Re: Is Big Whiskey getting worse to anyone else?
Big Whiskey has greater staying power than Everyday and Stand Up. Hands down.
I went to the first Giants Stadium show in '01 after enjoying three INCREDIBLE '00 shows and, quite frankly, the bad taste from listening to ED soured my experience at this gig (and my entire '01 tour experience, for that matter, seeing as how every set was in promotion of a clunker of an album); so much so, I didn't go to another DMB show until '06.
And with a set laden with garbage SU tracks at the Scranton show I attended (Hunger, American Baby, Bayou encore), I was left, perhaps, with an even worse taste (consider that I didn't attend a single '05 show knowing how SU-heavy the sets would be).
Then, I attended the Bethel Woods show, my first in three years, and, despite a set that had 10 BW songs in it (none of which, I felt, weighed down the show), I was none too disappointed. In my opinion, the majority of the BW tracks translate well to the live setting. That sold the album for me.
I constantly tried to fool myself into thinking ED and SU were good albums, simply because they were DMB records, but I just couldn't do it. I never had to sell myself on thinking BW was a good album...it only took one listen to decide that for myself. And the album has only grown on me more with time. As I felt BW was superior to ED and SU, I gave each of them a listen just to prove this notion to be true...and I was right: SU took the best part of the band out of the equation (Carter) and ED is just a synthed-out piece of trash, putting them at the very bottom of the DMB catalogue (which is clearly the consensus here).
Does BW stand up against the "Big 3?" Not at all...but it's still a quality album that has been in heavy rotation for me since its release. To call it "mediocre" and "pedestrian" is off-base.
"I'm only this far and only tomorrow leads my way..."