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Debut + Disaster!,
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This review is from: Nazareth/Exercises (loud proud & remastered) (Audio CD)Long time Naz fan, decided to try out these reissues.
I mostly agree with Mark Barry's review of this reissue - just a few extras to add:
I like the new mix - clear and bright (although not a huge difference from the Castle remasters in 1999) (although 26seconds into Cat's Eye, Apple Pie the mix seems to switch to left channel only for a second - maybe only on my copy).
The first album definitely shows what Nazareth would soon be capable of - several quite strong rocky tracks and darker slow tracks like Morning Dew, however Exercises is pretty dire. I remember struggling to find something from this album when making a best of cassette (a long time ago) and listening to it again, the situation is the same - a handful of ok songs but only worth listening to for completists (Woke up this morning does the business but Naz did a better version on Razamanaz).
The packaging is fine - the digipak is thin so you are more likely to get the spine facing at right angles instead of being twisted a little (spot the person who likes everything to be perfect!)
The "double imaging" mentioned by another reviewer on the back picture is not an error, it is the same as the reverse picture on the original album.
BUT, due to both albums being squeezed onto one disc, there is no room for extras. The old Castle remasters had b-sides and alternative versions (5 on Nazareth and 3 on Exercises) and, while none of these are exceptional (Hard Living b-side is the best) it seems a wasted opportunity to put out these remasters without extra tracks if they are available.
4 stars for Nazareth, 2 stars for Exercises (and that's being very generous!), 5 stars for the sound, minus several for the lack of extras - so overall 3 stars.
Naz beginners, start with Razamanaz or the Anthology (2CD best of - the one with the skull with wings on the front).
Naz completists, I suppose you're going to have to get it, but if you can resist, save your cash and wait for rarer tracks on other remasters.
Just noticed Hard Living is an extra on the Razamanaz Salvo remaster