Top critical review
72 people found this helpful
Got it, listened to it, sent it back!
on 29 February 2012
Well, I realise my review won't be one of those popular reviews that gets heaps of 'helpful' ticks.
So, please bear with me for one moment while I reassure you that I bought this compilation because I think this is exceptional, astounding music. And although there are a couple of track choices on this selection that I think are misguided, the music itself is not the problem, but the audio quality is.
Briefly, the two tracks I think represent wasted opportunities are, ironically, the two 'hits': Ghosts and Forbidden Colours. To be honest I am not sure why Ghosts needs to be included in any David Sylvian release - sure, it's a corker, but it's a Japan track, hence once again on this comp we get the 'remix' which is actually a re-recording, at least of the vocals. I don't enjoy David Sylvian's performance. It's one of those 'I've sung this song so many times, to make it interesting for myself I'm going to have to take the melody all over the place and play around with the phrasing'. Thanks, but no.
As for Forbidden Colours, once again this is not the original version - it's the version Sylvian recorded later, replete with a string section that may well be a sample. I don't know ... anyway, it's not a bad version. It's fine and dandy, but it is not the original version. It's more than possible that the original versions of these two songs are subject to copyright issues. But if that is the case, I would have happily foregone having them on this comp.
About the audio. Sadly, it doesn't appear these tracks have been remastered for this particular compilation. They sound exactly like the remasters from a few years ago, and let's face it, those remasters weren't impressive. They were the sort of remastering where an audio signal gets sent through a few presets.
Admittedly I cannot be entirely sure. The reason I can't be sure is that, having taken tracks from various sources (i.e. different albums), whoever was responsible for this comp has decided to balance the many different levels, so here we have the worst possible solution: normalisation.
The sound quality is, frankly, absolutely horrible, and I think this does enormous disservice to an artist obviously intent on producing stellar audio. For the record, I listened to this comp using a Musical Fidelity CD player, four mono block amps, and Neat speakers. So, as clean a signal as I can get.
The lack of care and attention, what amounts to complete indifference to the impact of this amazing music is, for me, grounds to give this release a one star review.