More Notes on the Rolling Stones Reissues

Whether it's the 60s material controlled by ABKCO or the 1971-onward catalog owned by the band, the Rolling Stones' discography is among the world's most tirelessly and excessively reissued; every few years, there's yet another remastered, repressed, repackaged reissue of the same decades-old classics. After several mediocre reissues of the Rolling Stones Records albums (particularly the first and best two, Sticky Fingers and Exile On Main Street), AnalogPlanet editor Michael Fremer found the half-speed mastered 2018 Studio Albums Vinyl Collection 1971–2016 box set (now available as individual albums) to best capture the original LPs' spirit, even if sometimes lacking in transparent analog sparkle. However, I thought another perspective on the Sticky Fingers and Exile reissues, also taking into account the Japanese flat transfer CDs, would be useful.

Before getting into album-specific details, an overview of the Japanese CDs. In 2011, Universal Japan released SACDs of the Rolling Stones' 70s and 80s discography, most of which were flat transfers (or close) from the original master tapes (the Some Girls disc in this series has light peak limiting and maybe some other processing, though most of these at least sound unaltered). Mick McKenna and Richard Whittaker did the DSD transfers at FX Copyroom in London, while Masaru Takagi at Tokyo's Sunrise Studios has an "edited in DSD" credit (maybe along the lines of SACD/DSD authoring and track split/volume editing, rather than mastering processing). In 2013, these masters were reissued on SHM (Super High Material) Red Book CDs, with HR [High-Resolution] Cutting from 176.4kHz/24-bit PCM files converted from the DSD (it's still a normal 44.1kHz/16-bit CD, but the HR Cutting process bypasses the need to create a 44.1/16 DDP from the higher resolution master files). If all the technical details sound like gibberish, I can't blame you.

For the half-speed mastered LPs, Miles Showell at Abbey Road Studios received hi-res PCM and DSD flat transfers from the original tapes, perhaps the same ones used for the Japanese discs, with instructions to do the best work possible while referencing the original LPs (more info here). MPO pressed the 2018 box set, though not all pressings of all the standalone half-speeds were done there.

Now for the album-specific breakdown:

Sticky Fingers

Produced by: Jimmy Miller
Engineered by: Glyn Johns, Andy Johns, Chris Kimsey, Jimmy Johnson, etc

Music: 8

I find it unnecessary to yet again dissect these albums' musical content (everyone's already said everything about these records), but I'll say that Sticky Fingers is the most streamlined studio album expression of what made the Stones great: dark, gritty, and sinister, yet elegantly so. Despite a few lesser moments, it's a very solid blues rock album that, for the most part, still holds up well today.

I can't afford an original Mastering Lab-cut UK pressing, so instead I have a mid-70s Monarch-pressed US reissue with a working zipper. It cost $50 in nice condition, though isn't anywhere near audiophile quality. It has the glowing analog transparency that digital lacks, but it's muddy and veiled, with muffled highs and poorly defined mids. Unfortunately, the standalone half-speed reissue isn't much better; the cymbals are clearer and it's a cleaner overall cut, but it's still murky and the snare sounds more like cardboard. An anonymous American plant (based on the stamper rings I'll guess Erika Records, but I'm not certain) did the US pressing of the half-speed (Interscope B0031948-01), which is riddled with non-fill. While Showell's mastering is a tad too compressed for my taste, the muddiness might be more of a plating issue than a mastering choice (maybe the MPO version, distributed as a standalone LP in Europe, sounds better).

Neither of those vinyl pressings sound like the Japanese SHM CD, which is bright but clear and dynamic, too dynamic even. The saxophone on "Brown Sugar" is harsh at higher volumes, and the lack of compression means that the whole thing (especially the drums) sounds a bit limp, but the benefit is that you can rip the CD (or SACD, if you pay aftermarket prices) and master it exactly how you like. Still, acoustic guitars sparkle, drums sound like actual drums, and electric guitars sound like electric guitars rather than midrange sludge. There's actual soundstage depth and space, noticeable especially on "Can't You Hear Me Knocking," that blows away the mid-70s reissue and the US half-speed. Unless you're a deluded vinyl loyalist, the Japanese flat transfer CD's pros outweigh its cons. (If you choose the self-mastering route and need to have a vinyl copy, Kunaki and similar services sell custom lathe-cut LPs. That's not an endorsement or recommendation, however, as I haven't yet tried it myself.)

