I'm afraid I gave in and ordered it from pure nostalgia. When I were a lad I coudn't afford albums, but a friend lent it to me and I loved the music and the sleeve design. It was magical. I even heard it in stereo at the house of the guy who lent it to me. Stunning it was.
So, as my wife was being so kind to me*, I ordered this 'premium' edition (not bothered about the vinyl version I'm afraid). Although the 'White' album and Abbey Road are also important to me I shan't bother to purchase if these are given the same treatment.
* she had recently bought some expensive jewellry. Why? Maybe it's to do with our forthcoming 45th anniversary
The packaging is superb. A heavy LP-sized box, an inch or more thick, with the 6 discs (4 x CDs, BluRay and DVD) inside an LP-sized gatefold cover. The cover pic, on the outer casing, the one with all the cut-out figures, is in 3D! Like the 'Stones Satanic Majesty Album was.
Have the Stereo mix CD playing on the bedroom system (Monitor Audio Bronze 1 speakers). Sounds puchy and smooth. Big system this afternoon. Vocals so clear, bass punchy.
Marketing shenanigans. As if Paul and Ringo need the money or the company for that matter.
Great pity about Sgt Peppers because only the minority will go for the package offered really, so they've scuppered their profits unless they change something in a year or so.
The clarity is definitely raised with some little artefacts left on some of the drum sounds which are curious. Sounds like resonances recorded at source... drums are ringing, possibly because they're not that great in comparison to modern kits? Some ring on a little further than I remember. Bass is better defined. Harmonies are clearer and you can much more easily hear what is being said in samples and the vocals themselves.
Had a quick listen to the 2 disc edition on Tidal in the wee hours. Martin Jr has done a good job with it I think with improved clarity and more sensibly 'proportioned' bass and drums.
tbh I don't think they'll harm their profits with what's on offer.
1 or 2 disc edition for the average punter? check. (most of the revenue will come from this?)
Vinyl for those who don't have a record player? Check.
Nice box set for the fans / collectors. Check.
Only thing missing really is a hi-res release but suspect sales are a drop in the ocean at this point in time. Most don't seem to care about those extra bits so perhaps they are waiting for public appetite for hi-res to increase before releasing it? That way they can sell you the same thing twice?
Funny on 'She's Leaving Home' that they left the violins on the right and 'cello on the left. I know most wouldn't know, but it's more normal or 'traditional' to have the violin on the left in a string quartet.
Listening to it now, I think it's extremely good. What an album as well!! One of my all time favourite albums.
OK, there is a mix up with She's Leaving Home. On the extras, the strings on the backing track for She's Leaving is the correct way round!!! Someone has transposed the left/right channnels.........
Yes, the package contains the music in 24/96 format. I had pre-ordered through Amazon and it should arrive tomorrow, Friday. With luck.
I heard Giles Martin promoting it on the radio and the extracts they played sounded really good. One thing, as was explained, is that the drums can be more prominent now as they are not having to consider controlling the levels for vinyl playbeck. Having said that, they are issuing the remaster on vinyl!
Now, do I still have my DVD audio ripping software? Haven't needed it in ages.
Why on earth did they think a 5.1 surround version was important?
I bought the Love 2015 with DVD, like you I had no idea where my ripper software was. I checked and Foobar can rip DVD, this one came out as 24/96.
I'm going to hold off judgement until I can hear the thing myself. I started to read a Variety review. I stopped when I hit a sentence that said uncompressed. The 24/96 is only on the DVD/bluray. There's a unreleased documentary on them as well. I pre-ordered the super deluxe set which also comes with a 144 page book. Amazon says it's at the warehouse here in town and it should be arriving today. Get back to everyone after I have a proper listen with headphones and speakers.
Mine was $118 delivered (£92.10). Just checked, out for delivery! But Amazon is out of stock at the moment for new orders you only can get it from 3rd part sellers. They start at $157 plus $4 shipping. Let the capitalism begin!
Got through opening song. Checked dynamic range compression. DR-8. Thanks Mr. Martin Jr. you just squeezed the life out of your father's best work. Disappointed is hardly an accurate reaction right now.
Edit: Took a deep breath, and a cool beverage. My wife asked did it sound good? I started on about the DR reading and then realized I didn't know if it sounded good. Started over. It's a new experience or an old one that I felt on my parents mono hi-fi. Only have listened to 2 tracks. First the stereo and then the '67 mono mix. Very good so far.
