in two years (and their first major-label release in many more), the Dead's Arista debut, TERRAPIN STATION, was also their first with an outside producer - Keith Olsen (Santana, Fleetwood Mac) - since Anthem Of The Sun. The union resulted in such classics as "Estimated Prophet" and the title suite. Six bonus gems included an instrumental "Peggy-O," studio outtakes of "Catfish John" and "Equinox," and an unreleased studio version of "Fire On The Mountain." In-depth notes from Grateful Dead Radio HOur producer David Gans complement the expanded release.
  • The first album recorded at the band's own Front Street studio in San Rafael, SHAKEDOWN STREET (1978) paired the Dead with Little Feat's Lowell George as producer. The disc delivers such treasures as the Hart/Hunter masterpiece "Fire On The Mountain," Weir's signature "I Need A Miracle," and the sly HUnter/Garcia title track. Five bonus additions include a studio outtake of "Good Lovin" featuring Lowell George and a live "Stagger Lee." Famed journalist Rip Rense contributes liner notes.
  • GO TO HEAVEN (1980) marked the Dead's 15th anniversary and introduced new keyboardist Brent Mydland. It also debuted the Hunter/Garcia staples "Alabama Getaway" and "Althea," as well as Bob Weir favorites "Lost Sailor" and "Saint Of Circumstance." Now enjoy six bonus cuts, including live versions of the aforementioned tracks, plus a studio outtake of "Jack-A-Roe." British journalist Andrew Clarke's informative essay sums it all up.
  • Favoring folk, bluegrass, and roots music, the live, acoustic RECKONING (1981) has been expanded to two discs - a chronicling of now-fabled shows at San Francisco's Warfield Theatre and New York's Radio City Music Hall. Highlights include "Ripple," "Dire Wolf," and the traditional "Deep Elem Blues," plus 16 bonus cuts, among them alternative live versions of "Cassidy," "China Doll," and "Dark Hollow." Grateful Dead historian Gary Lambert provides liner notes.
  • The flip side of RECKONING's unplugged delights, DEAD SET (1981), also expanded to two discs, mines the the same historic 15th anniversary concerts for full-on electricity. Featured are such era-spanning Dead favorites as "Deal," "Candyman," "Friend Of The Devil," and Phil Lesh's rarely-staged "Passenger," plus a full disc of 10 bonus trakcs including "C.C. Rider," "Not Fade Away," and "Sugaree." Prominent scribe Steve Silberman, author of Skeleton Key: A Dictionary For Deadheads, contributes a new essay.
  • Recorded by the band's last lineup [note from Geoff: the record company is probably referring here to the last lineup, as far as studio recordings are concerned. We know Vince was in the last touring lineup, and mean him no disrespect] , IN THE DARK (1987) scored the Dead's first Top 40 single, Garcia/Hunter's "Touch Of Grey," which hit #9 on Billboard's Hot 100 (the album went to #6). Among the six bonus tracks are a studio rehearsal version of that classic, as well as rehearsal takes of "Black Muddy River" and "When Push Comes To Shove," plus a live reading of Bob Weir's "Throwing Stones." Longtime Dead publicist and biographer and biographer Dennis McNally tells the story behind the album.
  • The final Dead studio effort, BUILT TO LAST (1989), delivers the Hunter/Garcia standouts "Standing On The Moon" and the title track, plus four songs by Brent Mydland - who died the following year - including the lovely "I Will Take You Home." This swan song is expanded with three live rarities, including the powerhouse "Foolish Heart" and "Blow Away." The reissue also features liner notes by Blair Jackson, author of Garcia: An American Life.
  • Contains two 100-page books packed with rare photos, a discography, liner notes, essays by noted Deadologists including Dennis McNally, Peter Coyote, Tom Anderson, Joel Selvin, David Fricke, David Gans, Rip Rense, Andrew Clarke, Gary Lambert, Steve Silberman, Blair Jackson, David Lemieux and Ihor Slabicky.