Adding to the Japanese CD's value for money is its packaging, which at the price of ¥2667 (around $20 USD) replicates the original UK vinyl packaging with the original Japanese obi. There's a miniature working YKK zipper, the belt die-cut, the original band photo and credits insert, and an additional booklet with Japanese liner notes and English and Japanese lyrics (which I haven't scrutinized for the glaring inaccuracies still common with Japanese releases). The half-speed vinyl, which at my preferred local store cost $26.99 (though word is that UMG recently further raised the MSRP on many vinyl titles), merely comes in a standard foldover jacket with a printed inner sleeve (underwear photo and credits, but no band photo) and mediocre artwork scans all around-you can faintly see the outline of the original UK LP's belt die-cut, and there's no working zipper. While the size and inconvenience of vinyl has undeniable appeal, given the lesser sound quality of the more affordable US Sticky Fingers pressings, I'd recommend the latest repress of the sonically and aesthetically superior Japanese flat transfer SHM CD (don't even think about the 2009/2015 CD and LP remasters, which are unnecessarily loud and compressed). The vinyl pressings get a 7/10 for sound quality, while the SHM CD gets an 8.

Exile On Main Street

Produced by: Jimmy Miller
Engineered by: Andy Johns, Glyn Johns, Joe Zagarino, Jeremy Gee

Music: 9

Famously recorded in a drunken and drugged-out haze while the Rolling Stones evaded UK taxes (rather predictably, they'd spent the money they owed in taxes on drugs and luxury), Exile On Main Street remains the Stones' magnum opus, a sprawling, messy, and unsettling double album that captured everything as it fell to pieces. Of course, that's exactly why the Stones never made a front-to-back great album ever again, but even if they did, Exile is the '70s blues rock album to end all 70s blues rock albums, one of that era's few classics actually worth its endless praise.

I'm fortunate to have an original US copy cut at Artisan sound and pressed at the Columbia Santa Maria plant, though the LPs aren't the cleanest (VG condition), the Unipak is disintegrating (G+), and the 12 postcards are missing. Still, the Artisan cut even in less than perfect condition has a natural tonality and holographic transparency unique to an all-analog signal path. Sure, there's some inner groove distortion and a near mint copy isn't cheap, but if that means hearing Exile the way it's meant to be heard, I'll accept some distortion on "Tumbling Dice" and surface noise on "Let It Loose."

Still, I was curious about how the current half-speed edition (EU copies pressed at MPO, North American copies plated at GZ and seemingly pressed at Precision) and the Japanese flat transfer CD compared to the Artisan cut. Like Sticky Fingers, the Exile SHM CD is a bit too dynamic, but for unmastered sources that's not uncommon. It's also noticeably brighter in the upper mids than the Artisan, though for a digital version it's surprisingly transparent, maybe from the lack of mastering. In my experience, the quality of these flat transfer CDs depends on what DAC you're using; they sound somewhat unexciting on my Arcam CDS50, but excellent through the SSL 2+.

On first listen, the half-speed seems more compressed than the Artisan, but that impression is most likely caused by the lessened transparency and in turn, a more forward and bright sound. However, it's much closer to the original than the godawful 2010 remaster (which is still one of the most blah-sounding things you'll ever hear), and the half-speed cutting combined with updated technology means that for better or worse, it's smoother and far less distorted than the Artisan. For those who are on a budget or don't feel like hunting for an original Artisan cut (which is usually cheaper "in the wild" than on Discogs), the newer half-speed is a perfectly fine copy of Exile On Main Street (I can't speak for the 2016 Miles Showell half-speed cut). Would many of us prefer to hear an all-analog reissue without early 70s cutting technology's limitations? Of course, but we also don't know if the tapes are in good enough condition to cut lacquers.

In terms of packaging, the half-speed reissue is rather lame; it's normal direct-to-board gatefold with thin top-loading printed inner sleeves (far from the original's side-loading thick cardboard inners), no postcards, and mediocre photo reproduction. It'll suffice for many, but disappoint those familiar with the original (further, the standalone half-speed reissues have barcodes printed on the jackets). Thankfully, the Japanese CD painstakingly replicates the original UK and US packaging, with a miniature Unipak jacket, the two side-loading printed inner sleeves on appropriate cardstock, small reproductions of the 12 postcards, a replica of the original Japanese obi (with an additional obi containing reissue info, plus the usual Japanese booklet). You really can't go wrong with any of these, but I think the Artisan is the best of the best while the Japanese SHM CD is the best value for money (the half-speed is quite good, don't get me wrong, but for the $36.99 I paid feels a bit overpriced). The Artisan gets a 10 for sound, the SHM CD a 9, and the half-speed an 8, but that's my subjective opinion based on what sonic characteristics I value most.

