Crystal Cat have released two great titles this month.
The first, namely "On the Road Night" from 1973, previously reviewed by me is highly recommended.
The second is "The Roxy Theatre Night" from
This show was previously available on the CD, "Ain't Nobody Here From Billboard Tonight" (as well as some other lower quality releases).
ANHFBT was ok, but not great.
The show performance wise was top notch. I believe this was the second night of a four night stand at The Roxy.
This release improves on the previous releases.
The show was broadcast in LA so I'm assuming the source is a low generation cassette recording.
The sound is excellent but obviously not from pre-FM reels.
There is much compression and some hiss present.
Crystal Cat's version has better instument seperation than the others mentioned. Unfortunately, it's not as crisp as "On the Road Night" but still extremely enjoyable because like I said the performance was great.
(And it's from the Born to Run era, who doesn't like this album?).
The show begins just like the official "Live 75-85" does with the October 16th piano version of "
Thunder Road" from The Roxy.
In fact, it sounds very much the same as the previous night.
After a great and energetic "Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out" is where Bruce declares Ain't Nobody Here From Billboard Tonight referring to the previous night where
Columbia had reserved seats for industry and media.
(Bruce was unaware of this and not happy about it).
A version of Manfred Mann's "Pretty Flamingo" is a nice inclusion complete with a long story intro which captures the joy of being young.
The rest of the setlist doesn't vary much from the official Hammersmith show which was about a month later.
"Born to Run" sounds a bit chaotic and in my opinion never sounded as good as the record
(Probably due to the great layered production). However, Disc 2 does include a version of the Byrd's "Goin Back".
Disc 2 includes three bonus tracks including two from the Bottom Line on
7/14/74 which features a jazzier "Jungleland" with very different lyrics.
Not as good as the "Born to Run" version but still an interesting listen.
Most interestingly, the last bonus track ("The E Street Shuffle") on disc 2 is labeled the Bottom Line 8/75.
It doesn't indicate which show.
The sound quality is absolutely superb on this track and is better than the main show from The Roxy.
Does this mean Crystal Cat's next release will be a perfect quality radio broadcast from Bruce's legendary Bottom Line shows in August of 1975?
If this is true, this would be the holy grail of Springsteen bootlegs considering the importance this show had on Bruce's career.
So far, only mediocre sounding boots have surfaced from these shows. One can dream, can't they?
The packaging is rated as high as you can get.
A 20 page booklet is included with nice photos and reprinted articles from the time period.
The longest article is one from Playboy in early 1976. Overall, a great addition to the CC catalog.