Track Listing

    Mississippi Half-Step Uptown Toodeloo / Let Me Sing Your Blues Away / Row Jimmy / Stella Blue / Here Comes Sunshine / Eyes Of The World / Weather Report Suite : Prelude / Part I / Part II (Let It Grow) BONUS MATERIAL: Eyes Of The World (Live) / Weather Report Suite: (Studio Acoustic Demo) Prelude / Part I / Part II (Let It Grow) / China Doll (Studio Outtake)
    U.S. Blues / China Doll / Unbroken Chain / Loose Lucy / Scarlet Begonias / Pride of Cucamonga / Money Money / Ship Of Fools BONUS MATERIAL: Loose Lucy (Studio Outtake) / Scarlet Begonias (Live) / Money Money (Live) / Wave That Flag (Live) / Let It Rock (Live) / Pride of Cucamonga (Studio Acoustic Demo) / Unbroken Chain (Studio Acoustic Demo)
    Help On The Way / Slipknot / Franklin's Tower / King Soloman's Marbles, Part I: Stronger Than Dirt / Part II: Milkin' The Turkey / The Music Never Stopped / Crazy Fingers / Sage & Spirit / Blues For Allah / Sand Castles & Glass Camels / Unusual Occurences In The Desert BONUS MATERIAL: Groove #1 (Instrumental Studio Outtake) / Groove #2 (Instrumental Studio Outtake) / Distorto (Instrumental Studio Outtake) / A To E Flat Jam (Instrumental Studio Outtake) / Proto 18 Proper (Instrumental Studio Outtake) / Hollywood Cantana (Studio Outtake)
    Estimated Prophet / Dancin' In The Streets / Passenger / Samson & Delilah / Sunrise / Terrapin Station, Part 1: Lady With A Fan / Terrapin Station / Terrapin / Terrapin Transit / At A Siding / Terrapin Flyer / Refrain BONUS MATERIAL: Peggy-O (Instrumental Studio Outtake) / The Ascent (Instrumental Studio Outtake) / Catfish John (Studio Outtake) / Equinox (Studio Outtake) / Fire On The Mountain (Studio Outtake) / Dancin' In The Streets (Live)
    Good Lovin' / France / Shakedown Street / Serengetti / Fire On The Mountain / I Need A Miracle / From The Heart Of Me / Stagger Lee / All New Minglewood Blues / If I Had The World To Give BONUS MATERIAL: Good Lovin' (Studio Outtake) - featuring Lowell George / Ollin Arageed (Live) / Fire On The Mountain (Live) / Stagger Lee (Live) / All New Minglewood Blues (Live)
    Alabama Getaway / Far From Me / Althea / Feel Like A Stranger / Lost Sailor / Saint Of Circumstance / Antwerp's Placebo (The Plumber) / Easy To Love You / Don't Ease Me In BONUS MATERIAL: Peggy-O (Studio Outtake) / What'll You Raise (Studio Outtake) / Jack-A-Roe (Studio Outtake) / Althea (Live) / Lost Sailor (Live) / Saint of Circumstance (Live)
    (Live Acoustic Recordings, 1980, Except Where Otherwise Indicated) DISC 1: Dire Wolf / The Race Is On / Oh Babe It Ain't No Lie / It Must Have Been The Roses / Dark Hollow / China Doll / Been All Around This World / Monkey And The Engineer / Jack-A-Roe / Deep Elem Blues / Cassidy / To Lay Me Down / Rosalie McFall / On The Road Again / Bird Song / Ripple DISC 2 - BONUS MATERIAL: To Lay Me Down (Studio Rehearsal) / Iko Iko / Heaven Help The Fool / El Paso / Sage & Spirit / Little Sadie / It Must Have Been The Roses (Alternate Live Version) / Dark Hollow (Alternate Live Version) / Jack-A-Roe (Alternate Live Version) / Cassidy (Alternate Live Version) / China Doll (Alternate Live Version) / Monkey And The Engineer (Alternate Live Version) / Oh Babe It Ain't No Lie (Alternate Live Version) / Ripple (Alternate Live Version) / Tom Dooley (Live, 1978) / Deep Elem Blues (Alternate Live Version, 1978)
  • DEAD SET :
    DISC 1: Samson & Delilah / Friend Of The Devil / New Minglewood Blues / Deal / Candyman / Little Red Rooster / Loser / PAssenger / Feel Like A Stranger / Franklin's Tower / Rhythm Devils / Space / Fire On The Mountain / Greatest Story Ever Told / Brokedown Palace DISC 2 - BONUS MATERIAL: Let It Grow / Sugaree / C.C. Rider / Row Jimmy / Lazy Lightnin' / Supplication / HIgh Time / Jack Straw / Shakedown Street / Not Fade Away
    Touch Of Grey / Hell In A Bucket / When Push Comes To Shove / West L.A. Fadeaway / Tons Of Steel / Throwing Stones / Black Muddy River BONUS MATERIAL: My Brother Esau (Single B-side) / West L.A. Fadeaway (Alternate Version, 1984) / Black Muddy River (Studio Rehearsal) / When Push Comes To Shove (Studio Rehearsal) / Touch Of Grey (Studio Rehearsal) / Throwing Stones (Live)
    Foolish Heart / Just A Little Light / Built To Last / Blow Away / Victim Or The Crime / We Can Run / Standing On The Moon / Picasso Moon / I Will Take You Home BONUS MATERIAL: Foolish Heart (Live) / Blow Away (Live) / California Earthquake (Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin On) (Live)

background | album facts | Track Listing

return to GDF Store

return to GDForum home page