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Animals killer 2011 remaster
on 14 October 2011
To date I have got Dark Side, the 2 cd version, Meddle, Atom Heart Mother and Animals from the Pink Floyd remasters. Of the 4 albums that I have heard so far this has got to be the most impressive in terms of remastering. It has benefitted most from the work carried out at Das Boot Studios, not what I would have expected considering the age of the recording, in having the music presented better than ever before.
For a start the acoustic guitar work on the opener Pigs On The Wing just sound so much better, more realistic, natural, better filled out in the lower mid range eq and more obviously wooden in nature. Rogers singing is cleaner clearer and yet less harsh than the Shine On Boxset version I have.
Dogs is just an amazing tour de force. David Gilmour wrote the music for this and his guitar work is at a peak, better and more varied than anything he did before or since. This track has great shifts in dynamics moving through a series of movements like an orchestral piece. Again the use of acoustic and electric guitars sound so much better, being separated into individual instruments playing together rather than an amalgamated sound that approximates both together. Lyrically, care of Rog, this track is a damning of the business approach to life in a clear and unambiuous way.
Pigs, again vitriolic and direct, gains a lot from the remastering. The harmonies in Rogers overdubbed vocals really 'sing' and are distinctly clearer than the 1994 version. The sound of the pigs themselves is more resonant and natural. For me this track is the highlight of the album thanks to the jaw dropping range and quality of guitar work on show. There are acoustic guitars in the mix, along with various electric guitars processed differently and then the killer solo featuring the guitar being fed through a Dunlop Voice Box to allow DG to emulate the pigs and to give the solo greater emotive range.
Sheep, again the recorded animals sounds are so much more natural than before, and the ping ponging sound of Rick Wrights keyboards is so much more apparent and enjoyable. Rick Wrights contribution to this album is of the highest order. I reckon it is the best example of his skills as a musician, using various synth, organ and piano sounds to lift the songs to a new level.
I also thing that the pitch on the previous issue was wrong. I am fairly sure everything here is presented a third or a half tone down on the last one, without affecting the tempo. I think there must have been a software problem or a careless techie behind this fault. The new album has a better defined mid to lower end and is much more musically tight, for lack of a better term. The animals and birds all sound right this time, not processed or tweaked.
So, for fans of Floyd, do not hesitate, get this and enjoy an album, that I have literally avoided on cd for years due to its harsh presentation, sounding better than I would have imagined it could.
edit - this album features some of the finest keyboard playing that Rick Wright did with Floyd. He, to use a football term, plays a blinder, getting the keyboard to morph into Rogers voice, Daves guitar and so on.......taking what is a rough run through of Dogs and Sheep on the Wish You Were Here bonus cd and turn them into the superb polished monoliths that are here. His playing and ability to conjure up powerful moods is overlooked too often in favour of David Gilmours guitar work and Roger Waters Lyrics.