"Containing some of their most well-loved songs, Wake of the Flood is a necessary selection for a Dead collection.Some of the songs on this album continued to be played live by the band even twenty years after it was released. "Mississippi Half-Step" oftened opened shows while the beautiful "Eyes of the World" was often blended into other songs and drums/space solos in concert.While the review published by Amazon above may reflect the views of some mainstream music listeners, songs on this album have been loved by thousands of Deadheads for years. Referring to any of their music as "country rock," even those songs which were spawned from Jerry Garcia's bluegrass background, illustrates a very shallow understanding of the band's history and the wide variety of musical styles and influences to be found in this album as well as others. These guys were never taking cues from Marshall Tucker Band, Charlie Daniels, or any of that particular genre.While some may decry the influence during the 70's of Keith and Donna Godchaux, to many their era was another interesting and diversifying stop on this "long, strange trip" which helps to separate the Dead from so many "classic rock" bands that continue to play the same songs with the same group of band members endlessly with very little innovation.Try it for yourself and you be the judge! It's a classic!"
Fine fine effort for non-Deadheads too
Phasedin | New Jersey | 11/16/2003
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I've been more of a fan of jazz, classical, and "new age" music for decades now. But every once in awhile I indulge myself in the music that was new and happening during my high school years.
I remember reading a Rolling Stone review of "Wake Of The Flood" when it was a new release. I loved the cover, but , being a metal-head at the time, I had no time for the Dead. Well, times and tastes (thankfully) change. Although 90% of my time is spent listening to music that could never fall into the catagory of "popular song/vocal music", I do on occasion find myself pulling out a few recordings of popular music from the deep dark past. And in the early 90's I bought this minor little jem.
I have only maybe about 6 Dead discs. I have to wholly recommend this. especially if one appreciates jazz music at all. Not that this IS Jazz, but jazzers and other more forward-thinking music fans won't shy away from this because it is pretty much a relaxed "laid back" recording.
The sound is very clean and crisp. Maybe it can't hold a light to todays digital studio recordings, but this recording sounds a hell of allot better than most of the muddy sounding recordings of popular music from the early 70's. The guitars are all very clean sounding (which is what should appleal to jazz fans), the "Weather Report Suite" has a nice saxophone solo, and there's snatches of some beautiful pedal-steel guitar throught the album which is very effective without having a country music feel to it.Jerry's voice is wonderfully soft and relaxed. He doesn't sound at all to be straining and on this recording it really seems he has found his niche as a vocalasit and is quite comfortable in his role.
Too bad there aren't more recordings like this one!"
The Best Studio Dead Album
C. Marshall | Durham, NC | 03/28/2000
(5 out of 5 stars)
"Wake of The Flood (WOTF) is, IMHO, the single best studio Dead
recording. ... If you
don't like the Dead (...), you won't like WOTF. If you like
the Dead, you must own this disk. First of all, it contains Weather
Report Suite -- one of the Dead's very finest pieces ever. Secondly,
everything else on the album is great too. Check out Stella Blue:
slow? yes -- and soul shakingly sublime. Check out Eyes of the World
-- A classic Dead jam piece. You should also check out other Dead
albums Blues For Allah, Terrapin Station, and From The Mars Hotel.
These are not "pop" records. You will have to listen to
them carefully and learn them. But your efforts will be repaid 1000
times over. Enjoy!
Impossible to write the review that this album deserves
J.H. "Jon" | Seattle, WA United States | 05/01/2004
(5 out of 5 stars)
"If I had enough time, and was a halfway decent writer, I'd sit down and write the review that this album deserves. It would be about five pages long, and it would precisely describe the wonderful, amazing moods and melodies of Wake of the Flood. Where to begin? To summarize the whole of the album: nature-revering, land, water, all growing things loving, unpretentious, feeling good like you just did a good deed, were nice to someone, feeling like maybe the mad world has some good points to it after all, feeling like you could almost sort of dance even though you hate dancing, but instead, you just sort of nod your head lazily, in affirmation of the good grooves, the vibrating strings, the folky singing, as long as you can listen to music like this, you'll be able to get through the day, or a few more hours at least, like lying back on the ideal, the bare earth, or the grass, not much to do in the world but observe it from your vantage, marvel at a few marvelous things, leaves rustling, a bug maneuvering the forest of grass, you feeling like being in love with someone, desiring, yearning, and that's just one song, Eyes of the World, each other song an ideal world sensed, probed, translated into rhythm and melody, next thing you know you're almost bebopping doing a little halfstep toodleoo, gliding down towards the Rio Grande, sun at your back smiling of course, gently upon you, easing you along -- quite hot did I mention? til you meet the surface, and then, cool water of the river round your body, and there's Jerry, with some crazy-legged mariachi guys walking on the banks, and a guy with a ten gallon hat -- is that Bob? --they don't see you, they're just playing some tune, some sort of thing to scare the blues away, only thing is, you don't have any -- why, blues wouldn't come within a hundred miles of this tune, you return to your swimming, dive under, break through the surface again, rays greet you greedily, you climb out, dry yourself off by basking in the sun awhile, like an iguana, like, if you're young, you're a little older and wiser and calmer, or if you're older, now you're a little younger, more naieve, less disenchanted, you eventually stroll into town, go to the tavern, where your friends are, naturally, at this hour even, no doubt playing a game of pool, or maybe just sitting around a table, good tunes coming from the jukebox -- geez, normally they don't have music like this at jukeboxes, sort of sad, sort of hopeful, sort of Stella Blue, sort of Row Jimmy Row -- you say your bit, laugh, regain your strength, and head back out into nature, it's all a little greener now, sky a bit bluer, trees vibrant, full of life and vitality, flowers nodding at you, when the acoustic guitar starts, you pause, startled, and then enrapt, the song begins, moves, flows around you, back on the river, slow currents, you drift, you comprehend the seasons, summer to autumn, autumn to winter, and then...spring, the song cuts loose, thunderclouds burst and batter the ground with big raindrops the size of plums, the earth drinks it up, thank you sister, says the earth, no problem brother, says the sky, then plow breaking earth, spring festivals, you the fool, wandering through the buoyant and gay spectacle, and then Weather Report Suite ends, and dooowwwwwnnnn you go, back to earth, back to dullness and drearitude...it's not fair, why can't every album be like this you bemoan?"
THE GREATEST CD THE DEAD EVER MADE- BAR NONE!!!
J.H. "Jon" | 09/09/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"This whirlwind of wonderfully cheery tunes always cheers me up when I'm down. Starting with the wonderfully cheery Mississippi Halfstep Uptown Todeloo, the album moves on to Let Me Sing Your Blues Away, a masterpeice that really does. Then, as Jerry himself says when singin' Row Jimmy, it's "not too fast and not too slow," altough admitidly if the preceding Stella Blue was any slower it would be going backwards. Here Comes Sunsine, though, is a nice, steady song followed by the untopable masterpeice Eyes Of the World and the wonderfully witty and powerful Weather Report Suite. All in all, a wonderfull album."