(Malachi Lui is an AnalogPlanet contributing editor, music obsessive, avid record collector, and art enthusiast. Follow him on Twitter and Instagram.)

COMMENTS
Lemon Curry's picture

I was hoping you might touch on the Goats Head Soup. Super Deluxe. I bought it mostly for the Brussels Affair show on the extra disks.

I was stunned with the excessive compression...on vinyl!! The listening experience is comparable to listening to a bootleg - too loud.

These same comments go for the studio tracks, as well.

Imagine, a Rolling Stones record that sounds like cr@p when you turn it up...

MalachiLui's picture

i'm not very familiar with the original mix and i don't have an original pressing (i don't think it's a very good album), but the 2020 mix on streaming sounds fine to me. it's compressed, and probably a bit too compressed, but the sound isn't bad enough for me to complain about it. i actually like loud and compressed when done right for the right material (and on the right format - loud and compressed works fine for digital but not for vinyl), so i only point it out when it's very obviously impacting how good a record sounds.

Lemon Curry's picture

Loud and Compressed sounds great on earbuds on a crowded subway. When I'm hoping the recording will sound great on my loudspeakers in my listening room, it never does.

MalachiLui's picture

i think loud and compressed but not ridiculously so sounds fine on a proper stereo, but it really depends on the material, and who mastered it. some music should have full dynamics (i believe that if a mix was done to tape, compression should be carefully done and peak limiting should be minimal), while other types of music NEED that extreme peak limiting to glue the mix together. at the end of the day, loud and compressed is a technique that, like any other technique, can be good or bad. some records shouldn't be cut half-speed, some records should. some records shouldn't be pressed on supervinyl, others benefit from it. some DMM records are fine, others completely suck. some CDs shouldn't be loud and compressed, some CDs should.

xtcfan80's picture

ML....ya musta read this quote in the Rolling Stone record guide or on one of the hundreds of sites prone to regurgitated feisty rock critic babble...Try listening to Exile again and forget the cr** you've been fed and consider offering something new in your next album analysis.

MalachiLui's picture

see, when you're dealing with an album that's 50 years old and has the legendary status of something like 'exile on main st,' there isn't really much more you can add to the conversation if your opinion happens to match the critical consensus. i'm often very skeptical of how good these "classic" rock albums actually are, but i honestly think 'exile' is a great album, though as i said in the 'sticky fingers' part of this piece, i don't find it necessary to really talk about the music much again. therefore, i only wrote very short notes for the two readers here who might not have heard these records all the way through.

now if i thought 'exile' was a garbage album that has nothing against masterpieces such as 'blue and lonesome' or 'bridges to babylon,' THEN i'd have something new to say. but i don't think that, and i've nothing new to add, and i was quite upfront about that. (for the record, i'm not saying 'blue and lonesome' and 'bridges to babylon' are bad albums, nor am i saying they're great.)

Michael Fremer's picture

"sprawling" and it is "messy", though I'm not sure I agree with M that it's "unsettling", though that point in time was very unsettling, don't you think?

MalachiLui's picture

i meant "unsettling" as in dark... "unsettling" might not've been the best word choice there but i think most people with half a functioning brain would get my general point.

Montpier's picture

sorry ML, that's a cop out. You've been engaging with the trolls in the comments for how long and you're still writing for people with "half a functioning brain" mindset? Wow, the naïveté of youth!

More seriously, if you're going to continue to review music from way before you were born that has since been enshrined as masterpieces either tell the reader how you personally feel about the music or just leave out the regurgitated boilerplate Googled crap and get to your anal retentive assessment of the various pressings/sources you happen to have.

In this case, if you meant "dark" why not just say so? Because in my book "unsettling" does not mean "dark."

Actually, it would have been much more interesting if you the music did indeed make you feel "unsettled" or possibly "frightened" (has your generation even heard of Roget's Thesaurus? Oops I meant www.thesaurus.com). That would have suggested there's hope you'd eventually realize how clueless it sounds to dismiss Sticky Fingers as a "very solid blues rock" album. Go back and listen to, maybe a Ten Years After or Foghat album?

