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Eurythmics vinyl reissues impress

While one cannot help sensing a collective groan from diehard fans at the announcement of vinyl reissues of all the Sony-controlled Eurythmics studios albums, the label have taken the job seriously and seem keen to make a good impression on the band and fans alike.

I say that, because it was less than two years ago that Dave Stewart told SDE that “we don’t know anybody there [at Sony]”, adding: “They’re a huge corporation and if you try to find Eurythmics on their website, you can’t find us. We seemed to have disappeared off the face of the earth.”

However, relations have clearly thawed and Stewart and Annie Lennox are cooperating on this comprehensive vinyl reissue campaign, which will happen in waves, during 2018. The first three albums In The Garden, Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This) and Touch were reissued yesterday and SDE has had a chance to have a listen and take a look at the presentation.

The first thing to say is that these LOOK great. Too often blurred (i.e. enlarged) images on vinyl reissues make a mockery of the oft-quoted ‘meticulously re-created original packaging’ line, but this certainly isn’t the case here. Touch‘s iconic cover image is stunning! Absolutely pin-sharp, suggesting that someone has taken good care of the original elements over the years. I held In The Garden up next to my UK original and it’s hard to tell the difference. The reissue has a glossy laminated cover (as does Touch, but not Sweet Dreams) while the original doesn’t, but colours and tones are perfectly matched.


Spot the difference. Original on the left, reissue on the right.

These don’t come with poly-lined sleeves, but rather printed inners, which match the originals. These are 180g pressings of course, so the vinyl records are obviously heavier than when they were issued the first time, but the label designs are well-executed and attempt to come close to the originals, so In The Garden has a black RCA, while Touch is more design-heavy, for example.

Let’s talk about the sound. First off, these are half-speed mastered pressings. I don’t recall reading that anywhere, but Abbey Road’s Miles Showell (something of a half-speed specialist) has prepared these from “the best known sources, including wherever possible the original studio masters”. In fact, Miles provided fans with some quite interesting information yesterday on twitter, including the fact that “quite a few” of the songs on Touch were “compiled edits from different takes” which were edited using the then state-of-the-art Sony 1610 digital recorder. That machine’s maximum output resolution was 16bit / 44.1kHz so those edits are the masters and cannot be made ‘hi-res’. This is an anomaly though and Miles also said he has just worked on Be Yourself Tonight (with Revenge & Savage – all scheduled for July) very recently and “with the exception of a small bit of damage (that I was able to repair digitally), the Be Yourself Tonight 1/2-inch masters sounded absolutely wonderful. Exemplary engineering.”

Also, while these are cut from digital there has been no digital peak limiting used. This is an important point because, impressively, all the new vinyl comes with high-res 24bit/96kHz downloads, except Touch for the reasons explained above.

I took a close listen to In The Garden and it sounded very good indeed. I did some A-B testing with my UK original and found it very hard to tell any difference at all. That may sound disappointing in some respects, but actually getting back to the pure sounds of the originals can probably regarded as ‘job done’. I would much rather that, than enduring compressed audio or some revisionist remaster than changes the sound into something we’ve never been used to. I actually thought Touch sounded good too, despite Showell declaring (on twitter) that In The Garden and Sweet Dreams were “the best” from this early batch.


All the albums (except Touch) feature hi-res 24/96 downloads

All in all, these are a delight. Sony have eschewed the fanfare of Universal’s ‘half-speed mastering’ branding (OBI’s, certificates) but effectively delivered the same product. At £20 (or less) each, with the hi-res audio thrown in as a bonus, these are about as good as you could possibly hope for. Even the hi-res download cards (you can also have MP3, if you want!) are fully artworked and Sony have built a new website to redeem the codes. If only all vinyl reissues were this good.

In The Garden, Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This) and Touch are out now on vinyl.

