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4.5 out of 5 stars
4.5 out of 5 stars

Fans of Sam Moore and Dave Prater see the duo's rare 1st and 2nd LPs for the mighty Stax Records reissued again - and for those Superstars of 60t's Soul - it's been done in real style. Here are the finite details... UK released 26 March 2012 - Edsel EDSS 1035 (Barcode 740155103538) breaks down as follows (73:33 minutes):

1. Hold On, I'm Comin'
2. If You've Got The Loving (I've Got The Time)
3. I Take What I Want
4. Ease Me
5. I Got Everything I Need
6. Don't Make It So Hard On Me
7. It's A Wonder
8. Don't Help Me Out
9. Just Me
10. You Got It Made With Me
11. You Don't Know Like I Know
12. Blame Me (Don't Blame My Heart)
Tracks 1 to 12 are the album "Hold On, I'm Coming" - released April 1966 in the USA on Stax Records ST-708 [Mono] and STS-708 [Stereo]. The STEREO mix is used except on "You Don't Know Like I Know" which is the MONO single mix (Track 11).

Tracks 14 and 13 are "Goodnight Baby" and "A Place Nobody Can Find" - the A&B-side of a non-album US 45 on Stax S-168 - released March 1965

Track 15 is "Sweet Home" - the non-album 7" single B-side to "I Take What I Want" (Track 3) which was released in the USA on Stax S-175 in June 1965

16. You Got Me Hummin'
17. Said I Wasn't Gonna Tell Nobody
18. That's The way It's Gotta Be
19. When Something is Wrong With My Baby
20. Soothe Me
21. Just Can't Get Enough
22. Sweet Pains
23. I'm Your Puppet
24. Sleep Good Tonight
25. I Don't Need Nobody (To Tell Me `Bout My Baby)
26. Home At Last
27. Use Me
Tracks 16 to 27 are the album "Double Dynamite" - released January 1967 in the USA on Stax ST-712 [Mono] and STS-712 [Stereo] - the STEREO mix is used.

This 27-track CD will also allow fans to sequence the following Stax 7" singles surrounding the two albums:
1. Goodnight Baby [14] b/w A Place Nobody Can Find [13] - Stax S-168 (March 1965)
2. I Take What I Want [2] b/w Sweet Home [15] - Stax S-175 (June 1965)
3. You Don't Know Like I Know [11] b/w Blame Me (Don't Blame My Heart) [12] - Stax S-180 (November 1965)
4. Hold On: I'm A Comin' [1] b/w I Got Everything I Need [5] - Stax S-189 (March 1966)
5. Said I Wasn't Going To Tell [17] b/w If You Got The Lovin' (I Got The Time) [2] - Stax S-198 (September 1966)
6. You Got Me Hummin' [16] b/w Sleep Good Tonight [24] - Stax S-204 (November 1966)
7. When Something Is Wrong With My Baby [19] b/w Small Portion Of Your Love [see Notes] - Stax S-210 (February 1967)
8. Soothe Me [see Notes] b/w I Can't Stand Up For Falling Down [See Notes] - Stax S-218 (June 1967)
[Notes: the B-side to Stax S-210 is missing and is NOT on the 2nd CD in this series either - "Soul Men + I Thank You....Plus" on Edsel EDSD 2131 (2CDs). Its omission is likely an error. Also - the UK single for "Soothe Me" on Stax 601004 (March 1967) used the album cut (Track 20) with "Sweet Pains" (Track 22) as its B-side - but the US single listed above on Stax S-218 used a 'live' version recorded in London as the A - both this 'live' version and its non-album B-side are on the "Soul Men..." 2CD set]

PHIL KINRADE at Alchemy Studios in London has done the mastering and it's a fantastic job - muscular and pounding out of your speakers like those old 45's used to do. Being 60's Soul and recorded with indecent haste in less than audiophile conditions - there's hiss on occasion and some muddiness to the bass every now and then - but mostly this remaster sounds 'so' clear to me - the brass, drum whacks and guitar - much better than the early Nineties Rhino discs I've had for years now. The decision by Edsel to leave out the weaker Stereo mix of "You Don't Know What I Like" on the 1st LP and replace it with the extra overdubs and punchier MONO mix is a good one. As a sucker for those 45's and their double-shots of brilliance - I also love the fact that this release allows me to line up those songs for play - and in top sound quality too.

The 16-page full-colour booklet featuring a 4000-word essay by noted Soul expect and aficionado TONY ROUNCE is superlative. Rounce has had a long-time association with both Edsel and Ace Records of the UK and their Philadelphia and Chess CD reissues - and his work here is typically indepth, knowledgeable and enthusiastic in a way that only British Soul nuts can be. Pages 10 and 14 have gorgeous full colour plates of each album sleeve and the rest of the text is peppered with insert photos of those rare blue labels that Stax used in the UK. There's a track-by-track Discography at the rear and it even reproduces the original liner notes that graced the back of each American LP sleeve. Edsel could have taken the easy way out with this and put in foldout 3-page filler that would have sufficed - but they haven't - and they're to be praised for this.

