April 23, 2011

Playlist Week of 04-23-11

Fleetwood Mac - Rumours

* Trevor Pinnock: Keyboard Music of 16th Century England (Pinnock) (Vanguard LP)
* De Machy: Pieces De Viole 1685 (Savall) (Telefunken LP)
* J.S. Bach: Inventions and Sinfonias (Leonhardt) (Seon/ABC LP)
* Sun Ra: Space Probe (side B) (Saturn LP>CDR)
* Sun Ra: Space Probe (Expanded Edition) (Saturn/Art Yard CD)
* Sun Ra: Disco 3000 (Saturn/Art Yard CD)
* Tom Rainey Trio: Pool School (Clean Feed CD)
* Ingrid Laubrock: Anti-House (Intakt CD)
* Myra Melford’s Be Bread: The Whole Tree Gone (Firehouse 12 CD)
* David Torn: Prezens (ECM CD)†
* Bill Laswell: City Of Light (Sub Rosa CD)
* War: The World Is A Ghetto (Avenue/Rhino CD)
* V/A: Saturday Night Fever (Soundtrack) (RSO 2LP)
* Sir Douglas Quintet: The Mono Singles ’68-’72 (Sundazed 2LP)
* Grateful Dead: Civic Center Arena, Springfield, MA 10-02-72 (SBD 4CDR)
* Grateful Dead; Reckoning (Deluxe Edition) (d.2) (GDP/Rhino 2CD)†/‡
* Fleetwood Mac: Fleetwood Mac (Reprise LP)
* Fleetwood Mac: Rumours (Reprise/Warner Bros. 2-45RPM/33RPM LP)
* Fleetwood Mac: Tusk (Warner Bros.—Japan 2LP)
* Boston: Boston (Epic LP)
* Pink Floyd: The Wall (Columbia 2LP)
* Joni Mitchell: Hejira (Asylum CD)†
* Rickie Lee Jones: Pirates (Warner Bros./MFSL SACD)
* Elvis Costello: My Aim Is True (Columbia / MFSL LP)
* Elvis Costello: This Year’s Model (Columbia / MFSL LP)
* Elvis Costello: Armed Forces (Columbia/ MFSL LP)
* U2: The Joshua Tree (Deluxe Edition) (Island/Universal 2CD)†/‡
* Pixies: Surfer Rosa (4AD/ MFSL SACD)
* The Feelies: The Good Earth (Coyote LP)
* Flaming Lips: The Soft Bulletin (Warner Bros. CD)†/‡
* Robert Pollard: Crickets: The Best Of The Fading Captain Series (Fading Captain 2CD)†/‡
* Robert Pollard: Moses On A Snail (GBV, Inc. CD)†/‡
* Lifeguards: Waving At The Astronauts (Serious Business CD)†/‡
* Mars Classroom: The New Theory Of Everything (Happy Jack Rock Records LP)
* Beck: Sea Change (Geffen/ MFSL 2LP)
* Radiohead: In Rainbows (TBD CD)†
* Radiohead: The King Of Limbs (TBD/Ticker Tape CD)†
* Animal Collective: Merriweather Post Pavilion (Domino CD)†/‡
* Broken Bells: Broken Bells (Columbia CD/LP) (†)
* Broken Bells: Meyrin Fields EP (Columbia EP)



I was 13 years old when Fleetwood Mac’s Rumours came out on February 4, 1977. From thence forth, the album’s numerous singles were ubiquitous and remain staples of classic-rock radio to this very day. At the time, I was an obnoxious little classical/jazz snob and dismissed them as so much MOR fodder—even though I secretly liked some of those songs. In the privacy of my teenage bedroom, I wouldn’t change the dial when “Dreams” came on my dinky clock radio. Stevie Nicks’s voice made me feel all tingly… There was no reason to actually own the record—everyone seemed to have it—it always seemed to be playing somewhere, all the time. Rumours went on to sell nineteen-million copies (and counting) but, as time wore on, I got a more than a little sick of those songs and I grew up to be an even more obnoxious punk/jazz snob, actively disparaging such popular pop music as the opiate of the masses, the downfall of humanity. Fleetwood Mac epitomized all that was banal and slick and empty about our culture, etc.

Well, I grew older and realized all such snobbism is a waste of time and that “Dreams” is a great pop tune (Yo La Tengo's sublime deconstruction of the song back in 1986 only reinforced my shamefully hidden opinion). I found a relatively clean copy of Rumours on LP for a buck at a record show and despite some ticks and pops, I have enjoyed pulling it out once in a while and having a listen. I later picked up the DVD-Audio, just for high-rez kicks and it sounds great (although it’s a very different mix from the original LP) and I thought that was the ultimate version of this classic album. End of story.

