June 29, 2014

Vinyl Albums Being Re-Released in Mono 09-2014

With an audiophile audience in mind, The Beatles’ mono albums have been newly mastered for vinyl from quarter-inch master tapes at Abbey Road Studios. While the corresponding CD boxed set from 2009 was created from digital remasters, these new vinyl versions have been cut without the use of any digital technology.  Manufactured for the world at Optimal Media in Germany, The Beatles’ albums are presented in their original glory, both sonically and in their packaging

London – June 16, 2014 – The Beatles in mono

This is how most listeners first heard the group in the 1960s, when mono was the predominant audio format. Up until 1968, each Beatles album was given a unique mono and stereo mix, but the group always regarded the mono as primary. On September 8 (September 9 in North America), The Beatles’ nine U.K. albums, the American-compiled Magical Mystery Tour, and the Mono Masters collection of non-album tracks will be released in mono on 180-gram vinyl LPs with faithfully replicated artwork. Newly mastered from the analogue master tapes, each album will be available both individually and within a lavish, limited 14-LP boxed edition, The Beatles In Mono, which also includes a 108-page hardbound book.

The Beatles, 1968. © Apple Corps. Ltd.

In an audiophile-minded undertaking, The Beatles’ acclaimed mono albums have been newly mastered for vinyl from quarter-inch master tapes at Abbey Road Studios by GRAMMY®-winning engineer Sean Magee and GRAMMY®-winning mastering supervisor Steve Berkowitz. While The Beatles In Mono CD boxed set released in 2009 was created from digital remasters, for this new vinyl project, Magee and Berkowitz cut the records without using any digital technology. Instead, they employed the same procedures used in the 1960s, guided by the original albums and by detailed transfer notes made by the original cutting engineers.

Working in the same room at Abbey Road where most of The Beatles’ albums were initially cut, the pair first dedicated weeks to concentrated listening, fastidiously comparing the master tapes with first pressings of the mono records made in the 1960s. Using a rigorously tested Studer A80 machine to play back the precious tapes, the new vinyl was cut on a 1980s-era VMS80 lathe.

Manufactured for the world at Optimal Media in Germany, The Beatles’ albums are presented in their original glory, both sonically and in their packaging. The boxed collection’s exclusive 12-inch by 12-inch hardbound book features new essays and a detailed history of the mastering process by award-winning radio producer and author Kevin Howlett. The book is illustrated with many rare studio photos of The Beatles, fascinating archive documents, and articles and advertisements sourced from 1960s publications.

Available now for preorder at www.thebeatles.com.

The Beatles In Mono
* Available individually and collected in a limited 14-LP boxed edition, accompanied by an exclusive 108-page hardbound book.
  • Please Please Me
  • With The Beatles
  • A Hard Day's Night
  • Beatles For Sale
  • Help!
  • Rubber Soul
  • Revolver
  • Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band
  • Magical Mystery Tour
  • The Beatles (2-LP)
  • Mono Masters (3-LP)

"The Beatles", affectionally known as "the White album". © Apple Corps Ltd.

Official promotional film for the mono vinyl releases.

The prices from Amazon in USA for the boxed set is $409.26, single-LPs are $26.60, the 2LP "The Beatles" $43.97 and the 3LP "Mono Masters" $77.52.

Official press release.

Source: http://wogew.blogspot.com/2014/06/the-beatles-mono-vinyls-press-release.html

June 28, 2014

Unplugged Bootleg

Just when you thought that everything that could be said that was new, fresh, or unusual about the Beatles' later history was already out there, along comes The Beatles: Unplugged, a bootleg CD so good that the folks at Apple and EMI ought to be kicking themselves for not thinking of it first. This disc (which is sort-of subtitled "The Kinfaun-Session," referring to George Harrison's Esher home) pulls together the 23 songs that Harrison, John Lennon, and Paul McCartney recorded as works-in-progress at Harrison's home in May of 1968. Most of what's here was eventually heard either on The Beatles [White Album], or various solo works ("Child of Nature" surfacing with new lyrics as "A Jealous Guy," etc.) or B-sides ("What's the New Mary Jane"), and on various bootlegs. What makes this presentation better than most is that it's part of that "digipak" bootleg series that's been coming out of Europe since late 2000 and generally knocking listeners out with its quality. The production here is a match for any legitimate release, not just in sound quality but also the care that went into the selection, order, and editing of the tapes; there's some hiss here and there, to be sure, and a few tracks are close to overload on the sound, but there's nothing here that will make you jump to lower the volume or skip to the next cut -- in fact, chances are most of the songs here will get repeated more than once. It's a lot like listening to an "unplugged" version of The Beatles (even re-creating The Beatles [White Album]'s packaging), since most of it is represented here, and in excellent form. Indeed, the version of "Revolution" on this disc -- just to cite one example -- is as good as the released one, only brighter, and, if you will, bouncier, as the trio has unbridled fun with the lyric, the beat, and the rhymes without the need to pump up the wattage or the seriousness of it all; if the finished song is John Lennon's message to the world about politics, hate, and manipulation of the Beatles, this is his handwritten draft of that message, with all of his momentary digressions and mental edits left in. McCartney and Harrison's songs are just as well represented, and the only thing missing is a contribution by Ringo Starr, who didn't participate in these recordings. The curious element is that it's the hard-rocking songs -- "Yer Blues" and "Back in the USSR" -- that come off the best, even though they're the most different from the finished versions; the demo of "Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da" is just as entertaining, as the trio plunges headfirst into reggae armed with just their guitars and some good intentions. As the notes point out, whatever stresses the group may have been experiencing as a formal entity, the three guitarists had some productive and harmonious sessions and they still sounded as cool, creative, and cutting edge as they ever did. As bonus cuts, the makers have added "Helter Skelter" from a studio run-through, and thrown on "Spiritual Regeneration," the Beatles/Beach Boys ode to the Maharishi (which segues into the Beatles' birthday greeting to Mike Love) and a somewhat less-entertaining, informal, acoustic medley of traditional songs, all tracks recorded in India.
Source: AllMusic Review