MalachiLui's picture

and maybe your snarky comments continually suggest that you aren't actually reading what i'm saying, because there's no need for anyone here to make shit tedious.

Montpier's picture

if the Watergate hearings were "unsettling" I am at a loss for words to describe the current Congressional show. Where's Sam Ervin and Howard Baker when we really, really need them? My god, someone cast Ivana Trump in the Maureen Dean role...

MalachiLui's picture

can we please settle down here? yes i agree that the american political landscape is currently a shitshow (not that it's ever been anything but that, let's be real here). but how much do we really need to complain about what i admit was a less than perfect word choice, or the fact that i gloss over the music in a piece specifically focused on sound quality?

not talking about you specifically, but i get the sense that these small little things cause deep pain in quite a few people here, and they spend plenty of time thinking about and expressing their grievances. me? i spend about 2-3 minutes per reply here. to everyone who's ever complained about such small errors in these comments sections: i've seen worse mistakes and worse descriptors used in record marketing blurbs and thinkpieces written by people who probably get paid considerably more than i do. no, that is not me complaining about how much i get paid. just something to think about. (again, not talking specifically about montpier here)

firedog's picture

Bob Ludwig SACD mastering of direct DSD transfers from the analog masters (AFAIK).
They sound good to me, including Sticky Fingers. Little if any added compression. Doesn't sound like they changed much from the originals LPs.

firedog's picture

Sticky Fingers isnt' in the ABKCO SACDs. It's a later Japanese SHM "flat transfer from the original analog" SACD release.
The ABKCO SACDs by Bob Ludwig also sound really good.

xtcfan80's picture

Nothing unsettling to me about Exile On Main St...back in 1972 or today.

granadaland's picture

Any chance of posting the catalogue numbers of these CDs? The Japanese CD releases confuse the wotsit out of me...

firedog's picture

UIGY 9066

MalachiLui's picture

aside from the expanded deluxe packages and the remasters released at the exact same time as the rest of the world (which are the shitty loud masters), all the japanese standalone optical disc releases of these albums are the flat transfer ones. latest SHM CD repress of 'sticky fingers' flat transfer is UICY-79241, latest SHM CD 'exile' repress is UICY-79242. all the japanese SACD variants are these same masters, as are the 2013 CDs. not sure about the 2016 ones, doubtful about the 2017 ones. there are also MQA-UHQCDs released in 2018 also from the flat masters, but you need to hook your CD transport up to an MQA-compatible DAC to unfold the full resolution (and how "full" that "resolution" is depends on whether or not you like MQA).

Glotz's picture

I bought these two reviewed here and have very early pressings in VG+, and I was disappointed. I listened to them this weekend, strangely enough.

The sound is clear for sure, but def digitally sourced. Saw the DSD and PCM comments on your research above, and nodded slowly and disgustedly. The originals just have better depth of field, true lightness in the harmonies and just more relaxed development. Really everything. I guess I has delusions of grandeur thinking those masters would be in good shape.

Oh well. Great work ML!

azmoon's picture

10, 10, 10, etc.

MalachiLui's picture

10 is an incredibly rare score that i reserve for around a dozen or so albums throughout history, so 9 is the absolute best you can reasonably hope for from me (it still means something is basically the best of the best). that said, i rate things much more generously than piero scaruffi, though his 8/10 score for 'exile' means that he thinks it's top tier (he's never given anything a 10, and i think his highest rating is like a 9.5 for 'trout mask replica').

Happy Will's picture

Has Miles S done two ½ speed versions of Exile, one in 2016 and one in 2018 or 2020? Thank you.

MalachiLui's picture

yes, the 2016 and 2018 ones were both done by miles showell but are two separate masterings said to be from different sources. the 2020 standalone releases have the same mastering as the 2018 box set and seem to be recuts from those same prepared masters.

Rashers's picture

2010 horribly compressed vinyl, the 2016 half speed vinyl, the Blu-ray audio, sacd, 24 bit download, and several CD reissues of Exile (and a similar number of versions of Sticky Fingers). Unfortunately I have not heard a first pressing on vinyl. My first copy was a 1980s era cassette that sounded like soup with Dolby NR turned on. By far the best version that I have heard is the 1994 Bob Ludwig remaster CD (Virgin records). A lot of the mud was lifted off - from previous CDs - and there are tremendous dynamics and clarity. Same goes, incidentally, for all of those 1994 CDs (Sticky Fingers in particular).
Regarding Goats Head Soup - the recent super deluxe version and vinyl deluxe were a significant step up from previous reissues. Yes there is a significant amount of dynamic range compression, but the Blu-ray audio disc, in particular, is less loud and more dynamic than previous reissues.

