Rob welcomes author and musician Jeff Slate to discuss FRAGMENTS: TIME OUT OF MIND SESSIONS 1996-1997, the latest installment of THE BOOTLEG SERIES.
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One response to “Pod Dylan #246 – Fragments”
This was a great discussion, Rob and Jeff. So fun to hear the enthusiasm and insight into some of the recording processes that went into TlME OUT OF MlND, which Rob knows is my favorite Dylan album.
I didn’t know this set was coming out until the day before it dropped, and since then I’ve been listening to it over and over, diving deeper into the outtakes and alternate versions. Since my favorite Dylan albums are those produced by Daniel Lanois, I’m still trying to fully process how I feel about the remix version that strips away some of the Lanois-ness but makes the album a bit more… inviting, perhaps?
It’s great to hear some rollicking versions of “Mississippi”, although I can’t agree with your assessment that any of them are better than the final studio track that appeared on LOVE AND THEFT. I ^wish^ there was a version that could’ve slipped seamlessly into TOOM, but I agree that the song is a bit too whimsical for the funereal album.
Amongst the alternate takes, however, are a handful of redeemers. I never cared for “Can’t Wait” that much, but there’s an alt cut that pulls back on the organ while front loading the drums and guitar. It feels more rocking, but also more driving down a dark road to destruction; it has the swamp Gothic sound I associate with Lanois, which is why I’m surprised this cut didn’t make the album.
And then there’s “Not Dark Yet”. I won’t share all my thoughts on the chance that someday I come back on the show to compare the new version with the original (my favorite song), but I will say that I am absolutely fascinated by how the same skeleton of a song can be flipped on its head to become an uptempo, gospel rocker. Amazing.
Anyway, great to hear this episode. I’ve ordered the vinyl set, which does not include everything. The fully loaded box set on CD, when translated to vinyl, will end up being at least 10 LPs and probably cost $500, so they might be saving that one for a rainy day.