Music Commentary

Welcome to ‘MIXOLOGY’, the show where I take Mono, Stereo, and International/Single mixes of classic albums, and compare and contrast all the key differences to create the ultimate in-a-nutshell guide!

Episodes

Hello Friends! We've got an extra special episode of the show today, digging into all of the new mixes presented on the recently released Expanded Edition of The Beach Boys' huge selling compilation Sounds of Summer, newly remixed by Mark Linett. With 28 9not the listed 24) tracks to look into, we'll be breaking down each of these mix by mix, in the order they appear on the compilation, starting with the earliest mix offered, and working through a summary of all subsequent mono, stereo, single mixes and remixes, culminating in the new 2021 mix of the track, and breaking down exactly what makes these new mixes unique. We'll also be correcting some mislabelling of mixes here, to give you a proper breakdown of exactly what you're getting. From first-time stereo mixes of tracks like 'I Get Around' that emulate the original mono mixes extremely closely, to later remixes of 70s tracks such as 'Let Us Go On This Way' that radically change the soundscape, let us see what's on offer here, and help you decide if these new mixes will become your new sounds of summer.
 
Happy Listening,
 
Frederick
 
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Hello Friends. Many moons ago a listener of the podcast requested I cover The Lovin' Spoonful on the show, and I can only apologise that is has taken this long! On the show today we will be looking at the group's 1966 album Daydream, a mid 60s pop classic by anyone's measurement. Filled to the brim with fantastic singles, hooks, and original cuts, this album is a real treat for the listener. Between the mono and stereo mixes, we don't encounter too many true differences, but there is a real difference in feel between these mixes that is hard to quantify. Which ultimately suits the material best, and is this consistent from track to track? Let's dive into the big noise from speonk and find out!
 
Happy Listening,
 
Frederick
 
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Hello Friends! We're following on from our recent look at Please Please Me this week, with the earliest album by The Beach Boys to receive mono and stereo mixes, 1962's Surfin' USA. The follow up to their Capitol debut Surfin' Safari, this LP saw the production standards grow, with double tracked vocals and additional instrumentation entering the fray. What does this hold for the two mixes and their unique traits? And does the benefits of either mix hold true across the whole album? Let's go trippin' and see if we can find out, bringing along a lovely little 2003 remix of 'Shut Down' with us too!
 
Happy Listening,
 
Frederick
 
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Hello Friends! Today on the show we're taking another trip out with Nancy Sinatra, and her album of duets with Lee Hazlewood, Nancy & Lee from 1968. An album that for many years was seen as an underground classic, over the last few years it has risen to greater prominence in the music community, and today I want to take a look at that original 1968 stereo mix, the original mono single and LP releases of the 5 tracks released prior to the album, the Bill Inglot remix issued on CD in 1989, and the tracks remixed for the digital only release in 2006. It's time to put all these differences to rest, as we celebrate Light in the Attic's reissue of this album next week, including a couple of wonderful bonus tracks too!
 
Happy Listening,
 
Frederick
 
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Hello Friends! Today on the show we're hitting the 50th album on the show, and I've decided to take it right back to the beginning, with The Beatles' debut LP Please Please Me. An album with a notoriously wide twin-track stereo mix, just how different could the mono and stereo mixes be? The answer is not too different, but there's a few key differences here that you may have overlooked, and a big hole to dive down regarding the title track. So, with 2 LPs and a 45 in hand, let's bring these mixes together and find that taste of honey!
 
Happy Listening,
 
Frederick
 
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Hello Friends! It's time to get revolutionary, as this week on Mixology we'll be taking our second look at Paul Revere & The Raiders, with their fantastic LP Revolution! from 1967. The first in a line of 'featuring Mark Lindsay' titles thanks to their heavy wrecking crew involvement, Mark has gone on record as saying producer Terry Melcher only ever intended this album to be heard in mono. As a result, only 6 of the tracks received stereo mixes back in 1967, with Him or Me getting a stereo mix in the 90s. Of these seven tracks, do the stereo mixes offer us anything new - or should you just stick with the stereo mixes that circulate today? What's It Gonna Be?
 
Happy Listening,
 
Frederick
 
Support the show and get hours of extra content at: https://www.patreon.com/backtomono
 
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April 6, 2022

Idea by The Bee Gees

Hello Friends, and welcome to the first Mixology look at The Bee Gees. Today we'll be starting our journey with their 3rd UK LP Idea, released in 1968 in both mono & stereo mixes. With a drier and faster mono mix competing with a wetter and higher orchestra mix stereo, is one really superior to the other? Let's get an idea about the answer and find out...
 
Happy Listening,
 
Frederick
 
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Hello Friends, today on the show we're taking our first trip out with The Association, and their huge hit 1967 album, Insight Out. Featuring hit singles 'Windy' and 'Never My Love', this album is somewhat of a mixed bag mix wise, covering everything from fold-downs, to multiple unique mixes across LP and single mixes for other tracks. Does this add up to a superior stereo mix, or a hodge-podge mono mix that somehow rises above it's creation? Let's find out in this long awaited requiem for the masses...

Happy Listening,

Frederick

Support the show and get hours of extra content at: https://www.patreon.com/backtomono
 
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March 9, 2022

A Quick One by The Who

Hello Friends! Today we're taking our first Mixology look at The Who, with their 1966 LP A Quick One. Following up on their first LP, this album featured far more original contributions from every member of the group, culminating in Pete Townshend's epic 'A Quick One While He's Away'. Originally released in the UK only in mono, the album received a mostly stereo mix in the US and across Europe, and these are the mixes we'll be looking at today. Many of the tracks were then remixed in 2003, mirroring the original stereo mixes, with a few quality of life improvements here and there. So, with most tracks having 3 mixes to cover, this isn't going to be a quick one, but let's run run run and see if Boris the Spider has the answers!

