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The Shadows / At Their Very Best

Classic album of re-recorded hits pressed on limited 2LP red vinyl

Another Shadows release (check out the 11CD signed box set), this time aimed at the vinyl connoisseur. At Their Very Best is a 2LP hits collection available in limited numbers on red vinyl.

This set is a reissue of the group’s 1989 hits collection, which featured re-recordings of 20 Shadows classics, including Apache, Theme from The Deer Hunter (Cavatina) and Wonderful Land. That was a successful album peaking at number 12 in the UK charts, and earning gold status. The original Polygram release crammed all the tracks onto one record, but this time around the music is pressed over four sides of vinyl.

This is available on standard black vinyl, but for no premium and while stocks last, the Amazon UK Exclusive red vinyl is the one to go for. 500 of these will be manufactured.

At Their Very Best will be released on 3 November 2017.

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LP 1
1. Apache
2. Man Of Mystery
3. Shindig
4. Wonderful Land
5. The Rise And Fall Of Flingel Bunt
6. The Theme From “”The Deerhunter”” (Cavatina)
7. The Boys
8. The Frightened City
9. Theme For Young Lovers
10. Dance On

LP 2
1. The Savage
2. F.B.I.
3. Guitar Tango
4. Genie With The Light Brown Lamp
5. Atlantis
6. Foot Tapper
7. Don’t Cry For Me Argentina
8. Kon – Tiki
9. Geronimo
10. The Stranger

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Neil Kelly

Unlike the Marc Bolan ‘limited to 500 red vinyl’ this has not only not sold out on day 1, it’s actually been available for 6 weeks solid. I’ve just commented on the Marc Bolan set via that thread. I’m going to cancel my order of this right now before it’s too late!

Colin

Amazon have the marc bolan red vinyl bback in stock. My shadows red vinyl arrived today. Delightfully low number out if 500 too!

Ross Baker

An unusual set this one. As mentioned above, it allowed them to put their classics alongside newer recordings on compilations and such (if I recall correctly, EMI were being fairly tricky about it even without payment issues), but although they did a fairly good job, and the casual listener might not notice, for me these versions are incredibly inferior. When it comes to using synth strings instead of an actual orchestra, it just takes away from the whole experience. Although I do prefer the new solo on Guitar Tango.
Interestingly, the only successful one to my taste was ‘Riders in the Sky 90’ – which ended up on their following (and final) album, Reflection.

What I’d really love to see is a nice reappraisal of their ’60s and ’70s work. The ’60s stuff in particular was so staggeringly important in its day – when the likes of John Lennon and Mike Oldfield cite Hank as an influence, you know you’re talking big league stuff – but seems to have been relegated to cheaply knocked together compilations in the ‘easy listening’ section of HMV. The ’70s are a bit of a forgotten wilderness years for the band right up until they ended the decade with the surprise success of String of Hits (which spurred them on to their soft rock covers band format of the ’80s), so it’d be nice to see those albums given more of a spotlight too.

Bernard O'Hara

This album was originally recorded to coincide with their 30th anniversary. There are some slight performance variations on a number of the tracks, when compared to the originals (Theme for Young Lovers had strings added, Guitar Tango had a variation on the solo, as did Genie with the Light Brown Lamp, The Stranger, which ended the album, had an extended outdo). The points made earlier about re-recording as the current record company (Polydor) didn’t own the originals (EMI did), and also to ensure that money went to the artists, rather than the record company are valid – and this did enable Polydor (subsequently Polygram TV subsequently Universal) to issue compilations with the original hits. I liked these re-recordings – but ultimately the originals will be the ones which will be remembered. That said – this is a nice package – the original had 20 tracks on a flimsy vinyl – and the red vinyl will be very nice.

