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Japan / Quiet Life box set

1979 album remastered and expanded for new deluxe box set

In March, BMG will reissue Japan‘s third album, Quiet Life, across a number of formats, including a deluxe box set.

The 1979 album (issued a few weeks late, in January 1980, in the UK) was the final album on Hansa Records and became a forerunner for the alternative/new wave sound of the new decade.

The single ‘Quiet Life’ reached number 19 in the UK, but almost two years after the album (having originally been a B-side for non-album single ‘I Second That Emotion’). The Quiet Life album was a creative, rather than commercial success and Japan singles only started to chart once Gentlemen Take Polaroids and Tin Drum (both issued on Virgin in 1981 and 1982 respectively) raised the band’s profile.


The Quiet Life box features  three CDs and a 180g half-speed mastered vinyl LP (click image to enlarge)

Quiet Life is being reissued as 3CD+LP box set that features a new 2020 remaster of the album on CD and vinyl (the vinyl is half-speed mastered at Abbey Road) along with a disc of alternate mixes, remixes, singles and rarities. This same disc also includes the four-track EP Live in Japan (taken from the March 1980 Budokan show) which had a limited vinyl release in Europe in July of that same year. The third CD in the box set is that same Budokan gig, in full.

In addition to the box set, there are standalone 2020 remasters of the album available on black vinyl, red vinyl (both half-speed) and CD. There is no two-CD deluxe edition, in case you are wondering.

The reissues feature newly restored original album artwork, new sleeve notes with contributions from band members and original producer and rare and unseen photography and memorabilia. BMG have worked with Steve Jansen, Rob Dean, producer John Punter and with band biographer Anthony Reynolds and the Japanese Shinko archive in putting this set together.


The official store offers an exclusive 9-track ‘Life in Tokyo’ CD single with the box set

If you are interested, it’s highly recommended that you pre-order this Quiet Life box set from the official Japan store since it comes with an additional nine-track CD single full of original remixes of ‘Life in Tokyo’, only two of which are included in the box itself! This CD single is exclusive to the official store.

Quiet Life will be reissued on 5 March 2021.

Official Japan Store pre-order exclusives

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Quiet Life - 3CD+LP deluxe box set

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Quiet Life - half-speed mastered black vinyl

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Quiet Life - remastered CD edition

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Quiet Life – 3CD+LP deluxe box set

CD1 – QUIET LIFE

  1. Quiet Life (2020 Remaster)
  2. Fall In Love With Me (2020 Remaster)
  3. Despair (2020 Remaster)
  4. In Vogue (2020 Remaster)
  5. Halloween (2020 Remaster)
  6. All Tomorrows Parties (2020 Remaster)
  7. Alien (2020 Remaster)
  8. The Other Side of Life (2020 Remaster)

CD2 – A QUIETER LIFE: ALTERNATIVE MIXES & RARITIES

  • 1. European Son (Steve Nye 7” Remix 1982)*
  • 2. Life In Tokyo (Steve Nye 7” Special Remix 1982)
  • 3. Quiet Life (Original German 7” Mix 1980)*
  • 4. I Second That Emotion (Steve Nye 7” Remix 1982)*
  • 5. All Tomorrow’s Parties (Steve Nye 7” Remix Version 1983)
  • 6. European Son (John Punter 12” Mix 1980)
  • 7. Life In Tokyo (Steve Nye 12” Special Remix Version 1982)
  • 8. I Second That Emotion (Steve Nye 12” Remix Version 1982)
  • 9. All Tomorrow’s Parties (Steve Nye 12” Remix Version 1983)
  • 10. European Son (Steve Nye 12” Remix Version 1982)
  • 11. Quiet Life (Japanese 7” Mix 1980)* [18/01/21]
  • 12. A Foreign Place
  • 13. All Tomorrow’s Parties (John Punter 7” Mix 1979)
  • 14. Life In Tokyo (Theme Giorgio Moroder Version 1979)*

Live In Japan

  • 15. Deviation (Live In Japan)
  • 16. Obscure Alternatives (Live In Japan)
  • 17. In Vogue (Live In Japan)
  • 18. Sometimes I Feel So Low (Live In Japan)

CD3 – LIVE AT THE BUDOKAN 27/03/1980

  1. Intro*
  2. Alien*
  3. …Rhodesia*
  4. Quiet Life*
  5. Fall In Love With Me*
  6. Deviation*
  7. All Tomorrow’s Parties*
  8. Obscure Alternatives*
  9. In Vogue*
  10. Life In Tokyo*
  11. Halloween*
  12. Sometimes I Feel So Low*
  13. Communist China*
  14. Adolescent Sex*
  15. I Second That Emotion*
  16. Automatic Gun*

LP – QUIET LIFE

Side A

1. Quiet Life (2020 Remaster)
2. Fall In Love With Me (2020 Remaster)
3. Despair (2020 Remaster)
4. In Vogue (2020 Remaster)

Side B

1. Halloween (2020 Remaster)
2. All Tomorrows Parties (2020 Remaster)
3. Alien (2020 Remaster)
4. The Other Side of Life (2020 Remaster)

