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Category Archives: New Releases

Announcements for new Beatle-related releases of significance.

Paul McCartney Archive Collection’s long-awaited 2014 remasters – Venus And Mars & Speed Of Sound out in September

After a “false alarm” earlier in the year about a June 2014 release of the next two Paul McCartney Archive Collection releases – the goods are finally coming to those of us that have waited. The 2014 remastered 1975 album by Paul McCartney & Wings Venus and Mars and it’s 1976 follow-up album Wings At The Speed Of Sound will both be released in a grandiose repackaging with plenty of bonus features on September 23rd in North America and September 22nd everywhere else.

Similar to the previous Archive Collection issues both albums will be available in a 2-CD standard edition with the original albums on on disc and bonus material on the second disc. Then there is the 3-disc deluxe version which adds a DVD, hardback book (128 pages for V&M, 112 pages for SoS) of photos and new interviews from Paul McCartney and additional info about each track that is over and above what was originally available on earlier releases of either album. Finally there is download access to 24-bit digital audio files with the deluxe edition. There are also vinyl and digital-only options.

 

Venus And Mars

Venus And Mars cover art (click to enlarge)

Wings At The Speed Of Sound

Wings At The Speed Of Sound cover art (click to enlarge)

 

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A few notes concerning the new 2014 Criterion Collection edition of A Hard Day’s Night

In celebration of it’s 50th Anniversary, the new Criterion Collection re-issue of The Beatles first movie A Hard Day’s Night has now been issued on Blu-Ray and DVD. Released on June 24, 2014 the deluxe edition includes an 80 page book with plenty of photo stills from the film and others from the shooting. Unlike the actual film, some of the photos are in color including the ‘bit in the field’ (baseball diamond sequence used with “Can’t Buy Me Love”). The book also includes a long account on the making of the film by it’s director, Richard Lester, as well as an opening discussion about the film by Film Comment contributor Howard Hampton.

I realize most reading have seen the movie already but for those that haven’t let me just say it’s a zany ninety-minute account of a day in the life of The Beatles in 1964 – with chase scenes from screaming teenage girls, studio performances, press conferences, a mini-concert and even a train ride where, while en route to a show, The Beatles have to care for Paul McCartney’s “mixer” grandfather (played by Wilfred Brambell) who nearly succeeds in influencing Ringo Starr to leave the group. It’s a lot of fun and, of course, the music is great (including the film’s title song, “I Should Have Known Better,” “If I Fell,” “And I Love Her,” “I’m Happy Just To Dance With You,” “Can’t Buy Me Love,” “She Loves You,” “Tell Me Why” and a few more selections).

 

A Hard Day's Night Criterion Collection 2014 edition

A Hard Day’s Night Criterion Collection 2014 edition

 

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The Beatles in Mono 14-LP vinyl box set due out on September 9, 2014

The long-awaited mono counterpart to the 16-LP stereo Beatles album collection of remasters issued in November 2012 is finally here – or at least will be on September 9th. The Beatles’ official website explains that while the Beatles in Mono CD box set was remastered with digital technology in 2009, the vinyl for the new set was instead cut on a 1980s era VMS80 lathe to get it as close as possible to the way it was done in the sixties. The mastering team of Sean Magee and Steve Berkowitz (both Grammy winning sound engineers) reproduced the sound from the original quarter-inch master tapes at Abbey Road Studios listening with their trained ears to get the sound as close to the originals as possible and even using the transfer notes made by the original cutting engineers as a guide. The albums will be sold separately as well as packaged in the 14-LP box set, which includes a one-square foot 108-page hardbound book that gives plenty of Beatles photos, not only of the group but of fascinating archive documents, advertisements and articles of the day. The set does not include the Abbey Road album or the Let It Be album since those were only released in stereo in the U.K. and North America.

The Beatles in Mono box set

The Beatles in Mono box set

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New Releases for June 2014 – a status update

Update: The Venus And Mars and Wings At The Speed Of Sound remasters will be released on September 23rd 2014 in North America and September 22nd 2014 everywhere else. More details here.

First of all, the item that I have been getting questioned about the most – Back in March (2014) it was announced here that the next albums in line for the Paul McCartney Archive Collection treatment (Venus And Mars & Wings At The Speed Of Sound) would be released on June 17th. While no official announcement has come down, it would appear that these releases are delayed, given that we’re down to a week and a half away and there has been no promotional coverage or pre-order opportunities anywhere. I will keep abreast of what the latest is and post it here when I know more.

 

Venus And Mars

Venus And Mars cover art (click to enlarge)

Wings At The Speed Of Sound

Wings At The Speed Of Sound cover art (click to enlarge)

 

Now for the good news – The new 3-disc dual format (DVD & BluRay) remaster of A Hard Day’s Night will be out on June 24th. The 1964 Beatles debut movie has been given a brand new 4K digital film restoration that includes either the mono soundtrack (originally heard in the theaters in 1964) or a new 5.1 surround mix made by Apple. There are plenty of bonus features including (but not limited to) a deleted scene, the making of 1994 documentary You Can’t Do That (previously issued), an interview with Mark Lewisohn, audio commentary, etc. The package contains one BluRay disc and two DVDs with all content available in both formats. For more info or to purchase/pre-order through Amazon, click here.

 

A Hard Day's Night, 2014 (Criterion Collection) 3-disc (BluRay/DVD) remaster

A Hard Day’s Night, 2014 (Criterion Collection) 3-disc (BluRay/DVD) remaster

 


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Meet David Bedford and let him tell you about “The Fab One Hundred and Four”

Hello again Beatles fans. I want to tell you a little about a friend of mine that you may also know if you’ve attended any Beatles conventions over the last few years in the U.S. or U.K. His name is David Bedford (or Dave, or Partly Dave, or Liddypool Dave – he has a few such nicknames). Dave, a lifelong Beatles fan, was born In 1965 in the Liverpool area known as The Dingle and very near the Madryn Street home where Ringo Starr began his childhood. Currently he lives with his family in a Liverpool home near Penny Lane.

Dave was diagnosed with fibromyalgia early in life which forced him to retire from his job in 2000 at the age of 35. He was advised by his doctor to find an interest that would occupy his time productively. With his love of The Beatles, Dave had no trouble deciding what that would involve.

 

David Bedford holds a copy of The Fab One Hundred and Four

David Bedford holds a copy of The Fab One Hundred and Four

 

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Next in line for Paul McCartney’s Archive Collection – Venus and Mars & Wings At The Speed Of Sound

Status update on this given here.

On June 17th, 2014 the next two installments in the remaster series The Paul McCartney Archive Collection will be arriving. Continuing with the Wings period in the seventies, Concord Music Group will issue both the 1975 album Venus And Mars (click here for original track listing) and the 1976 album Wings At The Speed Of Sound (click here for original track listing). As before, there will be special and deluxe packaging editions of the sets available in both vinyl, CD and digital formats. In the seventies these were both single-disc LPs that preceded the triple-LP set Wings Over America that was the last to receive the Archive Collection treatment back in May 2013.

 

Venus And Mars

Venus And Mars cover art (click to enlarge)

Wings At The Speed Of Sound

Wings At The Speed Of Sound cover art (click to enlarge)

 

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60 people think this is FAB!