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on 4 April 2016
Quality music from yesteryear and great value for money!!
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on 27 September 2010
I'll start off by admitting that I am a big Tom Moulton fan, from his classic early work to his newer mixes of both classic tracks and the occasional new track. And his work here is as good as ever - each tune clearly mixed with love and respect. "Jay" and "Music Lover" have done some excellent reviews here, so won't go in to any more detail abou the fantastic tunes.

But the sound is APPALLING - all midrange and distorted, with little bass. I'm surprised that none of the other reviewers have mentioned how bad it is (and I would be interested in anyone elses feed back on the sound quality). I have many of these tracks (in their original mixes) on other CD's and vinyl and every one of them sounds far better quality than on this CD.

How did this get past quality control? Tom Moulton must be very disapointed to have his work handled in this way.

As much as I love these mixes, as a professional DJ I could never play any of these tracks out.

Such a pity. I just hope they get around to remastering it.

I also have Dimitri's "Get Down With The Philly Sound" which is a double album of similar material and that sounds extremely good.
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on 26 January 2011
Everything that other reviewers say about the music on this release is true, but it's also true that this cd has been mastered SO hot that it's practically unlistenable (I've never been able to listen to it entirely).
Because there's no dynamic to the sound, ie there's no distinction between 'quiet' and 'loud' parts, and because this creates unnecessary distortion, the cd quickly becomes tiring and painful to listen to (esp. in headphones) - ever noticed this in other cd releases of the last decade? Although initially it seems the greater volume creates greater clarity, it's a false economy - so many 'remastered' and new release cds just sound terrible.
Caveat Emptor - I'm sure Tom Moulton would not want his work to sound like this release; it's one of the worst examples of its kind.
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on 20 July 2010
That's what I have to say after listening
to this for the very first time today!!! I was blessed to get this in my
mailbox today and I was flabbergasted as to what I heard!!

I'm here to give you a full report!!
This is not for your everyday 1979 Donna/KC/BeeGees Disco Fan.

This is for the Philly Sound Fans--(like me)
and it does not disappoint one bit!!

Twelve tracks all newly remixed by Tom Moulton.
And I say he is at the top of his game here!!
The Good Parts first;

Let's go thru them 1 by one:

1 - "We're On The Right Track" - Ultra High Frequency - 6:36
from the first 10 seconds I knew I was gonna love this--As many times as I played the original single, I knew the differences right away.
The bongos are right up front and clear this time around; and it starts with the Instrumental verse for the first 2:40--the rest is just like
the original but with a W I D E dynamic quality that was absent with the
original---the train at the break is lowered (thank goodness),
and it goes to a long instrumental fade out
for the last 41 seconds--DYNOMITE!!
It is credited to Ultra High Frequency featuring Ben Aiken.
(now we know who was the lead singer)

2 - "Armed And Extremely Dangerous" - First Choice - 6:34
I expected the least surprises from this one but I was wrong.
The intro bangs into the song right away (no elongated looping), but takes a little different turn going into the instrumental a
bit earlier at 4:13, keeping the momentum up. The strings & horns
are clear as can be during this part and the police siren is gone!!!
At about 1 minute left the rhythm section is louder, the vocals &
strings are lowered and you can hear Baker-Harris & Young Jam out till the end. Fabulous!!!

3 - "I Told You So" - The Delfonics - 5:44
If you love the original track (as I do) you will love the double length of this version---it starts out Instrumental for the first
No extra parts here but the orchestra sounds so much FULLER than before.

4 - "This Is The House" - First Choice - 6:41
This version was released last December digitally on Traxsourse so the true Philly fans should know this one already. Instrumental until 2:30,
Rochelle & the girls kick it on their original first Philly Groove
single; a great extended version of a too short original song.

5 - "Ruby Lee" - Nat Turner featuring Major Harris - 4:43
I never heard the original of this track, so it would be unfair for me to comment but listening to the instrumental intro & outro it would be a good guess that Moulton hooked that up.
Not a 'hit-em-hard' floor stomper like the previous 4 above, this is Classy Philly Sound, much like "Just Say The Word" by The Trammps or aThom Bell record.
It is growing on me with every listen!!! (really--no hype)

6 - "Let Us Entertain You" - The Philly Groove Orchestra featuring First Choice - 7:00
This is the track that was the first part of the "First Choice Theme/Ain't He Bad" track from the 1976 LP "Let Us Entertain You".
Moulton starts this off instrumental for 2 minutes before the girls come
in with the "Do-Do...."--Very nice, but to me, not a standout.

