Top positive review
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Going Back to Mono
on 29 January 2013
This 75 track (3 discs - Cd 1. 61.36mins, Cd2. 57.23mins and Cd3. 61.57mins) anthology charts Phil Spectors' early productions and song writing across various great artists from 1959 to 1962. These are the formative years, only the tracks from 1962 start to have the trade mark wall of sound. The usual classics are present including the vastly superior version of Vikki Carr's original `He's a rebel' by The Crystals written by Gene Pitney. There are great tracks by Ben E. King, Gene Pitney, Connie Francis, The Paris Sisters, Ray Peterson and Curtis Lee. There are lesser known acts but by no means less great - such as Troy Shondell, Billy Storm and Jean Du Shon. There are tracks by Phil himself in the form of The Teddy Bear's (7 tracks - some sound twee and haven't dated well) and other guises as well (including 1 or 2 very good instrumentals).
All these tracks are now in the public domain in this country, but unlike a very recently released compilation of Spector productions of 48 tracks at the end of 2012 - the sound quality is better - it's loud, proud and clean for the most part, well done `Not Now Music'. However, I have done a listening comparison and the 2010 'Ace' records 28 track compilation 'Phil Spector - the early productions' has superior, fantastic sound quality overall.
As far as I can see there are a couple of Paris Sister tracks missing from this compilation 'Be my boy' and 'I'll be crying tomorrow' as is `Be my girl' by Ray Peterson and a Sammy Turner track (why?) - there's room on the discs. Sadly as usual there is no booklet only a one sided intro. A couple more niggles - I wish the compilers had put the tracks in chronological order and the artist names were legible on the back cover. With these small things aside, overall, this compilation has lots of tracks that are new to my collection making it a must buy. 8.5/10 - 4.5 stars. Great stuff.