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Bob Dylan - Bootleg Series Vol. XII "The Cutting Edge"*

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by Abbey Road, Oct 16, 2014.

  1. NumberEight

    NumberEight Came too late and stayed too long

    This has to be the most expensive thread ever. :)
  2. Percy Song

    Percy Song Tom's Tambourine Man

    It's a thread of pure gold....:)


  3. asdf35

    asdf35 Forum Resident

    Austin TX
    I'm not the most romantic guy (just ask my girlfriend), but this is the first time I ever realized "Visions Of Johanna" was recorded on Valentines Day.

    Actually, the Blonde On Blonde takes of "Fourth Time Around," "Visions of Johanna," and "Leopard-Skin Pill-Box Hat" were all recorded on Valentines 1966. I'm sure you could extract a warped love story from the texts of those songs.
  4. JudasPriest

    JudasPriest Forum Resident

    Question: I love my DCC H61R but am struck by how good the sound is on the best of Cutting Edge 36 track edition on Tidal. Can anyone say if they compiled the actual H61R album takes from The Cutting Edge into a playlist and compared the sound - is The Cutting Edge even better than the DCC which was my gold standard up to now?
  5. subtr

    subtr Forum Resident

    Impossible to compare the two. I have done this, yes, but the mixes are totally and entirely different. It's a cool experience, but not one you can judge sonic differences on.
    Tim 2, PhantomStranger and Percy Song like this.
  6. JudasPriest

    JudasPriest Forum Resident

    Thanks - apologies for this but is there any chance you could identify which tracks on the 6cd release are the actual album takes?
  7. Tim 2


    Alberta Canada
    I never compare sonic differences, takes the fun out of music, for me.
  8. stepeanut

    stepeanut Holmes Boy

    Off the top of my head, I believe it’s just “Like a Rolling Stone” and “Rainy Day Women #12 & 35”. Also, “From a Buick 6” from the first U.S. pressing of Highway 61 Revisited is on the 6CD set, so that technically counts, although it’s not the take most are familiar with.
    Percy Song and Dave Hoos like this.
  9. subtr

    subtr Forum Resident

    Maybe, but it was what the poster asked, and also to a large extent what this forum is for finding out - was only trying to be helpful!
    DeeThomaz, Percy Song, Tim 2 and 2 others like this.
  10. Tim 2


    Alberta Canada
    True enough.
    Myself; I don't enjoy doing a back to back comparison, I either like the sonic's or I don't. :tiphat:
    LeeGriffin and subtr like this.
  11. Percy Song

    Percy Song Tom's Tambourine Man

    The stereo gold standard, I think:-


    For mono, it's probably the original UK LP for me...


    Although the mono box will do at a pinch:-


  12. JudasPriest

    JudasPriest Forum Resident

    How do people feel about the Cutting Edge Bringing it all Back Home album takes compared to other editions? I like the Mofi SACD but suspect - based on comparisons with the 2 disc Cutting Edge edition BIABH alt takes (not the actual album tracks which aren't there) - I may prefer a Cutting Edge playlist of the album culled from the 18cd version. The mix feels a little warmer and with a tad more bass
  13. George P

    George P Notable Member

    I suspected that too, but when I compared, the MFSL (redbook layer) won.
  14. Adam Schellin

    Adam Schellin Forum Resident

    I made playlists of each album based on tracks from big blue. I like the sound.
    Stone Turntable, Mr. D and tstrapac like this.
  15. JudasPriest

    JudasPriest Forum Resident

    Blonde on Blonde Mofi is so perfect doubt Cutting Edge could take it on but very curious about BIABH. Have now heard H61 and it's lovely to have that Cutting Edge alt mix (minus Charlie McCoy's overdub acoustic guitar on Des Row unfortunately) although I still couldn't live without the DCC but they compliment each other nicely .
  16. Percy Song

    Percy Song Tom's Tambourine Man

    My hearing is hopeless these days but I don't view Cutting Edge album takes for any of the 3 LPs as being superior, inferior, preferable or otherwise. They are just different. I enjoy them as a representation of the songs in their unpolished "playback" guise which is an interesting experience, and all are definitely worth burning onto CD-Rs for stand alone playback as an alternative to the mainstream release(s). Hurrah for EU copyright legislation, I say...!!! :agree:

    For BIABH my two CD choices are the 2003 Sony stereo mix by Michael Brauer and the Mono Recordings CD. On the former, listening to elements of the 5.1 surround mix is interesting; by isolating the rear two channels you can appreciate fully the genius of Bruce Langhorne, for example. Again, it might be the limitations of my hearing but I don't find anything particularly meritorious about the Mofi edition.


    Obviously, being old, I cherish my 1st press UK mono LP which, presumably is presented in the mix Bob wanted us to hear the record originally.



  17. JudasPriest

    JudasPriest Forum Resident

    Any recommendations for an alternative 'best of" culled from the deluxe 6ccd set? Very much enjoying the 2cd one but am curious as to whether unofficial compilations can beat it.
    Hep Alien likes this.
  18. C6H12O6

    C6H12O6 Senior Member

    My lab
    Unlike the new BOTT Bootleg Series box set, more is better here, or rather, the value of this rapidly diminishes when you boil it down to a single disc.

