Sunday, September 13, 2009
On 9/9/09 all of The Beatles proper albums were released in their glorious remastered form. A marketing ploy, or a markedly better sound? You decide. Upon hearing the mono version of "Hey Bulldog" on KUT last night, I would have to say better sound definitely wins out. Two box-sets that were released, a mono and stereo set, promptly sold out in less than a day, with more on the way. You can also buy the individual stereo remastered albums by themselves.
I have yet to get my hands on one of these gems. The mono box set is the one that I'm most curious about, although I wouldn't throw the stereo set out of bed. The Beatles long-time producer George Martin once said, "You never really heard Sgt. Pepper's until you've heard it in mono." Back in the day when stereo sound was a new thing, albums were recorded to be played in mono. Martin, and the Beatles themselves, took great pains in creating these exceptional mono versions. Word is that the boys left the building when it was time for the stereo mixing sessions.
As for the regular stereo remasters? People have been complaining for years about the sound on the 1987 remasters. Released for the first time on compact disc in 1987, the sound can be tinny and over-compressed on these versions.
The box sets will cost you. The stereo set is $179, while the mono set will set you back $229.99 over on Amazon.