Quick... what's THE most overused word on classified and auction sites? Answer: rare. Absolutely everything is rare... all the time. Hand painted ceramic coffee mug from Camp Chippewa? Rare! Glovebox gasket for a 1973 Datsun 240Z? Yep... you guessed it. That's rare too. The word has become so ridiculously meaningless, I refuse to use it in an ad... until now. Because there's rare, and then there's R-A-R-E, as in this case..., quite literally one-of-a-kind. And it's not just about scarcity. It's about access to THE best available sound on what, in this humble listener's opinion, is already a really, really good Daniel Lanois produced record.
For sale here is the still sealed, with the original shrink wrap and Classic Records tamper proof stickers fully intact, #1-of-1 four disc set of 45rpm LACQUERS from Classic Records' reissue of Peter Gabriel's SO (catalog #PG 7-45). The Classic reissue was cut from the original 1/2" 30 ips analog master tapes on the Classic all tube stereo cutting system at Bernie Grundman Mastering by "The Wizard" Bernie Grundman himself. This release features the additional tune "We Do What We're Told (Milgrames 37)" that was originally not on the Geffen vinyl issue in 1986.
These discs are NOT a stamped test pressing. They are the original lacquers cut by the record lathe @ 45rpm, on four single sided discs (1 per LP side - 4 sides: A1, A2, B1, B2) used to make the master stamper. In real time, the master tape was running along with the cutting lathe, cutting the groove modulations in the master lacquer. The master lacquer was then electroplated and produced a Master plate used ultimately to make stampers that press vinyl records. Once the master lacquer has made its metal master it can still be played like an LP and represents the CLOSEST transfer to the original master tape used to cut it! The sound of lacquer is as close to the sound of the master tape as you can ever get - with the least amount of information lost in the transfer and the highest fidelity. The master lacquer of a Classic Records title represents the ultimate collectible, given there is only one set per title. For these special editions, the master lacquers have been delicately trimmed down from 14" to 12" in diameter so that they can be played back on any modern turntable. Each disc is single sided and perfectly flat for playback sound that is nothing short of breathtaking. Each set is packaged in its own custom box and sealed and numbered to preserve their collectibility. This set is packaged in a white special edition box and each lacquer comes in a white jacket. Original jacket also included as a bonus. Jacket in mint condition.
Peter Gabriel introduced his fifth studio album So with "Sledgehammer," an Otis Redding-inspired soul-pop raver that was easily his catchiest, happiest single to date. Needless to say, it was also his most accessible, and, in that sense it was a good introduction to So, the catchiest, happiest record he ever cut. "Sledgehammer" propelled the record toward blockbuster status, and Gabriel had enough songs with single potential to keep it there. There was "Big Time," another colorful dance number; "Don't Give Up," a moving duet with Kate Bush; "Red Rain," a stately anthem popular on album rock radio; and "In Your Eyes," Gabriel's greatest love song which achieved genuine classic status after being featured in Cameron Crowe's classic, Say Anything. These all illustrated the strengths of the album: Gabriel's increased melodicism and ability to blend African music, jangly pop, and soul into his moody art rock. Apart from these singles, plus the urgent "That Voice Again," the rest of the record is as quiet as the album tracks of Security. The difference is, the singles on that record were part of the overall fabric; here, the singles are the fabric, which can make the album seem top-heavy (a fault of many blockbuster albums, particularly those of the mid-'80s). Even so, those songs are so strong, finding Gabriel in a newfound confidence and accessibility, that it's hard not to be won over by them.
Track Listing: Red Rain Sledgehammer Don't Give Up That Voice Again Mercy Street Big Time We Do What We're Told (Milgram's 37) This Is The Picture (Excellent Birds) In Your Eyes
Thought I would try and make this available to the community here first. If you're interested, please make an offer. If I don't find any takers, they'll go to Ebay in a few weeks, closer to the Holidays. Note: given that a big part of the value is related to being sealed, on this one I can only accept a check/bank draft/wire, with time to clear my account before shipping. No PayPal and no shipping outside of the continental U.S. I will ROBUSTLY pack the set for safe arrival to the buyer. I also have extensive seller history on Audiogon (user ID: Markraile) and I think you'll find a consistent theme in carefully packing and shipping to avoid problems.
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