A strong copy, with a Double Plus (A++) side two and a side one that’s nearly as good
These two sides show us just what a monster rocker this album can be when it’s mastered and pressed right
I’m a big fan of the record – it’s as original and as moving as practically anything the man ever did
Bryan Ferry owned the ’70s as much as David Bowie did; they’re both artistic giants in my book
It’s been years since I last played this album, and I’m happy, ecstatic even, to report that it sounds way better than I remember it. In the old days, I recall it sounding dry, flat and transistory. Now it’s BIG and BOLD, revealing a band that’s on fire in the studio.
These two sides show us just what a monster rocker this album can be when it’s mastered and pressed right. The reviews were mixed when the album was released in 1978 but time has been kind to it — after hearing the killer copies I would rank it up at the top with the best of Ferry’s and Roxy’s bodies of work.
We were a bit surprised to find that the domestic copies we played were clearly better sounding than the UK imports. It may be counterintuitive but these are the kinds of things you find out when doing shootouts. We have little use for intuitions (UK recording, UK pressing) and rules of thumb (original equals better). Hard data — the kind you get from actually playing the records — trumps them all.(more…)
This British original pressing caused me a great deal of consternation. I’ve always been a big fan of this album — so much so that I even have the CD of it in my car — and I was under the impression that the sound was quite good. But playing a few British originals like this one caused me to have my doubts. The sound was aggressive and hard. I suspected the absolute phase might be reversed, and sure enough it was. But even after correcting for the improper phase the sound is not what I would have hoped for. It’s a bit “grungy” and lacks the extreme highs that would sweeten the overall presentation.
So if you can put up with less than state of the art sound you may find yourself thoroughly enjoying this one. Side one rocks hard from start to finish, more than any other Ferry album.(more…)
Our shootout winner for side two and only the second copy to hit the site in many years – Triple Plus (A+++) on side two, Double Plus (A++) on one
For material and sound I consider this to be the best of Bryan Ferrry’s solo albums – it’s a blast from start to finish
The energy, presence, bass, and dynamic power (love that horn section!) place it well above his other side projects
4 Stars: “The title track itself scored Ferry a deserved British hit single, with great sax work from Chris Mercer and Mel Collins and a driving, full band performance. Ferry’s delivery is one of his best, right down to the yelps, and the whole thing chugs with post-glam power.”
We shot out a number of other imports and this killer side two is As Good As It Gets. The presence, bass, and dynamics place it head and shoulders above the competition. It has what we like to call Master Tape Sound — right in every way.(more…)