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Old 09-28-2020, 11:05 AM   #341
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Waiting for my copy as well. I didn’t buy right away because I wanted to see if there would be any major price adjustments, but that doesn’t appear to be the case. And if it’s like the 1999 set, it will be hard to come by sooner rather than later.

Luckily I had an Amazon gift card to help lessen the financial hit.
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Old 09-28-2020, 12:21 PM   #342
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My order from ImportCDs came to $128 including tax and shipping, which was considerably lower than what Amazon was charging.

Were you expecting lower than that? I got the comparable super deluxe White Album set for less but I didn’t get it until a month or so after the release date.

I used the same seller for the upcoming Replacements “Pleased to Meet Me” set and that came to $43 all included, way less than I expected and again lower than Amazon.
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Old 09-28-2020, 12:24 PM   #343
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Originally Posted by LemonMelon View Post
Listening now. All I wanted was a copy of the album on streaming services that didn't have weird edits and horrendous mastering.

Play in the Sunshine sounds SO much better. That bass kick!
I wasn’t aware of any weird edits on the original, what’s the source on this?
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Old 09-28-2020, 01:20 PM   #344
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My order from ImportCDs came to $128 including tax and shipping, which was considerably lower than what Amazon was charging.

Were you expecting lower than that? I got the comparable super deluxe White Album set for less but I didn’t get it until a month or so after the release date.

I used the same seller for the upcoming Replacements “Pleased to Meet Me” set and that came to $43 all included, way less than I expected and again lower than Amazon.

No, was simply hoping Amazon would go a bit lower since I had a gift card to use. Your price is easily the lowest I’ve heard, so nicely done.
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Old 09-28-2020, 01:46 PM   #345
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I wasn’t aware of any weird edits on the original, what’s the source on this?
Spotify sources from different albums sometimes, so you'll end up with single edits and album mixes being intermingled. It's even worse for Purple Rain.

The real problem with the original streaming version of Sign is the volume mastering. The volume levels were nowhere near even. For example, the title track was extremely loud, whereas Play in the Sunshine was relatively quiet. Hot Thing was loud whereas The Ballad of Dorothy Parker was quiet. You would constantly have to mess with the volume on your device to get it right. Now, it's perfectly level and sounds great.
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Old 09-28-2020, 03:05 PM   #346
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Ahh, I thought you were talking about the old CD master.

Don’t have any sympathy for people streaming anything in compromised quality/versions, tbh, since you’re all making it impossible for musicians to earn a living off of their recorded music.

Spotify is the devil.
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Old 09-28-2020, 10:21 PM   #347
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Add to that the Camille album that was recorded after Dream Factory was abandoned, but before compiling Crystal Ball.

I get that they didn’t want repetition on the release by putting all the different albums on there, but certain songs released elsewhere should have been included. For example, while The Ball is getting a release here, it would have been nice to have it flow into Joy In Repetition as originally intended. Yes, the latter was released on Graffiti Bridge, but it segues into other songs there, making for a choppy transition on any custom Crystal Ball playlist.
Late reply here but my set arrived today and some new things to add:

After Prince died I DLed some huge discography that included a bunch of unreleased/unofficial albums, including Dream Factory, Camille, and Crystal Ball. For some reason I never checked it after originally reading your post, but that transition between The Ball and Joy in Repetition you're bemoaning the absence of is actually present on what I have in my iTunes, there's like some applause and someone talking and a little horn that joins the tracks, and it's pretty smooth to my ears, just a fraction of pause in-between due to the automatic separation of iTunes. Either way it's definitely not a segue from We Can Funk as it appears on Graffiti Bridge.

Anyway, don't know if you've noticed yet but the version of Rebirth of the Flesh on the new SOTT set contains the "original outro" that Prince removed when the song appeared on an exclusive NPG music club release in 2001, so it now has a length of 5:28 compared to the 4:02 of the previous one. But oddly enough, the one in my iTunes Crystal Ball is coming is 4:54. Supposedly the version I have is only found on the Camille and Crystal Ball tracklisting so it comes from a different source.