But in 2006, it was revealed that the legendary mastering engineers, Steve Hoffman and Kevin Gray, were working on an LP-only reissue of Rumours, painstakingly reassembled from the original two-track analog tapes. It was going to be the ultimate version of this classic album! Pre-orders were available for sale then quietly canceled in 2007 and rumors [ahem] of its release periodically made the rounds over the years but nothing ever happened. Then a couple of months ago, another announcement came along regarding an impending release, only this time with a date certain: Record Store Day, April 16 2011. Moreover, it would be released as both a standard 180-gram LP and a super-limited edition two-45RPM edition, for the ultimate in audiophilia. At first, I didn’t believe it; but as the date approached—and the frenzy built among the audiophilic message boards, I decided to go ahead and pre-order the 45RPM edition from Music Direct, who delivered it to me on Monday. Boy, am I glad I took the plunge, since it immediately sold out everywhere and is already commanding top dollar on the secondary market. Not only a good investment (apparently), but it also sounds extraordinary, even on my modest system. Stevie Nicks’s voice still makes me feel all tingly…

If you missed out, never fear: the 33RPM version sounds almost as good and Warner Bros. claims this is an unlimited edition and is widely available. I found a copy at The Great Escape here in Nashville yesterday. All things considered—impeccable mastering, premier pressing at Pallas—it is very reasonably priced. If you love this album (even just a little bit) and have the ability to play LPs, by all means, do yourself a favor and check out this lovingly produced reissue. Your ears will thank you. If you think Fleetwood Mac represents the nadir of civilization, then this is just another golden nail in our collective coffin. As for me, I’m just going to enjoy that tingling sensation.


Sam said...

Re: Rumours: So you have like, what, 5 versions of this now? Yikes!!! har har Sorry, Rodger, I can't go there with ya on this one. Still catching up from our road trip last week (see last week's playlist post)--here's my list from last week:

Playlist 2011-04-25

*Rodger Coleman & Sam Byrd: 2010-12-27 Nashville (selections)
*Animal Collective: Merriweather Post Pavilion
*Beach Boys: Good Vibrations box set, disc 2
*Beatles: Hard Day's Night (2009 mono remaster)
*Chemical Brothers: Push the Button
*Elvis Costello: This Year's Model (2002 reissue, disc 1)
*Elvis Costello & the Attractions: Get Happy (2003 reissue, disc 1)
*Dark Carpet: Let's Make a Deal (CDR compilation)
*Deerhoof: Milk Man
*Dr. Dog: Fat
*Girl Talk: All Day
*Kinks: The Kink Kronicles (disc 2)
*Pavement: Slanted and Enchanted
*Prince: The Hits/The B-Sides (disc 1)
*Prince & the New Power Generation: [love symbol]
*Martha Reeves & the Vandellas: Live Wire (disc 1)
*Rolling Stones: Their Satanic Majesties Request
*Rutles: The Rutles
*Steely Dan: Citizen Dan (disc 2)
*2 Skinnee J's: Super Mercado
*Various artists: Brother's Gonna Work It Out
*Various artists: I Love Bollywood
*Various artists: WSAM: Sixty Hippies (CDR compilation)
*XTC: Coat of Many Cupboards (disc 2)
*XTC: Wasp Star (Apple Venus vol. 2)

Reading List 2011-04-25:

*James, P.D. The Lighthouse (started)
*James, P.D. The Murder Room (finished)
*Lileks, James. Gastroanomalies: Questionable Culinary Creations from the Golden Age of American Cookery (finished)
*Arabian Nights: Tales of 1001 Nights (transl. Malcolm C. Lyons) Vol. 1 (in progress)
*Ebert, Roger. The Great Movies (in progress)
*Gifford, Don, and Robert J. Seldman. Ulysses Annotated, rev. and expanded ed. (in progress)
*Hodgman, John. The Areas of My Expertise (in progress)
*Joyce, James. Ulysses (reread/in progress)
*Segar, E.C. The Complete E.C. Segar Popeye Vol. 8 (Dailies 1932-1933) (in progress)

Andrei said...

Hi, Rodger!

I spent last weekend in Moscow, Russia for one incredible live show:
Roger Waters: The Wall Live (2011-04-23, SC Olympiysky, Moscow)
It was unbelievable. So, this was my only playlist for last week :)


Vernon Fitch and Richard Mahon: Comfortably Numb - The History Of Pink Floyd The Wall 1978-1981 (PFA Publishing, St.Petersburg, FL) [5000 Autographed Limited Edition, my is #759]
Rolling Stone: Cover To Cover [4DVD-ROM + Book] (in progress for many-many... years)