01. Alone Again Or
02. A House Is Not a Motel
03. And More Again
04. The Daily Planet
05. Old Man
06. The Red Telephone
07. Maybe the People Would Be the Times or Between Clark and Hilldale
08. Live And Let Live
09. The Good Humor Man He Sees Everything Like This
10. Bummer in the Summer
11. You Set the Scene
All tracks Mono
All of these mixes are officially unavailable on CD.
Here's another rarity in the series "essential in mono but not available on cd".
Long-rumored to be a folddown, the mono version of this landmark album is somewhat overlooked, not least
because of its limited availability. As with the 2nd Doors album, it is difficult to determine whether there
are real mixing differences between the USA stereo and mono LP's. I have taken the trouble to study the
differences between a folded-down stereo recording and the USA mono version of this album ardently, using a
stereo and a mono rip recorded on the same setup from original USA top copies. However, I could not detect
any mixing differences on this one (contrary to Strange Days).
Still, there was one other difference: the mono had noticeable better fidelity on all tracks than the folddown.
Not just more high-end details but slightly better resolution so to speak. In fact, the differences varied;
in a few instances the mono sounded considerately better than my folded Allentown stereo copy (Tr. 6 + 7),
while the difference was less dramatic on other cuts (Tr. 1, 8). My theory is that the mono tape may have been
separately recorded simultaneously during the stereo mixing but from a summed one-channel output. Then again,
some tracks might well be folds from the stereo, while others could indeed be dedicated mono mixes. So here
it is, for what it is worth.
Elektra U.S.A. had this particular title pressed in 1967 in mono and stereo by three different plants:
Allentown (this copy), Columbia Terra Haute and Monarch. Each plant was sent a master lacquer to cut from
(rather than a copy of the mastertape) which was uncommon in those days. Thus Elektra ensured that all
pressings had similar high sound quality. However, there is a distinction between Allentown and
Monarch pressings when it comes to vinyl quality: Allentown & Columbia copies are usually quieter because
they used a higher quality vinyl mixture and are therefore preferable when it comes to this album.
Those who are familiar with original USA pressing pressing will know how hard it is to find a copy that plays
without excessive surface noise. Even with top copies, the delicate intro to “Alone again, or” is always marred
by some crackling and/or ticks. This is not necessarily because the vinyl was of poor quality, but because the
recording itself had to be mastered very softly (due to its dynamic range). The copy used here is in great copy
and luckily did not need a whole lot of digital cleaning up.