I think there's going to be a lot of different answers to this, different strokes for different folks and all that :) But here's a couple of my faves...
I really love the Oct 16 2009 Canopy Club show:
The Feb 28 2008 Bottom of the Hill show is another good one:
I dig the Fox (Oakland), IA City, and Sydney/Melbourne SBD shows. The AU requires a nuance of the file use.
GL makes a good point, it depends kind of what you're looking for. Some shows audio quality is better than others of course yet, the music in other cases has qualities of its own that are heard 'as the music played the band,' some shows are a bit more beautiful and pastoral in the incredible harmonies and emotional playing; some perhaps are spell binding for the band listening so hard to one another, you know, maybe BT was utilzing excellent band dynamics between loud/soft passages, maybe there's banter between songs that is hilarious, as is so often the case, like Marty in Melbourne: "This next song's about our home in Oregon...has anyone here ever been to Oregon?"
Fair crowd response, to which Brian says, "Really??!".
Marty: "Its a long ways away.....thanks for comin'." Nice.
others, to my perception, really have more of potent spiritual quality to them: they are perhaps a bit slower on tempos, more open in the pauses Earley and the band takes between verses for example. the Boulder show last year was like this--if anyone knows of tapes of that show? speak up with a link please
others have remarkable energy and imagine this -- stupid 'drunken' crowd participation, in IA city's case, the crowd noise is probably over the top for lot of people, and annoying even for the taper-head purists possibly. try some shows on for size by streaming them, see how they fit your def'n of legit.
what I do, with any live show on there really, --is to stream a show from 3-4 songs in, let it go in the background, if you like, dl. there is so much good music on just the LMA alone, not to mention elsewhere, through other tapers mediums, sites, and torrents even. this is incredible music for some of the most change filled times in history...I'm not sure you can go wrong with BT or any of their shows...imo that is accurate.
Thanks for the suggestions. I decided to start with the Canopy Club (partly because of the setlist; mostly because GL posted a direct link). Excellent performance, and I'm impressed with the sound quality too. I'll get to the other suggestions soon, I'm sure. I think I remember reading somewhere else on here that the Melbourne show was exceptional.
And yes, GreatWavesOfChan, LMA is a phenomenal resource. I remember when I was first getting into trading live Grateful Dead and Phish shows and I would be super excited to get a fourth-generation audio cassette in the mail a few weeks after arranging a trade. This is much, much better (though it lacks the personal connection of the old way).
Thanks again guys.
Wood, good to hear you're also a Phriend Head. This band and nearly all the indie music out there is so good, so real, and has so much truth behind it, that it is a natural for a phan to get into it--and that includes genres I don't know or follow like indie hip hop, and others. A fellow Head pointed out LMA summer of 05 (well before the takedown of the SBDs) I was floored and it wasn't because we were partying, there is so much on there, Dead and non Dead.
Are you a mac user Wood? 2nd question, are you on philzone's discussion area? If yes, to both, I could holla at you re: the AU sbd detail.
I do not buy CD's anymore that much with online purveyors, but you know what, this Destroyer of the Void BT album is an 'oh-fo-sho' buy when it drops June 8th. Lastly, on the interewebs, suggest look up 'The Contribution' Denver show, they have a website too of their album made by a band of solid founding players from other bands, they just released album; pretty hot band inc. members of New Monsoon, Railroad Earth, SCI, etc. That Denver bluebird show is all i can afford :) but its a nice show, good energy, good music; they have one cut up from album to download called Come Around, free.
(Honestly, most important, with most benefits of awareness and the most long term potent thing I have to share is at website below, 4 free chapters of new book available to read/print/share at site, that is in my u-name (which was sorta truncated). Not affiliated directly with author/non-profit publisher but it changed my entire life's direction and resonated so strongly that I'm compelled to share it. Namaste. --- fan of GreatWavesOfChange.org)
Sorry for the delay, GWOC. Yes, I am a mac user; no I am not on the philzone board. I remember the controversy over removing Dead sbds from the Archive a few years ago. Didn't GDM end up relenting on that though? I thought they did.
I'll def check out the Contribution. Sounds promising. And yes, I agree that Destroyer of the Void is a no-brainer purchase. Thanks for the music recs and the website suggestion. I'll take a look.