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Them - The Complete Them 1964-1966 (v2.0_ Revisited by Prof. Stoned_ 2016)

CD 1: Original Masters 1964-1965

01. Don't Start Cryin' Now
02. One Two Brown Eyes
03. Gloria
04. Philosophy
05. Baby Please Don't Go
06. Here Comes the Night
07. All for Myself
08. Little Girl 			*	(version one uncensored)
09. I Like It Like That 		*^ 	(uncut version)
10. The Story Of Them 			^
11. Little Girl 				(album version)
12. Mystic Eyes 			^
13. Don't Look Back 			^
14. (Get Your Kicks On) Route 66 	^
15. Baby What You Want Me to Do
16. Just a Little Bit
17. Bright Lights, Big City
18. (It Won't Hurt) Half as Much
19. Go On Home Baby 			^
20. My Little Baby
21. I Gave My Love a Diamond
22. One More Time
23. How Long Baby
24. I'm Gonna Dress In Black 		^
25. If You And I Could Be As Two 	^
26. You Just Can't Win 
 
CD 2: Original Masters & BBC Sessions 1965-1966

01. Could You Would You
02. I Can Only Give You Everything
03. My Lonely Sad Eyes
04. Stormy Monday 			^
05. Times Gettin' Tougher Than Tough 	^
06. I Put a Spell on You
07. Call My Name				(album version)
08. Bring 'Em on In				(album version)
09. Don't You Know
10. Hey Girl
11. Friday's Child 			#^
12. Turn on Your Love Light
13. It's All Over Now, Baby Blue
14. Bad or Good
15. Something You Got
16. I Got a Woman
17. Out of Sight
18. Hello Josephine
19. Call My Name 				(single version)
20. Bring 'Em on In 				(single version)
21. Richard Cory
22. Interview Billy Harrison 		# 	(BBC March 1965)
23. Here Comes the Night 			(BBC March 1965)
24. Gloria 					(BBC March 1965)
25. All for Myself 				(BBC March 1965)
26. Gloria 					(BBC June 1965)
27. Interview Billy Harrison 		# 	(BBC June 1965)
28. One More Time 				(BBC June 1965)
29. Here Comes the Night 			(BBC June 1965)

CD 3: Demos, Sessions & Stereo Mixes 1964-1966

01. Stormy Monday Blues 			(demo 1964)
02. One Two Brown Eyes 				(demo 1964)
03. Gloria 					(demo 1964)
04. Don't Start Crying Now 			(demo 1964)
05. One Two Brown Eyes 			# 	(stereo 1965 remix)
06. Gloria 				# 	(stereo 1965 remix)
07. Turn On Your Love Light 			(alternate 1964 version)
08. Baby Please Don't Go 			(alternate take #4)
09. Here Comes The Night 		# 	(stereo 1965 remix)
10. I Gave My Love A Diamond 		#	(alternate take #9)
11. Go On Home Baby 			# 	(stereo 1965 remix)
12. My Little Baby 			# 	(stereo 1965 remix)
13. (It Won't Hurt) Half As Much 	# 	(stereo 1965 remix)
14. I'm Gonna Dress In Black 		# 	(stereo 1965 remix)
15. One More Time 			# 	(stereo 1965 remix)
16. How Long Baby 				(alternate take #1)
17. If You And I Could Be As Two 	# 	(stereo 1965 remix)
18. Friday's Child 				(stereo 2015 remix)
19. Richard Cory 			#	(alternate take 1966 mix)
20. Mighty Like a Rose
21. Here Comes the Night 			(alternate take #2)
22. Go on Home Baby 				(alternate take #4)
23. I Gave My Love a Diamond 			(alternate take #8)
24. (It Won't Hurt) Half as Much 		(alternate take #2)
25. My Little Baby 				(alternate take #1)
26. One More Time				(alternate take #1)
27. [Bonus] Richard Cory 			(alternate take 2015 remix)

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CD 1-2: Mono
CD 3: Stereo except Tr. 1-4 Mono

All Tracks from the 2015 Sony Legacy release "The Complete Them 1964-1967" except the ones marked with:

* which appear here in unedited form, whereas edited versions have been used on "The Complete Them 1964-1967" 
^ which appear here with superior soundquality due to higher quality source material, as opposed to what was used on "The Complete Them 1964-1967" 
# which do not appear on "The Complete Them 1964-1967"

Official Release (splendidly) Mastered by Dan Hersh

Compiled/Researched/Additional Audio Sources Transferred & Mastered by Prof. Stoned

(N.B.: The left and right channels of all mono master recordings from "The Complete Them 1964-1967" vary slightly and have been made true mono here by pasting the left channel over the right channel in an effort to reduce file size after conversion to FLAC. I have decided to share this collection in 16/44.1 only. You can get most of the material in Hi-Rez by buying it from HDdownloads.)    

