I think the boys are just enjoying playing with the young un's. We are witnessing a new growth from the Grateful Dead tradition that amounts to a passing of the torch. Additionally, these men are visionaries who are changing the landscape of the music industry and it's reliance on record sales. They are essentially solving the problems digital music presents and being real in their art as opposed to enhanced studio falsities. I expect they are testing the waters for what they will roll out in the future right now.
First, Jeff C. is slowly finding the missing magic that was lost when Jerry died. The guy is electric and I am seeing the magic in his fingers which is amazing. Vocally, I would say the band is weak but musically and instrumentally they are Dead on. What we are witnessing is a true morph of a band from one to the other one. An analogy I can think of would be AC/DC when they rolled out the homage album to Bon Scott with Back in Black. It was instantaneous for them and it just worked. Well Furthur is really starting to work now. At the end of the day they are looking to build another rich performance tradition in front of a lot of fans and in a lot of venues with the addition of one major channel not previously explored by any band with the exception of isolated events-- pay per view.
Furthur is driving to deliver a pay per view experience for their fans never before experienced in the music industry. In such they will be selling their live performance to millions more people's throughout the course of the performance seasons. And instead of the rote deliverance of the same show over and over like most bands perform while on tour ... further will build on the Grateful traditions by generating revenue streams beyond the CD aisle at Walmart--something every one of those other non jam bands would love to figure out!
I am just suggesting the potential of the genius of the people working on the Grateful project for so many years. In the final few decades we have living members on earth they seem humbled by what it's become and at the same time remain visionary in their music. Not bad for a bunch of acid heads.