I'm going to make this brief:
I knew that this was only put out because they changed labels, and didn't expect to be blown away. The music industry (not to be confused with music or art or talent) is well known for milking the public, and I contributed to this as well.
I must say that, being a small time recording engineer, I can really tell the minor changes to the remastered songs. I can hear bells and sitar in King that I'd never heard before. The biggest difference is the distinction of Jerry's kick drum. faith hope love's kick was dated, in that it was obviously influenced by Lars on ...And Justice For All. Ty managed to put a lot more bottom back into it here, and I don't necessarily dislike it.
As for the bonus tracks, all the guys on the newsgroup rave about them, and I'm stuck out on a limb, because I was severely let down. These just sound like (as I'm sure they are) half finished songs that got scrapped before they got to stage one of album pre-production. Sure, I like the idea of hearing Ty write a riff with a wah-wah (rather than just on a solo), and think these could have gone somewhere. But they obviously hadn't yet!
As I listened to Sallly the first time, I thought the lyrics were kind of redundant. Then I heard Lover! Two lines per verse, and three identical verses! This is just Doug singing a quick ad-lib over a riff the band was working on. But guys on the newsgroup are reading all kinds of things into it, like it's something profound. Hello!! Quit trying to justify the hunting you had to do to find the unpromoted CD that you probably had to pay too much for! Atlantic ripped you off! Ty just did his best to make it something half-way decent. Atlantic would have released this with or without his help.
Now, as for the live version of Over My Head, don't think I was completely let down by this CD! As I drove home from the store reading the liner notes, mourning the obviously thrown together art layout, I noted this was mixed by Bob Clearmountain. You may not know who that is, but I sure do! I was impressed that they got him (he probably did all of Woodstock II) and even more anxious to hear it than I'd already been for the past few months.
You see, I've seen the band live only once, on the KX4 tour in a small theatre in Hollywood. Great show, and Over My Head was a highlight, because Doug just walked up to the mic and started to sing the chorus a-capella. The crowd soon joined in, and we all repeated it several times before the band kicked into it! It was a very personal vibe, showing how the band really tried to touch it's audience on a personal level.
So, I get home, and immediately skip the rest of the CD and jump straight to this final track, and turn it up to eleven. I almost immediately realize this version won't be like my experience, but realize that that's because the Woodstock crowd is very large, and not necessarily fans of them in particular, so this wouldn't work. As they start to rock it out, I'm let down a little, thinking the mix sounds very muddy and cluttered on the bottom end. Then I realize that our esteemed Mr. Clearmountain has done what no previous producer has done for this band. He has actually put Doug Pinnick's monster bass sound onto tape! When it gets to the vamp, where he just hits the big root chord, it rocks the shelves in my room.
You must understand, I'm a father of two small children that are more precious and important to me than the whole world. When Doug told the story of his childhood, and tells the crowd to "make sure your kids know you love them, no matter what they do," it really struck home with me. I cried the first few times I listened to this song. I really did.
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