Today In Grateful Dead History: June 24, 1985 – River Bend Music Center, Cincinnati, OH

dancing-bear The powers that be have selected this show as the 1985 entry in the 30 Trips Around the Sun box set, so you’ve got to figure that it’s held in high regard and rightfully so.

The first set is a high energy performance, typical for 1985, but there really isn’t much that stands out until Let It Grow at the end, which wails.  Jerry shreds several passages and the drummers just pound the heck out of their instruments.  It’s a nice way to end the set.

The second set is fantastic for 1985 (it’s actually a really good 80’s show, not just an ’85).  Iko Iko features some “interesting” lyrical digressions from Mr. Weir, but sets the tone for a strong Samson & Delilah and a burning Smokestack Lightning (apparently there was a lot of real electricity in the air during a huge summer storm).  The meat of the performance is Cryptical Envelopement>Drums>Comes A Time>The Other One>Cryptical Envelopement>Wharf Rat.  Unlike the bust out show from Berkeley on the 16th, here Cryptical works like a dream on both ends.  The Comes a Time, sung in Jerry’s strained, smoked-out 1985 rasp, is wonderful and then The Other One blows the place down.  At the end of Wharf Rat, the whole band turns it up another level and just powers over the audience.  It’s a great segment.

The usual caveats about the sound of 1985 shows apply here – the soundboards are horribly tinny, so you get a Matrix instead:



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