Remasters - does no-one give a s**t about 'remasters' ?
Okay, this has been bugging me for a while. RANT ALERT !
I am flipping hacked off, because every time I want to buy an album on CD that I already have a superb copy on vinyl of, I have to do hours of research. I have bought 'remastered' CD's where there are jarring errors ( the ZZ Top La Grange, ignoring any digital drumming update f**kups, the original remaster's mis-step, real nasty ). Newly released stuff that should have the advertised DTS track that just isn't there ( XTC - Nonsuch IFIRC ). JMJ's back catalogue ( e.g. Zoolook's re-ordered tracklist with two tracks remixed, and a failed crossfade of the title track ). Again, JMJ's Revolutions, substituted for another track ( yes, due to copyright reasons but ..... ). Kraftwerk's Radioactivity - absolutely beautiful on vinyl but ( and I'm going on internet reviews here soz ) noise reduction applied that gets rid on the intentional 'noise' across the album.
AND I'm not even beginning to 'discuss' the current trend for dynamic range compression.
Every time something new and improved is released, someone f**ks up. Peoples finds it, and tries to report it. Sometimes it gets fixed, sometimes there is no email to report problems to, no feedback link to click on.
I thought the main problem with old master tapes was shedding. It doesn't seem that way to me...
Thanks for staying with me, I'd really like to read your responses,
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Re: Remasters - does no-one give a s**t about 'remasters' ?
Ahhh, I see your problem...
you are incapable of making a coherent representation of a complaint.
Sorry, truly - couldn't resist.
Surely you grasp the idea that the fan base and the marketplace knows exactly what they want; but, the powers in charge don't have the ability to deliver that incarnation without complications, compromises or coercion.
- Maybe the labels wants to release a 5.1 or remaster from original source...but the artist is sitting on the tape in question ("master tapes 'went missing'"), until he can either get a better deal for it, or until they entrust his ravaged ears to do the project himself.
- Possibly the best tapes are really gone, destroyed when everything got dumped to "perfect sound forever" digital tape storage, and somebody in the chain is forbidding the project unless they can get a better deal for it, or a better-quality source can be found ("Hello, Japan? Say, remember those tapes we sent to your studios back in the '70's...?").
- Possibly the best work on the project got scuttled at the last minute when some coked-up label exec stuck his head in the remastering suite and told the engineer to jack-up the compression because his girlfriend wants it louder...and he can get a better deal for it.
- Or his name rhymes with, "Meter Phew"......and unless his name is on the credits...he can't get a piece of that better deal his division got for it.
- Possibly the label is working on its' own "deluxe album series", and only tacked this album onto the list as an afterthought, and nobody has the budgeted time to go searching the vaults for the right source material...because they need to move on to that Aretha Franklin title...that they already got a better deal for.
- Maybe the artist won't sign off on it in 5.1 because he supervised the SQ Quad mix long long ago, which is the only one he ever got a better deal for, and insists it'll be fine, even if the label only has a license to release QS Quad.
- Maybe there was one glaring error in the project - vocals too far off the center of the soundstage, or sound quality of the '70s-era Quad mix didn't come close to the stereo remaster done just months ago, or somehow a fold-down of the stereo mix got left where there should have been a dedicated mono mix - and label heads just let it go out, thinking nobody's gonna notice and surely nobody's gonna start calling for replacement discs, so let's just get it out there on time and celebrate the better deal we got.
I believe any of those possibilities contain the component of the reasons for all your frustrations. They frustrate us too, but since we're willing to pay premium prices to get the products we were promised, that means we have no power in this customer/manufacturer relationship - they got the better deal.
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