- Two incredible sides each earning Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) grades or very close to it; the first copy to hit the site in many years!
- Both of these sides are super rich and full-bodied with wonderfully present vocals and a huge punchy bottom end; Bruce Botnick’s engineering ensures the sound is big and lively
- Exceptionally quiet vinyl throughout — Mint Minus to Mint Minus Minus
- “With much of the same urgency Money stands as perhaps a lighter but still gutsy-voiced Bruce Springsteen. His performance exudes a certain authenticity of main line rock without seeming derivative or repetitious.” – Billboard
The average copy is way too compressed, which kills the top end (by making the cymbals aggressive) and the vocals too midrangy. When you’ve got a copy of Eddie Money’s debut album that’s doing what it’s supposed to do, you know pretty quickly. The highs are sweet and extended, the vocals are present, but without any spit or strain, and there is solid bass and low end propelling everything else forward.
Eddie Money has only made one good record in our opinion — this one. Fortunately, it’s a GREAT one and we don’t have to play any of his others! This guy had so much promise, based soley on his debut here. He lost his brilliant guitarist and arranger, Jimmy Lyon, soon after this first album was made, and that may account for his slide into mediocrity. But this record is outstanding from first note to last. If at the end of the second track — a cover of You Really Got A Hold On Me — you are not rockin’ out, then Eddie Money is just not for you. I love this album and I have played it countless times.
What amazing sides such as these 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 1977
- 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 studio space
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.
What We Listen For on Eddie Money
- Energy for starters. What could be more important than the life of the music?
- Then: presence and immediacy. The vocals aren’t “back there” somewhere, lost in the mix. They’re front and center where any recording engineer worth his salt would put them.
- 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, not the smear and thickness so common to these LPs.
- Tight punchy bass — which ties in with good transient information, also 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 instruments.
- Extend the top and bottom and voila, you have The Real Thing — an honest to goodness Hot Stamper.
Two Tickets to Paradise
You’ve Really Got a Hold on Me
Wanna Be a Rock & Roll Star
Save a Little Room in Your Heart for Me
So Good to Be in Love Again
Baby Hold On
Got to Get Another Girl
This strong debut benefits greatly from the expertise of veteran producer Bruce Botnick as well as the likes of former Steve Miller bassist Lonnie Turner and saxman Tom Scott. Guitarist Jimmy Lyon was to Money what Keith Scott was to Bryan Adams. Money, son of a New York City cop, had a rock & roll epiphany en route to following his dad’s career path. The debut album, long on craft but not without inspiration, deservedly shot radio-ready tunes ‘Two Tickets to Paradise’ and ‘Baby Hold On’ up the charts, the latter helped by former Elvin Bishop songmate Jo Baker. The key tune is the spirited ‘Wanna Be a Rock ‘n’ Roll Star,’ which spells out the game plan.
With much of the same urgency Money stands as perhaps a lighter but still gutsy-voiced Bruce Springsteen. His performance exudes a certain authenticity of main line rock without seeming derivative or repetitious. Part of the credit goes to his backing, a tight and sizzling but not bombastic rock force of musicians that support Money’s vocals, sax and keyboards.
Best cuts: “You’ve Really Got A Hold On Me,” “Wanna Be A Rock ‘N’ Roll Star,” “Got To Get Another Girl.”
– Billboard, 1977.