*rare or unreleased

  • 1. Life In Tokyo (Original 7” Mix 1979)
  • 2. Life In Tokyo (Original 7” Mix Part 2 1979)
  • 3. Life In Tokyo (Original 12” Version 1979)
  • 4. Life In Tokyo (‘Assemblage’ 7” Remix 1981)
  • 5. Life In Tokyo (‘Assemblage’ 12” Remix 1981)
  • 6. Life In Tokyo (Steve Nye 7″ Special Remix 1982)
  • 7. Life In Tokyo (Steve Nye 12″ Special Remix Version 1982)
  • 8. Life In Tokyo (Steve Nye Theme 1982)
  • 9. Life In Tokyo (Steve Nye Theme ‘Correct Pitch’ 1982)

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223 Comments

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J. Jackson

Warning! Haven’t received mine yet, but I am now told from multiple people that the live disc is sourced from the audience and is of poor quality, unlike the four previously released EP tracks from the same show which sound very good. I bought this just for the live disc, but it is likely I will return it unopened.

Sixcontrabass

Deluxe boxset is a great release. Live CD is sonically a little rough but an interesting addition none the less. Shame that a 5:1 surround sound mix was not part of this project. Here’s hoping that ‘Poleroids’ and ‘Tin Drum’ are in line for a Deluxe release in the near future.

Kerry Echols

Sorry, a previous post was error-ridden due to being dictated on my phone. I don’t have the option to delete the original. The text should read “For those of you in the United States, importcds.com just put up the 3-CD plus vinyl box for $58. After tax and shipping the total is $67. https://amzn.to/3rmvn9x

Oddly, this is several dollars cheaper than purchasing through the importcds’ web site, even though the company has to give Amazon a 10 to 20% cut of each sale.
https://www.importcds.com/quiet-life/4050538625356

James Hartman

Just a note – hdtracks.com has the 3 CD version up for sale (16 bit/44.1k FLAC) and also the single remastered version (24 bit/44.1k FLAC), for those who wanted the music but couldn’t get the physical media in time.

I really really wanted the box, but was late to the party.

Kerry

Also, does anyone know of a comparison of the mixes on the bonus CD of Life in Tokyo remixes vs. all previously released Japan releases? I’d like to know if the bonus CD contains any exclusive/unreleased versions. For example, I have the “Japan – The Singles” set, and it contains 9 versions: https://www.discogs.com/Japan-The-Singles/release/170010.

Kerry

For those of you in the United States, import cds.com just put up the three CD plus final deluxe box or $58. After tax and shipping the total is $67. Quiet Life (Limited Edition, Box Set) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08NYFRR5X

Oddly, this is Sarah dollars cheaper than purchasing through the company zone website, even though the company has no doubt having to give Amazon a 10 to 20% cut.
https://www.importcds.com/quiet-life/4050538625356

Dutchdean

I managed to order the Box +CDsingle from the Townsend Music official store… just to be informed that I am being stung for €33 import duty and taxes.
The joys of post Brexit online shopping…
Next time I will for go thd special edition and just order via Amazon. They ship via Amazon.nl and add no charges, up until now alway.

Rob Puricelli

Can one assume that the box set and bonus disc available at the official store was only available in limited quantities? It no longer appears on the site :-(

J. Jackson

Warning! Haven’t received mine yet, but I am now told from multiple people that the live disc is sourced from the audience and is of poor quality, unlike the four previously released EP tracks from the same show which sound very good. I bought this just for the live disc, but it is likely I will return it unopened.

Sixcontrabass

Deluxe boxset is a great release. Live CD is sonically a little rough but an interesting addition none the less. Shame that a 5:1 surround sound mix was not part of this project. Here’s hoping that ‘Poleroids’ and ‘Tin Drum’ are in line for a Deluxe release in the near future.

Kerry Echols

Sorry, a previous post was error-ridden due to being dictated on my phone. I don’t have the option to delete the original. The text should read “For those of you in the United States, importcds.com just put up the 3-CD plus vinyl box for $58. After tax and shipping the total is $67. https://amzn.to/3rmvn9x
Oddly, this is several dollars cheaper than purchasing through the importcds’ web site, even though the company has to give Amazon a 10 to 20% cut of each sale.
https://www.importcds.com/quiet-life/4050538625356

Kerry

Also, does anyone know of a comparison of the mixes on the bonus CD of Life in Tokyo remixes vs. all previously released Japan releases? I’d like to know if the bonus CD contains any exclusive/unreleased versions. For example, I have the “Japan – The Singles” set, and it contains 9 versions: https://www.discogs.com/Japan-The-Singles/release/170010.