To the music - both the 45 of "Hold On, I'm Coming" and the LP of the same name broke SAM and DAVE not just nationally - but globally. The 7" and LP reached the coveted Number 1 spot on the American R'n'B charts in June and August 1966 respectively - and made inroads all over the globe late into 1966. The follow-up album "Double Dynamite" (a nickname for the singers who hailed from Florida and Georgia) simply provided more of the same. In fact relistening to both albums - you're reminded of how extraordinarily productive those halycion years were - and a lot of it down to ISAAC HAYES and DAVID PORTER - Stax's brilliant inhouse songwriting team. Highlights include the wonderful mid-tempo "If You've Got The Loving (I've Got The Time)" with Steve Cropper putting in great guitar licks and feel - while I will always associate the belting "I Take What I Want" (lyrics above) with Rory Gallagher who did a blistering rock-funk version of it on his 1975 album "Against The Grain" (it was a stable at the famed "Grove" venue in Dublin throughout the Seventies). The anthemic "When Something Is Wrong With My Baby" still has the power to move a body and soul alike - and is Southern Soul at its very best. Sam Cooke's "Soothe Me", the Dan Penn and Spooner Oldham classic "I'm Your Puppet" and the Hayes/Porter finisher "Use Me" - it's an embarrassment of riches.

To sum up - presented well, sounding spiffing and cheaper than a wet trout slapped across your kisser - this is a huge amount of top Sixties Stax Soul for peanuts money - so good and thoroughly recommended.

PS: Lovers of ATLANTIC, STAX and VOLT Records should note that as of October 2012 there is a massive reissue program of classic albums going on in Japan - 100+ titles to be exact (which includes Sam & Dave). They feature Fifties Blues and R'n'B, Sixties and Seventies Soul and Funk/Fusion. All are budget price (£7.50 per disc) and feature 2012 DSD remastering. Many of these titles are familiar - but a huge number are new to CD. For a full detailed list of these Japanese reissues - see the 'comment' section attached to this review...
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on 12 May 2012
Sam & Dave, often imitated, never ever beaten. These two albums on one CD offer the best of the best, far better than any Greatest Hits package. Beyond the hits it's hard to choose, but perhaps you can listen for "If You Got The Loving" "I Got Everything I Need," and what I think is the original of "I'm Your Puppet." With the "soul" exception of Otis Redding, music just does not get any better.
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on 5 April 2013
S&D were great and released a series of remarkable LPs and singles - we all know that.
What makes this cd different is the sound - it is stunning! Full, bold, powerful and clear - perfect. Buy this cd even if you have all these tracks elsewhere as you will fall in love with S&D all over again.
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on 7 June 2012
At last we can appreciate distinctly all the instruments and voices..I know some listeners like better mono tracks but here it's a pleasure...
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on 2 May 2012
Great Value CD as is the other ReRelease I had Double Dynamite on LP back in the 60s and great to see it back again. The greatest Soul Duo of all time buy both they are Magic.
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on 26 April 2012
Ok, to begin with, I am a huge fan of Sam & Dave. The music here is as good as it gets and deserves the 5 star rating; that's the good news.

The bad news is that those generally good people at Edsel have chosen to use the 1960's stereo mixes for most of this, (and it's sister - Soul Men & I Thank You plus). What are you thinking Edsel's?

The one thing that made the 1960's southern soul releases from FAME, Atlantic & Stax so wonderful was the super punchy MONO mixes.
Now I'm no Ludite but the reason the stereo mixes lack the punch of the MONO ones is because the technology of the day didn't allow the stereo panning that you get nowadays.

That means that the vocals on these stereo releases are often off-centre or coming through the left AND right channels.
The left & right mixing isn't so bad when well balanced, as with some Don Covay and Sly Stone 60's mixes but these just don't cut it I'm afraid.

The golden rule with reissues is that you always choose the best mix and up until about 1968, that was always the MONO one.
There are other reasons for this that apply more so to these recordings though. In the 60's, the bass on the stereo mix would often make the needle jump, as opposed to the single track mono mix. This is part of the reason that the bass in 60's stereo mixes is so weak, it had to be toned down out of necessity.
Also, as the bass was usually recorded on the same track as the drums, not only did you lose power from the bass but the backbeat as well; which in these recordings is crazy because punch was the whole point. THIS IS MUSIC TO DANCE TO.

Additionally, with only 4 tracks to play with, many sounds and vocals were added during the MONO mixing stage, which you lose in the stereo master because they only exist on the MONO master. Glad to say that Edsel did use common sense for some of the tracks here.

I do agree with our friend at Reckless that this is the best stereo mix available thus far but the separation makes listning with headphones a real chore. I too have the old double Rhino set and yes, the MONO Edsel tracks do sound better, so why couldn't they have opted for MONO throughout.

Sad to say, I had to return my Edsel versions and am now scouring itunes and record stores to mop up those missing MONO songs that I still have on my old LPs.
So now to the begging and this goes out to all of the great reissue companies, (Sundazed, Ace, Edsel et al) please, please PLEASE, always use the MONO mix on these old classics or at least issue both together as Collectors Choice sometimes do. Give us the choice because I know that some listners prefer the stereo, (even if they lose vital overdubs).

I really don't want to harm great companies like Edsel, (I have been following them for years) but listning to this, I think that the time has come to vote with our wallets. Let's express our love of the music to make sure that it stays on catalogue but in the best way and with the most choice.

So, Dr. Edsel, please issue a complete collection of the MONO Sam & Dave. I would even buy an expensive limited edition, just to enjoy this wonderful music once again as it was intended to be heard. That said, 5 stars to Rhino for their Otis Redding album collection; great price and great MONO mixes all round.

Cheers, Doc
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on 17 March 2015
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