Gillan – Singles Box Set
Demon Edsel 2007 : 11 CD + DVD set
Although this set has been out for ages, we had some interesting comments in from a DTB reader recently. I must confess I just stuck my copy on the shelf, blithely assuming all was as it suggested on the cover. It appears not! Over to Aki…
Smoke On The Water (Vengeance b-side)
– This one is taken straight from a vinyl single, and treated with some kind of a noise reduction, very badly. In the beginning (and the end) of the song you can hear some very ugly noise reduction artifacts, kind of a bubbling sound with a washing machine-like reverb, and some leftovers of the vinyl crackle that has been tried to remove. I don’t know if the Mr. Universe remaster has the same noise reduced version of this song, but it sounds really bad here.
No Easy Way
– The “Single edit” version on the box set is actually the album version edited to match the length of the original single version, fade-out and all, with a very annoying digital cut-start! The original single version is completely a different mix. Funny enough, the original single mix is available on cd only on the notorious Angel Air cd “The Gillan Tapes volume 1”!
No Laughing In Heaven
– This one is actually the same mix as on the original single, but when listening carefully you hear that this song too has been taken straight from a vinyl single. There’s clear vinyl background noise though there aren’t any loud pops or crackles, and luckily no noise reduction as on the Vengeance b-side (above).
The other tracks seem to be fine, but I’m quite sure that they are exactly the same versions as on the remastered album cds. There have been some discussions of what generation of tapes were used for the old Virgin records cd’s and these new remasters. I did a quick check comparing Vengeance on the old Virgin records cd of Mr. Universe and the Singles box set version, and the timing of the both matches. They sync perfectly, which could be a hint of that the source for these new remasters is actually just the old cd’s…
So, I really wouldn’t recommend this box to anyone. I really love the stuff the Gillan band did, and in my opinion their music deserve a way better treatment.
Aki Kuosmanen, Finland
Thanks for this Aki. I totally agree that the Edsel reissues were a very mixed blessing, poorly put together and packaged, and with a lack of attention to detail on the tape sources. The stupid thing is I have original studio masters for all these tracks and told them I had, but they simply couldn’t be bothered! And the inclusion of just a handful of the promo videos was another job half done sadly.