EW99

The “pitch corrected” version is new – everything else has been released before. Links to what I believe to be their original releases on discogs.com below.
Life In Tokyo (Original 7” Mix 1979)
Life In Tokyo (Original 7” Mix Part 2 1979)
https://www.discogs.com/Japan-Life-In-Tokyo/release/1862596
Life In Tokyo (Original 12” Version 1979)
https://www.discogs.com/Japan-Life-In-Tokyo/release/660981
Life In Tokyo (‘Assemblage’ 7” Remix 1981)
https://www.discogs.com/Japan-Featuring-David-Sylvian-Souvenir-From-Japan/release/173299
Life In Tokyo (‘Assemblage’ 12” Remix 1981)
https://www.discogs.com/Japan-Assemblage/release/1500685
Life In Tokyo (Steve Nye 7″ Special Remix 1982)
https://www.discogs.com/Japan-Life-In-Tokyo/release/2038988
Life In Tokyo (Steve Nye 12″ Special Remix Version 1982)
Life In Tokyo (Steve Nye Theme 1982)
https://www.discogs.com/Japan-Life-In-Tokyo/release/95821
Life In Tokyo (Steve Nye Theme ‘Correct Pitch’ 1982)
– sped up version of previous track

Kerry

For those of you in the United States, import cds.com just put up the three CD plus final deluxe box or $58. After tax and shipping the total is $67. Quiet Life (Limited Edition, Box Set) https://www.amazon.com/dp/B08NYFRR5X
Oddly, this is Sarah dollars cheaper than purchasing through the company zone website, even though the company has no doubt having to give Amazon a 10 to 20% cut.
https://www.importcds.com/quiet-life/4050538625356

Dutchdean

I managed to order the Box +CDsingle from the Townsend Music official store… just to be informed that I am being stung for €33 import duty and taxes.
The joys of post Brexit online shopping…
Next time I will for go thd special edition and just order via Amazon. They ship via Amazon.nl and add no charges, up until now alway.

James Hartman

Just a note – hdtracks.com has the 3 CD version up for sale (16 bit/44.1k FLAC) and also the single remastered version (24 bit/44.1k FLAC), for those who wanted the music but couldn’t get the physical media in time.
I really really wanted the box, but was late to the party.

Darren Howard

You can still get the box for £45 from Lexer Music, you don’t get the extra Life in Tokyo CD though but you can still get that from the Japan store but would have to buy the black vinyl to get it.

Rob Puricelli

Can one assume that the box set and bonus disc available at the official store was only available in limited quantities? It no longer appears on the site :-(

Rob Puricelli

Just got this response from TM Stores…
“Hello
Thank you for your enquiry.
Sadly we don’t have any information in relation to restocking these at this time.
Apologies for any inconvenience
Regards
TM Stores”

Noel Fitzsimons

I take it that the set with the bonus CD is no longer available from the official store?

[…] Forthcoming box set is available to pre-order for an amazing price in Italy. This equates to around £33 when it’s £50 in the UK! […]

EW99

amazon.it have a good price (€36.99) on the box 22/1/21

EW99

It’s been popping in and out at that price for days but every time I caught it it went straight back to “not available” before I could order. Thankfully they finally committed to it :)

Kevin Aston

i remember ordering it from Italy following deal alert, no payment has been taken but i cannot find any record of order anywhere, any body help, this is the first time ive ordered from Amazon Italy

Kevin Aston

i remember ordering it from Italy following deal alert, no payment has been taken but i cannot find any record of order anywhere, any body help, this is the first time ive ordered from Amazon Italy

John MC cann

Iv just dug out a book called. David Sylvian the last romantic by Martin power, got it from fopp about five years ago and forgot all about it,this thread has put me back in a Japan mood,, while I’m here tell you a funny story,,,4 years ago I walked into a musical instruments shop in East Kilbride, strangely at the back there was a rack of records no prices on them but all mint unplayed,
Asked the owner about them he said a record company rep in the 70s kept some records that would have been promotional items,had them in his loft for years,he traded them for a guitar in the shop,, among them was a brand new hansa gatefold sleeve quiet life with a sticker on it £4.99 for a ltd period only,
I took it to counter asked the guy if it was still £4.99, yes mate give me a fiver, happy days,have it in a display cabinet,brand new ,old stock never seen a stylus!

Tcf

Good story! I still have a sealed copy of GTP from 1980. Wanted it to give to a schoolfriend as a gift but then decided that he was unworthy……

Michael

True story.About a decade ago I sent David Sylvian’s management an email politely asking him to reform Japan as I was a big fan of the band and they responded with a very curt response saying he was a solo artist and Japan are extinct.They seemed very upset I had the audacity to suggest such a thing!It was like I’d insulted him!

Richard Heraghty

You did. His solo output is superb. You should have seen them in their time. I did, 19 times. We don’t need a retro return.

SimonH

Quite funny that they responded:)
I doubt they’d reform based on polite email requests…

John MC cann

Take more than a polite email,to get the bass player to return to the band,,

Chris Squires

Indeed. I was just, within the last 30 seconds, listening to Oil on Canvas as I have been since yesterday as the conversation with CJ (below) put it front and centre of my mind and I haven’t been able to shake it off yet.
I even reached for “Incantations” from my shelf to listen to that, but seeing Oil on Canvas in the slot made me think… “just one more”.

I digress. The point I was coming here to register is that the whole album is driven, almost to perfection, by Mick Karn. It’s not Sylvian’s voice, sublime though it is or Jansens vastly under-rated drumming. Nor anything else on show. Yes, like the best live albums it is more than the sum of it’s parts but by far the greatest part is the sorely missed Karn. Just listen to the opening of Sons of Pioneers. Or even Swing which is a drum ‘n synth track at it’s heart. Karn steals it away into the world of bass-line jiggery-pokery. Then of course a tour de force on Visions of China, where you can imagine they must have had more than one bass player on stage, surely?

