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Pink Floyd update: “Oh by the way, which one’s Pink?”

EMI have no answers and no clue when it comes to questions put to them by Pink Floyd fans

Pink Floyd and EMI are hoping that some of the most devoted fans will open their wallets next month and spend hundreds of pounds on the new Dark Side of the Moon and Wish You Were Here Immersion Editions and the Discovery Box Set.

However, it has become apparent that they have no interest, or even more worryingly, are not able to answer some basic questions about the Pink Floyd archive or future release plans. These were questions from you the fans, submitted to EMI by superdeluxeedition.com.

The former shows disdain for the very people they wish to sell their product to, while the later would indicate that at least 9 months into this process they have no idea what they have and how they plan to use it.

We had consolidated a list of almost 100 questions from our previous post, down to a more manageable 22. People close to the band have been superbly helpful – engineer Andy Jackson came back on the same day with answers to some of your questions. But the corporate machine that is EMI took almost a month to reply and answered only one question out of the list of 22.

Let’s be clear, we didn’t get a “don’t know” or “it could happen” with the other questions, they simply would not, or could not answer. We were not necessarily expecting a detailed response to all questions, but we’ve highlighted five (below) that were asked by many people, and were generally speaking, broad enough to warrant some kind of response.

FIVE KEY PINK FLOYD QUESTIONS THAT EMI CANNOT / WILL NOT ANSWER

Why is there no 5.1 mix of The Wall in the forthcoming Immersion Box spec? No one seems to  know, EMI cannot provide any answers. James Guthrie may or may not have it in his schedule…a big mystery.

Will any of the other quad mixes from the 1970s be released in the future? EMI cannot provide any answers.

Do high quality In The Flesh tour recordings exist? EMI could not answer – meaning they do not know if these recordings are in the archive, never mind if they will ever be released.

Will Immersion Editions of other albums be released? They will not commit to any future Immersion Editions. No even a guarded “quite likely”.

What is the “array of digital formats” ? Six weeks before Dark Side of the Moon is available for purchase there are no details forthcoming. Are we getting MP3s, FLAC, Apple Lossless, WAV files? Who knows?

None of these questions should be difficult to answer. This blog has attempted to manage a conversation between the fans and the record company. But only one side wishes to talk.

We are very disappointed at this apathy towards some genuine and enthusiastic fans. If you share this disappointment, then please let us know by leaving a comment and giving us your thoughts.

To anyone at EMI who might be reading this – it is not too late to engage with the fans and provide some answers. Contact me on paul@superdeluxeedition.com.

 

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30 responses to Pink Floyd update: “Oh by the way, which one’s Pink?”

  1. Ryan Talbot says:

    Wow…disappointing!

    Just goes to show how much the record companies only care about money…no surprise here. Guess Andy Jackson’s our only guy with answers willing to talk. Maybe if you can get ahold of James Guthrie that would be great.

    Also, try to see if you can get some people working on the Quadrophenia Deluxe Edition and/or the Aqualung Deluxe Edition to answer some questions. I’ve heard a few names involved with each of these releases so maybe they’d be willing to answer some questions about the respective releases.

    • Marcel says:

      Disappointing.. I feel cheated. If EMI doesn’t care, why should I? Preorders cancelled, I’ll stick with the Sax remasters.

  2. Allan says:

    Dear EMI:
    When, as a paying customer, I’m treated with apathy or ignored by the shop, I understand they are not interested in my business and so I take it elsewhere. If you are not interested in giving your paying customers the basic information they are requesting about your product, why should we be interested in paying for it? I sure am not interested anymore and I’m canceling my orders. I’ll take my money where it is appreciated.
    Thanks, and goodbye.
    Allan.

  3. James says:

    Perhaps if the music companies were run by people who cared about music (like in the 70s) instead of bean counters then things would be different. To know so little about an artist of this calibre who has been with them for over 40 years absolutely astounds me about EMI. But then it stopped being a music company when it sold its soul to corporate greed-mongers.
    Wonder if EMI have heard of that other band. What’s their name now?? Ah yes, The Beatles. Last time I looked I believe they were on EMI. Maybe someone should call them and ask.

