Quad LP/Tape Poll Aerosmith: Rocks [SQ/Q8]


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Rate "Rocks"

  • 6

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 5: Bleh.....

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 4

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 3

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 2

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • 1: Bad Sound, Bad Mix, Bad Content

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
For as long as I can remember - (and it's a very long time) - the cracking whip effect was always in the stereo mix.

You might be right, I don't have a stereo copy to confirm. I do remember hearing the stereo version a lot as my brother used to play it and "Wings" all the time in his car and don't recall any whip effect. If the effect is there it must be subtle, buried in the mix. Can someone with a stereo copy confirm? In any case the stereo mix's are very dry and boring compared to the Quad.
The "whip" is definitely there in stereo, but not as pronounced as on my SQ LP. I have the remastered version from the Box of Fire CK 66674.

Here's what Wikipedia says:

The song's main riff was written by Joe Perry on a Fender Bass VI, which gives the song its distinctive "growl". Brad Whitford plays the lead guitar part. "Back in the Saddle" also features one of the heaviest and noticeable bass lines by Tom Hamilton. The song is also notable for the slow buildup of the drum beat and guitar riff in the beginning of the song, as well as the sound effects of a galloping horse and whips, and screams and yodeling by Steven Tyler at the end of the song. A real bullwhip was intended to be used for the whip effects and hours were spent trying to get it to crack. The band members ended up cut up and hurt without making any progress. Eventually, the band decided the whip effects would be created by whirling a 30-foot cord from the studio, then by firing a cap gun to create the crack of the whip (the sound effects are more prominent in the Quadraphonic mix of the album (Columbia CAQ 34165)).
I was introduced to Aerosmith in 1975 with the release of "Toys In The Attic". I liked the LP so much that I purchased "Get Your Wings" and then their debut. When "Rocks" came out, it quickly became a favorite in my collection. I would ranked it at number 2 in the list of their classic albums. "Get Your Wings" is my number 1 due to 'Seasons Of Wither' alone. Those classic first four Aerosmith LP's sure bring up a lot of memories from my time spent growing up in Lombard, IL. :)
Lombard??? I have some fond memories of working at Pacific Stereo in Lombard. It was the #2 volume store out of 110, second only to Berkeley, which was their original store. I was at both the old store and prototype of their "new store" that we built across the street. We had Steve Dahl (a year before the infamous disco demolition night at Comiskey) & Garry Meier for our grand opening. Funny you mention Lombard, because I'm listening to Third World 96 degrees, which I got into while working there.

Sticks and stones will break my bones, but WHIPS and CHAINS excite me!
Unless there's multiple stereo mixes out there, one of the biggest differences between Quad & Stereo is the Quad completely omits a lot of Steve Tyler's yodelling and adlibbing towards the end of the song.
SQ album is a "10" for me. My favorite Aerosmith LP, with great sound quality. I prefer cranking my LP to the other versions out there, despite my decoder's limitations.
Has anyone ever heard the Q8 of this title? By the comments posted, I get the impression that the SQ LP is what most people have heard. I guess Aerosmith fans of the day weren't huge Q8 fans.
Has anyone ever heard the Q8 of this title? By the comments posted, I get the impression that the SQ LP is what most people have heard. I guess Aerosmith fans of the day weren't huge Q8 fans.

I used to have all three Aerosmith Q8's. The hoof beats and whip, on "Back in the Saddle" slowly circled the four speakers around the room discreetly. The SQ is good because of the improvement in fidelity, but something is lost in translation with regards to the mix. IMO, the Q8 mix on "Toys in the Attic" was better than on the 5.1 SACD. My favorite of the three was "Get Your Wings". I still have hopes that someday these will be released but they better hurry, the fans aren't getting any younger.
A 10 if there ever was one! Simply one of the greatest quad mixes ever. I'll just quote my post from the "Listening To Now" thread below:

View attachment 37663

This is, to me, the be-all-end-all ultimate hard rock surround title. The U.K. quad of Machine Head comes close, but this slightly edges it for me because that title is mostly static in terms of placement. This mix pulls out all the stops with various forms of active panning and motion effects.

"Back In The Saddle" becomes even more zany and chaotic with horses galloping around and whips hitting each speaker. The guitar intro to "Rats In The Cellar" moves from channel to channel clockwise around the room. The guitar solos in "Rats" and "Combination" move all around the room, jumping left to right and front to back. The guitar in "Nobody's Fault" rapidly swirls and pulsates around the room in a manner similar to those early Santana and Guess Who quads.

Beneath all that, you get the typical Columbia rock layout: drums, bass, and vocals across the front, with rhythm guitars in the rears. Lead guitar spotlights are often totally isolated in the left rear channel ("Back In The Saddle", "Last Child", "Sick As A Dog", "Get The Lead Out"). Backing/doubled vocals are usually in the rears ("Combination", "Sick As A Dog"), though on "Last Child" Steven Tyler's doubled vocal ("yes sir, no sir...", "home...sweet...HOME") is diagonally placed in the left front and right rear channel.

Easily the best of the three Aerosmith quads- I think it's still unknown who did the mix, but Jay Messina is credited for the other two and the 5.1 Toys In The Attic, so maybe it's him. It's pretty scare unfortunately, another '76 Q8 that's unobtainable (one just sold for $80 today, there's another one listed for something insane like $230). Even the SQ doesn't pop up much, I see it on Discogs starting for $30+.

So what's it gonna take to get this out? Has this title ever been reissued on anything other than CD? I don't think there's ever been even a stereo hi-res version of this, the single-layer stereo SACD was pulled from the market (though there are a few in circulation).

Unless you hate Aerosmith, I guarantee this quad mix would blow you away. I will never listen to "Back In The Saddle" in stereo again, not enough clip-clop action!

"Last Child" (with diagonal backing vocals- presumably to get dead center within the limits of SQ? Some of the PIR quads do that):
View attachment 37666

"Combination" (with channel-hopping guitar):
View attachment 37665

"Sick As A Dog" (lead guitar AND backing vocals in left rear on outro):
View attachment 37664
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Don't know which Tab DTS CD transfer I have a SQ or a Q8, but it sounds much better than my original pressing of stereo vinyl. All of Aerosmith quads would be an excellent revisit......order up....
I have SEVERAL versions of this album, A KILLER German import lp, a regular us issue lp, standard cd, sacd, 24/96 HD Tracks and a conversion of this QUAD LP to 24/96, THIS is the ONE
loved the 'smiths since I was..12(?)...my sister's boyfriend lent me Rocks (and A night at the Opera) and I was hooked! bought all the albums starting with Draw the line until Rock in a hard place..
was used to the Stereo version so when I got the Quad in 2008-9 and converted it with Lucanu's script it was just amazing...can't wait for DV to do these three... or Sony Japan even!
Well you are probably one of only a handful of people in the world as it was never released commercially.

You must have a story on how you got it
A handful were fished out of the grinder dumpster obviously before they were destroyed. I always wondered why, were they defective, or the lack of a surround layer was deemed unacceptable?
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