Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Genres: Pop, Rock, Classic Rock
Digitally remastered 1997 reissue of their top 75 1978 albumwith 'Nothing Can Move Me' added as a bonus track. 13 trackstotal, also featuring the top 50 hit 'Dreadlock Holiday', plus 'For You And I', 'Last Night', 'Take Th... more »
Digitally remastered 1997 reissue of their top 75 1978 albumwith 'Nothing Can Move Me' added as a bonus track. 13 trackstotal, also featuring the top 50 hit 'Dreadlock Holiday', plus 'For You And I', 'Last Night', 'Take These Chains' & 'Tokyo'. A Mercury Records release.
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Great music, pitiful remastering job
D. Ayars | Deerfield, IL USA | 05/26/2006
(4 out of 5 stars)
"I am in the distinct minority among 10cc devotees-- and this is just my personal taste-- but I've always preferred Deceptive Bends, and particularly Bloody Tourists, as my favorite 10cc albums. Kevin Godley and Lol Creme with Eric Stewart and Graham Gouldman put out some awesome tracks on the earlier albums, among the best 10cc ever did, no doubt, but there were also tracks on those albums I just personally never got into. After The Split (Kevin and Lol left the band), on Deceptive Bends and Bloody Tourists, Eric and Graham demonstrated continued growth as musicians and consistently very high-quality writing, wit, hooks, energy and performance level that I really enjoy. If you don't agree, and most or at least many longtime 10cc fans don't, I understand, but I believe differences here come down to personal taste. I rate every track on this CD (including the bonus Nothing Can Move Me which was a B-side to the Dreadlock Holiday single) very highly and worth a trip out to my iPod.
At times, Bloody Tourists reminds me of Paul McCartney. Sir Paulie should wish he were making music this good in 1978. And I like McCartney and the Beatles very much. I like this better.
I can't endorse the Mercury digital remastering of this CD, though. Some of the treble or high end got lost in the transfer, a relatively easy problem to address with tone controls in playback or with audio software. The dynamic range on most CD tracks was compressed too much compared to the vinyl. But most annoying of all, this CD was remastered with a slight slowing of timing and pitch. Each track but the Dreadlock Holiday single sides runs slower on the CD than on vinyl, at a consistent slow speed within each track, but by varying amounts of slowness from one track to another. The musical notes on this remastered CD are as much as a half-tone lower than on the LP. You may wonder: 'So what? I don't have perfect pitch.' So this: just a bit of the energy and sparkle of the original have been drained off. Think 10cc on ludes. OK, so this always was one of the best head albums. Now it sounds it? But that's not a feature; it's a bug. The difference in listed track times on LP and CD, which are very close to accurate for Bloody Tourists, supports what the ear hears: the CD runs slower than the vinyl. Comparing the lead vocals to other 10cc recordings clearly suggests that the version that was engineered at the incorrect pitch or speed was the remastered CD, not the original LP.
If you have music editing software such as Adobe Audition, you can correct this pitch and timing screwup by buying and ripping the Mercury remastered CD and editing the pitch of each CD track to match up to the LP track. (The Audition 1.5 command sequence for this is: Effects>Time/Pitch>Stretch>Constant Stretch tab, turn the Resample radio button on, and enter for the Ratio the following numbers for each of these tracks: Track 2: 99.5%. Track 3: 98.0%. Track 4: 97.0%. Track 5: 96.5%. Track 6: 97.5%. Track 7: 99.5%. Track 8: 98.5%. Track 9: 98.5%. Track 10: 97.75%. Track 11: 98.0%. Track 12: 99.75%. In other words, track 5, Last Night, is 3.5% slower on the CD than on the LP, but by running this software on this track, you digitally shorten it and match it back up to the LP in pitch and time.) Add a little high end, save and burn, and you have a notably better digital version of the album than Mercury's remastered CD release. But of course most people don't have software that can make this adjustment, and it's too expensive to buy just to fix one CD.
If you have no way to fix the pitch issue with music editing software, should you get this CD? I still recommend it, unless you are highly sensitive to pitch and know the LP version of this album well; if that's the case, this CD may drive you nuts. It surely does sadden me to see this fine material treated with such carelessness by an engineer and by a record company.
My grades: A for the music composed and arranged by Eric and Graham, A for 10cc's performance, D for the digital remastering on this CD: B or 4 stars overall. I join with others in hoping for a better digital remastering of this underrated album another day."