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THRAK Box

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THRAK Box

Postby diderot on Wed Nov 11, 2015 2:24 pm

Darren published his THRAK Box unpacking and we have seen lots of pics from everywhere - at DGM Live - with its content. Now let's talk about the music inside.

I've just listened to some discs, and while the sound is really great, I can't say the same for the videos...

SPOILER ALERT - don't read it if you want to be surprised by your own THRAK Box

Blu-ray 2 - the videos
Yesterday, while everyone was sleeping, I put the second blu-ray. When I choose the Warfield concert, it started in black and white with the band's name and spoting each musician and his name. At first I thought it was a menu, but the concert followed exactly like the teaser DGM put on youtube.

To my surprise the video quality isn't any better than the teaser on youtube, so for me it's a waste of resources to put it on a blu-ray. I was expecting for something with better quality, but all we got is close to "Live in Argentina". Sometimes the cameraman is clueless and don't know where to focus... (check the begining of "Indiscipline".) The audio wasn't enjoyed in its entirety, but I'll check it again.

On the other hand it was great to see "Live in Japan" on blu-ray. Although it's the same concert released on Deja VROOOM it has subtle differences in editing. Now I can put my VHS on eBay... Even with its misty image, it's better than the Warfiled footage.

"Tony's Road Movies" could be left in the DVD alone for its home-movie quality. I don't know why dupicate it? Another inadequate use of the blu-ray capabilities.

CD 2 - Maximum VROOOM
I was impressed by the clarity and definition of the audio. Although "When I Say Stop, Continue" sounds like a band finding a way thru a new composition, the additional tracks - originally from The VROOOM Sessions -, look like filler to me. They could be left on the original album...

CD 4 - ATTAKcATHRAK
At first I thought it would be a different combination of improvs glued in a single long track, like the previous THRAKaTTAK, but they assembled five Thrak 'instances', around 10 minutes each, with different styles or 'flavors' and it works better for me. Still digesting ...
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Re: THRAK Box

Postby vrooom on Thu Nov 12, 2015 5:57 pm

Still finding it hard to love the new stereo mix and 5.1 mix of THRAK. They took an album I loved and shit on it.
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Re: THRAK Box

Postby diderot on Thu Nov 12, 2015 7:22 pm

I haven't listened in its entirely as I have to put everyone out at home...

What's your opinion on the videos. When they said it was restored, I was expecting something much better, or am I being too critical / picky?
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Re: THRAK Box

Postby diderot on Sun Nov 15, 2015 4:15 am

vrooom wrote:Still finding it hard to love the new stereo mix and 5.1 mix of THRAK. They took an album I loved and shit on it.

I feel the same about the new stereo mix, that I'd compared to the previous one - 2002. First listening in the room with stereo speakers, then again on some passages with headphones. I haven't yet explored the 5.1 mix. Maybe tomorrow.

General impressions: I've read on AllAboutJazz that Jakko had separated all instruments in the stereo mix, reducing each of them from stereo to mono, but while it worked for guitars and sticks, I think he had gone too far on the drums separation. It works fine in Coda Marine 475, but on others he created a "Thrak effect" as their 'out of phase playing' (I'm not musician, I hope you understand...) worked better when they were mixed with minimum channel separation. On the first tracks it seems to have more low-end or compression, but on the last ones they have a lower volume in the mix.

My impressions on some tracks:

Coda Marina 475 - As noted above, the drums separation worked better, but Trey/Fripp vocals (now twice) up front in the mix looked like the last DGM Hot Tickle, when Pat counts the beats on Larks IV... At the end, when Trey says the last '5' (in 545, it echoes from right to left in the previous mix, while in the new one it keeps center. Jakko also include a different chord, by Fripp I think, to finish it.

Dinosaur - Belew's vocals lost the reverb and stereo effect it had, becoming flatter (?). The soundscapes after the bridge was softened (as most of them throughout the album).

THRAK - Here the channel separation, most notably on drums, seems exagerated. Some passages seems cleaner, not just clearer/sharper, but THRAK is noise!

People - The main beat was softened looking like a different version... and losing punch!

Radio II - seems to have more compression

Sex, Sleep... - Here at 2' the drums separation brings the "Thrak effect".

VROOOM VROOOM - is quite lower than the 2002 mix. The same for its Coda.

I'd like to hear your impressions.
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Re: THRAK Box

Postby diderot on Tue Nov 17, 2015 1:57 pm

More listening:

Audio-only blu-ray:
ATTAKcATHRAK - fantastic in surround!

JurassiKc THRAK - Compared to "Keep That One, Nick" from the Larks' box this is much more polished, good to know and listen, but hard to listen again. Maybe I'd choose some demo and 'studio run-through' tracks to put on a separate disc. They also could build a track, beginning with its acoustic demo than adding other instruments and so,

Anyway it's was great to listen proto-Dinosaur wiyh incomplete lyrics.

Kcensington THRAK - In stereo it's great, but in 5.1 it loses the bass - or it is too low, but I'll check again...
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Re: THRAK Box

Postby vrooom on Sat Nov 21, 2015 7:41 pm

A good summation, Diderot.
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Re: THRAK Box

Postby diderot on Sun Nov 22, 2015 2:47 pm

vrooom wrote:A good summation, Diderot.

Will you post something or do a Prog Review about it?

I'm curious about what you have to say after your comment on the new mix. :wink:
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Re: THRAK Box

Postby Krimzep on Wed Dec 30, 2015 6:57 am

Bloated. Still would buy it if I could afford too.
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