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Surprisingly nice sound, questionable choice of bonus tracks, pretentious quotes in the notes, the answer to the questions...
on 5 February 2011
So how many copies of this album did you buy before this came out?
This CD pulls together the mixes from both the original vinyl and CD versions of the album and is good enough to point out some differences between the more subtle remixes.
The main sleeve notes perhaps continue the crusade to make Propaganda seem dark as perhaps do the the tired old religion/science disc titles taken from the text on one of the 12" sleeves. There is some interesting info in the main body, but what was more satisfying to me was the section from Ian Peel who curated the collection giving some interesting info about the different mixes.
The CDs are also refered to in the sleeve notes as "Beauty Love and Danger" and "Repetition Plus Variation" which works much better for me.
The sound quality was a really nice surprise - particularly on disc 2.
Disc 1 contains the original CD sequence and then tags on the different mixes that appeared on the original vinyl. Very neatly fills up the CD to within a few seconds shy of 80 mins. The CD version of Dream Within A Dream seems to be the better of the two - even down to the slight pause between the initial question (more later) and the start of the instrumentation. Was Stephen Lipson unhappy with the original mix and decided to give it another go, or was Paul Morley up to his tricks? I don't know. Still you can easily make your own decision now.
Disc 2 is a mish mash of rarities, previously unrealeased tracks and for some reason part of the Wishful Thinking album which seems a waste.
1) Do Well - the cassette single of Duel/Jewel
Yeah, so it was one side of a cassette, but as others have noticed it's five seperate tracks. It would have been nicer to have separeted these out to bear more repeated listening of certain sections. I quite like Bejewelled (part 5) which is the two versions cut alternately throughout the track. Works for me, but again would have preferred it as a seperate track.
2) Testament One
About 75 seconds of a keyboard riff in Duel. Not essential, surprising hard (for me) to sing along with.
3) Die Tausend Auden Des Mabuse (previously unreleased)
- which answers the question: "Why did the 13th Life Mix fade out in such an odd place?" The answer is this mix which is essentially the 13th Life Mix not fading out at the odd place but continuing for just over 3 minutes. It continues as a remixed, but not extended version of the standard track so makes it a bit repetitive as a couple of the verses are heard more than once. Track sounds nicer than the faded 12" though.
4) Sorry For Laughing (Unapologetic 12")
- this track is a more interesting inclusion for me in that it is an outtake from the Wishful Thinking album. It is a difference mix to the version that made the album. It has its moments, and oddly includes a limeric about a man from Hong Kong (not a highlight for me.) There is at least one clumsy edit (a bar too early on the cut in I think) and it goes on a bit for my liking.
5) Thought Part I
6) Thought Part II
- seemingly pointless inclusion as these two tracks are the last track from Wishful Thinking split into the main body and then the brief p:Machinery reprise. Why waste the space? This might have allowed room for another outtake or at least the b-side Mabuse material and the Femme Fatale link which have yet to make it to CD as far as I'm aware.
7) p:Machinery (Goodnight 32)
- apparently previously unreleased, but as someone else has stated this sounds just like the beta wraparound 7" mix. Haven't compared closely.
8) The Chase (the Goodnight Mix)
- also previously unreleased, couldn't tell the difference on a straight listen. A brief comparison seemed to sound SLIGHTY different, but if you can't tell straight away that implies it's not a great find, doesn't it?
9) (Echo of) Frozen Faces
- don't like this track. Musically much more interesting and rewarding than the lyrics for me.
10) p:Machinery (p:Polish)
- is that Polish as from Poland or polish as in shoe? I like this standard 12" mix a lot. Seems the least satisfying single for me brought the best 12" mixes. Includes the neat reprise that was not included at the end of the beta mix that appeared on Outside World.
11) Testament Three
- not much over twenty seconds long. Contains a fade up on a piano section from The Murder of Love and then a crash from Jewel.
Take off the two Thought tracks and there's ten minutes space that could have been used for either more outtakes or the "still not on CD" material.
So how about Wishful Thinking getting a remaster with bonuses, eh?
THE ANSWER TO THE OTHER QUESTION:
Is all that we see or seem but a dream within a dream? No. It's not.