  4. Alberto says:

    Very sad, EMI doesn´t really care about this huge project…

  5. Phil Cohen says:

    For the albums from “Wish You Were Here” onward, the recordings are owned by Pink Floyd, and EMI is merely a licensee. EMI are not preparing these releases. Pink Floyd are preparing them. And EMI doesn’t want to risk upsetting the surviving group members, and jeopardizing any future releases.

    Actually, EMI have given out quite a bit of information about the September & November 2011 Pink Floyd releases. Contrast this with EMI’s nearly 6 months of total stonewalling about The Beach Boys’ “Smile Sessions” box.

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      It’s EMI’s job to market and distribute and sell these products. To do that they need fans to buy them.

      It is going to be a small percentage of Pink Floyd fans that will stump up on big £90 boxes. The kind of fans that check out news on superdeluxeedition.com or other Pink Floyd forums are quite likely to be the ones considering these boxes…

      There is no doubt some truth to what you say, but to stonewall a list of 22 questions direct from the mouths of your core target audience, without so much as a “really sorry we are not able to provide this information because X, Y or Z” seems very shortsighted to say the least…

  6. Julie Skaggs says:

    Not that I’m defending EMI by any means (because as has been noted, they are entirely ruled by corporate soulless entities at this juncture) BUT, Floydian politics being what they are, I’m not surprised that they either declined to comment or do not possess any concrete knowledge. After all, they’re just the distributing arm of the enterprise, PFML owns the material and ultimately decides the content and form (although it’s determined, in some part, by what EMI is willing to fund and distribute, obviously).

    As to the first question, a 5.1 remaster of The Wall would only be feasible – in the minds of the PF braintrust – if it was accompanied by release on SACD, and EMI have absolutely no interest or methodology in place for such a format, which is why the WYWH SACD is being distributed by Analogue Productions. So given that reluctance it’s easier to understand why it’s not going to be a part of the Immersion box set (that we know of, things might change between now and February).

    The next three questions are also in regards to efforts which are not under EMI’s direct purview and thus it’s likely that they truly cannot answer them. The only people who could have possibly not come to a decision or simply decline to comment, as is their privilege. But as to whether more Immersion releases will be in the pipeline…again, Floydian politics is the single biggest roadblock at this point, so it’s difficult to know if Nick’s recent comments regarding this subject are merely optimistic or pandering to fandom expectation.

    But the last question, well, surely that *could* have been answered, at least partiially. So which one did the EMI reps answer, Paul? Now I’m terribly curious!

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      Hi Julie

      with regards to the 5.1 The Wall – there is no reason why EMI cannot replicate what they are doing with Wish You Were Here. Hi-Res on SACD via third party and BluRay and DVD in the normal box. I don’t think that is the issue. The issue is WHY does it look like we are not getting a 5.1 mix. If the band do not want it then that’s fair enough, but why not say that? If it is still being discussed then it would be good to know.

      I’m not in the camp that considers it some breach of my human rights not to have a 5.1 mix of The Wall but since the specs have omitted this aspect which is so prominent on the other two boxes, asking EMI to explain is entirely reasonable.

      The answer we WERE given was about vinyl. Confirmation that vinyl versions would be coming without bonus tracks with original packaging and MP3s!

      • Julie Skaggs says:

        Hi Paul –

        “No reason” perhaps, but definitely no desire to do so. The only reason EMI was able to include hi-res versions on the other Immersion sets is due to the prior existance of 5.1 mixes in the possession of PFML. Now, if – and this is strictly speculation of course – a licensing deal were reached with Analogue Productions or some other distributor for an SACD release of The Wall then that would drive the hi-res effort applicable to other formats as it relates to the Immersion boxset. But again, politics is the reason behind their silence, and that’s the way it’s always been in the PF world. I cannot honestly believe that any representative of EMI would willingly make the admission that they turned down PFML’s offer of licensing the WYWH SACD to them first and it’s in part an answer to the question posed.