7 - "Second Best Is Never Enough" - Finishing Touch - 5:15
Another floor stomper from BITD gets a wonderful extention.
Moulton starts off just like the original keeping the vocals in the beginning,
but the instruments are spaced out and you hear them jamming!!
At 2:08 the vocals cut off so we can hear the bongo & violin bridge on it's own (yes!!) and then goes into the instrumental for 2 minutes
where we hear the band VERY clear---before going into the full on vocal fade out!!!

8 - "Gotta Get Away" - First Choice - 7:44
Moulton had a remixed version of this track out before and I'm glad he switched it around this time. The vocals didn't start off with "Gotta
Get Away, gotta get away....." ;
it starts off with instrumental for 1:23 then Rochelle singin the lead verse instead.
(I always thought songs get burned out quicker when they start off with the chorus that
they are gonna repeat 3x or more during the track anyway).
This song goes into ANOTHER instrumental (@4:30) and then goes into the breakdown featuring the bongos, guitar, and keyboard. The vocal chorus
comes back for a minute then fades out instrumental.

9 - "Big Stone Wall" - Tapestry - 4:17
Only 4:17 you say? It's still almost double the 2:13 original.
This track Jams!!!! True Philly Classic, not unlike Sons Of Robin Stone's "Got To Get You Back"--It breaks into the instrumental right
from jump street and goes there again @2:03. One of my all time Philly
Faves--so I'm glad Moulton hooked this one up!!!

10 - "Gonna Keep On Lovin' Him" - First Choice - 4:34
This was the flip side of the original "Armed And Extemely Dangerous" 45 back in 1973. It has a semi-mellow "Hold Back The Night" beat. Not my style, but I guess they had to mellow out sometime on the CD.
(my opinion only)

11 - "Don't Put Me Down" - Finishing Touch - 9:09
One of my favs from this CD---I love what Moulton did with this joint!!!
A lower beat (105 bpm?) but funky like "Everyman" or "Hooked For Life"--Moulton extended the break like forever; from 3:03 to 6:36 is pure Philly Heaven
and it breakdowns again @7:35 till the end---WOW!!!

12 - "Whatcha Gonna Do" - Heaven 'N' Hell- 9:49
This track was originally on the 1979 'Noctura' Soundtrack (originall mixed by Wayne Scott)
and is the only one here Produced by Reid Whitelaw & Norman Bergman.
(Moment Of Truth's "Helplessly" & Ralph Carter's "When You're Young & In Love")
It was recorded in Philly, and has that hypnotic sound with some deep soulful vocals.
Nice remix by Moulton and a welcome inclusion on this CD.

Liner/Sleeve Notes: Introduction by Ian Dewhirst;
A Bio/Interview of Tom Moulton by Steve Handbury;
A Philly Groove Bio;
and tracklist with all credits, musicians, publishing, etc.

Notably absent is credit for who mastered this Comp???
I do not think it was Moulton cause it is wayyyy loud, but still sounds great!!

I didn't put it thru the PC yet to see the levels but it sounds great!
I will get back to you on that!!

Now this CD, like I said up top, is not for everybody,
but if you are a Philly Sound fan it is a MUST HAVE!!
Dimitri's Get Down With The Philly Sound CD & this one are 1 and 1A in my book--
I don't know which one I favor--probably never will !!!

I'm so happy that we are FINALLY after 35 years getting to hear the music in FULL like it should have been back then!!

Thanks Reid Whitelaw & Thanks Tom Moulton.
This release is the best birthday present in years!!!
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on 12 November 2013
it is outrageous that these wonderful pieces must be heard so badly. It is not fair to pay for a disc so even just £ 1. I hope that things like that do not happen often, out of respect for those who buy and listen to music and respect for the artists themselves.
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on 4 September 2010
In recent months Ian Dewhirst has been at the helm of the Demon Music Group's 'Back Beats' series, adopting the very same approach seen in his earlier 'Original Mastercuts' series, issuing specifically themed compilations that manage to provide a qualitative overview that represents exceptional value for money, particularly in an age of digital downloading and non-tangible product. All of this work has been informed by Dewhirst's experiences as a DJ, beginning in the early 1970s when he was establishing himself within the 'Northern Soul Scene', accompanied by a broader interest in what was often termed 'black music' and a particularly sensitive ear for identifying great tracks that would later become acknowledged classics of their kind.

This compilation should be seen as a labour of love for Dewhirst, who has steadfastly championed the 'Philly Sound' throughout these years, and who has recently been granted licensing access to the 'Philly Groove' and 'Philadelphia International' back catalogues (as seen through the recent 'Back Beats' issues 'Philly Disco' (BACKB003) and 'Philly Freedom' (BACKB015). His unstinting involvement with the music has ultimately led to this compilation being issued, with the legendary Tom Moulton having "access to the original Philly Groove master tapes...in order to produce a series of remixes on his favourite tracks".

