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FAN REVIEW: Thompson Twins Remixes & Rarities 2CD

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Thompson Twins fan Cindy Rosenblum gives her opinion on the new Remixes & Rarities compilation…


Let’s start this review by revealing some of the things that I am not.  I’m not a connoisseur of Thompson Twins remixes.  I’m also not an expert on their albums or everything they ever released.  I am however, a more than ‘average’ fan who considers the music of the Thompson Twins part of the ‘soundtrack of her childhood’ and was very pleased when SuperDeluxeEdition Editor Paul Sinclair suggested I write this review after I told him I’d purchased a copy of the Remixes & Rarities CD signed by Tom Bailey himself when I saw the first show of the Retro Futura tour on 21 August. This was Tom Bailey’s first performance in 27 years, and it was a great idea to release this CD to coincide with the tour.

I was 12 when Lies was released in the US and 13 when Hold Me Now came out.  I didn’t have MTV until much later on, so I watched shows like American Bandstand (the Thompson Twins were on the show more than once) Friday Night Videos, Top 40 Videos, and any other show that had music or videos.  One of the staples of my childhood music shows was Solid Gold and I found this amazing clip of Lies, where the hosts of the show interrupt the song (as was the fashion!!).

 

 

The Music

Sometimes when you have a compilation CD set that record companies throw out there without consulting the artist first, you wind up with five or six versions of the same song on one disc.  Fierce collectors don’t mind that (and I would be interested in that perhaps in a different type of compilation), but I would say that this two-CD set might have wider appeal because of the variety of songs available on the two discs.

The hits that the fans want are there; I was pleased to see (Bigger & Better) Lies the ‘Rap Boy Rap’ version of Love On Your Side, Lay Your Hands On Me, In The Name Of Love, You Take Me Up, King For A Day, Doctor! Doctor!, The Gap, and Hold Me Now.

There are six songs that were previously unavailable on CD (some of which I never heard or don’t remember hearing), which makes this something that I’d want to own.  Granted, there are two versions of Lay Your Hands On Me and The Gap on this set, but it’s not overkill.

I would have liked to see Get That Love included, but maybe we can leave that for a Thompson Twins Remixes & Rarities Part 2?

I could have lived without Watching (You Watching Me). I don’t think I’ve ever heard the song and it’s not great. I also had no idea that Thompson Twins covered Revolution. When I heard it I was thinking “NO, that’s NOT MY Thompson Twins!”  For purposes of “switching things up” and showing the variety of Thompson Twins work out there, it was good that it was included.

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The Interview

In the CD booklet, Paul did a great interview with Tom Bailey that goes deeper than the usual music documentary shows (think VH-1 “Behind The Music”). There is an actual insight into the music from Tom Bailey that goes beyond all of the gossipy-type stuff (which I’d be really interested as well, I’m not going to lie).

It was great to read what Tom’s thoughts were on recording certain songs, who he worked with, etc.  I finally learned what Sister of Mercy and Don’t Mess With Doctor Dream were about (as a kid you really don’t think about this stuff, at least I didn’t at that age).

The layout included some great old photos along with pictures of the label portion of vinyl records. It looks good and it’s definitely worth reading. Don’t just rip the CD to iTunes and put it on the shelf with the rest of them without reading the booklet!  (I’m guilty of that, especially when the booklet is a big one . . .).

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“I don’t want to give away what’s in the interview, but regarding the song The Gap Tom Bailey said, “What surprised me was the store The Gap never took it on as their theme tune! They stayed well away from that, I don’t know why!” As a kid I always thought the same – The Gap was very popular at the time and I didn’t know why they just didn’t take the song and run with it!

What Should Be Next

Between the music on this release and the interview in the booklet, this two-CD set was well worth it for me and left me wanting a part two!  This is what I’d like to see in the future:

  1. A Thompson Twins “Remixes & Rarities” CD set Part 2 (that includes Get That Love).
  2. A companion Thompson Twins “Remixes & Rarities” official video compilation on DVD/Blu-Ray.  This compilation should include all versions of music videos that were released in the US and UK plus rare TV appearances, etc. (I know, it’s a big ask, but I’m not sure if there’s anything official like that out there!).
  3. A documentary that shows us what went on behind the scenes, etc. (yes, the gossipy stuff like VH-1 produces, but better).  I don’t think this has been done yet either.

The final word?  Yes, I enjoyed this compilation and I think whoever buys it won’t regret it. It has to be good if it left me wanting more, right?

Fan review by Cindy Rosenblum.

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Click to view track listing

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16 responses to FAN REVIEW: Thompson Twins Remixes & Rarities 2CD

  1. Nate says:

    Thankfully, in the 80’s, we were not quite as saturated with pop songs used in commercials as we are now.
    Granted I remember the Thompson Twins singing about Dr. Pepper to Doctor, Doctor — but I always considered us all lucky for not hearing them sing about the wonders of some ‘Oil of Olay’ product. “Olay Your Hands”. Surely we would today. Now we probably would hear it that way before the track was even released.