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Prof. sez:

This is the outcome of an idea that has been in the works for 7 years. For the longest time, my ambition was to produce a complete overview of Them's recorded output for my own pleasure. During that time, I have researched every LP & CD in existence that contained any Them content from the Decca-era and compared the audio quality of every single recording. I have also attempted to gather as much info as possible about the recording dates. In 2015, Sony Legacy released a 3CD set that made most of my efforts up until then redundant. But this was not a bad thing; it has a wealth of unreleased material I never thought I'd hear and the audio quality of the previously released material is often superior to what I was able to find on prior existing media. Yet, despite the best efforts 
of the team who worked on this compilation, it still has a few of the same problems that plagued the many releases before it. To be more specific: a good number of original mastertapes are M.I.A. and only inferior copies seem to exist in the official vault. 

I have used the 24/96 version of "The Complete Them 1964-1967" as the foundation of this new set. By replacing and adding the above marked tracks, I believe this has now truly become the definitive Them anthology that it was set out to be in the first place. Every officially released master recording has been used for this compilation and every track appears in the best soundquality (publicly available). Furthermore, this is the first time the original studio masters appear in what probably is as close to a correct chronological order as one can get. What follows is a breakdown of all the material I have added to the official release and an explanation why its inclusion is mandatory. 

*** The missing "Angry Young Them" mixdown mastertapes ***

While compiling the British debut album in early June 1965, producer Tommy Scott must have thought the overall sound of the recordings lacked some punch. So he went back to the studio and did some post-production by applying EQ and more compression to the fourteen selections. The result was a more AM radio friendly sound with emphasis on the upper-mids. This tape was then marked 'master' and the original mixdown tapes of these songs were either thrown-out or filed away. Whatever the case, they were never used again (with the exception of the original mono master recording of 'Gloria' which was used for the first time in 50 years on the "The Complete Them 1964-1967" but that was originally not an album track...) 

The mastertape of the American debut album (which has a different tracklist) had already been assembled by Scott before the British album, as evidenced by its slightly lower matrixnumber, and without any further post-production. This is why the American LP is the only place where one can hear the unedited version of "I like it like that". Unfortunately, original USA mono copies suffer from lacklustre mastering and the higher quality of the source material does not really become apparent. Luckily, there is one exception: an export mono pressing for the American market was mastered and pressed by Decca UK in small quantities. British export albums are usually sourced from a copy of the foreign album masters but the audio quality on this one is far superior to its USA counterpart. So, CD 1: Tr. 9, 12-14, 19 & 24-25 were sourced from a beautiful ultra-rare mint copy of the UK Export version. This means there are still six songs left on this compilation from the processed album mastertape (CD 1: Tr. 11, 16-17, 20-21 & 26), even though they do sound slightly better here than ever before.

*** The uncensored version of "Little Girl" ***

In March 1965, their manager Phil Solomon urged the group to record a contribution for what would become the full-length charity sampler "Fourteen" (DECCA LK 4695, May 21, 1965). Two different versions of "Little Girl" were eventually released: one on "Fourteen" (version one) and one on the British and American versions of the debut album. The former version was a bit less energetic but had a naughty line at the end of the song ("I wanna fuck you") which apparently went unnoticed when the record was first mastered. Decca acted very quick once the problem became known and the offending bit was edited out on subsequent issues. The full uncensored version has never been reissued to this day, presumably because the mixdown master was edited. So, CD 1: Tr. 08 was sourced from a gorgeous mint copy of the ultra-rare original press with 2K matrix on side 1.

*** The mystery of the "Dutch mastertapes" *** 

CD 1: Tr. 10 & CD 2: Tr. 4-5 & 11 are probably among the best-known examples of how poorly some of Them's mastertapes were stored. These songs, along with "Baby, what you want me to do", first appeared in 1967 scattered over a few singles and a Dutch EP (all in mono, as they were recorded). Then in 1968, all 5 tracks appeared on the Dutch LP "Story of Them", of which both a mono and an electronically re-channeled "stereo" version was released. The fake stereo mixes were created in the Netherlands with EQ and reverb/echo and are easily distinguished from the drier mono versions. It seems most likely that the original mono tapes (which came from "a dusty drawer in a London office" as we can read on the sleeve) and the fake stereo tapes were simultaniously send back to England.

