Scratched – Record Store Day!


April 23, 2022

So, hopefully, you’ll have seen by now that we have reissued our Japanese-only compilation album “Scratched”, on vinyl, for the first time. It’s two pieces of heavyweight vinyl, marbled blue and yellow – so it matches the artwork. Speaking of artwork – we got the original designer Stylorouge to redo all of the design, and bring it up to date. It’s as faithful as we could have made it, to what came out in the 1990s. Totally chuffed with how it looks – and for those of you who have a copy – just look at it, it’s ace!

For anyone who’s not managed to get a copy, apologies for not getting them for the JJ shop – RSD stock just goes out to the Record Shops – that’s the whole point of the exercise. Having said that, people do miss out, for one reason or another. Maybe their local shop ran out of stock, or they were too far, geographically, from a location where they could find one. At times like these, it’s easy to look at eBay and be totally disheartened by the prices of copies being “flipped” for a quick (and often outrageous) profit. I always try and tell people – to sit tight. Those chances always prey on an initial wave of enthusiasm (and sometimes desperation) to inflate their margins. After a month or so, prices come down. Let’s hope so, anyway.

It’s also worth pointing out that “Scratched” isn’t the only thing we’ll be putting out. Far from it. There is a lot happening, along these lines – wish I could tell you more! Suffice to say, you’ll be very, very chuffed, once all of the plans are finally revealed. As ever, I’ll do my best to let you all know first.

There’s one more thing too – We expanded “Scratched” to fill two pieces of vinyl. We didn’t want to have three sides and an etching (which a lot of people do) so we filled out that last side with other cool mixes. One of them is an instrumental mix of “Right Here Right now”, and the eagle-eyed (eagle-eared?) among you will probably spot the fact that…..it’s got vocals on it! It’s not very instrumental, at all.

Yeah, it’s a bit of a mistake – but the process we went through, is pretty interesting, so I thought I’d fill you in on what happened. It all comes from the time when RHRN was offered a place on the “Rock Band” video game, and they wanted “stem” versions. So, digital mixes are created from the separate recorded parts of the song. It’s easy to do it, these days – as most songs are recorded digitally. It’s a quick and painless process, to get these sorts of mixes together. RHRN was slightly different – as it was recorded in an analogue era. We had to go back to the original multitrack tapes, which were taken out of the EMI vaults, and transferred, digitally.

Anthony, our engineer, made mixes of the bass, the drums, and the guitars, for the game. They also needed “reference” mixes of the song, created from the original instruments. A brand new mix, basically. This was a fascinating process – as Anthony hadn’t been completely familiar with the original, so we asked him to re-create it from the ground up, meaning we had something created with fresh ears. It was the same old RHRN, but with a modern twist.

We made a mix of the song, with Mike’s original vocals, over a brand new instrumental, created by Anthony. Somewhere along the line, this “new instrumental, overlaid with the original vocal” got mislabeled. And the end product, of this long, twisted tale? there’s a track on the new version of “Scratched”, with the wrong title.

I’ve never been too bothered by mistakes, or misprints, or odd things on records – so long as I know something about that mistake. then, it becomes something quirky, something interesting. So – I’m hoping, that now you know the whole story – you might feel the same!

Thanks to everyone that went out and got a copy of the album – and as I said, keep some space free, on your shelves, next to it. Might come in useful, rather soon……

Cheers,

Iain

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