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Van Morrison - Album by Album discussion - PART THREE

Discussion in 'Music Corner' started by DJ WILBUR, Feb 29, 2008.

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  1. Clarkophile

    Clarkophile Too Long in Exile

    Location:
    St. Thomas, ON
    For me, the brilliance is still there, but it's more an exception where it was once the rule, sporadic where it had once been a matter of course. Let's face it, he's been doing this since before I was born and, to use an image Van would appreciate, I'm no leaf in springtime. :laugh: But I'm glad to see him still plugging away. I know the whinge factor and the inability to keep mediocrity at bay is fast becoming an issue, but I'm still able to find snatches of albums which still do the trick for me, like "In the Forest" or "High Summer" or practically anything off of Down the Road.

    It could be a lot worse. He could have totally stopped recording new music altogether and gone the "Greatest Hits Live!"-at-a-casino-near-you route and racked up a ton of dough. His refusal to play that game tells me he (for one, at least) is confident in his own ability to create new and important work--this is something about Van which, in spite of his more frustrating characteristics, entitles him to my lifelong respect as a creative artist.
     
  2. tfarney

    tfarney Active Member

    Location:
    Charlotte,NC
    Yep, Down The Road is a good one. So is What's Wrong With This Picture. And Magic Time. And....well, we ain't done yet, now are we?

    Tim
     
  3. Clarkophile

    Clarkophile Too Long in Exile

    Location:
    St. Thomas, ON
    No, we ain't done.

    Confession time here: I'm still getting acquainted with some of these works, especially those which came out during my brief flirtation with Anti-Vanism (Days Like This/The Healing Game), so, in a very real way, a lot of the albums coming up are all new music to me.
     
  4. mrbillswildride

    mrbillswildride Internet Asylum Escapee 2010, 2012, 2014

    As a Van aside, picked up two of his Lps yesterday in Santa Cruz (total haul to be posted soon to the "What vinyls have you bouught lately?" thead) Wavelengths and No Guru, both imports, both mint @ $6.50 each. Also got a Van book, the Celtic Crossroads one by Brian ????. (decent discography, though I noted no listing for Exile on import Lp, which I own.

    Ironically, given the thread drop, their was a used copy of Hymns, but JUST DISC TWO! used, for 8 bucks... I passed... now, maybe should have not given that that is the disc favored here. But, in need, the turntable is available...

    Did pick up the Still On Top three Cd version, an import, now available domestically. It brings up two questions regarding rights and remastering.

    #1 There were a few songs from Moondance 4/5? and Chior, but NOthing from Astral Weeks! Now, I know he has rights issues with these Lps, but somem of the songs are on here, and sound great. Are they remastered? Anyone compared them to their other Cd releases?

    #2 The 1979-1983 series: Into The Music, Common One, Beautiful Vision, and Inarticulate Speech are not in the remasters series, again rights issues right? But, Into The Music was listed on a Van site, and in a mag. review as coming out, with bogus tracks. Appearently, it is an import only, I've ordered it, will it have bonus tracks, remastered? Anyone know these details?


    Finally, having just heard Inarticulate speech for the first time, all i can say is yuck...synth hell, sterile, tinny sound, Van lite, almost worthless, save John...
     
  5. curbach

    curbach Some guy on the internet

    Location:
    The ATX
    Yeah, I only own about half of Van's post Hymn's output myself. I may try to acquire the rest for purposes of this thread, or not. The half I've got (and the odd other bits I've heard) don't make a good case for acquiring the others. But I'm open to persuasion from my esteemed colleagues on this thread :angel: I must admit that hearing positive words for What's Wrong With This Picture? and Back On Top has me worried, though (hint: I've got those two :sigh:). But talk 'em up guys :righton:
     
  6. curbach

    curbach Some guy on the internet

    Location:
    The ATX
    Ah, listen again and join my very exclusive Inarticulate Speech Of The Heart Fan Club :love:
     
  7. Clarkophile

    Clarkophile Too Long in Exile

    Location:
    St. Thomas, ON
    I love the little tacked-on qualifier!:laugh:
    Very subtle, sir.
     
  8. mrbillswildride

    mrbillswildride Internet Asylum Escapee 2010, 2012, 2014



    I own Magic Time, and think it his best of this decade.... (not having heard the rest!) :) Butt, seriously, it is a great Cd, Celtic New Year, Stranded...

    Highly recommended...

    Not much impressed with Pay The Devil on Lp.

    Own the Skiffle Sessions, but not yet audioned it...

    Best of Van Vol. III HIGHLY recommended!!!


    Just heard The Healing Game whilst researching for the Van special, and I loved most of it... it is one I plan on picking up. But to wait for the remaster? or get the original used copy locally available for $7.97?

    That's it for me...
     
  9. DJ WILBUR

    DJ WILBUR The Cappuccino Kid Thread Starter

    Magic Time is a fine release....sorry I've been missing in action, work is insane. i'll catch up with all of you vaniacs tomorrow and saturday....now lemme get back to that Van Morrison wannabee...david gray....:D
     
  10. elborak

    elborak Forum Resident

    The bonus tracks on the remastered Into The Music are alternate (and longer) takes of "Steppin' Out Queen" and "Troubadours".
     
  11. mrbillswildride

    mrbillswildride Internet Asylum Escapee 2010, 2012, 2014


    Did you read this (as I did) or did you get the import? or both? :)
    If so, how is it...
     