To steal the show from the Brothers Batt is nigh on impossible, but somehow in that 72 minutes Mick Karn manages the impossible and makes it sound easy.

No Mick, no Japan. Simple as.

SimonH

Spot on.

Paul E.

@ Chris- have you heard Peter Murphy/Mick Karn team up together as Dalis Car? That first song in particular off of 1984s “The Waking Hour” is what lead me to listen to Japan. Incredible bass from a very gifted musician.

Deanery

Pop Erik Satie at it’s best. Agreed Chris Squires – no Mick, no Japan!! When I first heard him/my first Japan purchase/Canada….was Oil on Canvas/this live album I enjoyed and the gatefold album cover with the superb pictures inside are out of this world. Where’s the inner gatefold for this album?? – incredible again – love the barrett.. it all looks like you’re in some type of spaceship encounter and I guess you are – musically/you can hear some of the influences and yet it’s so original and influential. Then I bought Polaroids (my fave). I wasn’t even sure he was playing a bass.

Even the slower stuff on here is superb and catchy (Hallowe’en/In Vogue/Alien)….then a song in French and a cover version…..what more could you want? I probably will buy this…but not at the ‘new’ price.

I need to look into/buy Mick Karn/Titles. Love Dali’s Car too.

Karen

I suspect Paul knows this but Mick Karn worked with Kate Bush.
Karn backed Kate for her performance of The Wedding List at The Prince’s Trust Rock Gala. Several years later, he played bass on Kate’s song Heads We’re Dancing.

Karen

I suspect Paul knows this but Mick Karn worked with Kate Bush.

Karn backed Kate for her performance of The Wedding List at The Prince’s Trust Rock Gala. Several years later, he played bass on Kate’s song Heads We’re Dancing.

Deanery

A favourite album….can’t believe Fall in Love wasn’t a single. Great songwriting/Karn bass/Barbieri keyboards/David/his brother and Rob Dean…..soooo musical and catchy-clever….to good to sell well. I already own 2 copies of the album and the 12″ singles, 2 copies of it on cd and I’m not wowed by live albums or single versions so……I’ll need to see more/hear more….if I hear the SQ is much improved I’ll buy the single cd….very glad BMG put this out though.

Tcf

You should read Sylvians latest Twitter replies concerning the QL Re-Issue. I must say that I find it harder from year to year to find him and his latest musical output “fascinating” as in the years from Brilliant Trees up to – let’s say – Blemish. He sounds like a snob these days.

Bill B

I fully expect or all his apparent distain for this period of his musical life David Sylvian will still cash the royalty cheques from it no doubt!

Tcf

Spot on, Bill B. That’s exactly what I thought when I read his comments about listening to his old music. He can afford to have a living without releasing anything for decades. Must have something to do with enough people listening and buying his old stuff. I suppose he didn’t make a fortune with “Playing the schoolhouse ” – for me the lowest point of his musical output so far.

CAB

I agree with many of the posts below. I’d be more than happy to pay for CD’s of the remastered Lp, the remix CD and the Life In Tokyo remixes if they were all released individually. Not so interested in the live CD.
If the embedded video in this article is anything to go by (Quiet Life on You Tube), the remaster sounds very open.
But I too don’t want to pay for vinyl. I also don’t want yet another ‘slip in’ design for the CD’s, which by the look of the packaging is what this will be. Each element of a deluxe edition should in my opinion have its own artwork, no matter how simple.
Bottom line is that I can’t personally justify the price for this collection even though it’s probably worth it if you use all of it.
I find it a bit short sighted that record companies treat CD collectors as a second consideration – that CD’s are somehow a bonus to the main event.

Hirotsugu

I’m in japan(country).

Ordering Quiet Life Deluxe Boxset + Life In Tokyo EP ( £65.00) via the official website will force me to pay an incredible shipping cost of £86.

when I ordered Bryan Ferry / Live At The Royal Albert Hall 1974 Boxset in 2019, The shipping cost was £21.

Even if there is the influence of Covid19, I can’t understand at all why Japanese people can only choose super expensive DHL delivery when trying to order this time. Townsendmusic gave me a totally unfaithful answer.

> If you ordered the same item today, the postage would also show higher than paid previously. It is your choice whether to place the order or decide not to do so.

They may have unavoidable circumstances regarding international shipping cost.
But this reply doesn’t really convince me.
Why do we have to pay nearly £100 for Life in TokyoEP?

EW99

This looks like a gorgeous package and I’m totally in for it. I’ve gone for the box from amazon and the CD + Life In Tokyo single from the official shop as it doesn’t look like the box contains the single CD digipack which I quite want.

Japan reissues are notorious for errors with versions of tracks so I really hope that everything is correct this time. I’m sure lessons have been learnt from before so fingers crossed.

Shane

I don’t agree about the excuse about higher shipping charges so that clients won’t complain about lost parcels: This is only valid if you give the client a choice. Forcing them to use UPS or similar is not friendly at all.