MalachiLui's picture

haven't heard it myself, but i've heard good things about it and i should probably find a cheap used copy at one of my local shops sometime. i think the blu-ray audio 'exile' is the same as the japanese flat transfer SACDs and CDs.

jazz's picture

the following characteristics:

„glowing analog transparency that digital lacks, but it's muddy and veiled, with muffled highs and poorly defined mids„

I just want to understand your way of listening. How can one recording have glowing transparency (not sure if I’d describe transparency as „glowing“) and muddied, veiled, muffled sound at the same time?

Isn’t both excluding each other also in your terminology?

MalachiLui's picture

that "glowing analog transparency" as i think of it is more of a natural-sounding top end and general "warmth" (but not exactly bass warmth). it's like you can see into the space of the recording. however, that doesn't mean that something with a "glowing analog transparency" is transparent to what happened in the studio, or what's on the tape.

thanks for pointing that out, i hope i've cleared up some of that confusion.

jazz's picture

so that’s what I’d describe as you did now (warmth and natural top end), not as „transparency“. But good to know what you meant. And although my opinion is, that with better gear on digital and analog side, the typical differences between the two tend to turn out differently, it’s always good to get an impression of the reviewers‘ listening habits and preconditions as well as his use of terms to be able to translate his words into something useful for oneself.

Happy Will's picture

Although I wouldn’t have used it, I think unsettling is quite an apt word to describe some of Exile… I would also describe it a having a dark, claustrophobic feel and a veiled, muffled and muddied sound that can be identified when you have a transparent version that lets you look into the recording. My original prerecorded cassette just sounded ****. whereas…

Anton D's picture

Stones music was supposed to be unsettling.

Otherwise, they'd just be The Beatles.

DaK's picture

I really don’t get the vibe here against you Malachi. I really find it sad to see that these old and grumpy men with hearing loss (probably lost most of what’s between the ears too) have such a big problem with young people writing about ‘their’ music. I love your enthusiasm! Some positive energy from me to you!

xtcfan80's picture

Agreed…..ML I do love your description of the various mastering / pressings of these albums… Very helpful

Glotz's picture

I'd like to see a fist fight tbh.. lol. I think Malachi would win handily.
LMAO. Super Kidding.

arcman67's picture

I know it's Abbey Road Mastering's big promo point, however, I think the value of HSM is basically divided among the "name" mastering engineers. I know cutting and playing back are two different animals. Wouldn't cutting at 16 rpm be equivalent to a record playing back at 16rpm which is considered lower fidelity? Even if the material will be played back faster?

MalachiLui's picture

i don't think it's a gimmick. it certainly has a particular sonic characteristic--very smooth, detailed, clean--but like any other technique, it's not suitable for all material. whether or not half-speed helps or hurts depends on the record and the cutting source, and of course the other mastering choices (EQ, compression, etc) make a bigger difference. half-speed from tape isn't a very good idea at all, half-speed from digital can work. i've heard some EXCELLENT half-speed cuts (spiritualized 'lazer guided melodies' fat possum reissue, M.I.A. 'kala' VMP 45), some pretty good ones (the pop group 'Y' mute reissue, outkast 'ATLiens' VMP pressing), and some mediocre to bad ones (radiohead 'kid a mnesia,' the pony canyon reissues of the first two happy end records).

you're right in that cutting a record at 16rpm to be played back at 16rpm means lower fidelity, but cutting a 33rpm record at 16rpm means that the cutter head has more time to carve all the small details into the grooves, hence a cleaner and more detailed (again, for better or worse) cut when it's played back at 33.

Martin's picture

Ask Abbey Road, Miles Showell, after he gets through the "half speed mastering is super duper" bullshit about slightly jagged edges on the grooves because the cutting head moves slower and does not achieve as clean a cut as 33.
Then ask him about 45 rpm 12" records. Cut at 45 rpm.
Sometimes I think the guys at Abbey Road think the laws of physics and materials science do not apply to them. Or they can just say whatever they like.

DigitalIsDead's picture

I always found the sound of both of these albums, especially the early CDs and 80s reissues, to be terrible which is a shame as the music is mostly their best. Finally, with Tattoo You Bob Ludwig was brought in and from their forward their records sounded fantastic.

