Tue May 27, 2003 11:31 pm
Wed May 28, 2003 9:18 pm
The Memory label has just released recently several shows recorded from the audience, and now for the first time a show recorded from the soundboard. This CD is titled “ In Dreams Of Yesterday “ and contains the Milwaukee, Wisconsin June 28, 1974 performance.
Elvis was in top form for this tour although I still prefer the March 1974 tour over this one. From what I have heard so far the June 1974 tour was getting better and better as it progressed, and the shows from June 29th onwards are amongst the best overall. You can read a “ Concert Review “ on this site of the June 22nd 1974 performances in Providence,RI. and a more extensive overview of the whole tour within the same section titled “ Summer Tour 1974 “.
The artwork presented by the Memory label is one of their best with appropriate pictures from this tour. The photographs used are actually from Fort Worth, TX ( beginning of the tour ) but Elvis was wearing the same jumpsuit in Milwaukee that day. The text is a pretty good overview of the first six (6) months of 1974 with the last paragraph focusing mainly on the performance featured on this CD.
Elvis’ performance was without a doubt much better that night than it was at the opening show of this tour in Fort Worth, TX. ( Man In White – volume 1 ). There are certainly several highlights. “ Trying To Get To You “ was one of them at every shows and Milwaukee was no exception, “ I Can’t Stop Loving You “ is rather strong, a very good rendition of “ Bridge Over Troubled Water “ and a great version of “ Steamroller Blues “ that was preceded with an equally strong “ Big Boss Man “. I think it’s interesting to note that we have here for the first time a rendition of “ Turn Around Look At Me “ in soundboard quality. This version is very short and not as good as the one performed in Ashville, NC. on July 23, 1975 but nevertheless interesting altogether.
Now we get to the toughest part of this review. This is only the third soundboard that we are getting from this tour, and in terms of sound quality the Kansas City, MO. June 29, 1974 remains the best one and by very far. There were a few things I didn’t like much on “ Man In White- volume 1 “. The horn section was almost absent and there were a few tracks that was below par when compared to the overall sound. Yet “ Man In White – volume 1 “ has a “ more even “ sound than “ In Dreams Of Yesterday “. The horn section is more present on this latter CD though but not by a large margin.
In my review of “ Turning Up The Heat In Las Vegas “ I mentioned “I think the big difference between those two is the lack of high-end frequencies, which gives you a feel that Elvis’ vocal and the overall music is behind a blanket. “. Well a good part of “ In Dreams Of Yesterday “ is suffering from what I call now the “ blanket syndrome “. The lack of heights is more than evident from “ C. C. Rider “ up to “ Let Me Be There “, and all of a sudden the sound quality improves a lot from “ Funny How Time Slips Away “ until the end. In the last part it becomes more clearer ( some heights ) with an even sound.
It’s not easy to explain but the sound is “ fluctuating a lot “, a little bit like changing from a given level to a lower level, then back to the original level ( and sometimes with a clearer sound ), so in that sense it’s uneven. Why does it sound like that ? Well there could be several reasons. It’s possible the source tape provided is far from the “ master tape “ and has been badly dubbed at one point or another. Not impossible either it was simply badly recorded in the first place, and as we know all soundboard recordings aren’t all sounding extremely good, thus quality could vary a lot from one to another. I guess the answer is somewhere in-between, and would add that someone at Memory label is allergic to “ higher frequencies “.
I’m still happy with the overall product and do recommend it because it’s a “ soundboard “, the show is pretty good, “ Steamroller Blues “ is excellent and sounding quite well. Yet this one will accompany “ Man In White – volume 1 “ on my shelf, and will certainly give more spins to “ Something Old, Something New “ and “ Elvis- King Of The Neon Jungle “ than these two previously aforementioned recordings from the mixing desk. With the exception of the Kansas City, MO. June 29, 1974 evening show featured on the first Baxter Profile box-set, I’m less than impressed with these June 1974 soundboard recordings so far when compared to what we’ve heard from the other tours of the same year.
Recently we made a review of the CD “ No Fooling Around ! “ which contains the Las Veags August 4, 1972 opening show, two extra live tracks and some rehearsals. At the same time was released another CD with the same show on Gambol Records titled “ Another Opening Night “. This latter title doesn’t contain any bonus tracks.
I won’t go into details about the show itself since I already did that in my review of “ No Fooling Around ! “ ( see below on this page ). The artwork of the Gambol Records release is as simple as can be. There’s a picture of Elvis taken in Lubbock,TX from the November 1972 on the front cover, three shots from the June 17, 1972 Chicago evening show on the back cover of the inner sleeve with Elvis wearing the same suit, and another pic of the Chicago gig on the back cover. There’s a mention inside ( back cover of the inner sleeve ) listing the back up vocalists and the musicians.
Some sites has reported this CD was “ almost like a soundboard “, whether they mentioned this without having listened to it first or have a bad set of ears. I thought a few Czech releases suffered of the “ blanket syndrome “ but that one tops them off. The drums sound and bass line are “ muddy “ while Elvis’ voice is lost somewhere into that, in bonus you have a very hissy sound. It appears no effort whatsoever has been done in trying to improve this one way or another. If that CD would be considered as “ almost a soundboard “ then “ No Fooling Around ! “ would be soundboard on this reference level.
Obviously both aren’t soundboard recordings but the Ampex label made the best effort for giving us a real listening pleasure considering the limitations of these “ audience recordings “, and good results were certainly achieved. In terms of packaging Ampex wins again as it’s not even a close match.
My conclusion is that “ No Fooling Around ! “ is the best choice if you enjoy these “ audience recordings “ CDs, and the one to buy if you can obtain a copy. Does “ Another Opening Night “ a good alternative choice ? I guess it all goes down to taste here, but fans buying both versions by example would most likely play “ No Fooling Around ! “ and leave “ Another Opening Night “ on their shelves. This is exactly where my copy will go and stay. Only recommended to the fans who wants them all.
Fri May 30, 2003 12:27 am
julie1977 wrote:Anyone have an information on these newly released discs, eg CDR or CD previously released or not etc
1) Time Stood Still ? Live At The International 1 (Tupelo Records Soundboard
Tracks 1 ? 17 International Hotel, Las Vegas 26.01.1970
Tracks 18 ? 30 Studio B Nashville, Tennessee 16-01-1968
(Bonus the U.S. Male Sessions)
2) In Dreams of Yesterday ? Live At The International 2 (Tupelo Records Soundboard
Tracks 1 ? 18 International Hotel, Las Vegas 23.02.1970
Tracks 19 ? 21 American Sound Studios, Memphis, TN 20/21-01-1969
Tracks 22 ? 27 Studio B Nashville, Tennessee 10-09-1967
(Bonus Rubberneckin? & Guitar Man Sessions)
Fri May 30, 2003 12:31 am
Fri May 30, 2003 12:37 am
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