Grateful Dead: American Beauty (Rhino High Fidelity) (Rhino) - review | Under the Radar Magazine Under the Radar | Music Blog for the Indie Music Magazine
Tuesday, May 21st, 2024  

Grateful Dead

American Beauty (Rhino High Fidelity)


Apr 17, 2024 Web Exclusive Bookmark and Share

It’s rare that one gets to listen to old albums anew again. But that’s exactly what these Rhino High Fidelity vinyl reissues provide. We recently explored the New Wave goodness of The Cars’ Candy-O, and next up is Grateful Dead’s 1970 classic American Beauty. An absolutely generational statement of a record, American Beauty has stood the test of time and remains one of Grateful Dead’s seminal works.

Unlike that of a band like The Cars, American Beauty would seem to be the perfect choice for a high fidelity reissue. And Rhino’s offering here does not disappoint. Cut from the original analog master tapes, pressed on 180-gram vinyl, and housed in a heavyweight gatefold jacket, American Beauty first and foremost sounds spectacular here. The mandolin streaming from the left speaker in “Friend of the Devil.” The shaky organ providing psychedelic anchor to “Candyman.” The lush pastoral harmonies on “Attics of My Life.” The jaunty electric guitar, keyboard, and drums of “Truckin’.”

Listening (or should I say, re-listening) to this classic, you’ll find yourself cuing into a particular instrument in the mix, floating away spectacularly to Jerry Garcia, Phil Lesh, Bob Weir, Pigpen, or Mickey Hart and Bill Kreutzmann, zeroing in and becoming attuned in a way you never were before. (

Author rating: 9.5/10

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Average reader rating: 8/10


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