MalachiLui's picture

early CDs almost always SUCK. dynamic, sure, but grainy and blah and not even close to the original recording (there are a few good CDs from the late 80s of digital recordings at that time, but still... not very good). A/D converters are much better in the 21st century (especially now) than they were in the early CD age.

i have an original RL masterdisk 'tattoo you' and while it's a more conventionally tidy recording, the artisan 'exile' sounds much more transparent despite the messy character of the mix. entirely different albums, yes, but i think saying that 'sticky fingers' and 'exile' are "terrible" recordings is a bit extreme.

DigitalIsDead's picture

You're kidding, right? You can't be muddy and transparent. by definition muddy means opaque at best. The quality of the music is transparent but you have to extract that from the muck. There is no muck on Tattoo You, Undercover and Dirty Work. You won't get an argument from me about the quality of the music because I'd take the Mick Taylor lineup all day long.

Anton D's picture

Now we can get a transparent look at the murky heart of the beast, I guess.

Anton D's picture

Try the Japanese SACD pressing.

Astounding, for digital!

https://www.discogs.com/release/6007873-The-Rolling-Stones-Black-And-Blue

I am bringing one to the Pacific Northwest Audiofest if you wanna hear it.

Martin's picture

This one is really good.
The SACD nails it too.
Wish the Some Girls SACD was this good.
Somehow, for the SHM SACDs, they didn't get a great source.... All the others are great.

AnalogJ's picture

Malachi, I don't know what bug crawled up through some sphincters around here but I thought your Stones reviews here were well thought out and well done. I knew what you meant by "unsettled" by the context and and knowing The Stones and the music.

I think you're growing as a contributor, you're lending your persective, and not everyone is EVER going to agree with it 100% of the time. I don't agree with Michael Fremer nearly 100% of the time. And even HE can resort to snark too much. They may take it from him. I understand that he will be moving on from here, and you may be, too. I don't know.

But I wish you well, and hope you continue to follow your passion and growth.

Jeff

Glotz's picture

Pretty loaded comments to be throwing it around.

swimming1's picture

I've always found a clean original recording is the way to go.A side light, saw the Stones at Boston Garden the summer of 72.Stevie Wonder opened for them ,played every instrument, amazing. Don't remember the Stones.Ha. Let It Bleed is my all-time fav!

Michael Fremer's picture

I was there too! In fact I did radio commercial about it! Remember the Stones had been busted and were in jail in Warwick, RI and the show was postponed for hours and the Garden didn't have air conditioning. They passed out frisbees. And then there was the famous Mayor Kevin White "city in flames" speech. If you remember the Boston police were beating on the hippies at the Garden and beating on the Black people on the other side of town and White managed to spring The Stones so they could play and he gave a totally self congratulatory speech. It was a scene. I wish I could post the radio spot here. You'd love it.....

Biff Jones's picture

Malachi, you are hitting your stride. I enjoyed the review and appreciated the follow up comments you offered, even your responses to the less positive commentary. Looking forward to more reviews in the future!

Robcos02330's picture

You’re growing as a writer (as well as a responder to criticism!). Well done. Unsettling is EXACTLY the right word to use. I mean, c’mon it’s The Rolling Stones! You have sent me hunting and what better compliment than that?

kleinbje's picture

These reviews made me break out the EOMS reissue pressed at RTI probably early 2000's with 180g and postcards, sounds decent, with recessed vocals a bit. My preferred SF is a German original, though I have an original presswell where side two explodes and Moonlight Mile thrills. Great reviews, fuck the racist haters. Nobody criticizes and compares like you, it's basically what most readers ask for. I think Tyler and the Trump puppet suck, but dig your writing, and that you put yourself out there.
Be Well

dial's picture

After 'Satanic' a lot of magic flew away, it's like listening to a Macca solo album (on vinyl of course!) and then Sergeant Pepper, see what I mean? I also realize that time plays its part: I bought these records when they came out (U.S. pressing). And compared to younger groups, compared to Alice Cooper, Popol Vuh, the Blüe Öyster Cult, the stones were out of (their) time. At the time on the Dual it did not sound bad but far from hifi. But then with the Sanyo TP 1000, the Ortofon SL 20Q which had replaced the Excel Sound ES 70 it was even worse, compared to the productions of Bob Ezrin or Sandy Pearlman/Murray Krugman. Taylor's departure marked the end of the band musically.

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