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Early Bob Marley and the Wailers

Posted: Sat Dec 24, 2005 12:11 pm
by MK
This stuff has been reissued a 'gajillion' times. Audio Fidelity's Young Mystic was taken from the splits so it obviously has to sound better, right? On 11 of 15 tracks, yes, but four tracks are taken from the original mono mixes as the splits couldn't be found and may not exist: they're "Soul Rebel," "Try Me," "Soul Almighty," and "Reaction."

So how do they measure up? Compared to Trenchtown Rock: The Anthology 1969-1978, substantially better. When he did the Eno remasters, Simon Heyworth made a statement about doing flat transfers of the production masters because "that's what the artist(s) wanted" etc. I can't tell if that applied here but I doubt it.

For these recordings, there's definitely some limiting going on because to match Hoffman's levels, there was a reduction in volume of about 25%. Hoffman's mastering of the same tracks reached about 60% of maximum volume so do the math. What about EQ? Hoffman's stuff has a FAT, warm, full-bodied bass and I tried boosting Heyworth's a bit but still couldn't match it. Either he shaved the hell out of it or someone in Jamaica did. As for the top, Heyworth's is more harsh, you almost have to do a Rhino EQ fix to match it to Hoffman's.

That's all. Off to buy presents, happy festivus!