        • Paul Sinclair says:

          I think the whole SACD issue is a slight irrelevance to be honest. Not a big deal to me if EMI want to hand that over to someone else. In other words I don’t see the ‘requirement’ for an SACD from PFML (if this exists) being any kind of deal-breaker with regards to a 5.1 mix of The Wall.

          Many people are suggesting that cost is the issue with the 5.1 The Wall, but there is no evidence to support this. It’s not on the specs and that’s all we know at this stage.

          Andy Jackson specifically said to me that it would be unlikely to be anything to do with lack of budget. And anyway, in the scheme of things, how big an expense actually is it for James Guthrie to spend a a couple of weeks or however long it would take on doing a surround mix?

          IF the band wanted a 5.1 mix I’m sure there would be a 5.1 mix – that is my gut feeling. It could be that it will still happen and the specs will change, but because EMI are staying silent we don’t know.

          With nothing forthcoming in terms of clarification, the speculation will continue…

  7. Joe Siegler says:

    What I’m interested in is what’s physically inside the box of the 14 albums (16 CD’s) that comprise all the studio albums. Digipaks, standard jewel cases, or some mutant packaging where they’re attached to the physical box itself?

    I prefer the jewel cases, to be honest.

  8. I misspent my youth as co-editor of a Floyd fanzine and would like to reassure you that this high-handed dismissal of fans has long been par for the course.

    I hope anyone considering buying one of these ludicrous sets realises that the live stuff from 1974 is dreadful, and that anyone who wants a version of Dark Side or The Wall better than the versions made available on, respectively, the 1993 reissue and the Mobile Fidelity gold set, is arguably listening to the technology not the music

    Personally, I’d only be interested in a properly remastered Animals with a decent In The Flesh live set – it’s impossible to believe that the Floyd wouldn’t have recorded at least some of that tour. Fortunately there are innumerable bootlegs of the only tour on which the Floyd actually justified their live reputation.

  9. Kurt says:

    You would think that with record companies struggling lately they would care a little bit more about the fans who are going to keep their companies solvent. Very sad that no one at EMI has any drive or determination to take some initiative and help the fans, i.e. buyers of their products.

  10. Phil Cohen says:

    By the way, after these 2011 releases, there’s only one more quadraphonic mix yet to be reissued. It is “Atom Heart Mother”. It’s in circulation unofficially; computer-decoded & de-clicked from the SQ quadraphonic L.P.

    • Public Enigma says:

      Ah, but there is/was an Animals mix, and the rust on tape from around the OBC daze may be available; albeit not fully mixed down, and of course there’s those household objects, too.

      But it’s moot; it’s not about art, or history, or advancing the State, or even what Dave, Rog, Nick, the ghost of Syd, the late great Rick, Mr Klose or anyone else want.

      It’s about Money. (Hey, cue the tape, Alan…)

      FWIW, I have seen evidence of an EMITape box labeled “Quad” and “Pepper”, with something noted about a hard shelled insect, too, but one can only Imagine what could have been there, too.

      Finally, from another John, not quite Gospel-worthy, but nonetheless just as relevant: “Ah, ever get the feeling you’ve been cheated?”

  11. Matthias says:

    Hello guys,

    None of the announced re-release sets contain any previously non-existent material. It’s all previously _unreleased_ material.

    Apart from the remastering treatment, nothing on any of the releases in the “Why Pink Floyd” campaign was specifically created for them. Not even the 5.1 WYWH mix. It’s from 2009.

    IMHO, there is no way they will do a new 5.1 mix for The Wall. Or any of the other albums. The only things that may realistically get re-released are more recordings and mixes from the vault, like e.g. the Atom Heart Mother quad mix (pretty good bootlegs of that one are already out there) or the Animals quad mix, provided it (still) exists.

    I’m really not holding my breath for The Wall in 5.1. I’m not even holding my breath for the de-80s-fied “Momentary Lapse”, even though the band members/associates are toying around with it.

    Personally, I’m happy to get the regular studio albums in updated sound, and may buy the Dark Side and WYWH Immersion sets if the transfer of the DSOTM quad mix sounds better than the bootleg already available, and if the new WYWH 5.1 mix is inferior to the quad mix, respectively.

