Top positive review
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Mixed bag due to brick-walled mastering on 5.1 and live tracks
on September 30, 2010
I am not commenting on the excellent music this set contains or the iconic artist who created it. There's no doubt in my mind that Station to Station is one of the most important and enjoyable albums from one of the top rock artists of all time, and fully deserves to be treasured as part of our cultural history and presented in the highest quality possible. So a super deluxe set like this is a compelling, and in my case, a necessary purchase.
And there is a lot about this set that was done right, from the inclusion of the highly regarded, original RCA CD mastering from the mid-80s, to an audiophile quality, 2 channel hi-resolution version of the album included on the DVD. Not to mention the vinyl and other goodies that make this set hard to resist for any fan.
But that makes it all the more maddening that EMI would deliberately sabotage the highly anticipated live concert CD included, as well as the (hard to get these days) 5.1 audio mix on the DVD with horrendous, over-compressed, brick-walled mastering that robs the music of it's natural dynamics and life. The continued insistence of the record companies to compress the life out of the music makes absolutely no sense on a super deluxe edition like this, and is driving away whatever discerning music purchasing buyers they have left.
We all need to complain to EMI for intentionally ruining the sound on the 5.1 mix, as well as the live tracks, if they are listening. At least they got the original 2 channel album right, so I'm still recommending this set despite some flaws.