Tell me about Carthage Records...

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by LeeS, Aug 14, 2007.

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  1. LeeS

    LeeS Music Fan Thread Starter

    I picked up a sealed Kate and Anna McGarrigle S/T LP on this label today and it was pressed at Kendun and sounds very good. They have beautiful voices.

    Anyhow they have a postcard in the LP and it mentions some of their artists...Sandy Denny, Nick Drake, Richard and Linda Thompson, The Fairport Convention, etc. Some nice names on that list.

    Is this one of the bigger folk labels of its day?

    Do their records generally sound good? Are they usually done by Kendun?
  2. MikeyH

    MikeyH Stamper King

    Berkeley, CA
    The Carthage issues I've seen have all been nicely pressed and shiny. It is, however, effectively a reissue label for those artists. Not that there's anything wrong with that. Hannibal is a related label. Yes, they do sound good.
  3. LeeS

    LeeS Music Fan Thread Starter

    Thanks Mike. What Richard Thompson titles should I look for?
  4. babyblue

    babyblue Patches Pal!

    Pacific NW
    I Want to See the Bright Lights Tonight and Pour Down Like Silver are two excellent Richard and Linda Thompson albums. Really, you can't go wrong with any of their LPs.

  5. LeeS

    LeeS Music Fan Thread Starter

    Thanks Steve. I have Shoot Out the Lights on SACD and its wonderful.
  6. seed_drill

    seed_drill Senior Member

    Tryon, NC, USA
    Hannibal/Carthage were labels run by Joe Boyd, who was the American ex pat (or, at least living abroad) who ran London's famous UFO club. He was also a very influential record producer, responsible for discovering Pink Floyd.

    As friends with Chris Blackwell, he produced Fairport Convention and Nick Drake (among others) for Island and, I believe, the Incredible String Band for Electra.

    At some point, in the late 70s I believe, he started his own labels, which specialized in Brit Folk, including reissuing several Fairport and Richard and Linda Thompson albums. Richard also signed with him to release his new material, as well.

    I forget if there was a distinction between what was released on Carthage, and what on Hannibal, but, ultimately, Boyd sold out to Rykodisc, who folded the Carthage imprint.

    Their pressings were all a little odd to me. As the earlier poster noted, they are "shiny" as if on some alternative vinyl formulation. The recordings are universally good, but I seem to recall some recycled crud in the vinyl on the Sandy Denny set.

    Check out Danny Thompson's Whatever, if you get the chance. Great album
  7. Done A Ton

    Done A Ton Birdbrain

    Rural Kansas
    I second that. Also, Joseph Spence's "Happy All The Time".
  8. Guy from Ohio

    Guy from Ohio Senior Member

    Mostly their pressings are nice, sometimes they're crap.

    My box set of Sandy Denny was so bad I thought something was wrong with my turntable. (I bought this box new back around 85)

    Examine the grooves closely before you buy, you can see the bad pressings as staccato dots.
  9. MikeP5877

    MikeP5877 Uh Huh

    My pressing sounds bad as well.

    By the way, there are at least two different pressings of that Sandy Denny box set. My copy has the first note chopped off of "Two Weeks Last Summer". The copy I borrowed out of my library back in 1990 did not have this problem. I think there is at least one other song with a clipped intro.
  10. dwmann

    dwmann Well-Known Member

    Houston TX
    The only Carthage realeases I have are the Richard and Linda thompson titles. My copies all sound excellent.
  11. BobbyS

    BobbyS Forum Resident In Memoriam

    Delaware OH USA
    The Sandy Denny Box Set is an amazing collection of tunes but every copy I've ever heard sounded like a box of Rice Crispies. So sad....

    Bobby Sutliff
  12. Patrick

    Patrick Senior Member

    Ther is a superb (imho) vinyl compilation on one of these labels called: Richard Thompson, Guitar, Vocal.... or something like that. 2 LP set.
  13. ceevert

    ceevert Forum Resident

    Fullerton, CA, USA
    I believe the Carthage label was strictly reissued, licensed material. The new Thompson albums, Shoot Out the Lights, Hand of Kindness, etc., appeared on Hannibal while the older material, licensed from Island & Chrysalis, appeared on Carthage.

    Carthage was not just restricted to British folk either. As previously mentioned, Joseph Spence's Elektra album was reissued, along with a fair number of great Earthworks South African albums.
  14. LeeS

    LeeS Music Fan Thread Starter

    I keep seeing the Four Men with Beards version of Shoot Out the Lights.
  15. David Powell

    David Powell Well-Known Member

    Atlanta, Ga.
    :edthumbs: Excellent, as is the new 4MwB's LP reissue of the Flying Burrito Bros.' The Gilded Palace of Sin

    IMHO, the original Warner LP version of the eponymous Kate & Anna McGarrigle album is the one to have.
  16. Plinko

    Plinko Senior Member

    All my Carthage issues sound excellent. If you want more natural, analog sounding lp, get the original or a Carthage reissue (wasn't aware of this being on Carthage). You may like the Four Men with Beards reissue but if this one is similar to all my other FMwB issues, it will not be as good as originals or even a Carthage issue.
    rockinlazys likes this.
  17. Plinko

    Plinko Senior Member

    You know what are odd pressings to me? Earmark, Get Back, and Four Men with Beards. They are all on this vinyl that feels very *hard* to the touch.
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