Also someone says they ordered the CD from the official store to get the EP: make sure you check your order details because like Peter said, they removed that option the day they made the listing. I also emailed the store and they just said it is not included. It would have been more professional to say that they NO LONGER offer it in that bundle and that their banner/statement is factually wrong and they should remove it. But I won’t waste my breath there.

O(+> Peter B

I went to order from the official store to get the Life In Tokyo CD but I unfortunately had to cancel. Postage to Australia was £79.50 (roughly AUD $150) – more than the item itself. Whereas I just ordered the 10CD box set from Cherry Red and postage to Australia was a more reasonable £15.

Awkward Moment

Holy heck… postage to AU is 85 quid!

SimonP

Again I am thwarted from buying something I’d really like due to formatting. A 2 disc CD set would be my choice, but it’s not available.

I’d probably plump for the box with the Life In Tokyo bonus disc if said disc was a freebie but it isn’t, is it?

As it is, I’m reluctantly passing. :-(

Jeffrey fitzsimons

The only marketing of the release has been a farce. Burning Shed put up links which a lot of us jumped on and then the next day an Official Japan store pops up offering the extra LIT CD and now the only way to get that is to buy the black vinyl again as the cd option was taken down straight away. It’s an absolute disgrace and all it will do for us collectors is feed the EBay scalpers…. shame on BMG and Townsend…. a complete farce.

Robert Lett

I actually had this in my shopping cart until I saw the shipping price to the US. I’d like to have it w the bonus but that’s gonna be a hard no for me.

Michel75

How annoying to be forced to buy vinyl (which I don’t care at all) to get the full CD package….despite being a huge Japan and D.Sylvian fan, I will skip this one.

Paul Rymer

This is a wonderful package with a lot of love put into it.

Sadly there just isn’t that much additional material that could have been included. This is due to the way the band developed material in rehearsal and only recorded the songs intended for the album. “A Foreign Place” was recorded for the album but left off when they finalised the running order in 1979.

As for the international shipping costs, these have all gone up due to recent price increases, Brexit and the fact that reliable methods need to be used. There are hold-ups due to the pandemic with some countries only accepting express / tracked mail. Japan (the country) just imposed rules around package size and weight as well. Things may improve by March but it’s hard to say.

SimonH

Hi Paul (Rymer not Sinclair:))
Have you heard the remaster and if so is it worth picking up the single
Cd if the box isn’t an option?
I know you are an expert on the band’s cd variants!
Thanks very much

Paul Rymer

Simon H – the main album is totally accurate to the original pressing – segue between All Tomorrow’s Parties and Alien as it should be (not a complete fade between the two), and the vinyl sounds like a cross between the original UK and Japanese vinyl – both of those were excellent with the UK a tad warmer. Gets 10/10 for accuracy from me.
Fall In Love With Me is a complex track that I like to use to test speakers and headphones and it meets my approval wholeheartedly. I’m assuming that the CD version will be the same as it is advertised as the 2020 remaster. Buy the remaster with confidence.

SimonH

Thanks Paul, exactly the kind of advice I was after, much appreciated!
BW
Simon

Simon Musselle

The CD & the vinyl use the same master, a 2019 master by Alchemy.

Kevin O

Paul (Rymer) has it exactly right. I had a “holy shit” moment when I saw the shipping for the box set (to the US, it’s slightly more expensive than the merchandise)—but while we’re living in covidland the parcel shipping companies (UPS, FedEx, DHL, etc.) don’t have the same restrictions to contend with as the postal service in many countries. I’ve ordered CDs from Japan on a few occasions over the last 12–15 months; the FedEx and DHL option takes about two days door-to-door, versus two to four weeks for the postal service. So in this instance I’m willing to put up with the otherwise outrageous cost to get the more reliable service.

Kevin O

Paul (Rymer) has it exactly right. I had a “holy shit” moment when I saw the shipping for the box set (to the US, it’s slightly more expensive than the merchandise)—but while we’re living in covidland the parcel shipping companies (UPS, FedEx, DHL, etc.) don’t have the same restrictions to contend with as the postal service in many countries. I’ve ordered CDs from Japan on a few occasions over the last 12–15 months; the FedEx and DHL option takes about two days door-to-door, versus two to four weeks for the postal service. So in this instance I’m willing to put up with the otherwise outrageous cost to get the more reliable service.

Crashcris

Just wishing for a lovely 5.1 box set of all the albums (SACD or BluRay), in fact I’d rather be able to download just the files in FLAC 5.1. I’m not interested in the remixes nor adding to the planet’s plastic landfill sites with vinyl or superfluous remixed CDs and fancy packaging. I’m just into the music.

John MC cann

You might be on the wrong website mate?

Jan

I’m buying the single disc with the bonus remix disc from the official site, and the big box from Amazon. Totally makes sense, and means I have the basic album for the car. whoop.

Richard

Worth waiting a few days.
Just ordered on Amazon
Many thanks Super Deluxe

Nick Dyer

I’ve done the same switch to Amazon – it saved me £78- £50 = £28…I would like that Life In Tokyo CD, but a £28 premium? You must be joking. Luckilly I have the 12″ but I would have liked to hear the others…but I am not fond of CDs – surely you’ll be able to get rips from someone?

