To Remaster or Not To Remaster; That Is the Question…

Back in 2007, I finally produced the Heaven 17 boxed set I had been planning since 1996 or so. Eleven years of filling in the gaps in my collection eventually bore fruit. I made a five disc set with a DVD making for the sixth disc.

REVO | 5xCD + DVD | 2007 | REVO 039

Heaven 17: Made In Sheffield 5xCD + DVD

Disc 1

  1. Fascist Groove Thang [+ B.E.F. ident #1]
  2. Decline of the West [B.E.F.]
  3. I’m Your Money
  4. Are Everything
  5. I’m Your Money [specially fortified dance mix]
  6. Play To Win [12 inch ver.]
  7. Groove Thang [B.E.F.]
  8. Wichita Lineman [B.E.F.]
  9. Play [7 inch ver.]
  10. Penthouse + Pavement [7 inch ver.]
  11. The Height of the Fighting [He-La-Hu]
  12. Play [12 inch ver.]
  13. Honeymoon In New York [B.E.F.]
  14. Penthouse + Pavement [12 inch ver.]
  15. He-La-Hu [inst. ver.]
  16. Perfect Day [B.E.F.]

Disc 2

  1. Penthouse + Pavement [12 inch inst. ver.]
  2. Temptation [demo ver.]
  3. Let Me Go [12 inch ver.]
  4. Temptation [12 inch ext. ver.]
  5. Who Will Stop the Rain [ext. ver.]
  6. We Live So Fast [ext. ver.]
  7. Let Me Go [inst. ver.]
  8. Come Live With Me [12 inch ext. ver.]
  9. Let’s All Make A Bomb [new ver.]
  10. Song With No Name [new ver.]
  11. Crushed by the Wheels of Industry [parts I + II uninterrupted single ver.]
  12. Who Will Stop the Rain [dub ver.]
  13. Sunset Now [ext. ver.]
  14. This Is Mine [ext. ver.]

Disc 3

  1. Crushed by the Wheels of Industry [ext. dance ver.]
  2. Counterforce
  3. Counterforce II
  4. Skin
  5. Mine [This Is Mine inst. ver.]
  6. …And That’s No Lie [7 inch ver.]
  7. The Heaven 17 Megamix
  8. This Is Mine [filmix]
  9. When Your Heart Runs Out of Time [12 inch ver.]
  10. …And That’s No Lie [remixed to enhance dancability]
  11. This Is Mine [cinemix]
  12. When Your Heart Runs Out of Time [drumless]
  13. Contenders [UK dance ver.]
  14. Excerpts From “Diary of A Contender”

Disc 4

  1. The Foolish Thing To Do [featuring Jimmy Ruffin ver. 1]
  2. Penthouse + Pavement [John Potoker remix]
  3. Contenders [US dance ver.]
  4. My Sensitivity [gets in the way]
  5. Trouble [at mill mix]
  6. The Foolish Thing To Do [featuring Jimmy Ruffin ver. 2]
  7. Contenders [inst.]
  8. [Big] Trouble
  9. The Foolish Thing To Do [inst.]
  10. Contenders [go-go ver.]
  11. The Ballad of Go-Go Brown [ext. ver.]
  12. The Foolish Thing To Do [featuring Glenn Gregory]
  13. Slow All Over
  14. The Ballad of Go-Go Brown [version]
  15. Designing Heaven [pei mix by Giorgio Moroder]

Disc 5

  1. Train of Love In Motion [the mainline mix]
  2. Work
  3. Giving Up
  4. The Last Seven Days
  5. Temptation [brothers in rhythm mix]
  6. Fascist Groove Thang [rapino club mix]
  7. Penthouse + Pavement [tommy d’s master mix]
  8. We Blame Love [ext. ver.]
  9. Theme From Unreal Everything
  10. We Blame Love [inst. ver.]
  11. Designing Heaven [rodgers mix ext. vocal 12 inch by James Reynolds]
  12. We Blame Love [spacebaby mix]
  13. Holiday
  14. Sign O’The Times
  15. With Or Without You
  16. Den Himmel Designen

DVD – videos + live performances

  1. Play To Win [lipsync Top of the Pops]
  2. Penthouse & Pavement
  3. Let Me Go
  4. Temptation
  5. Come Live With Me
  6. We Live So Fast
  7. Crushed By The Wheels of Industry
  8. Sunset Now
  9. This Is Mine
  10. …And That’s No Lie
  11. Contenders
  12. The Foolish Thing To Do
  13. Trouble
  14. Train Of Love In Motion
  15. Temptation ’92
  16. Penthouse & Pavement ’93
  17. Live On The Tube [Contenders, Trouble]

This set deliberately left out tracks in my collection knowingly, but no sooner did I finish this project than did a friend point out that “Chase Runner,” the Heaven 17 cut on the “Electric Dreams” soundtrack, was missing from the set. I never had the “Electric Dreams” OST, nor did I see the movie, but I remembered seeing the ads for the flick on TV. When I bought the “Sunset Now” UK 12″, one of the B-sides was a track called “Counterforce II” that sounded just like music I had heard in the trailer on TV. I had [wrongly] assumed that the cut was simply re-titled for B-side usage, but my friend confirmed that while they sounded alike, the two mixes were unique. So that was a strike against me right off the starting block.

Recently, I had reason to revisit the set and the more I probed, the more holes I found in the end result. I had listened to the instrumental flipside of the “Penthouse + Pavement” 7″ and 12″ versions and considered that the 7″ version was simply an edit of the longer version on 12″ and left it off the running order. Three years later, that bothers me, so I recently digitized the mint 7″ B-side and it’s going into the running order.