  12. elborak

    elborak Forum Resident

    It's mentioned on the Van Morrison web site, and confirmed by an Amazon reviewer. I have a copy on the way.
     
  13. mrbillswildride

    mrbillswildride Internet Asylum Escapee 2010, 2012, 2014

    I order one too, along with Keep It Simple on vinyl... wonder when that is shipping? Anyone know? :shh:

    Do you have the current Into the Music Cd? and if so, how does it sound? The Common One I just bught sounded fine...
     
  14. elborak

    elborak Forum Resident

    Yeah, I have all of the original Warner CDs. Into The Music sounds excellent, and I've probably listened to it more than any other Van CD in my collection (possibly more than any CD, but there are a few Dylan and Ian Hunter discs that make it hard to be certain).

    I'm really only buying the new (re)remaster for the bonus tracks. At least the 90's remasters didn't include any bonuses, so I didn't get sucked in twice. I much prefer the Philosopher's Stone and Odds And Sods approach of releasing alternate versions & outtakes on distinct discs, but I'll take what I can get from The Man.

    So are we going to cover The Philospher's Stone after The Healing Game? That will certainly be a fun one to dig into!
     
  15. mrbillswildride

    mrbillswildride Internet Asylum Escapee 2010, 2012, 2014


    I think I might buy it just in case... and to compare...

    I was gonna buy all the new remasters cause I don't have a ton of van, but some commments here about their sound have made me thnk twice, have gotten Tupelo, stop now, and Wavelegths thou

    There is some very interesting info on the philo stone cd release and its origins in the appendixes to Brian??'s Celtic Crossroads Van bio...

    You have this?
     
  16. drewslo

    drewslo Forum Resident

    Curbach,

    I'm with you on "Inarticulate Speech Of The Heart". A beautiful album.

    I've been revisiting "Hymns To The Silence" after many years and now have much more of an appreciation for disc 2. There is so much to absorb. I was always more of a disc 1 man. I'll come up with my one disc version soon (not that easy for me because I like most of it). Disc 1 is earthier, disc 2 more ethereal. I've always really love the two spoken work pieces (On Hynford Street and Pagan Streams) but the other songs have stayed with me - running through my head even when I'm not listening to the album.
    This thread has allowed me to listen to this album with fresh ears and I'm really enjoying it.
     
  17. mighty_quinn

    mighty_quinn Forum Resident

    Inarticulate is a mixed bag at best. From memory, Celtic Swing and John Donne are good, but the studio version of the latter pales next to the live version (Grand Opera House). The two Inarticulate instrumentals are not good - more like something Windham Hill would reject. In fact, collaborator Mark Isham made far better electronic music on Vapor Drawings.
     
  18. curbach

    curbach Some guy on the internet

    Location:
    The ATX
    I think it's safe to say, based on my own listening experiences and the reports of other forum members, that you will be much better served to track down original W.B. cds (U.S.) or original Polydors (Europe). But if you've gotta have the bonus tracks, you've gotta have the bonus tracks. . .

    Look for a thread coming soon to compare some of these early pressings.
     
  19. mrbillswildride

    mrbillswildride Internet Asylum Escapee 2010, 2012, 2014


    OK Curb, I'll take your advice to Heart (but not inarticulately...:)) So how do I ID an original WB Van Cd, as oppossed to the current Cd issue (not remastered?) Or should I wait for this much needed and hoped for thread you mentioned? :righton: PS, Pay no mind to Drew's praise of Heart, he's a little loopy when it comes to Van, all his critcal judgements are suspended in ether~net..:shh:
    :agree:
     
  20. elborak

    elborak Forum Resident

    So far as I know, the Warner Van releases only ever had one mastering. So just look for Warner Brothers (not Polydor) and you should be good.
     
  21. tfarney

    tfarney Active Member

    Location:
    Charlotte,NC
    Well, if you're going late Van shopping, make sure you have Back On Top, Down The Road, What's Wrong With This Picture, Magic Time and maybe Pay The Devil. Depends on how you feel about Van singing country.

    Tim
     
  22. mrbillswildride

    mrbillswildride Internet Asylum Escapee 2010, 2012, 2014

    Great!!! Thanks!!:righton:
     
  23. DJ WILBUR

    DJ WILBUR The Cappuccino Kid Thread Starter

    personally I enjoy Pay The Devil for what it is and have listened to it a lot. I just dont consider it a Van album per se as he only wrote a few tunes...but man, his Bucket Got a Hole In It...fantastic....
     
  24. curbach

    curbach Some guy on the internet

    Location:
    The ATX
    I have heard rumors on this very forum of a recent secret (and inferior) remastering of Moondance. Otherwise, yes, AFAIK.

    Note that the albums from Tupelo Honey through Inarticulate Speech were issued on cd on WB in the U.S. and Canada and Polydor in Europe. These were all remastered on Polydor in the early 90's although the discs from Into The Music to Inarticulate Speech were not issued in the U.S. (where the old WB versions remained in print).

    I will be starting a new thread this weekend to compare various pressings (I don't think we need to do that in this already blaoed thread). Fellow Forum member Beatlebum and I have been comparing original Polydors and WBs and so far they are all different. Not sure where Japan and Canada may fit in, so it will be fun if you're into that kind of thing :nauga:
     
  25. butch

    butch Forum Resident

    Location:
    ny
    Yeah, it is what it is.I liked the album and I think that doing those songs gets his juices flowing: Cosmic American music that is!
     
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