CJ Feeney

Oddly, I have been contemplating buying a Shadows collection recently, as Mike Oldfield’s Return to Ommadawn frequently reminds me of Hank’s distinctive sound. Hank Marvin was such a respected guitarist by Oldfield, Knopfler, Brian May and others but his reputation seems to have got lost over the years.

bertielego

Top of my head, some great re-recordings I do enjoy:
– Jean-Michel Jarre: Oxygene New Master Recording.
– Freddie Mercury & Montserrat Caballe: Barcelona Special Edition.
– Cabaret Voltaire: Johnny Yesno Redux.
– Visage: The Wild Life (The Best Of Extended Versions And Remixes)
– Kraftwerk: The Mix.
– Bjork: Vulnicura Strings.
– Erasure: Union Street.
– Seal: Acoustic Album.
– Underworld: Barking (Alternative Versions).

Paul Wren

Most artists re-record original material and then reissue it as they then get paid for sales of this new material whereas new sales of original material usually goes into the record companies pockets.

CJ Feeney

That was certainly the case when Roy Wood re-recorded “I Wish it could Be Christmas Everyday” and Suzanne Vega recorded her Close Up series – which are excellent.

The other notable re-recording was Joni Mitchell’s “soft jazz” reworking of her old hits on “Both Sides Now” and “Travelogue”. It sounds like a terrible idea, but the change in her voice to a deeper, more mellow style really works, the new versions sound like they’re by a completely different artist.

graham

Are re-recordings more of a ‘I don’t own the rights to the old stuff but the new record company want a greatest hits package’?? Thought that was the case for Nik Kershaw?

WILLIAM ENGLAND

Blondie – Greatest Hits Redux – with only one (maybe two) not attaining the heights of the original … and as they don’t get a penny from film/tv ads using the original versions, you can quite understand why.
I’ll admit that at the time I was surprised at how good the new versions were…

Chris Squires

I haven’t heard Redux (or Ghost of Download..is it?) I will have to investigate – thanks guys for the heads up…. Maybe it can happen then.

My references were always Director’s Cut and the re-workings of Tubular bells (Not II or III but the original re-worked), none of which float my boat over the originals. Love being proved wrong, it happens so often….:-)

Chris Squires

Ah you see, it was pre-SDE for me. Oh no, more money.

Auntie Sabrina

Sharon or Ozzy Osbourne famously had parts of his first 2 solo albums re-recorded, then re-released the original versions years later

Heraldo

Two worthwhile and arguably successful endeavours regarding artists re-recording (/re-interpreting) their own material spring to mind for me.

Kraftwerk – The Mix and the 3-D albums (both have their merits and can sit alongside the originals)
Gang of Four – Return the Gift (benefitted from superior recording techniques and captured the band’s power even better than original recordings).

Chris Squires

So as early as 1989 Hank and the boys were re-recording their hits?

I can’t think of an album or artist where any re-recordings were what the fans wanted or were better (or even close to) the feeling of the originals. I guess it is purely money? I know Kate did the “Director’s Cut” album for “artistic reasons” as she doesn’t do much for “financial reasons”, Jeff re-recorded all of his hits for the money…. but do the majority of fans want this? Is it better? I would think not.

CJ

Technically, acoustic, live, and remix albums also fall into this category. Once again, as you said, I don’t know if they are what the fans are typically clamoring for when artists do them, but there are a few I can think of (Mariah’s Unplugged, Madonna’s You Can Dance, Pet Shop Boys first Disco, Simple Minds’ Acoustic, Cyndi Lauper’s Body Acoustic) where the album is a genuine, positive addition to their catalog. (And people may wish me dead for this one, as much as I love Kate, Director’s Cut doesn’t really feel like it was a necessary addition. I can understand, from her perspective, wanting to revisit work that she felt needed to be done “better,” but I was happy with the originals in most of the cases, and the remakes didn’t seem to bring much to the table.)

CJ Feeney

“As early as 1989…” was more than 30 years into their career.

Chris Squires

Ha, yes I know, but as a phenomenon (re-recording your own work) it wasn’t common practice back then, was it?

CJ Feeney

I remember Johnny Cash put out a re-recorded greatest hits at he same time “Get Rhythm” I think. Early Sun and Columbia songs, as he was no longer on either label.