I find myself listening to PLASTIC ONO BAND again (Dr. Ebbetts new release) with uneasiness, as I've never been a fan of Lennon's "Primal Scream" phase, and overly indulgent introspective "me me me" lyric writing--especially on this album. It's not one where you listen for a sense of joy. The music is simplistic, with a amatuerish guitar and piano and a plodding bass with slow/mid-tempo songs, and Lennons "Primal Screaming"-- that just grates on my nerves at times. The album sounds like it's partial "White Album" and partial polished studio demos. Certainly un-Phil Spector, especially with him at the helm!
What I do enjoy about this version from Dr. Ebbetts is that it's the original mix mastered from virgin vinyl. The latest legit cd is a remix and it suffers. It's lost it's harsh guitar that I liked on I Found Out and Well Well Well. The remix version from 2000 is a bit brighter and open but luckily the feel of the original album is retained on the Dr. Ebbetts mastering. It's so clean that you would never know it's source is vinyl! It has better low end and Voorman's plodding bass stands out more promenently. The guitars were recorded "hotter" on the original mix--and on the remix they are softened and lessen the anger in the music that corresponds to Lennon's lyrics. Dr. Ebbetts version retains a warmth that is missing from the 2000 Capitol remix.
The packaging always surprises me. The album cover has more color and contrast. The discs are (of course) silver cd-rs with thermal jet ink printing that mimics EMI/Apple/Capitol to a "t". The graphics on the disc and booklet (which contains lyrics)are sharp and clear and the paper is heavy stock and very durable.
All in all, another essential Dr. Ebbetts release that you need in your collection since EMI/Capitol messed with the original mix which makes the remix the sanctioned and only legit version available to purchase. I'd go out of my way for the Dr. Ebbetts version. He's doing true fans an immeasurable service which we should all be thankful for!
aka "Beatle Bob" on the Beatles message boards
aka "Cal" on the Beach Boys message boards