Happy Listening,

Frederick

Support the show and get hours of extra content at: https://www.patreon.com/backtomono
 
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Hello Friends! Today we’re finishing up the trilogy of Folk Rock albums from Simon & Garfunkel, with Parsley, Sage, Rosemary & Thyme from 1966. Their second album in the limelight, this was a huge leap forward in terms of production, but still heavily relied on songs from Paul's previous effort, The Paul Simon Songbook. Did this advancement in production lead to a greater number of mix variations when compared with Sounds of Silence? Not entirely, but once again with a 2001 remix now being the defacto mix of the album, we have three alternative mixes to consider. On top of this, 'Homeward Bound', a refuge from the Sounds of Silence sessions, was issued earlier that year on said album in the UK, complete with an earlier, and drier, stereo mix, as well as later that year on a 'Folk' compilation here in the UK in a very bizarre alternative mono mix... though not quite in the way you'd expect. With a suitcase and guitar in hand, let's dig in and see if we can decide on the definitive way to enjoy this album... wherever we may find it.
 
Happy Listening,
 
Frederick
 
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February 9, 2022

Strange Days by The Doors

Hello Friends! After looking at the fabulous self-titled debut LP from The Doors last year on the show, it only felt right to move on and cover their only other mono LP, Strange Days. Released in 1967, this album heralded a step forward for the group sonically, with the use of a greater number of tracks to record, as well as synth sounds and experimentation in the studio. This would naturally lend itself to an album with some even greater mix differences, but something is afoot here. Can we sort the dedicated mixes from the folds, and is the mono worth your time? Come take a Moonlight Drive with me and find out!

Happy Listening,
 
Frederick
 
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Hello Friends! Continuing on our January dive into The Beatles' 1965, we're taking a fresh look over the mix differences for the all-time classic LP, Rubber Soul. Originally covered in my very first episode of Mixology, the formula by which I make episodes was still in it's infancy, and since then my approach has got broader, deeper, and far more in depth than I ever intended, and I wanted to retrace my steps and give the album the treatment it truly deserves. This means not only covering the 1965 Mono and Stereo mixes of the album, but also the 1987 Stereo Remix by George Martin as this is the only digitally in-print edition of the album. We will also be once again covering the alternate mixes issues in America, including a mono mix of Michelle missed in my original edition! We've once again got a lot to cover this week, so it's time to Think For Yourself as to which mix is the definitive article, and dig right in with the evidence.
 
Happy Listening,
 
Frederick
 
Support the show and get hours of extra content at: https://www.patreon.com/backtomono
 
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January 12, 2022

Help! by The Beatles

Hello Friends, and welcome to 2022 here on Mixology! I've decided to go all-out with January, where we'll be cover the entire UK 1965 output by that fabulous group, The Beatles, starting of course with their first LP of the year, Help!. Formed out of the basis for the soundtrack to the film of the same name, this album features 14 pop gems from the group, including two numbers from George, as well as two covers to fill in the gaps, and was naturally issued in both mono and stereo at the time. However, in 1965 George Martin, for reasons that are completely clear, remixed the album (along with Rubber Soul) for its first CD issue, and these are the mixes that have remained as the defacto version to this day. With this in mind, today we will be covering all three mixes of the album, and working out if one of these can truly be defined as definitive. So, if you're looking for Help!, and screaming our I Need You, say goodbye to Yesterday's troubles - all the answered are right here for your ears.
 
Happy Listening,
 
Frederick 
 
Support the show and get hours of extra content at: https://www.patreon.com/backtomono
 
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Hello Friends, and welcome to the second festive spectacular here on Mixology, with our look at the Christmas album to end all Christmas albums - A Christmas Gift To You from Philles Records, produced by Phil Spector and performed by The Wrecking Crew, along with the many wonderful artists on the Philles label at the time, including The Ronettes, The Crystals, Bob B. Soxx & the Blue Jeans, and Darlene Love. Featuring 12 seasonal classics now heard throughout retail without fail each year, and a spoken word coda from the man himself, one question remains: should you go for the in print mono mix of the album, or the stereo remix issued in the 70s and 80s... before it was never to be seen again? So chuck on that Santa hat and come for a Sleigh Ride through a Marshmallow World, as we cover the most successful flop of the holiday period.

Happy Listening, 

Frederick

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Hello Friends, and today we're continuing on with our look at Donovan's 1967 classic, A Gift From a Flower to a Garden, diving in to the second LP of this set, also released individually in the USA as For Little Ones. A diversion from the first LP in the set, this album is comprised of a set of songs based in Celtic folk music, with Donovan's intention of writing an album of songs for children. Strangely, this song actually feels more mature than Wear Your Love Love Heaven, but how does this change in approach affect the mono and stereo mixes of the album? Littered with sound effect intros and stripped back arrangements, this album is a real mish-mash of similarities and differences, which which brings these mixes together best? Come along with The Magpie to The Lullaby of Spring and find the Starfish-on-the-Toast for the answer! 

Happy Listening, 

Frederick

Support the show and get hours of extra content at: https://www.patreon.com/backtomono
 
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