Intersting comments about postage cost (and I appreciate the Italian risks) but this is too much cost to the punter.

Paul Taylor

It could end up £78 cheaper if Amazon doesn’t get sufficient stock to fulfill all their preorders. ;-)

Phil Hitchings

Ordering from the official site makes the package cost £71, Amazon UK with free delivery is £22 cheaper, in other words, £22 for a CD of LIT remixes; too ‘spensive for me.

Andrea

I like Japan and I’d be interested but this SDE is not really attractive and quite expensive. To ship to Italy the official shop asks for 30€, if postage costs keep growing maybe there’s hope for local shops…. Easy pass for me at this stage, I’m confident this will become available at much lower price someday. If not, not a big loss…. B-sides and edits, audience live recording, vinyl/cd duplication… No 5:1 or any visual, could they do any worse?!!

Jan

spot on.

Glenn

As an online seller since the late 1990s I wholly agree with your comment here Paul. I have sold on Ebay since then and Discogs more recently. Shipping costs have continued to go up over the years. I used to be able to charge ~$7 USD to ship a CD to the EU and now it is ~$16 USD. Ebay used to allow buyers and sellers to work out issues with lost/damaged packages etc. but several years ago Ebay began charging the sellers for them. As I do this as a hobby and am not a ‘business’ I found that unfair. Most buyers were happy to ‘split the difference’ if things went lost or were damaged by the postal service as it was part of the risk of buying online. They other decision Ebay made several years ago was to charge fees against shipping costs which in my view is wrong. More recently for those sellers they have forced into ‘managed payments’ (ie. let’s grab the transaction fees from Paypal now that we no longer own them…) they also take a percentage of the sales taxes buyers pay. Again, wrong. Their justification for this was ‘it makes things simpler’. Obviously it would be simple to set up their website to NOT charge the fees against taxes… I have also had several bad experiences shipping to Italy (as well as Brazil) over the years. Have seen several sellers that refuse to ship to those countries. The most recent thing is that Paypal etc. now report your sales to the IRS here in the USA so they need to be accounted for in our annual taxes. As an online seller it seems we are always facing a headwind…

Tracey

Well said Paul. It’s unfortunate that shipping costs have become a material obstacle for some when it comes to supporting their favorite artists and/or the availability of physical product in general. It will be interesting to see if this dynamic continues in the future in our global “new normal.”

Stay safe and be well everyone!

Emmanuel

I couldn’t agree more with Paul. Regular shipping costs are expensive, but if you don’t secure it and it is lost, the seller will have to pay/refund/re-send. It happens to me on Discogs, I ask buyers to pay an extra for tracking, they say “no need”, then when it is lost, they complain and ask for a full refund. Amazon cheats with “free shipping”

CJ

I had never heard anything by Japan until i saw this post, and I was intrigued by the sample posted. I took a listen to some of their other work on Spotify, and I’m not a fan. Just ordered the entire back catalogue from Amazon. Might consider ordering this box too, if the price comes down a bit and I can get decent shipping on it. How did I miss this group?

Thank you, once again, Paul, for introducing me to some excellent music that had passed me by.

Chris Squires

Interesting comment CJ, I trust the “I’m not a fan” is a typo of “I’m now a fan” or you are a true Jedi master of /s sarcasm.

Interesting to know which work you heard to make the conversion as there is a world and a half of difference between Deviation / Automatic Gun or Nightporter / Canton?

For most people who like Japan, that I have ever seen posting here or on other review sites somewhere between Gentlemen Take Polaroids and Tin Drum is peak Japan. Personally my go to moment is the 1984 compilation album “Exorcising Ghosts” which says everything wonderful about Japan in one double LP. If you buy Vinyl do get the LP and not the CD as the CD omits 5 important tracks, not that you can’t get those tracks elsewhere it just loses the flow of the LP version. (whilst still understanding the irony of having to get up off yer arse to turn the record over twice and change it once).
There are a few Japanese imports CDs that keep the full Exorcising Ghosts 16 track listing over two CDs, which are worth hunting down.

The best “Early Years” release, by some distance (again IMHO) is Assemblage. This originally came as a 10 track single LP compilation in 1981, but I was first exposed to it as a 15 year old in it’s 1982 Long Play cassette guise which has a rather all encompassing and brilliant 18 tracks including remixes and live versions. Again if you don’t do cassette, and not many of us do these days, you can hunt down a Japanese double CD with all 18 tracks. I don’t think, and I am sure someone can correct me if I am wrong, there is an LP version with more than the original 10 tracks, which is a shame as a double LP of the extended Assemblage would be rather nice and would fly onto my shelf.

Hope that helps and enjoy the music CJ.

What? Japan? Worry?

“Exorcising Ghosts” is worth it alone just for “A Foreign Place” and “Voices Raised in Welcome, Hands Held in Prayer”

CJ

You’re right, it was a typo. I meant, “I am NOW a fan.” Can’t believe I missed that.

