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Complete Studio Recordings Box set

16 customer reviews

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Audio CD, Box set, March 22, 2005
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$84.98
$73.38 $55.00
$84.98 & FREE Shipping. Details Only 3 left in stock (more on the way). Ships from and sold by Amazon.com. Gift-wrap available.

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Complete Studio Recordings + Collected Works
Price for both: $129.49

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Disc: 1
1. Batman
2. The Sicilian Clan
3. You Will Be Shot
4. Latin Quarter
See all 26 tracks on this disc
Disc: 2
1. Grand Guignol
2. Blood Is Thin
3. Thrash Jazz Assassin
4. Dead Spot
See all 42 tracks on this disc
Disc: 3
1. Main Titles
2. Sex Games
3. The Brood
4. Sweat, Sperm + Blood
See all 24 tracks on this disc
Disc: 4
1. Asylum
2. Sunset Surfer
3. Party Girl
4. The Outsider
See all 19 tracks on this disc
Disc: 5
1. Val De Travers
2. Une Correspondance
3. La Fee Verte
4. Fleurs Du Mal
See all 10 tracks on this disc

Product Details

  • Audio CD (March 22, 2005)
  • Number of Discs: 5
  • Format: Box set
  • Note on Boxed Sets: During shipping, discs in boxed sets occasionally become dislodged without damage. Please examine and play these discs. If you are not completely satisfied, we'll refund or replace your purchase.
  • Label: Tzadik
  • ASIN: B0006UYOMO
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #236,270 in Music (See Top 100 in Music)

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

43 of 43 people found the following review helpful By Michael Stack VINE VOICE on March 25, 2005
Format: Audio CD
This boxed set represents the entire recorded studio output of John Zorn's Naked City project, consisting of Zorn (alto sax, occasional vocals), Bill Frisell (guitar), Wayne Horvitz (keyboards), Fred Frith (bass), and Joey Baron (drums). Frequent collaborator Yamataka Eye joins as a vocalist on probably half of this. Additionally, this set includes a "vocal version" of "Grand Guignol", which Mike Patton overdubbed.

I'll talk about the packaging first-- the set is beautiful, nice white box, each of the five CDs housed in a digipack styled after the Zorn birthday CDs-- single page inside an envelope opposite a CD tray with some of the original artwork reproduced. The book is about a hundred pages of pictures, some stuff from zorn's notebooks that's quite fascinating and will likely require further inspection on my part to fully appreciate, and annoyingly hard to read clear pages with white print on which members of the band, fans, etc. comment.

The remastering-- the recordings are clean, loud, distinct, undistorted-- they've been mixed hot enough to sound great but really well done. There's stuff buried on here I missed in the original recordings, and I suspect more will reveal on repeated listenings.

Question has been called into the material present-- there's a disc with "Naked City", one with "Grand Guignol" (the album), with the new version of the title track appended to it (and the old one still intact), one for "Heretic", one for "Radio", and one for "Absinthe" with "Leng Tch'e" as well. This is ALL the material, INCLUDING "Torture Garden"-- that particular release was just the "hardcore miniatures" from "Naked City" and "Grand Guignol".
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26 of 27 people found the following review helpful By Andreas Melzer on May 25, 2005
Format: Audio CD
I'm not rating the music (that would be 5 stars!!!), I'm rating the audio quality. Though the overall sound quality is good (not as aggressive as the original discs), the entire "Radio" album and parts of the "Absinthe" disc (most obvious on the track "Leng T'che") suffer from unacceptable distortion in the left channel (in the low mids, depending on volume). At least my copy had this defect, so I returned it. I suspect that a mistake was made during the mastering process as my original Avant-Discs are not distorted at all. Or could it be an individual manufacturing issue? No other reviewer has mentioned this problem so far.

If you care for perfect sonics, I recommend listening to the following portions before buying. Pay attention to the left channel. Is it distorted?

Track 01 on "Radio" - time: 01:06 till 01:13

Track 10 on "Absinthe" - time: 04:16 till 04:40

These are only two random examples. The mentioned discs are distorted throughout. If others have clean sounding discs, I might just have had bad luck with my item.

Otherwise this expensive set is absolutely not worth it's high price. Tzadik should take it back and correct these mistakes first. Then I will be happy to buy it.

As for the book: nicely made, but lots of testimonials, no real information on the band and the music.

The package is hyperaesthetically designed.

If the abovementioned problems were nonexistent, I would not hesitate to rate it with 5 stars.
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13 of 14 people found the following review helpful By M. Kinney on September 6, 2005
Format: Audio CD
First of all, for all the writers here asking where Torture Garden is, why don't you read the booklet. It explains that Torture Garden was released as a special package compliling the hardcore pieces from Naked City and Grand Guignol. Nuff said.

As another reviewer mentioned, Joey Baron is not credited at all on the Heretic notes, which I too thought was really odd.

Other than that, I have no complaints about the remasters. Sounds fine on my stereo and through my headphones. I mean, I don't have a very expensive elaborate stereo system, but to these ears, everything sounds wicked. Even if there WAS a bit of overload, I wouldn't have a nervous breakdown over it. I can see why some people would get edgy over it, after shelling out 100 bucks though.

The new Grand Guignol mix with Mike's vocals is a bit disappointing. Even though I'm a big Patton fan, I think he overdid it on this one. There's vocals where they're not needed in too many places. I don't really think it needs vocals, the piece seems to be darker and more luminous without them. Adding a few vocal bits in certain sections might have added a new dimension to the mood, but Patton just blew off too much. (Sorry Mike) Still, it is an interesting treat to hear and it makes me wonder how all these albums would've turned out if Patton would've been the lead screamer.

Anyway, I think overall, the set is great. Is it worth buying if you have all the originals? Yes, I think so. The only thing I wish Zorn would've included is more history in the booklet, and perhaps another disc of outtakes or unreleased tunes. I'm sure there's tons of stuff sitting in the vaults that Zorn is keeping secret until he feels lile releasing another boxset. Maybe we'll even get the Miles Davis treatment with his work someday, like a 7-disc set of "The Complete Grand Guignol" sessions, with one disc full of EYE doing nothing but farting and belching.
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