  2. Great review… looking forward to getting hold of this myself!

    Please SuperDeluxeEdition a REMASTERED DVD collection of promo videos and into the gap live is desperately wanted by the fans…some of us are getting really old now LOL lets not havecto wait too much longer!

  3. Cindy says:

    Thanks Andrew! Yeah! let’s rally for a DVD!

  4. omar says:

    I grabbed 2 copies of this because these were apparently all remastered from the original tapes. I love collecting 80s cds and (No, I’m not planning of selling one on ebay either!!). They both are signed by Tom just before the HoJo/Tom Bailey gig here in San Francisco. It was awesome. The crowd was small but everyone just connected with each other and sang word for word with both Mr. Jones and Mr. Bailey I was not disappointed at all. It’s probably the best collection out there. All the 12″ versions sound awesome and the linear notes with Tom giving a track by track commentary are exceptional. I’m hoping that this will propel the demand for a second best of just as Cindy suggested. Paul i hope you’re reading this and can convince Cherry Red to release another Twins cd set soon. A lot of 7″ versions or radio edits would be a warm welcome.

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      Hi Omar – thanks for your great comments. Very happy you are enjoying this set. Personally I’d be well up for doing another volume. I guess we will need to see how this does first though… but I know the Paul Young set was a best seller, so fingers crossed :)

      • omar says:

        It also seems that a lot of us grabbed these cds at the shows instead of their official release date which is later this month. I hope that people will still purchase them through Amazon etc.

  5. Mark Bumgardner says:

    I don’t think I was even aware that there was a “club mix” of Nothing In Common. I’ll be getting this.

  6. steven proom says:

    Well so much for this person being a fan!

    Didnt even know Watching orRevolution?

    That means she does not even own,Quick step and a side kick,or Heres to Future days….

  7. John says:

    I’m pleased with it as well – snagged a signed copy at the LA show, and probably one of the last ones for that particular date. A guy in front of me purchased 4 and inspected all the signatures before buying, indicating that he was probably going to sell them on eBay. I saw 2 copies left and then a bunch of sealed ones.

    I would love a DVD as well and a volume 2 that includes “Get That Love” – or maybe just a “Close To The Bone” reissue from Cherry Red.

  8. Martin says:

    I have not purchased this yet, but it’s on my list and a definite purchase. I too would like to see a second set with maybe 7″ mixes along with any other territory variants and coupled with the videos and TV spots.

    Currently loving some of the reissues in terms of their depth and quality. On a similar vein, I would also like to see a similar set for Blancmange, they had a very productive period with lots of 12’s to include.

  9. Richard says:

    Deepdiscount.com has it for $13.20 USD.

  10. Mike says:

    Great sounding set, i look forward to the second set with more rare remixes please!

  11. Koen Kroeze says:

    Not sure this is the right place…

    Since the Edsel re-issues and the recently released compilations I’ve been gathering all the versions available in the best possible quality.

    Regarding period 1981-1985:
    It seems a few single edits/mixes are still unreleased on CD/in digital quality. Some can be easily made by re-editing from album or extended versions, which are on CD already. Only a few will remain ‘unreleased':
    Politics (7″ Mix) [‘Perfect Game’ single b-side]
    Runaway (7″ Remix) [single a-side]
    Make Believe (Live) [‘Runaway’ free single b-side]
    Watching (7″ remix) [single a-side]
    Lay Your Hands On Me (U.S. re-mix) [single a-side]

    And there is an interesting fact… It seems the 1984 ‘U.S. Re-mix’ has been made by John ‘Tokes’ Potoker, which is credited on the sleeve/labels… But it seems the 7″ version [TWING6] is in fact an edit of the regular ‘Extended Version’ (6:09) [TWINS 126] and not an edit of the mix to be found on the 12″ of the ‘U.S. Re-mix’ (5:57) (TWINS 226).
    My theory: these mixes have been swapped before these got pressed. The second ‘U.S. Remix’ (6:25) that appeared on ‘Here’s To Future Days (Deluxe Edition)’ is also similar to the regular 12″… so I presume this is a Potoker remix as well, unissued
    By the way, the 7″ version of the ‘U.S. Re-mix’ has a unique intro. It has percussion overdubs and therefor impossible to re-edit from other digital sources.

    Regarding 1986-1992:
    Please more Deluxe Editions…

  12. Koen Kroeze says:

    …and hopefully the following will be available on CD one day as well:

    “The First Sessions (Richard Skinner Radio 1 Session)”
    Physics & Chemistry [from ‘Live At The ‘101’: Warts ‘N’ All’ compilation]
    Slave Trade [from ‘Live At The ‘101’: Warts ‘N’ All’ compilation]
    In The Name Of Love (NME ‘Jive Wire’ Dub Mix)

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