I bought just about everything: the five studio albums, plus Rain Tree Crow and Assemblage, Exorcising Ghosts, The Very Best of, and Collection. I’m not a huge fan of live albums except for specific acts, but I may pick up Oil on Canvas at some point.

I listened to a random sample of their stuff on Spotify to decide if I was into them enough to fully invest. I sampled at least one track from every album. I thought I might not like the first two albums, but I even liked the tracks I heard from those. I seriously don;t know how I never heard their stuff before, because it’s exactly the kind of music I love.

Thank you for the suggestions.

Tcf

Hi CJ, I am a bit envious – being able to listen to QL , GTP and TD for the first time again!! I still remember how it felt. Couldn’t believe what I heard when I first turned on TD for example. This album has dated so well! Enjoy!

Chris Squires

CJ – You must invest in Oil on Canvas. There was a thread a few months back about live material and how many people said they didn’t bother with it but then most admitted there was always one live album in their life that was more than worth the effort. Oil on Canvas is one of those albums. Get to know the material first then immerse yourself in the one live concert album I put above Before the Dawn.
The video is worth a watch as well although that is unfortunately a cut down 11 tracks, you will find a few tracks scattered across the YouTube, but as a single aural experience it is up there with the best of it’s genre.

Tcf – bang on the mark, mine was Gentlemen Take Polaroids. How I would love to get that feeling of hearing GTP, The Kick Inside, Tubular Bells for the first time. All in that 12 to 14 year old corridor for me. Blew me away. I can think of albums I love equally, but didn’t hear until I was 20 (like eponymous The Lilac Time) but being older lost some of that thrilling magic that comes with entering the teenage years rather than leaving them.

Kevin O

That cassette was my first copy of Assemblage also. I subsequently discovered that the B side was the version of that LP released in Japan, so I bought that version as well (this was back when Tower Records still existed and they still had an import section). The second disc of the 1995 2-CD edition released in Japan was different to that earlier Japanese edition, though it did have the benefit of including all four of the Live in Japan EP and the 12″ of “All Tomorrow’s Parties”.
A trimmed down version of the 1996 Japan-only compilation The Singles (which simply presented all their Hansa singles, 7- and 12-inch, resulting in some duplication, except for the differences in the vinyl copies they used as the source material) would be a great compilation of their early material, even though it would miss the key album tracks included on Assemblage.

Kevin O

That cassette was my first copy of Assemblage also. I subsequently discovered that the B side was the version of that LP released in Japan, so I bought that version as well (this was back when Tower Records still existed and they still had an import section). The second disc of the 1995 2-CD edition released in Japan was different to that earlier Japanese edition, though it did have the benefit of including all four of the Live in Japan EP and the 12″ of “All Tomorrow’s Parties”.

A trimmed down version of the 1996 Japan-only compilation The Singles (which simply presented all their Hansa singles, 7- and 12-inch, resulting in some duplication, except for the differences in the vinyl copies they used as the source material) would be a great compilation of their early material, even though it would miss the key album tracks included on Assemblage.

Craig Hedges

CJ – you might want to check out their gig at Hammersmith in 1982, Bassist Mick Karn’s moves are incredible and his bass playing is out of this world. Sadly he passed away 10 years ago. Deeply missed.

Karl Garwood

Gutted that you stopped the option of Single Cd with 9 track LIT EP for all in £18.50 was in the process of completing order , got called away and by the time i went back to complete the offer had been taken down gutted

David

Decided that this is too expensive for what you get. Had there been a deluxe cd version I would likely have purchased

Stephen dC

While we are at it, something that always baffled me is that on the original Life In Tokyo 7″ Vinyl single, it has [what I presume to be] the Life In Tokyo Theme on the B Side albeit at the wrong speed. It would only play near correctly at 78rpm. Does anyone know if this was intentional?

I note the ‘bonus CD’ contains a ‘corrected pitch’ version and wonder if this is the same one, corrected [and is the Steve Nye Theme, track 8, still at the wrong speed?].

Grahame Andrews

I was going to press “buy” but as I get older and also limited space in my Kallax shelves, I thought let’s see what’s on offer here. I realised that I have a 2004 Japan cd replica sleeve version of this, which has 4 remixes and a Quiet Life video. Sounds perfect to these ears and I don’t really think the box set has enough to tempt me. I will order the red vinyl from Burning Shed, anyone notice they have scrimped even on this, 140 g, come on BMG, 180 g is the norm surely! I will save my remaining space for London Town and Back To The Egg, although looks like they will be empty for the foreseeable future!

Ex-Oligarch

God bless Ikea for inventing the Kallax (fka Expedit).

180 gram vinyl is still sold as a premium product, and up until the last year or so I don’t recall seeing any 180g colored vinyl. The two styles were aimed at different target customers: heavyweight black vinyl at the audiophile, colored at the design fan/collector.

For me, the quality of the mastering and pressing seems to make more of a difference than the weight of the vinyl. If it makes you feel any better, the original Hansa versions of the Japan records were on the old standard 120 gram and sounded great.

MGW

According to Rough Trade the coloured vinyl version is 140g.

