Thursday, 19 January 2012

Stay with the Hollies!

In what will probably be the last blog entry around the topic of the Hollies on cd I'll be commenting on three cds, two studio albums and a new compilation.
Kicking off I'll start with the first album ever issued by the Hollies 'Stay with the Hollies' that was a mixture of R&B covers such as 'Stay', Chuck Berry's Memphis and 'Talkin' 'Bout You' and a powerhouse rocker Nash& Clarke original called 'Little Lover' which was featured on an English EP record.
I picked up the old 1991 BGO cd cheaply which is in mono unlike the lp re-issue they did earlier and I'd have to say I feel the sound while being a breathing more than the late 90's EMI remasters , it lacks definition compared to the BGO cds that have Here I Go Again and Bus Stop albums on them. Actually Imperial records in the states did issue all these tracks but Mr Moonlight in somewhat pedestrian arrangement and You Better Move On were on the Beat Group album not available on cd.
I don't feel this disc is really necessary for anyone but the most completist Hollies fan as the majority of these tracks are available in better sound elsewhere.

Later in 1964 Parlophone issued a second album called 'In The Hollies Style' which was a more accomplished set though having no singles on it which was the British norm back then with a rousing version of 'Nitty Gritty', 'Baby That's All', 'Candy Man' and the Everly Bros song I Thought 'Of You Last Night'
I bought the 1991 BGO mono cd issue of this too but while there is room for improvement it is better than the current EMI version but this album was never issued by Imperial in the States although Three songs did come out scattered across the Beat Group and Bus Stop albums.
Interestingly the BGO lp was like the first album also stereo. What was that all about?

Buying Hollies compilations is a messy exercise as you're seldom told exactly what versions mono or stereo you're gonna get and some dedicated mono mixes seem missing in action such as that of Bus Stop although someone at Capitol in LA found a copy tape of it in 2002 for the Capitol cd "Classic Masters" one compilation I do like outside the earlier 20 Golden Greats and the now out of print All The Hits and More 2cd set that are mainly in superb sounding stereo.
Recently a compilation came out on Music Club that does have some interesting mono material scattered across two discs in pretty decent sound for once.
Entitled "The Very Best Of" it commits the cardinal sin of not putting the tracks in any logical order across two cds, sketchy notes that don't refer to Terry Sylvester era which brought about a number of big hits like "The Air That I Breathe" but for the modest price (Under GBP £5.00) is worth picking up.
Most Hollies compilations have tended to feature after the event stereo remixes rather than the dedicated mono originals issued on the 45's until 1970 where available that sometimes sound very different and some of album tracks here are also the less often heard mono ones which were the priority mixes of the day.
I'll list every known mono track on this disc:
(Ain't That) Just Like Me
Here I Go Again
Yes I Will
Look Thru Any Window
If I Needed Someone
The Very Last Day (From Hear Here (US)/ "Hollies" (UK 1965) )
Pay You Back With Interest
After The Fox (with Peter Sellars)
Stop Stop Stop
On A Carousel
Carry Anne
Dear Eloise
Clown (From Butterfly album)
Honey and Wine
Butterfly (From album of same name)
Listen To Me
Sorry Suzanne
He Ain't Heavy, He's My Brother

Unlike most compilations it has three songs form the Hollies sing Dylan album of 1969 an album I feel was so out of date for the band as they had song writing talents with in it and access to top British songwriters more than prepared to write them fresh material.

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