Exactly what happened to the tapes remains unclear but CD 2: Tr. 4-5 & 11 were only ever re-released in fake stereo from that point on (sometimes folded back to mono). CD 1: Tr. 10 survives only as a poorly copied 2nd generation monaural tape with heavily compressed sound and tape warbling. "Baby, what you want me to do" initially seemed to have befallen the same fate as CD 2: Tr. 4-5 & 11, until a "dry" mono version appeared on the 1997 Anthology "The Story of Them" and later in improved quality on "The Complete Them 1964-1967". The producer of the latter compilation tried to remedy the problem with 'Friday's Child' by remixing it in stereo from the original 4-track tape. Despite having excellent fidelity, the stereo mix tends to isolate the vocal and acoustic guitar from the band. Predictably, the fake stereo mixes of "Stormy Monday" & "Time's getting tougher" were used again on the 2015 anthology for lack of a better source, albeit folded to mono. So, hereby I present the much needed original clean mono mixes of these four songs, as sourced from two excellent copies of the rare Dutch Mono LP. After careful comparison to the Dutch EP and the 1967 Decca and Major Minor singles, I can says that a clean unworn copy of this LP (you may have difficulty finding one) offers by far the best possible sound reproduction for these tracks, unless the mono masters are found.  

*** The vintage stereo mixes *** 

Suprisingly, "The Complete Them 1964-1967" omitted the few true stereo mixes that were made "back in the day", even though the mastertapes of these are definitely in Morrison's archives. It's difficult to say exactly when those mixes were prepared without documentation, but the one important clue we have is that the stereo versions of "Gloria" and "Here Comes the Night" appeared as early as 1969 on Decca's "The World of Hits" series. In 1965, stereo records were still very much an elitist thing in the UK and Decca was a conservative record company who only considered their classical & easy-listening recordings important enough for having to go through the trouble of preparing a separate stereo version. But the North American record industry was already actively promoting this new 2-channel format. 

So this is most likely what happened: when the band's first album was set to come out in the States, the American record company Parrot sent Decca UK the intended tracklist (which differed from the UK album) with the inquiry for stereo masters. Tommy Scott then went and remixed 7 of those 12 tracks in stereo. The other five selections were recorded on a mono tape machine at Regent Sound ("Mystic Eyes", "I Like It Like That", "Route 66", "Don't Look Back" & "Little Girl" (version one). This obstacle was solved by creating five doctored stereo mixes (= fake stereo with a new tambourine overdub placed in the left stereo channel)~. In the meantime, "Here comes the night" was on the verge of becoming a hit in the States and Parrot wanted to cash-in while they could. So they quickly processed the mono tapes to re-channeled stereo and rush-released the album in July 1965, only to use the British stereo tapes for the compilation album "Them featuring Van Morrison" much later on in 1972.  

This would explain why the majority of -if not all- the stereo masters were found at the Polygram tape archive in New Jersey in the 90's. It would also explain why somebody went through the trouble to create doctored stereo mixes of only those particular five songs and why "Baby Please Don't Go" was not remixed in stereo while being from the same session as "Here Comes the Night". It still leaves the questions what the purpose was of the stereo mixes of "Mighty Like a Rose" & "My Little Baby" and how these ended up in the States, as they were first released on USA compilations "Backtracking" (1974) & "Story of Them" (1977). My guess is that the alternate versions of "Richard Cory (alternative take 1966 mix)" & "I Gave My Love a Diamond (alternative take #9)" and the stereo remix of "Half As Much" (which omits Billy Harrison's background vocals) come from the same place, even though these 3 recordings remained unreleased until the 90's.

I have extensively researched all existing vinyl & CD sources to make sure the absolute best quality sources could be presented here. The old Deram/London CD's from the late 80's seemed to be the most logical choice for most tracks but not everything on there is actually sourced from the best tapes. Notably, Here comes the Night and Gloria sound the cleanest on two Rhino CD's from the early 90's. As for the quality of the mixes themselves as opposed to the mono originals, I'd say only CD3: Tr. 05-06 are truly essential. While the other 1965 stereo mixes are enjoyable (with vocals in the center), they tend to expose elements that were not necessarily meant to stand out (best example: the organ on the right channel of "I'm gonna dress in black").

~ (The five doctored "stereo" mixes are not included on this compilation. If you must, you can hear them on the 1989 CD version of the debut album or the 90's 2CD anthology "Story of Them".)

