Random Play by Graham Reid

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Random Play: Let me take you down . . .

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  • Shayne Stuchbery,

    And just get used to the idea that ambitious arts festivals are just going to require very long term financial commitments, and run serious deficits. That's not being negative, that's dealing with reality -- as anyone who's been involved with the Wellington International Arts Festival for more than five minutes will tell you.

    Your right mate, its a long term investment, however it seems that all manner of arts festivals can become pretty good earners. Can't move here in Canada during the summertime for festivals. For the last ten weekends just on Vancouver Island we have seen all manner of festivals and sometimes a number occurring on the same day/weekend! My mate who runs a big local event, and has a hand in many others, tells me that many of the festivals make a bit of money and most at least break even. These Festivals cover all kinds of Music, Food, Culture and the primary patrons are either locals or from the Lower Mainland.
    With my own business relying on the tourist dollar I can certainly attest to having bonus clients/media attention/advertising simply by being near these festivals. Busiest time of the year for many of us. Its become part of the culture here and yeah, perhaps the fervor is in part due to our collective joy at seeing the sun for a scant few months, but I still like to think your lot could get the same vibe.

    I like your idea Graham and if I can hustle my family back home at some stage I will be the first keener signing up to get some kind of show on the road.

    BC, Canada • Since Nov 2006 • 12 posts Report Reply

  • Rob Hosking,

    Reason critics have tended to trash McCartney: their mums liked him too much.

    No way of proving this, just a suspicion.

    Personally I'm not a fan of his rockers. They sound unconvincing to my ear, like the Osmonds' "Crazy Horses".

    Sacrilege, I know.

    But his mid tempo tunes...unbeatable.

    I was in the car the other day and 'Penny Lane' came on the CD player. Hadn't heard it for ages.

    And I was rapt. It is just utterly gorgeous.

    South Roseneath • Since Nov 2006 • 830 posts Report Reply

  • Danielle,

    the Osmonds' "Crazy Horses"

    That song is a hot mess, but in a wonderful way. I laugh out loud whenever I hear it.

    Charo World. Cuchi-cuchi!… • Since Nov 2006 • 3828 posts Report Reply

  • Rob Hosking,

    That song is a hot mess, but in a wonderful way. I laugh out loud whenever I hear it.

    I have an identical reaction, and the song features on my personal 'The Good the Bad and the Downright Cheesy' collection.

    But they're not trying to be funny.

    South Roseneath • Since Nov 2006 • 830 posts Report Reply

  • Rich Lock,

    the Osmonds' "Crazy Horses"

    That song is a hot mess, but in a wonderful way. I laugh out loud whenever I hear it.

    Have you heard the cover version by 'The Mission'?

    Turns out old-school '80's Goths have a sense of humour after all. Who knew?

    back in the mother countr… • Since Feb 2007 • 2728 posts Report Reply

  • 3410,

    First thoughts on the remasters [Now, bear in mind that I'm a B**tles geek and a mastering geek and a hobby complainer. Also, that these are general comments, not having heard everything yet.]

    Gotta say, I'm not entirely blown away. Both mono and stereo suffer from EQing. In all cases auditioned thus far the treble is rolled off (60 y.o. engineers compensating for their tinnitus, perhaps?) A/B'ed against the best vinyl rips and the '87s, the tops really are missing a bit most of the time; lead guitar often doesn't quite sting like it should, cymbals don't sizzle.

    Stereo editions (but not mono) are compressed a bit much; about 3dB too much, IMO. It's not extreme, but the lack of air is often slightly (or, occasionally, fairly) evident on the rockers. Overall clarity is generally improved, but often only slightly so.

    It's a bit more complicated than that, of course. Every song has been worked on individually, so some are more successful than others. Occasionally, a complete success, but far more often, merely quite good.

    Best general improvement is in bass detail but this is, I feel, partially due to EQ boosting in this range.

    Haven't heard too much mono yet, but the same EQ issues exist on what I've heard; mainly, a lack of treble, but in the odd case a pretty severe lack of bass heft, too.

    Like I said at the top, this is obsessive-level complaining. These are certainly no worse than most modern remasters (and better than a lot of them) and some elements do reveal themselves like never before, but talk of the previously unimagined levels of mastering quality is, to my ears, largely just good marketing.

    I guess I'm probably in the minority with many of these opinions, but I know the records well and, so far, this is how I see it.

    The music is, of course, great, and the packaging is pretty nice. Despite the minor quibbles (and they are minor; there is so much to like here), the discs are certainly rewarding. Grab 'em, tilt the EQ a bit towards the treble where required, and rock out.

    Auckland • Since Jan 2007 • 2618 posts Report Reply

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