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Eurythmics

In The Garden - vinyl LP with hi-res digital download

Shop Price gbp Stock
Amazon uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 15.68
Amazon de 6LP coloured vinyl box 15
Amazon usa 6LP coloured vinyl box 10.89
Amazon fr 6LP coloured vinyl box 15.15
Amazon it 6LP coloured vinyl box 15.87
Amazon es 6LP coloured vinyl box 11.53
Amazon ca 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.85
JPC de 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
HMV uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
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Eurythmics

Sweet Dreams Are Made Of This - vinyl LP with hi-res digital download

Shop Price gbp Stock
Amazon uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 15.91
Amazon de 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.17
Amazon usa 6LP coloured vinyl box 15.7
Amazon fr 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
Amazon it 6LP coloured vinyl box 17.29
Amazon es 6LP coloured vinyl box 14.53
Amazon ca 6LP coloured vinyl box 26.32
JPC de 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
HMV uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
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Eurythmics

Touch - vinyl LP with digital download

Shop Price gbp Stock
Amazon uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 15.92
Amazon de 6LP coloured vinyl box 15
Amazon usa 6LP coloured vinyl box 13.44
Amazon fr 6LP coloured vinyl box 15.18
Amazon it 6LP coloured vinyl box 15.91
Amazon es 6LP coloured vinyl box 11.53
Amazon ca 6LP coloured vinyl box 8.05
JPC de 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
HMV uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
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Eurythmics

Be Yourself Tonight - vinyl LP with hi-res digital download

Shop Price gbp Stock
Amazon uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.77
Amazon de 6LP coloured vinyl box 15.03
Amazon usa 6LP coloured vinyl box 17.67
Amazon fr 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
Amazon it 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.9
Amazon es 6LP coloured vinyl box 14.53
Amazon ca 6LP coloured vinyl box 27.38
JPC de 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
HMV uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
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Eurythmics

Revenge - vinyl LP with hi-res digital download

Shop Price gbp Stock
Amazon uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.21
Amazon de 6LP coloured vinyl box 15.95
Amazon usa 6LP coloured vinyl box 19.34
Amazon fr 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.75
Amazon it 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.9
Amazon es 6LP coloured vinyl box 14.53
Amazon ca 6LP coloured vinyl box 26.08
JPC de 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
HMV uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
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Eurythmics

Savage vinyl LP - with hi-res digital download

Shop Price gbp Stock
Amazon uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.21
Amazon de 6LP coloured vinyl box 15.03
Amazon usa 6LP coloured vinyl box 19.45
Amazon fr 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
Amazon it 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.9
Amazon es 6LP coloured vinyl box 14.53
Amazon ca 6LP coloured vinyl box 22.83
JPC de 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
HMV uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
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Eurythmics

We Too Are One - vinyl LP with hi-res digital download

Shop Price gbp Stock
Amazon uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 19.99
Amazon de 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
Amazon usa 6LP coloured vinyl box 27.98
Amazon fr 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.68
Amazon ca 6LP coloured vinyl box 25.19
JPC de 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
HMV uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 19.99
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Eurythmics

Peace - vinyl LP with hi-res digital download

Shop Price gbp Stock
Amazon uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 19.99
Amazon de 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
Amazon usa 6LP coloured vinyl box 27.98
Amazon fr 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.68
Amazon ca 6LP coloured vinyl box 25.19
JPC de 6LP coloured vinyl box 18.99
HMV uk 6LP coloured vinyl box 19.99
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48 responses to Eurythmics vinyl reissues impress

  1. Mark says:

    The Revenge WAV is 24/44.1 not 24/96, so two of th six are not 24/96, but the vinyl and WAV sound great though.

    I just went for albums 2, 4 and 5, plus the Greatest Hist double vinyl

  2. Scott says:

    What a pleasant surprise. All of the sleeves are excellent reproductions and the vinyl is really nice (although side 2 on my Sweet Dreams is very off center). I do wish they would have been colored vinyl though. The downloads are full high resolution for 2 of the albums, and are very dynamic and sound really good. And as some have also noticed, ‘Somebody Told Me’ on Sweet Dreams is a slightly different mix with additional sounds, mainly in the section before the second verse. I was only going to get one of the reissues but since the downloads include .wav options, that clinched the deal for me and I got all three. My love of Eurythmics stops with the 1984 soundtrack, so I can’t say I’ll be getting any of the next batches, but if they are done like this batch then it’s sure to satisfy.

