The Grateful Dead sound excited to be playing here in Philadelphia in 1983, so much so that they frequently let the beat get slightly ahead of the music. No matter – this is an average, up-tempo night with the Dead.
The first set is bookended by highlights – an opening Shakedown Street which is much more dynamic than the typical show starter and a closing Let It Grow wherein Jerry Garcia attempts to play as many scales as possible over the course of ten minutes. Good stuff abounds in both of these tunes. The rest of the set is pretty basic.
Help On The Way>Slipknot!>Franklin’s Tower opens the second set with a bang. Slipknot! has a lot of nice work from Brent and Jerry is still feeling frisky during Franklin’s Tower. Unfortunately, this moves into The Women are Smarter and then Drums and Space, so the momentum dies pretty quickly. Coming out of Space I thought the boys were going into The Other One but at the last minutes they changed course into Truckin’, which is a normal version. Morning Dew follows, with run after Jerry run. This typifies this show – lots and lots of notes from Jerry and above-average playing from Brent at times. Phil only pops up into audible territory every once in a while. After Morning Dew we have Throwing Stones, not one of my favorite songs but tonight, like in a lot of these earlier versions, the bridge of the song is well jammed out. The rest of the night is up-tempo but typical.
There are ups and downs here, but if you want the Garcia pyrotechnics, you’re in the right place. Listen to the Matrix (with some faulty track listings) here: https://archive.org/details/gd1983-04-26.132607.mtx.dusborne.flac16