Why Beatles Fans Should Buy the New Beatles Remastered CDs (Mono & Stereo Box Sets)
f you're a Beatles fan who already owns all of their albums on CD I can understand feeling like it doesn't make a whole lot of sense to buy the new remastered Beatles CDs. You maybe thinking "How much difference does it really make?" or "I've already spent hundreds of dollars on The Beatles CDs, do I really need to spend more?" Yes, I can understand this feeling, but I completely disagree with it! I bought the Beatles box sets as soon as they became available for pre-order and in this article I hope to explain why all other serious Beatles fans should also buy these CD box sets.
I think the importance of the Mono Box Set is actually quite obvious. This is the first time that these original mono mixes have been made available on CD. And it doesn't take too much of a history lesson to understand why these mono mixes matter so much. These were the mixes that the band itself worked on so hard in the 1960s. These were the mixes that they thought of as the real final version of their albums. Why? Because throughout most of the 1960s (up until the final couple of years) mono was the "standard" by which almost everyone listened to their music so it made sense for The Beatles to work much harder on the mono mixes than on the stereo mixes. Believe it or not, stereo was thought by many to be a "fad" at the time.
So clearly these original mono mixes are an important part of the history of The Beatles and anyone who wants to hear their music as it was originally hears in the '60s should be very curious to hear these new mixes. But there's more to it than that. It's not just about the historical importance of these mono mixes and a "curiosity factor." Lots of Beatles fans have claimed that these mono versions of famous albums such as Sgt. Pepper are actually better than the stereo versions. John Lennon himself said that the mono Sgt. Pepper was much better than the stereo mix.
The Mono Box Set includes The Beatles first 10 UK studio albums (all of them up through the self title double album that's known as "The White Album") and a compilation of non album tracks in their original mono titled Mono Masters. This non album tracks compilation is actually a vital part of this box set because many of The Beatles greatest songs were never included on a studio album (including "Hey Jude" & "Day Tripper" among many others.) Beyond the music, this box set also includes some very cool packaging, most notably the vinyl replica artwork for each album in the collection.
A cool bonus feature of the Mono Box Set is that it also includes the original stereo mixes of Help! and Rubber Soul which had been lost to history because both albums were remixed for stereo in 1987 when The Beatles albums were first released on CD. This is the first time that the original stereo mixes of these two albums will be released on CD.
The importance of the remastered Stereo Box Set may not be quite as obvious but it should be noted that these new stereo versions of The Beatles classic albums will be the new "standard" these will be the only versions of the albums available for sale as individual CDs. In other words these are going to be the CDs that everyone else is hearing, don't you want to know what they're hearing? Plus these newly remastered versions should reveal interesting new details in The Beatles music that you may not have heard before due to an unprecedented clarity in the recordings.