If you're not familiar with princevault.com, they're a good resource for looking up the origins of tracks, different versions, where you can find them. My version of Joy In Repetition is 5:09 and they don't even list one with that length, and according to them the version segueing from The Ball is unreleased. So it makes me wonder if the Crystal Ball playlist I have is from a very connected inside source...

I won't go track by track through all of it but my Crystal Ball version of Play in the Sunshine opens with completely different sound effects than the one on Sign O' The Times, so again, I don't think mine was cobbled together from various official sources but rather might be the legit version Prince tracked.
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Old 10-02-2020, 04:08 PM   #348
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I've heard different bootlegs with the Dream Factory/Camille/Crystal Ball songs and the sound quality always left a lot to be desired, so I never really pursued them further. Sounds like you obtained a nice copy.

There's an informative Rolling Stone article with Michael Howe, the principal archivist, where he goes into details on some of the tracks. For Rebirth, this version with the "original outro" was as intended for the Camille record, which makes sense since it removes the "Welcome to the Crystal Ball" bit at the end. The bootlegged version for Crystal Ball does indeed segue into Play In The Sunshine with what I recall a different opening that includes gunshots. Not sure if that's the alternate version you have.

I'm going to elaborate more in another post about the set itself, but it's these little bits that I wish were included in the set, so we can make a more effective, official playlist for each unreleased album as intended.
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Old 10-02-2020, 10:59 PM   #349
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I know some (most?) people won't care about this, but I was wondering why Pitchfork hadn't reviewed this, and yet on Metacritic it shows them giving it a 100 and there's a link to the review. Problem is, that link goes to a 404 error page.

Doing a google search also lists the same review, and again 404.

Kind of odd for a review to disappear, no? Does anyone remember seeing/reading it before it did?
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Old 10-02-2020, 11:20 PM   #350
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phanan, clear out your private message box.

I've got some stuff you might want to see...
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Old 10-03-2020, 01:51 AM   #351
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Originally Posted by lazarus View Post
Ahh, I thought you were talking about the old CD master.

Don’t have any sympathy for people streaming anything in compromised quality/versions, tbh, since you’re all making it impossible for musicians to earn a living off of their recorded music.

Spotify is the devil.

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Originally Posted by lazarus View Post
Makes it a lot easier to justify torrenting, IMO.
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Old 10-03-2020, 02:24 AM   #352
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Nice try with the false equivalence.

I wanted to buy the mp3s of that album, or a physical copy.

She decided to send it to streaming platforms first, without an option to buy it at the same time.

Since I don't subscribe to any of those services, there was only one other way for me to hear it.

But hey if you think giving like 25 cents a year to all your favorite indie artists is helping them in any substantial way, vaya con dios. I'm still spending $10 on Amazon or iTunes for albums by the artists I want to support.
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Old 10-03-2020, 08:34 AM   #353
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phanan, clear out your private message box.

I've got some stuff you might want to see...
Done. Thanks!
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Old 10-03-2020, 08:55 AM   #354
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As for the set itself, the packaging is fantastic and there's a lot of stuff on here, but I think this shows how great of an editor Prince was. Most of these tracks ended up being throwaways, and rightly so. They should have whittled the vault tracks that aren't really associated with the album (i.e., the proposed musical, songs for other artists, etc.) to two discs and then had a third disc specific to filling out the missing spaces for Dream Factory/Camille/Crystal Ball. I realize that there might have been some apparent copyright issues, but for a set like this, that should have been worked out. If not, at the least (as I keep harping) it could have included the songs on other Warner releases remastered here, along with alternate versions of songs that were specifically part of those other albums.

That said, there are plenty of standout tracks. Witness 4 The Prosecution, All My Dreams, Blanche, The Cocoa Boys, Walkin' In Glory, Big Tall Wall, and of course Rebirth Of The Flesh. The 1979 version of I Could Never Take The Place Of Your Man sounds like it came straight out of some new wave band of the time. And the alternate version of Forever In My Life is gorgeous.

