From: xyx  
Date: Thu, 14 Nov 1996 13:31:28 +0500

A double Hector arrived down here courtesy of a kindly soul from the 
land of the wursts (brat, liver & knock), and what a fine specimen 
it is. No comprende? Continue on.......

"DANCE BENEATH THE DIAMOND SKY"  2CD (Hector 001/2)   Cottbus, Germany
   14 July 1996 entire show  + filler  *Magdeburg  12 July 1996
   Tracks: 19   Times: 70+/72+  Source: Audience   Quality: Excellent/VG*
The first release of what the Hector label says will not be the last from
"the Maestro," implying more BD shows to come from an apparent 
all-Dylan label. A welcome fact, too, being that Dylan specialty labels 
like Red Sky & Wanted Man seemed to have flown the coop, leaving 
Razor's Edge as the lone "specialists" of the great one. The Cottbus 
portion of this set is presented in excellent quality - upfront
&  punchy, w/ vocals and instrumentation crisp and clear and all 
nuances intact. Can't ask for more than that, right? Wrong! 
How about a performance to match? Bob and the gang deliver a good one 
here, loud and strong and energetic and passionate. From the opening 
roll of To Be Alone With You, Dylan's vocals are on the mark and the
Band rolls right along with him. "I Want You" is a delight, as is 
the now not-oft played "Just Like A Woman."  They hit a nice, bluesy 
groove on "Pledging" and the obligatory  "Silvio" is extremely upbeat 
and the guitars are more Garcia-like than any I can recall.  
Dylan's vocals on "Boots" are gorgeous, as is the accompaniment,
"John Brown" is, as usual,  powerful & haunting & soaked with dread 
and despair. "MrTMan" reaches sublime heights as Bob's vocal becomes 
more and more excited as the song progresses, the pace picks up and 
by the end he's singing and pleading at the same time, to great effect 
(so much different than the beautiful & haunting 95 versions).  
"Jokerman" slips in perfectly in the #10 slot and is slower paced and
a bit more melodic than the '95 openers - this is a great version sung
w/clarity and conviction.  "I Believe in You"  makes you believe he 
believes and the Band really stretch out on "Memphis Blues." 
The high mark follows w/an astounding "Blowin' in the Wind," the Cottbus 
crowd providing a nice singalong on the choruses - this one gave me 
goosebumps. You can almost feel Dylan taking in the crowd's love
and appreciation of this one. One of those moments you hope happens 
at least once a show. 12&35 wrap it up.

A nice selection of filler (albeit in lesser quality but still pleasing)
completes a very worthwhile disk: LayLady, 4th Street (as good as these 
are, none can touch Berlin), LotToLaugh, a rare GatesOfEden and 
nice- to- hear LARS.

Two things about the packaging -  these are the best looking disks of all
time w/full color repros of the Cottbus & Magdeburg tickets on each 
- the tix have a color pic of 96 vintage Bob in concert. Very cool. 
Lastly, the front insert folds out into a full color
poster w/some nice pics - not that you'd hang it up but a nice touch. 
A supposed limited run of 497 copies, all numbered.

1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 T-list CDs