  3. Guido Hoffmann says:

    Thank you For your excellent review. I ordered Sweet Dreams after I read it, but what I received was a badly warped and dished pressing!
    Also I think it’s good to have the original inners to be reproduced, but the vinyl should always be delivered in an antistatic polysleeve as Universal did it with the excellent recent U2 reissues for example.

  4. Mark Stevens says:

    Great information. Thanks. I’ve been enjoying the three reissued albums since their arrival Friday. The Sweet Dreams album sounds incredible. Everyone seems to agree that “Somebody Told Me” has some sounds never heard before. Great stuff. I’m really looking forward to picking up 1984 on Record Store Day this Saturday, and I’m anxiously awaiting the arrival of the rest of the catalogue this year. As has been said on my posts here, it would be nice if Sony would really dig deep and release all the b-sides, remixes, etc. missing from the 2005 CD special editions. Of course, we all want the video albums, especially Live and Savage, released in remastered formats. It’s criminal that these have never had a release since the ancient days of VHS.

  5. Mar Wolfgang says:

    https://pitchfork.com/news/high-definition-vinyl-is-happening-possibly-as-early-as-next-year/

    According to this story, new vinyl versions might come sooner than we think. Actually, SDE might be following updates on Super Vinyls on a regular basis in a few years.

  6. moog_man says:

    Kudos to Sony for doing it right.

    Universal – take note !

  7. Dan says:

    I couldn’t resist but buy all 3 LPs on Friday, I only know their singles so this is a great opportunity to discover their back catalogue. I got the bundle for £50 from HMV, which came with the 3 12×12 prints.

  8. memoryboy says:

    Thank you Paul for this detailed review. This is exciting news.

  9. Johnathan says:

    So I’m torn as I have all of these on vinyl except for ‘In The Garden’ and ‘Peace.’ If the sound approximates the original releases with the difference being 180g vinyl, then it seems like a push. But then again, there are the hi-res download cards inside. Anyone care to persuade or dissuade me one way or the other?

  10. OMG 1984 is being released on record store day? Really? What about on CD?

    As for theses releases it sounds cool and I’m hoping it means deluxe CD’s are on their way with all the remixes B-sides and videos. I have some of the originals releases on vinyl and CD and I’m wondering if theses are worth it for me. Nonetheless good job at Sony parts especially with the hi res digital.

  11. Richard says:

    I noticed that one of the sellers on Amazon was dodax. I’ve bought vinyl from them recently and it was well packaged. Thought I’d check their site and they have the Eurythmics stuff for under £14, plus postage is free by the looks of it… if you don’t fancy giving all your money to Amazon for a change :)

  12. Steinar Wulfsberg-Gamre says:

    It’s interesting to read about the nice sleeves with sharp original photos, I wonder why that wasn’t the case with the Annie Lennox reissues. They look like streched and copied cd-covers…

  13. Michael says:

    Wondering if CD releases of these new masters will follow. Fab if they did and we could say goodbye to those awful ’05 abominations.

  14. Chris says:

    Hi Paul,
    Great to hear these are of such good quality. Could you tell me if Sweet Dreams is a gatefold like the original?
    Thanks for a great website!

    Chris

  15. jon says:

    some of us just want simple reisues of the albums,, especially on vinyl, i dont want to pay extra for bunch of b-sides and demos, maybe on cd set, but thaat gets pricey when its put on vinyl set

  16. Derek Langsford says:

    So you have to buy the vinyl to get a hi-res download? Talk about rubbing salt into the wound of the non-vinyl buyer. But perhaps, just perhaps, this may signal the beginning of the reinvigoration of the Eurythmics catalogue. If 96/24 files are available, then maybe Deluxe Editions collecting all the missing tracks, and a Blu-ray (Sony created the first version of Blu-ray) with videos and hi-res versions (and dream of dreams – 5.1 mixes) may not be so impossible as Dave Stewart thought 2 years ago? Or maybe Sony are just taking advantage of the latest trend in whatever sells? Reasons for hope and cynicism. But because of the care they have taken with the vinyl, I am more hopeful.

    I love my physical digital music media. If CD and blu-ray music go the way of SACD and DVD-A, I’ll be loathed to do it, but will deal with CD quality or hi-res downloads. If all we are left is with low-res streaming, I will probably stop buying new music, trawl eBay and Discogs for CDs of previously released music, and listen to my existing collection for the rest of my life.