First my apologies to Giles Martin. Although the new mixed is compressed, in this case it isn't a bad thing. His vision for the re-mix was inspired by the mono mix. Variety used the term muscular. I think that is an appropriate term. I am still absorbing this new mix. But on second listen I just listened, no analyzing. I almost felt the way I did as a kid in 1967 when I first heard the album. What an amazing piece of art this collection of songs is. Lucy in particular seems to have a new life. I'm still struggling to find words to express how this album makes me feel. I am hoping he might give Magical Mystery Tour a re-mix next. What a treat this new mix is. Really makes you realize why they spent over 600 hours in the studio to get this unique sound. Hopefully a hi-res digital download will be forthcoming. I still would like to hear a version that has less compression. If anything it would be another opportunity for EMI to get some more of my money. Which I would happily hand over.
Haven't been able to get off the couch to listen to it on my stereo set up. An old high school mate of mine is coming over today, so I think I'll wait and have a listen with him.
As Hi-Fi people Ron, we tend to look for compression, artefacts, noise etc. However, they are legitimate tools used to get the music onto a medium in a way that is listenable given certain constraints.
My ventures over the years with video and sound have taught me a lot about compromise, depending on the situation. There was a time when I would go for the highest possible audio quality and retain as much DR etc as possible and lose all hiss from microphone takes etc. It was a lot of work and now, looking at them, I shouldn't really have bothere
For instance, with hiss, it can legitimately stay in there if the ambient noise covers it anyway. Dynamic rage is great when needed but for speech and music, things can be difficult to decipher on a tv screen as a result, but perfect on headphones!!
So for video stuff, I have learned to normalise, compress as much as needed for the content in order to make it listenable on her average tv setup because that's what we're watching on.
Same can often go for audio recordings. Best to use the ears first otherwise your listening is coloured by the numbers that you see. If it sounds good, then it's irrelevant.
I loved the remixed version and it brought the album to life for me. Some of the inner clarity is quite astounding given the age of the recordings too and what they were done on. Bass and drums stand out to me as being massively improved and actually, I gained a little more respect for the young Paul McCartney's bass playing. Also, the vocals somehow seem closer to me and less shrouded.
I think he's done a great job although I see that Guy Manning who is an English Musician has written something about the videos being too repetitive.
I'm still annoyed about the hi res copy not being made available though. I hope they do release this eventually.
I agree with you Ian. Thanks to my thoughtful wife, I realized I fell into the old trap of measurements vs. listening. Almost allowed myself to be a grumpy old man, but my wife pulled me back from the brink. Measurements are a great guide, particularly when they are bad. But DR as you said isn't the whole story. Giles is a pro, and IMHO, understands the Beatles recordings better than anyone alive. If he added some compression I think it was for sonic reasons not because it is the current "in thing" to do. Perhaps it was a way to capture the sound he heard on the studio masters. I have a book I bought a few years ago that details the recording equipment that was in place at Abbey Road Studios during the time the Beatles were recording there. It has a lot of detailed pictures of the equipment. It looks very primitive by today's standards. It is no wonder that so much work went into getting the sound they were looking for. Amazing that they actually could pull it off (especially considering they only had four track tape machines) without it sounding like dog doo.
I love how he was able to restore the vocal effects that are on the mono mix but were omitted for technical reasons from the stereo mix in 1967. I keep hearing new things with each listen, which is amazing considering I thought I knew every note, and effect due to decades of repeated listening. It is not an exaggeration to say I have listened to this album more times than anything I own. Can't wait to hear Paul's bass and Ringo's drums on my trusty Dunlavy speakers.
Pretty amazing what 24 year old Paul 26 year old John and Ringo and a 23 year old George did back then. Still young adults with their creative talents peaking. I have the DVD/Bluray with the hi-res versions. I will give a listen later today, still having my morning coffee, and see if there is enough of a difference to warrant buying a download, which I am sure will be coming once all the physical media purchasing frenzy dies down. I feel like a kid at Christmas right now. More presents to open. A splendid time is guaranteed for all!
Sorry for all the edits. Still trying to wake up. :-)
I have still only had a quick skim through on my main system (I particularly like the drum fills in Day In The Life) because of family staying over. I have to have patience. Hope time will be my own again tomorrow pm.
Don't have anything to say bout Sgt. Pepper, but the talk bout music companies trying to encourage piracy is spot on. I can't buy music from Qobuz or HDtracks simply because of where I live?? What an absolute load of crap. It's this kind of crap that does proves the record co. totally have their heads shoved up somewhere unpleasant. When it's actually easier to pirate music than legally purchase it… the mind recoils. Thankfully Opera browser has a built in VPN so I have a way round.
As far as the pricing goes, it is ridiculous. However, if you spent any time on the Steve Hoffman forums, you'll see there's no shortage of Beatles loonies willing to throw money at it