- You’ll find solid Double Plus (A++) sound on both sides of this outstanding early UK pressing of 10cc’s fourth album, How Dare You! – exceptionally quiet vinyl too
- This wonderful LP will show you that 10cc’s commitment to Audiophile Recording Quality was – at the time – beyond reproach
- Forget the dubby domestic stuff and the no-doubt-awful Heavy Vinyl, this early British pressing is huge, spacious and rich, with prodigious amounts of bass, like no other copy you’ve heard
- 4 stars: “…a well-crafted album that shows off 10cc’s eccentric humor and pop smarts in equal measure… it remains a solid album of witty pop songs that will satisfy anyone with a yen for 10cc.”
With this superb British pressing some of you who might consider yourselves more devoted fans of the band will finally be able to hear what a good recording this is. The typical domestic copy is a disaster as are some of the British originals and reissues; we should know, we cleaned them, played them and heard them for ourselves.
If you know anything about this band you know their recordings are often amazing Demo Discs. We’ve done shootouts for all their most important titles and the sound on the best copies is OUT OF THIS WORLD.
If you’re looking for something off the beaten path, this is definitely one to check out. I don’t know of any other album like it.
Best sound on side one: Lazy Ways.
Best track on the album: Rock ‘N” Roll Lullaby.
What the best sides of How Dare You! have to offer is not hard to hear:
- The biggest, most immediate staging in the largest acoustic space
- The most Tubey Magic, without which you have almost nothing. CDs give you clean and clear. Only the best vintage vinyl pressings offer the kind of Tubey Magic that was on the tapes in 1976
- Tight, note-like, rich, full-bodied bass, with the correct amount of weight down low
- Natural tonality in the midrange — with all the instruments having the correct timbre
- Transparency and resolution, critical to hearing into the three-dimensional space of the studio
No doubt there’s more but we hope that should do for now. Playing the record is the only way to hear all of the qualities we discuss above, and playing the best pressings against a pile of other copies under rigorously controlled conditions is the only way to find a pressing that sounds as good as this one does.
A Fan Favorite
How Dare You has always been one of my favorite 10cc albums; I actually have the CD in my car so I can listen to it as often as I like.
That said, I would note that, although most of the album is made up of melodic pop of the highest quality, it does contain some offbeat material that will find its strongest appeal among real 10cc fans.
Sheet Music (1974) and The Original Soundtrack (1975) are more accessible for those of you who are looking to hear the best music the original lineup of the band has to offer. After that, I would point you to the reformed band doing Deceptive Bends from 1977, which is pretty much the last good album the band made. All three are Must Owns in my book.
What We’re Listening For on How Dare You!
- Energy for starters. What could be more important than the life of the music?
- The Big Sound comes next — wall to wall, lots of depth, huge space, three-dimensionality, all that sort of thing.
- Then transient information — fast, clear, sharp attacks for the guitars and drums, not the smear and thickness common to most LPs.
- Tight, note-like bass with clear fingering — which ties in with good transient information, as well as the issue of frequency extension further down.
- Next: transparency — the quality that allows you to hear deep into the soundfield, showing you the space and air around all the players.
- Then: presence and immediacy. The musicians aren’t “back there” somewhere, way behind the speakers. They’re front and center where any recording engineer worth his salt — Eric Stewart in this case — would have put them.
- Extend the top and bottom and voila, you have The Real Thing — an honest to goodness Hot Stamper.
How Dare You
I Wanna Rule the World
I’m Mandy Fly Me
Art For Arts Sake
Rock ‘N” Roll Lullaby
Don’t Hang Up
AMG 4 Star Review
After scoring their commercial breakthrough with “I’m Not in Love” from 1975’s The Original Soundtrack, 10cc continued to build on their good fortune with How Dare You. It didn’t spawn another massive hit like “I’m Not in Love,” but it is a well-crafted album that shows off 10cc’s eccentric humor and pop smarts in equal measure.
…it remains a solid album of witty pop songs that will satisfy anyone with a yen for 10cc.
In an interview at the time of its release, Graham Gouldman told Melody Maker music newspaper: “It’s as different as any album by the same band can be, and I think it’s a progression from the last one. I think there’s been a progression on every album and I think we’ve done it again. It’s a strange mixture of songs. There’s one about divorce, a song about schizophrenia, a song about wanting to rule the world, the inevitable money song, and an instrumental.”