Even though The Beatles broke up long before we ever heard of a CD or iTunes, that certainly does not mean that fans are not expecting to benefit from the latest in sonic technology. Sure, the old vinyl LPs that so many of us grew up listening to are making somewhat of a comeback, but at the same time, the ever-advancing technology that makes digital music a reality is coming closer and closer to delivering the elements of sound that vinyl aficionados say is missing from digital music.
And when you consider that the first release of The Beatles original British albums on CD came out in 1987, it’s easy to understand why fans desire to hear their old favorites remastered using he latest technology. Twenty-two years is probably more like a century when one considers the advancements in digital technology over the past few decades.
We now know that just five months separate fans from the release they have been waiting for. Apple Corps and EMI announced Tuesday that the highly-anticipated remasters will be released on individual stereo CDs on September 9th, which happens to be the same day The Beatles version of the popular video game “Rock Band,” is set to land on store shelves.
For those who await access to downloadable versions of the group’s material, the wait for good news on that front might stretch on a bit longer. It is being reported that a dispute between Apple Corp. and EMI is holding up the process that would allow the download to become available to the public. George Harrison’s son Dhani reportedly said that the dispute centers around the cost of the downloads, and that another alternative is being considered that would provide a site that was independent of iTunes where the downloads would be available.
The September release will mirror the content of the 1987 CD release as far as content is concerned, but the quality of the content should be a noticeable improvement, especially for fans who are eager for recordings that are more likely to please the ears of the audiophiles among them.
Although those same fans may be apprehensive about the noise reduction process that is used during remastering, EMI is said to have taken steps to reduce the undesirable side effects that can result, such as some loss on the high frequency end of the spectrum. The company claims that just 5 minutes out of the 525 minutes of music were subjected to noise reduction.
Even though the new release will not fulfill every dream that dedicated collectors have for the “ultimate” release of Beatles material, this is a step forward which is likely to please many fans, and may provide others with the hope that bigger and better things may be forthcoming.
For more on this, check out the New York Times.