Bob Dylan

Peco's Blues

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Peco's Blues Review

by Richie Unterberger

Even by the standards of Dylan bootlegs, this is one for the obsessives: 24 outtakes from the sessions for the soundtrack of Pat Garrett and Billy the Kid, an album which itself is peripheral to the singer's main body of work. The legions of Dylan obsessives, however, guarantees a greater audience for this than for most bootlegs, and if you do want to investigate it, it has its merits. First of all, the sound from these February 1973 sessions is excellent, obviously taken from the master or a source that was close to the master itself. You get multiple versions of vocal and instrumental numbers from the soundtrack, including three takes of the only famous song to emerge from the project "Knockin' on Heaven's Door." Other than that tune, the content is marginal, but as low-key, atmospheric folk and folk-rock with a faint Tex-Mex feel, it's not bad. Dylan sounds earthier here than he did on most of his 1970s recordings, and there's an agreeable backyard-hootenanny informality to the proceedings. About half the tracks includes contributions from notable session guests Roger McGuinn and Jim Keltner.