Similarly, I used the stereo soundtrack to the “Penthouse + Pavement” video as the 7″ mix, but a careful actual listening to the 7″ A-side reveals that the video mix is different. So the now digitized A-side is replacing the video mix. Given that the video dub was taken from a PAL tape that had been transferred to NTSC, so there was 50 Hz head switching hum that had been recast to 60 Hz for NTSC. As a result, my noise reduction software was made for either 50 or 60 Hz noise – it just couldn’t deal with what happened to the hum, and it was still in the audio file. The 7″ mix of “Penthouse + Pavement” is now accurate, and because my vinyl was mint, flawless. It sounds ten times better.

“Chase Runner” is now in the playlist for the set and I revisited the 7″ mix of “We Live So Fast” and found that it was not the same as the LP version, so it was remastered from the US Promo 12″ of the same title. I took a mix for granted and that, as I’ve so often learned, is not the way to go when compiling this sort of project. It was not helpful in that the recent [in many ways excellent] Heaven 17 “Greatest Hits” CD/DVD has LP versions of many cuts which would have been better appreciated in their actual 7″ mix versions.

One other thing I’ve reversed my feelings on is the dropping of remixes of “Designing Heaven” and “We Blame Love” from the band’s 1996 resurgence period with the excellent “Bigger Than America” album. I’m now adding the following cuts:

  1. Designing Heaven [Radio Mix]
  2. Designing Heaven [Stark Mix – Gregorio’s 12″]
  3. Designing Heaven [Le Corbusier Mix – Motiv 8’s Dub 12″]
  4. Designing Heaven [Meis Van Der Rohe Mix – Giorgio Moroder’s Subteranean 12″]
  5. We Blame Love [Radio Mix]
  6. We Blame Love [Matt Darey Dub Mix]
  7. We Blame Love [Instrumental Extended Mix]

I don’t have all of the remixes of “Designing Heaven.” I’m still missing the following:

  1. Designing Heaven [Hysterix Pure Pumpin’ Mix] – German promo 12″ only mix
  2. Designing Heaven [Venturi Mix – Giorgio Moroder’s Vocal 12″] – On UK CD #2
  3. Designing Heaven [Trans European Heaven] – On UK CD #1
  4. Designing Heaven [Pump Up Mix Edit] – German promo CD mix
  5. Designing Heaven [Gregorio’s 12″ Varispeed 130BPM] – German promo 2×12″ mix

But I’m not inclined to spend any more on post-rave remixes that are not already in-house to revisit this box. One record I still don’t have that I am very inclined to put in the running order is the 7″ version of the Glenn Gregory/Claudia Brücken duet from the “Insignificance” soundtrack.  I need both the soundtrack and the 7″ for my ZTT/Claudia Brücken collection, so I have no problem with spending further for that cut!

ZTT | UK | 7" | 1985 | ZTAS 15

Glenn Gregory + Claudia Brücken – When Your Heart Runs Out Of Time UK 7″

  1. When Your Heart Runs Out Of Time [7″ ver.]
  2. When Your Heart Runs Out Of Time [drumless]

Well, that issue us finally taken care of. I just bought a copy in the marketplace. One more record. One more step to perfection. However, the fact remains that I need to resequence the box for the remaster. I used to use Taiyo-Yuden 80min printable CD-R media. I’ve since upped the ante to Mitsui archival gold printable CD-R media. The upshot of that is that they are 74 minute discs instead of the 80 minute media I previously used. So this is a problem. In fact, all of the added cuts make it impossible to fit on six discs without dropping any. At this point the DVD will certainly get left out. Moving to seven discs makes the set a bit untenable. The multi-disc boxes I use are capable of holding 2-6 discs but a seventh disc in a single jewel box is inelegant. I’m still weighing the possibilities in my mind. This story is far from over.

– 30-

About postpunkmonk

graphic design | software UI design | remastering vinyl • record collector • satire • non-fiction
This entry was posted in Core Collection, Record Collecting, Remastering and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

5 Responses to To Remaster or Not To Remaster; That Is the Question…

  1. James says:

    Sorry to start the ball rolling on the ruining of your world by bringing Chase Runner to your attention…. but that said it is probably in my top five H17 trax, so I was astounded that you’d never heard it.

    I’d go back to Taiyo-Yuden 80-minute discs for this one in order to keep things to six discs.


    • postpunkmonk says:

      @ james – Pointing out errors hardly ruins my world. It only makes it better! I am planning on buying some T-Y media for re-doing this one. Like I said, I didn’t know there was a difference between “Chase Runner” and “Counterforce II” until you pointed it out to me. That new P+P 3 disc remaster looks amazing. I hope they looped “We’re Going To Live For A Very Long Time” for at least 5 minutes before ending it. Check out the details at Martin Ware’s blog. [see links]


  2. Vinny Vero says:

    I must admit, “Chase Runner” is one of my fave H17 trax, as well. This set looks tasty!


  3. chas_m says:

    Great googly-moogly, they’re remastering P+P *again?*

    Reassume frassum rickem rackem ruckum …


    • postpunkmonk says:

      @chas_m – But did ‘ye see th’ bonus material, laddie? All previously unreleased bonus tracks! You have to love that – and the DVD isn’t chopped liver! Besides, I’ve only lived on my 1st UK pressing for nearly 25 years now. I’m due for an upgrade. To hear Martyn talk, it’s not brickwalled, either.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.