Today EMI/Capitol continues its “From the Capitol Vaults” series where the major record label reissues long out of print vinyl records of essential albums. These come on thick, 180-gram slabs of wax in packaging that mimics the original release. Sometimes there are nice bonuses, like the large posters reproducing the Roxy Music covers or the liner notes in the newly reissued Faust IV album.
Also released in this series are:
The Band’s Cahoots and Stage Fright
TheBeach Boys’ Summer Days (And Summer Nights!!) and Today!
Frank Sinatra’s Come Dance With Me!, Come Fly With Me, and In The Wee Small Hours.
The series was also to include David Bowie’s Aladdin Sane, Diamond Dogs, and Young Americans, however their release dates have been pushed back to Jan. 26, 2010.
Speaking if the Bowie reissues, a source at the label told me that the sources used for these are all digital. Specifically, for Diamond Dogs, they used the digital master from 1999, Young Americans, comes from the 2007 digital master and Aladdin Sane, the 2003 digital master. So no official, reissued Bowie vinyl has yet to be sourced from the original analog master tapes and none are planned for the near future. I have the Space Oddity reissue coming on the way from the label (it’s due for release on Nov. 17), so it’s a wait and see on that.
But back to the current releases… For me, the gem in this batch is the Faust record. I’m not denying the importance of the other releases, which are definitely popular classics for many, but, as a hardcore fan of Krautrock musik, Faust IV blew my mind. Before listening to this album all the way through I had only given Faust cursory listens: a track here and there. But a few listens of this gorgeous slab of wax, has made it one of my all-time favorite records from the scene, not to mention the early 70s in general (Here’s my review).
I’ve bought many records in the series, including most of the Radiohead reissues and all the Roxy Music reissues, and have been impressed with the sound quality of these reissues. The records barely make any noise at all, and they are up there in pressing quality with the likes of releases from Matador Records, who clearly are affectionate about their vinyl pressings. However, as I have noted, some “Capitol Vaults” records do come from digital sources instead of the ideal source of the original analog master tapes, which hold much more realistic depth to the music as compared to the compressed sound of digitally stored music.
I plan to investigate further as to the sources of all the records in this series. At least in the case of the Faust album, I had to open the record and read through the tiny liner notes to learn the source.
i bought the “queensryche – operation mindcrime” vinyl 2009 re-release…
later i also bought the first release from 1988 and when i compare them together the old vinyl is like listning to a diffrent record.. this new record is so quiet its like the vinyl sound is dead. as this wasnt enough it have alot of noise that shouldnt be there, capitols quality controll sucks… i am very disappointed.
I think somewhere in this post or another I mentioned how Capitol often uses digital sources instead of the original masters. I know that would have been the case with the now canceled Bowie reissues. At lest the Faust one notes remastering form the original tapes, and it does sound amazing.
I bought that same album and immediately noticed the quality is very poor – lots of surface noise and pops.
I’ve been very disappointed with the quality of the sound from these records…worst sounding vinyl in my collection. I feel It’s a money grab from vinyl audio enthusiast by Capitol records.
I would have to agree. EMI/Capitol Records does not seem to make great vinyl. They do not consistently source from master tapes. It also showed in this release: http://indieethos.wordpress.com/2009/11/18/space-oddity-40-lp/. However, this release was done right: http://indieethos.wordpress.com/2009/11/06/faust-iv_1/
Thanks for this info. I was wondering if these Capitol reissues were sourced from analog masters