    Just my 5 cents…

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  13. etzeppy says:

    “• Why is there no 5.1 mix of The Wall in the forthcoming Immersion Box spec? No one seems to know, EMI cannot provide any answers. James Guthrie may or may not have it in his schedule…a big mystery.”

    No mystery here at all. Unlike DSotM and WYWH, no 5.1 mix already exists for The Wall. This campaign is about repackaging and releasing material that was already in the vaults. No new mixes have been created. Don’t expect any new mixes to be created.

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      I’m well aware that the 5.1 mixes for the other two albums already existed albeit the WYWH was unreleased. This doesn’t change the fact that back in 2007 time and money was willing to be spent to create a 5.1 mix of WYWH for what was likely to be a hybrid SACD.

      4 years later, for a supposedly definitive and very expensive The Wall Immersion Box Set there is seemingly no appetite to do the same as they did for WYWH only 4 years ago. This is not logical and doesn’t make commercial sense.

      The immersion editions are basically the ultimate editions of the albums, they are not just about dubbing what’s in the vaults onto a CD/Blu-ray or DVD master.

      Music has been remastered, old tapes have been found, live material remixed with missing elements painstakingly fixed – many hours, days and months researching audio and video archives. So YES it is mysterious that with all this work and effort nobody seems to want to keep The Wall consistent with the other two.

      It is nothing to do with money as far as I can see, so there will be another reason that we may or may not find out…

      • Julian says:

        Paul, I think I know why there is no 5.1 mix of The Wall – because Pink Floyd had ditched the quad idea after “Animals”. On his current tour, Roger only used the quad system for the sound effects – NOT THE MUSIC. This is probably the reason why they don’t like the idea of a 5.1 mix of The Wall. Although they could ask a guy like Steven Wilson to do a new 5.1 remix…

  14. Bofsensai says:

    Hah, scraps from the table in what is undeniably ‘yet another, (if not) movie’, then cynical ‘Gravy train’ exercise

    Until there is only one member (left?!) that takes the pride to curate their own archive – e.g. a la J. Page did for Led Zep all those years ago – us fans will never get any such ‘reward’ for assisting in placing said members into their current contemptouus stance towards their loyal fanbase lifestyle they now sumptously occupy.

    John Harris neatly summed it up in his review in the latest ‘Mojo’ magazine – (which, considering the amount of material involved in this exercise, tellingly in only a half page!) – “I can hear the same tills that begin Money, tinkling on with a saddening sense of cynicism – possibly forever.”
    We have been warned – or as the sample went: ‘thought you’d like to know’! …

  15. movement says:

    You guys are barking up the wrong tree. EMI is just releasing the product. They have nothing to do with making the content. The reason they have not answered these questions is because they honestly don’t know. If you want answers, talk to Mason. He is the only one with the time or energy to make anything happen. The comments from him have been promising.

  16. LJA says:

    Alot of kids wont have heard the early stuff and might not like it but Floyd fans my age will have most of the albums and I dont really see the point in doubling up on what I already have whether it’s digital or not . So good luck with the box set and bad karma to EMI for not knowing anything . Money ! Its a crime .

  17. captain nemo says:

    like all record companys care about is how much money [pink floyd].they bleed out of poor working fans.there like big oil .which uses this for making records. all one happy family.the bands get big and forget were they came from up thru the ranks.all music fans tell record company to back off.they steal from the buying public all the time.time to fight back music lovers.give us a break……………………

  18. ex animo says:

    I wish they would stop releasing useless sets. I am a newcomer fan of Pink Floyd, and after watching video reviews of the 3 box sets that have been released over the years, I came to the conclusion that I only want the Oh By The Way box – which is OUT OF PRINT and you can only find fake sets around (I’m not sure if any of them are genuine.. but I’m not risking 300$ on it).
    I may be a new fan, but I’m not stupid and I completely see why the Discovery set is bad (and I don’t want it).
    I want them to re-print the Oh By The Way box set :(

  19. Pharaoh Hiii’s masterssssssssssssss

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