UMC acknowledge Richard and Linda Thompson box set disc errors

Replacement discs and downloads promised

Universal Music Catalogue (UMC) have made a statement after some fans complained about defective discs in the Richard and Linda Thompson Hard Luck Stories 1972-1982 box set.

Some people have had issues with the CDs in this box set where ‘ripping’ them successfully (i.e. copying the files to a computer from a CD drive) is not possible. The process gets ‘stuck’ at various points on some discs. Others have reported playback issues from some discs, too. This is by no means a blanket problem, since SDE has checked its set and all seems fine.

The label are blaming the “hand-packing” process for these errors. This rang a bell with SDE and we then recalled that back in September 2018 the same label blamed the same ‘hand-packing’ issues for DVD errors on the Soft Cell Keychains and Snowstorms box set.

Anyway, the good news is they are offering a download code for the full box set contents to anyone who emails proof of purchase (presumably aimed at those with the ripping issues) but significantly will also offer replacement discs to those who request them. They do not make it clear if they are getting a new batch manufactured or are just supplying replacements from existing stock with the hope that they will be okay. UMC do, however, emphasise that this box set is now SOLD OUT, so no one will be getting a replacement box from their favourite retailer.

The full statement (which is posted on the uDiscoverMusic Store above the product listing for the box) is as follows:

We are aware of issues affecting some CDs in a small number of the Richard & Linda Thompson 8CD boxed set, ‘Hard Luck Stories 1972-1982’. Having spoken to the manufacturer, it appears likely that these were caused during the hand-packing process. If you have been affected please email [email protected], including proof of purchase, and we will send you a download code for the full contents of the package. If you request them, we will also arrange to send replacement discs to you. Please note, this box set is now sold out. If you return your box to the store you purchased from it will only be possible to get a refund.

SDE summary of the situation:

  • Any box that you buy online right now MAY have the issue, but you can subsequently contact UMC for a download or replacement discs.
  • There are no boxes in the marketplace right now guaranteed to be perfect.
  • Since this box is now sold out, the best advice is to hang on to it and simply go through the process of requesting the download (if you only have ripping problems), or replacement discs (if you have experienced playback issues).
  • If you don’t have any issues, ignore all this and enjoy what is a fabulous box set!

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