Child of Nature later became Jealous Guy on John Lennon's solo album Imagine
Circles, written by George Harrison, was later released on Gone Troppo, his solo album released in 1982.

Sour Milk Sea was later given to Jackie Lomax which would be released in 1968.
Not Guilty was released in George Harrison's self-titled album in 1979, and an alternative take was released on Anthology.
Junk was released on Paul McCartney's first self-titled album, and the demo was also released on Anthology, a bit shorter than the original.
Spiritual Regeneration India was played for a birthday in India, according to someone talking in the song.
Rishikesh No. 9? I don't know.
01 - Cry Baby Cry
02 - Child Of Nature
03 - The Continuing Story of Bungalow Bill
04 - I'm So Tired
05 - Yer Blues
06 - Everybody's Got Something To Hide Except for Me and My Monkey
07 - What's The New Mary Jane
08 - Revolution
09 - While My Guitar Gently Weeps
10 - Circles
11 - Sour Milk Sea
12 - Not Guilty
13 - Piggies
14 - Julia
15 - Blackbird
16 - Rocky Raccoon
17 - Back In The U.S.S.R.
18 - Honey Pie
19 - Mother Nature's Son
20 - Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da
21 - Junk
22 - Dear Prudence
23 - Sexy Sadie
24 - Helter Skelter
25 - Spiritual Regeneration India
26 - Rishikesh No. 9

More info here: http://getbeatlebootlegs.blogspot.com/2012/06/download-here.html

June 26, 2014

Alternate Abbey Road

Alternate takes and mixes from Abbey Road era. All the material presented here has already been bootlegged before. This CD circulates in two versions. The contents are the same (the two medleys have been separated in tracks) but the art is different.

Alternate Abbey Road - Tracklist - Pear Records
August 1972 - "One To One" rehearsal

1     Come Together  - Take 37
2     Something Take 21 - Piano notes at the start, different vocals, no ynth and guitar overdubs
3     Maxwell's Silver Hammer - Early version - different vocal
4     Oh! Darling -  Take 32 - no sound effects, different vocal
5     Octopus's Garden - Experimental take - lead vocal by Paul (22/02/69)
6     I Want You (She's So Heavy) - Live - 18th November 1976, George with Paul Simon live on the Saturday Night Live show
7     Here Comes The Sun - Isolated vocal for the first minute of the song, made for the 1983 Abbey Road Video show
8     Because - Alternate take with instrumental jam at the end
9     You Never Give Me Your Money - Alternate take, starts with organ note, no sound effects
10     Sun King - Alternate take, different ending
11     Mean Mr. Mustard - Original
12     Her Majesty - Alternate take, different beginning
13     Polythene Pam - Alternate take
14     She Came In Through The Bathroom Window - Alternate take, different vocals, no chorus, no strings, more piano
15     Golden Slumbers / Carry That Weight - Alternate take from the Anthology video
16     The End - Acetate - as used for Anthology in an earlier stage, this lasts a few seconds longer
17     Something - Alternate take
18     Oh! Darling - Alternate take
19     Because - Original Abbey Road mix
20     The Huge Melody (Part 1) - Original Abbey Road mix
21     A Huge Melody (Part 2) - Alternate take, with final guitar chord
22     Her Majesty - Medley of Abbey Road tracks
23     Abbey Road Medley - Instrumental of "Because" with comments by all four Beatles
24     The End of The Beatles    

Let It Be Naked

Let It Be - Remastered

White Album

Red Album - Greatest Hits 1962 - 1966 - Remastered

Blue Album - Greatest Hits - 1967 - 1970 - Remastered

Love Album