JOHNNY CASH At Madison Square Garden (Columbia/Sony) Rating: NNN Rating: NNN
This previously unissued live document of the Johnny Cash revue's Madison Square Garden stand of 69 -- when the man in black was at the peak of his popularity, with two number-one singles and seven albums (!) in the country charts -- isn't really any sort of revelation. There are no "lost" songs uncovered, the between-song banter, which could often be hilarious, is kept to a minimum, and apart from the annoyingly medley-ized versions of his biggest hits, oddly peformed by Carl Perkins and the Carter Family, the song selection is fairly predictable. Backed by the Tennessee Three, Cash tears through Big River, I Still Miss Someone, Folsom Prison Blues, Five Feet High and Rising like he may have at any point during the past 30 years. Since better versions of all the songs exist elsewhere and there are more than enough hits packages to go around, Johnny Cash At Madison Square Garden is best left to completists.