Live and Loud Shows

I did a restoration of the Live In Tokyo gig (which is 16 March, not 27th – they didn’t play in Tokyo on the 27th) created from 3 separate audience recordings for my website – I’ll be taking down the free copy on there when the show gets an official release in March. But I was hoping the official release would be from soundboard, at least. None of the 3 audience recordings are very good and took a LOT of restoration work to sound half decent. I hope someone has put some serious work into this, or people will be sorely disappointed.

SimonH

I think you have just helped me in my decision to hold fire!
Thank you.
Really wish there was a reasonably priced two or three disc release.

Tom

Live And Loud Show – is there a chance BMG might have used your clean-up work for this CD release?

David Harold

So is it the case that the live CD is taken from an audience recording? I’d hope that was very clear if true and I can’t see it anywhere?

J. Jackson

The four “Live In Japan” EP tracks always sounded great to me, so the prospect of having the entire show is my only reason for wanting to purchase this. Is it the same quality as the EP or is it really just an audience recording? Can’t help but notice the asterisks indicating “never before released” even though four of the tracks ostensibly were. Others have suggested they are a “different mix.” Will probably hold off ordering this until someone reviews the live disc in detail.

J. Jackson

The four “Live In Japan” EP tracks always sounded great to me, so the prospect of having the entire show is my only reason for wanting to purchase this. Is it the same quality as the EP or is it really just an audience recording? Can’t help but notice the asterisks indicating “never before released” even though four of the tracks ostensibly were. Others have suggested they are a “different mix.” Will probably hold off ordering this until someone reviews the live disc in detail.

Martin Farnworth

In my very limited experience of charity shop vinyl purchases three Japan Lps for £1 each including this album was the best ever.

Nigel Day

I’ll save my money. It’s a mediocre album at best

Mark Jensen

Does anyone know how to tell by listening the difference between the 1979 12″ mix of Life In Tokyo and the 1982 12″ Steve Nye extended version? I’m trying to figure out which version appears on cd 1 of the 12″/80s Electro:Pop compilation, which is just labeled as Long Version.

Khayem

As far as I can tell, it’s the Giorgio Moroder mix on 12″/80s Electro:Pop compilation (the entire series was notorious for mislabelling tracks or including non-80s mixes as I recall). I think it’s the Steve Nye Extended Version that appears on Twelve Inch Eighties: Rhythm Is Gonna Get You, the similar (but budget priced) compilation from 2016.

David

My research concluded that this was the 1982 version

Isaías

I can help you Mark, let’s go:

(1st release) 1979
Produced by Giorgio Moroder
07″ Life In Tokyo (short version) 3:30
Life In Tokyo (parte 2) 3:17

12″ Life In Tokyo (short version) 3:30
Life In Tokyo (long version) 7:08
=================================

(2nd release) 1981
Produced by Giorgio Moroder |also|
07″ Life In Tokyo (short version) 3:30 [the same]
European Son 3:45 [new B-side]

12″ Life In Tokyo (long version) 7:08 [the same]
European Son (extended remix) 4:58
==================================

(3rd release) 1982
Produced by Steve Nye
*NEW BASS and *NEW SYNTHESIZERS

07″ Life In Tokyo (special remix) 4:03
Life In Tokyo (theme) 3:55

12″ Life In Tokyo (special remix ext) 7:06
Life In Tokyo (theme) 3:55 [the same]
==================================

So the difference is the new bass and synths.
Listen to them very carefully Mark, ok?
Have a great 2021

David Bishop

The £15 option seems to have disappeared from the Japan official website?!

Bridge

Sub-Total: $89.00
Estimated Postage:$115.00
(DHL Express to Canada)
Total:$204.00
LOL and btw, this is in U.S. dollars, so $260CAN. Again LOL.
That being said, the contents of this edition are slim at best. If your going to provide a live set, at least they could have dug up a dvd concert. I can’t imagine this live cd (I know its from the time period) being near the quality release that Oil On Canvas was. As for the ‘bonus’ CD. 9 mixes of one song? CD 2 looks somewhat interesting, but that’s about it. I’ll pick up the vinyl remaster when it comes down to a reasonable price. Unfortunately I missed out on the MOV release some time ago. Rant over.

The Thorn

Yeah, I was all over this until I saw the total price. :(:(:(

Seriously, there’s not reason why shipping to Canada has to be this expensive. I love Japan (I’ve got so many releases already) but I simply can’t justify 260CAN for just a live show and bonus EP.

Terrible misstep here. :/

Ex-Oligarch

Obviously the intent was to has the original album stand alone on CD1, but I think it would have been nice if they had sequenced the lovely little instrumental “A Foreign Place” alongside the album, rather than burying it among the remixes on CD2. It fit in nicely with the band’s main work when it was included on the “Exorcising Ghosts” compilation.

wim

Anthony Reynolds answered after me asking what the quality of the live cd is compare to the “live in Japan” Ep from the 80’s:
The live cd sounds like a boot alright, but is quite interesting to suddenly hear the music from such a different perspective. The band play great as ever. No one seems to know where the show is from though exactly. Steve Jansen thinks its different show from the one on the Live in Japan EP..