The remastering itself is superb. After all these years of listening to the original flat recording, to hear this upgrade now (hello bass) is a revelation. And while I haven't dived into the DVD yet, the audio live recording was a real treat.

As presented, it's not worth the price tag though. I'm glad I only paid $60 with a gift card I saved for it. But knowing how quickly the 1999 super deluxe became hard to find, it was still a no brainer. It may not be a perfect set, but for an album and era of this magnitude, I'll take what I can get.
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Old 10-05-2020, 08:58 AM   #355
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Pitchfork review is up.

https://pitchfork.com/reviews/albums...-super-deluxe/

And it's this paragraph from the review that essentially sums up my major gripe with this release.

Quote:
What’s frustrating is that it’s impossible to rebuild Crystal Ball or Dream Factory just from the materials included in this box set. This is partly owed to the fact that Prince released several Crystal Ball songs when he was alive, on the confusingly-titled archival release, 1998’s Crystal Ball. But the segues and edits Prince had planned for each record are presumably still unavailable, and the albums themselves remain inaudible abstractions, something beloved in a form that’s just different enough to seem mysteriously new. When Warner Bros. asked Prince to edit Crystal Ball down into two LPs, it became the Sign o’ the Times we recognize today, and it’s a stronger album for that, even if it’s a compromised artistic vision.
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Old 10-05-2020, 12:07 PM   #356
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Looks like they had sent Metacritic the link earlier, before it was active.

And I’m glad this was reviewed by someone who knows their shit, or at least did the research.

It’s odd to give it a 10/10 with that qualifier being acknowledged. Obviously everything on there is great, but that missed opportunity definitely takes it down a notch.
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Old 10-05-2020, 07:12 PM   #357
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Nice try with the false equivalence.

I wanted to buy the mp3s of that album, or a physical copy.

She decided to send it to streaming platforms first, without an option to buy it at the same time.

Since I don't subscribe to any of those services, there was only one other way for me to hear it.

But hey if you think giving like 25 cents a year to all your favorite indie artists is helping them in any substantial way, vaya con dios. I'm still spending $10 on Amazon or iTunes for albums by the artists I want to support.
It's not a false equivalence. I am sure if you asked the artist, they'd prefer the pittance they get from Spotify then you downloading it illegally via a torrent.

I don't, I think Spotify is fucked and just another example of corporate, capitalist greed, but you cannot seriously be arguing that downloading albums illegally is a better way of supporting artists.

I use Spotify solely to listen to music I don't own, and then if I like that music, I buy it, whether it's on iTunes, MP3s from their website, CDs or vinyl. I know the vast, vast majority of people who use Spotify use it as their personal library, which means artists get fuck all, but it feels like a better option than torrenting, which I haven't done in fucking years.
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Old 10-05-2020, 09:28 PM   #358
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I didn’t say torrenting was better for artists than Spotify. I said that in this instance, when the artist neglected to make a paid download available at the same time it was available to stream, then I acquired it the only way I could.

And you somehow used this one instance as ammo to call me a hypocrite for chastising Spotify enablers, even though I already stated I regularly buy mp3s to own.

If you do the same with stuff you like, then good for you. But I’m sure you’ll agree that the vast, vast majority of Spotify users don’t give a fuck about owning music, ever. Sadly I don’t think Gen Z as a whole doesn’t even think owning music is a valid concept outside of a few vinyl fetishists.
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Old 10-05-2020, 11:13 PM   #359
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yes, I think we can both agree on that point sadly.
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Old 04-08-2021, 02:22 PM   #360
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Unvaulted Prince Album Welcome 2 America Set for Release


FUCK YEAH GlVE IT TO ME

A deluxe edition of the album will feature a concert film shot in 2011 at the Forum in Inglewood, California.

And give that to me too.
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