  17. Dustin Soper says:

    How do the Annie Lennox reissues stack up to these here, Paul, do you know? (I hope BARE is in the pipe for her next!)

    Also – do you think you could get ahold of Dave again somehow and find out if anything else is down the pipe – now that he’s back in contact with SONY? No one seems to be asking that question in any interviews I’ve seen.

    Thanks!

  18. Renato says:

    I just can’t stand this “vinyl revival” nonsense… All I really want is a propper reissue campaign – great deluxe multidisc editions, with all the stuff that was commercially released back then and maybe some unreleased tracks. All single versions, all B-sides, each and every remix, radio sessions, videos, TV performances, etc. Maybe Demon Music/Edsel could license the albums and release nice special editions, in case Sony isn’t interested? They could even license 1984 too and release all their albums…

  19. Kauwgompie says:

    Nice that Sony can deliver a proper vinyl album but what we’re really waiting for are proper SDE’s of the Eurythmics albums with all the extended versions, b-sides, 5.1 surround, alternative mixes and BBC sessions. In your interview w Dave Stewart a while back it was made pretty clear that Eurythmics superdeluxe editions are pretty much a pipe dream. Come on Sony!!

    • Mathew Lauren says:

      Sony could easily produce 5.1’s or ATMOS physical media combo SDE’s for most of Dave & Annie’s body of work, together & solo.

  20. Paul Wren says:

    Once again all the UK prices are higher than on the continent. Follow Paul’s links for the cheapest deal in Europe.

  21. Adam Shaw says:

    Hi Paul
    I’ve got the originals of these and as you mentioned the glossy outer covers I was wondering if Sweet Dreams has a Matt finish cover as the original had . I always hated handling it as it put my teeth on edge !

  22. Gareth Williams says:

    I do think my appreciation of the band suffered a bit from them being ‘too good’ and ‘too successful’ first time around – like – should I really like this. And I think I bristled at Annie being a shoe in for awards I thought Kate Bush should be winning – silly but then so are the obsessions of youth. Obviously time would rather suggest – hell yes, they are terrific. And so rare for a massive singles band to be a really excellent album band – I mean – with the exception of Revenge which is just like a glossy banking leaflet, and We Too Are One which was clearly just an album too far for them, all their albums are properly impressive – very little in the way of anything resembling ‘filler’ – they did a lot of very interesting sonic exploring in a pretty short space of time. Looking forwards to these.

  23. Mike the Fish says:

    Now that’s how you do a vinyl reissue. Nice repro sleeves, lyric inners, nice sound and hi res downloads. I’m interested in Peace, particularly.

  24. Paul says:

    Just shows that good quality reissues *can* be done at a fair price. Credit to those involved.

  25. Andrew M says:

    Interesting. Eurythmics are a band where I knew their Greatest Hits but hardly ever listened to it these days. Dug it out when I heard these were coming and listened to it and forgot just how good they were, how intricate the recordings were, and how amazing her voice is.

    Reading this makes me tempted but as someone who has never listened to a eurythmics album in his life, which one would knowledgeable people recommend?

    • Andrew F says:

      Andrew M – I’d really recommend Savage. It’s a fan-favourite and I think it showcases a very strong set of creative songwriting and production.

      The video album, released the following year, was also amazing – but sadly out of print and never released beyond its original VHS incarnation.

    • Auntie Sabtina says:

      Savage isn’t out ’till July so I’d go with Sweet Dreams Andrew M.

    • memoryboy says:

      Start with their early albums, I recommend ‘Touch’ or ‘Sweet Dreams’.

  26. Simon says:

    Great article but have the first 3 ever been listed at £14.50 each on Amazon? The whole time I’ve been watching them they’ve stayed at £19.99

  27. Trash says:

    Makes me want the 1984 album even more…

    Thanks for the info Paul. Might have to pick up Sweet Dreams and Savage…

  28. Charles K says:

    This is outstanding news, thank you for the detailed synopsis of what was done. A vinyl reissue of their catalog has been a holy grail of mine for a while but had given up hope based on statements made by Dave over the last few years in regards to label treatment.

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