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Can't seem to face/up to the facts... - W.A.S.T.E

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October 4th, 2005


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08:53 pm - Can't seem to face/up to the facts...
I haven't even touched on the 5.1-channel DVD-audio remixes yet, but so far, the stereo remasters of the old Talking Heads albums sound good to my ears. Beefier low end, a little more detail, and a generally stronger presence. And about time, too.

(I'm still a little grumpy about having to buy Naked as part of the box, but WTF: one album I don't care about isn't such a terrible penalty. And hey, it's a very pretty box.)

Edit: Interesting. There seems to have been a little back-and-forth with regard to the songwriting credits on Fear of Music. On the other recent Rhino/Sire/WB releases (The Best of Talking Heads, The Name of This Band is Talking Heads and the Once in a Lifetime box set), "Heaven" and "Memories Can't Wait" were credited to Byrne/Harrison, and "Life During Wartime" was credited to all four Heads; on both the old WB Fear of Music CD and the new Rhino/Sire/WB disc, those three songs are all credited solely to Byrne. And "Drugs", which the other Rhino releases credit exclusively to Byrne, is credited to Byrne/Eno on the album.
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[User Picture]
From:dariusk
Date:October 5th, 2005 03:30 am (UTC)
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Ooh. I didn't know there was a remastering. I take it these are only available on the box?
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From:trystero
Date:October 5th, 2005 01:17 pm (UTC)
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For now, yeah, they're only in the box set. And Rhino's site doesn't say anything about individual album releases. But the box-set review on AllMusic claims that the individual albums are "tentatively scheduled to follow, three to four months after this set's…release", so maybe their reviewer knows something I don't.

There are some nice little details in the remastering; you can hear the attack on picked guitars and on snare drums more clearly, and you can hear the beginning of the acoustic guitar part at the start of "Burning Down the House", where the old CD faded it up in mid-phrase.

And I've listened to a couple of the 5.1-channel remixes now; so far, they're interesting without being essential. Nothing too pan-crazed; instruments mostly spread across the front three speakers, ambience and some percussion and a few keyboard bits thrown into the rears. I don't think they'll replace the stereo mixes, but they're kinda cool as supplements.

As far as Remain in Light goes, since I know it's your favourite: the CD side features four unfinished tracks from the album sessions (one of which, "Right Start", is clearly an early prototype of "Once in a Lifetime"). These are interesting rather than great, IMO, but they offer some cool context: it's amazing to think that the insanely-tight final album came out of this sort of loose demo material. And the DVD side has live video clips of two songs taken from the Remain in Light tour, with Adrian Belew and Busta Jones. Very nice.

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