    The bulk of Vol. 14 was mainly about nailing the master take, at least what would be considered the master take from the NY sessions before the last-minute decision to re-record songs in Minneapolis. Boiling that down to one or two discs works very well because outside of the master takes for the original acetate, you usually had one or occasionally two alternate takes that were very strong candidates for a master take or at least clear standouts. (The one exception is "Lily, Rosemary..." which only had one good take.)

    With Cutting Edge, arguably nothing tops the versions released on those three landmark albums. There's maybe a few that may give the released master take a run for their money, but that's it. The main appeal is listening to the sessions in full (if possible) and hearing the songs evolve, especially the full-band stuff which was radically re-arranged and re-written over the course of the sessions. It's an incredible listen, and all that still comes across well in the 6CD version. But having heard a chunk of this on the original Bootleg Series 1-3 and later on 7, it doesn't play nearly as well when condensed to a small cross-section. In that context, it's merely a pile of rejects. To be fair they are rejects - but banded together each one is basically a stepping stone on a wild, twisting path towards something magnificent, and I don't think that's very clear when there isn't enough of them to smoothly trace out that path.
    Last edited: Feb 22, 2019
  19. NumberEight

    NumberEight Came too late and stayed too long

    I think you’ve expressed the difference between Vol.12 and Vol.14 perfectly!
  20. Percy Song

    Percy Song Tom's Tambourine Man

    One aspect of all the Bootleg Series CD releases is that where there are various editions of the same volume (i.e. single CD, 2CD and multi-CD boxes), the "paperwork" with each edition also varies. That is no revelation (I hear you say), but the interesting curious frustrating part of it is that in every case the smaller edition always contains "paperwork" that does not appear in the largest.

    In the case of "The Cutting Edge" you might expect that Big Blue, being the kitchen sink edition, would contain everything that Medium Blue and Baby Blue contain. Not a bit of it. Baby Blue has images of studio paperwork that do not feature on Medium Blue or Big Blue, and Medium Blue contains images of studio paperwork that do not appear on Big Blue. To own all the artwork officially released with BS12 CD editions you need to own all three!

    But wait! There is a fourth CD edition of "The Cutting Edge", the single CD Promo Sampler, which I'm calling Small Blue :):-


    Beneath the clear CD housing is a card insert which contains an interesting"paperwork" image which does not appear in any of the other three versions:-


    I can't identify several of the boxes, but this is what I have so far (from left to right):-

    J 155649: Not known by me
    Box 4895: Not known by me

    J#97997 : 15 June 1965, the day of the "Like A Rolling Stone" session. The job number can be found on the page in Big Blue housing Disc #10

    ZSP114563-2: "I Want You" U.S. single identifier. The suffix (-2) may signify that this is a second reel of takes from the session. The identifier can be found on the page in Big Blue housing Disc #14.

    92483: 14 January 1965, the second day of sessions for "Bringing It All Back Home" . The job number can be found on the page in Big Blue housing Disc #1

    J#157437: Not known by me

    J92478: 13 January 1965, the first day of sessions for "Bringing It All Back Home". The job number can be found on the page in Big Blue housing Disc #5

    SW98151: This is the famous mono master tape containing most of the tracks destined for "Highway 61 Revisited". "Like A Rolling Stone" was a notable absentee; the mistakenly released version of "Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window?" and the "Positively 4th Street" single were included. Bob gave acetates from this tape (or tapes) to Emmett Grogan and, of course, dubs of the acetates circulated among collectors for years. I'm not sure exactly what the "SW"prefix denotes but the job number can be found on the page in Big Blue housing Disc #11

    CO88582 is the remake of "Can You Please Crawl Out Your Window?" from 30 November 1965, released as a single after "Positively 4th Street". The job number, 98616, and the CO number can be found on the page in Big Blue housing Disc #9.

    The image above is a tantalising glimpse into archive documents that could (and should?) have been included with the packaging for Big Blue. To secrete it away in a promo sampler jewel case seems somewhat bizarre.



    The big (blue) question is this: Is there any "paperwork" contained in the vinyl edition that doesn't appear in any of the CD editions? If so, it seems like my wallet may have to take another beating....:shake: :help:
  21. Percy Song

    Percy Song Tom's Tambourine Man

    @Roger Ford's invaluable Electric Dylan site has been updated. It now features a section on Bob's '65-'66 singles, a page devoted to the "is-it-vinyl-or-is-it-styrene?" debate and a page discussing the often thorny question of official release dates from this era of Bob's career.


    Electric Dylan
  22. Stone Turntable

    Stone Turntable Dedicated Listener

    New Mexico USA
    My man Robert Christgau put it this way:

    “Scoff at Bootleg Series hype though you may (and should), you'll want to check and recheck Vol. 12's outtakes from his most amped-up period, only to conclude that the standard versions rool every goddamn time pre-Blonde on Blonde.”
    C6H12O6 and warewolf95 like this.
  23. supermd

    supermd Forum Resident

    San Jose, CA
    Were any of the shows from his 1965 tour with the electric section professionally recorded on multitrack?
  24. NumberEight

    NumberEight Came too late and stayed too long

    I love it when I get an alert on this thread. :)
    Percy Song and HominyRhodes like this.
  25. Richard--W

    Richard--W Forum Resident

    Yes, they were professionally recorded.
    No, not on multi-track.
    supermd likes this.

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