For the uninitiated, Moulton is often credited with creating the 12" mix (although Moulton describes it as a purely accidental invention!), and has also created some of the most enduring 12" remixes from the 1970s and what is often termed the 'Disco' period, reflected in his personal citation of personal favourites in the liner notes, 'Love Is The Message' by the MFSB and 'That's Where The Happy People Go' by The Trammps (The Trammps may well be his favourite all time group). Fans of Moulton will know all of these things and more, and will undoubtedly be listening to and 'through' the remixes to identify Moulton's techniques and musical methodology. This review is aimed at the non-specialist who may be tempted to buy this cd without knowing of the historical context of Moulton and the music

The disc opens with 'We're On The Right Track' by Ultra High Frequency, a record that features all of the essential elements of the 'Philly' sound, beautifully orchestrated musical shading allied to an up-tempo groove featuring real musicians and real instruments. The vocals are soulful, tightly woven to the groove, providing a stunning counterpoint to the musical textures underlying the mix. This track also nicely highlights Moulton's general technique throughout the cd, which does not feature musical cue points and extended breaks of the fashion now so predominant in the extended mix aesthetic. The tracks very often appear to consist of carefully blended vocal and instrumental sections, without exposing the core rhythmic elements in a song. Moulton has always insisted that he was never a DJ, so his approach to remixing appears less utillitarian than many of his DJing contemporaries. 'Armed & Extremely Dangerous' by First Choice offers a further perfect example of his technique, where others might have concentrated on extending the opening declamatory section Moulton extends the song without significantly restructuring it. It reeks of the 1970s and the increasing confidence of the African-American community (expressed particularly through song), and is simply gorgeous.

Fans of Northern Soul will warm to the driving and propulsive 'This Is The House' by First Choice, which begins as an instrumental before opening up to reveal the Motown influenced vocal. Nat Turner's 'This Is The House' is a mellow, string driven groover, with a very subtle melodic drive that refuses to leave the brain once implanted. 'Let Us Entertain You' by The Philly Groove Orchestra (featuring First Choice) is a return to the typical 'Philly' sound tempo, with horn and string accompaniement that teases with a strong instrumental melodic line before the sliding counter vocal. Subjectively, this is one of the album highlights. First Choice feature again with 'Gotta Get Away', with its insistent descending chorus, and 'Gonna Keep On Lovin' Him', a slower paced mellow excursion. The cd compilation concludes with 'Don't Put Me Down' by Finishing Touch and 'Whatcha Gonna Do' by Heaven n Hell.

So. Do you buy?

If you are fan of Tom Moulton then it is highly likely that this cd will already be placed in your basket for purchase. If you are a fan of Tom Moulton and the 'Philly Sound' then you have purchased the cd and are in a state of orgasmic expectational excess. But for music fans less familiar with both this cd offers up enough musical delights to charm and tease the ear. Arguably the musical approach adopted by Moulton is concerned with developing and enhancing the original material, not significantly restructuring, deconstructing or exposing the inner workings of a song in an almost entirely minimalist way. Moulton has listened to the songs and has instead produced highly concentrated versions, where the groove and melody are still important - thereby ensuring that each is still accessible beyond a core audience. The sound quality is excellent throughout, with evident care taken with the mastering and the accompanying liner notes (featuring Ian Dewhirst and Steve Handbury).

As Dewhirst writes in the notes, this collection is about the "early 1970s, namely real musicians, full orchestras, proper arrangements and that final 'sweetening' that defines any Philly Record...the results are nothing less than spectacular".

It would be very difficult to argue. Full marks to Dewhirst and Tom Moulton. Is it too much to hope for a Volume Two in the near future.....?
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on 18 August 2010
Simply put, if you love your Disco then this guy is the master of the 12" version. This is a great sample of Philly Groove that has been given the Moulton treatment.

If you love Philly and mid to late 70's Disco then this purchase is a no brainer!!
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on 3 September 2010
Well, it looks very much like Tom Moulton still has that magic touch. This is a stunning collection of remixes - every bit as good as those from the height of his fame. More please!
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on 13 September 2010
Remixed from his source material, this is a near perfect compilation of some of Philly's lesser known grooves by 70s studio hotshot Tom Moulton. First Choice feature heavily, either as artistes or backing singers. Stand out track: 'Whatcha Gonna Do.'
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on 2 October 2010
I love the the feel of these great tracks but I have to agree with one of the reviews which points
to the poor sound quality. I found myself trying to adjust my stereo to accomadate what on some tracks
was quite an unpleasant distortion.I am left feeling that I would probably play this album to death if the
sound was better. I must say though that the music and especially that wonderful Philly sound shines
through and if you are a fan of this particular musical flavour this is still a must buy and a wonderful addition
to any collection.
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