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*** Sessiongraphy ***
				
April, 1964, Cromac Square, Belfast (CD 3; Tr. 01-04) | Engineer: Peter Lloyd 
Van Morrison (Vocals) | Billy Harrison (Guitar/Backing Vocal) | Alan Henderson (Bass/Backing Vocal) | Eric Wrixon (Organ) | Ronnie Millings (Drums) 
		
May 5, 1964, Decca Studios No. 2, West Hampstead, London (CD 1; Tr. 01-04 / CD 3; Tr. 05-07) | Producer: Dick Rowe | Musical Director: Arthur Greenslade | Engineer: Terry Johnson 
Van Morrison (Vocals) | Billy Harrison (Guitar/Backing Vocal) | Alan Henderson (Bass/Backing Vocal) | Ronnie Millings (Drums) | Bobby Graham (Drums) | Arthur Greenslade (Organ)
	
October 1, 1964, Decca Studios No. 2, West Hampstead, London (CD 1; Tr. 05-07 / CD 3; Tr. 08-09, 21) | Producer: Bert Berns except Tr. 7: Tommy Scott | Engineer: Terry Johnson
Van Morrison (Vocals/Harmonica) | Billy Harrison (Guitar) | Alan Henderson (Bass) | Andy White (Drums) | Phil Coulter (Organ/Backing Vocals) | Jimmy Page (2nd Guitar) | Tommy Scott (Backing Vocals)
				
March 1, 1965, The Playhouse, London (CD 2; Tr. 22-25) | Producers: Jimmy Grant & Brian Willey | 1st Broadcast: Saturday Club, April 3, 1965
Van Morrison (Vocals) | Billy Harrison (Guitar/Backing Vocals) | Alan Henderson (Bass/Backing Vocals) | Jackie Mcauley (Organ) | Pat Mcauley (Drums) 
				
March, 1965, Regent Sound Studios, Denmark Street, London (CD 1; Tr. 08-11) | Producer: Tommy Scott | Engineer: Bill Farley 
Van Morrison (Vocals/Harmonica) | Billy Harrison (Guitar/Backing Vocals) | Alan Henderson (Bass) | Jackie Mcauley (Organ) | Pat Mcauley (Drums) | Tommy Scott (Tambourine)
				
May 3?, 1965, Regent Sound Studios, Denmark Street, London (CD 1; Tr. 12-17) | Producer: Tommy Scott | Engineer: Bill Farley
Van Morrison (Vocals/Saxophone/Harmonica) | Billy Harrison (Guitar/Backing Vocals) | Alan Henderson (Bass) | Peter Bardens (Organ/Piano) | Pat Mcauley (Drums) 
	
May 5, 1965, Decca Studio No. 2, West Hampstead, London (CD 1; Tr. 18-21 / CD 3: Tr. 10-13, 22-25) | Producer: Bert Berns | Engineer: Vic Smith
Van Morrison (Vocals/Harmonica) | Billy Harrison (Guitar/Backing Vocals) | Alan Henderson (Bass) | Peter Bardens (Organ) | Bobby Graham (Drums) | Phil Coulter & Tommy Scott (Backing Vocals)
	
May 14, 1965, Decca Studios, West Hampstead, London (CD 1; Tr. 22-26 / CD 3: Tr. 14-17, 26) | Producer: Tommy Scott | Engineer: Vic Smith
Van Morrison (Vocals) | Billy Harrison (Guitar) | Alan Henderson (Bass) | Peter Bardens (Organ) | Bobby Graham (Drums) | Phil Coulter (Piano)
				
June 22, 1965, Maida Vale (Studio 5), London (CD 2; Tr. 26-29) | Producers: Jimmy Grant & Brian Willey | 1st Broadcast: Saturday Club, June 26, 1965
Van Morrison (Vocals) | Billy Harrison (Guitar/Backing Vocals) | Alan Henderson (Bass/Backing Vocals) | Peter Bardens (Organ) | Pat Mcauley (Drums)
				
September?, 1965, Decca Studios, West Hampstead, London (CD 2; Tr. 01-03) | Producer: Tommy Scott
Van Morrison (Vocals) | unknown session players 
				
October, 1965, Regent Sound Studios, Denmark Street, London (CD 2; Tr. 04-10) | Producer: Tommy Scott | Engineer: Bill Farley 
Van Morrison (Vocals) | Jim Armstrong (Guitar) | Alan Henderson (Bass) | Ray Elliott (Saxophone/Flute) | John Wilson (Drums) | Phil Coulter (Piano/Vibes) 
		
October, 1965, Decca Studios, West Hampstead, London (CD 2; Tr. 11-14 / CD 3: Tr. 18) | Producer: Tommy Scott
Van Morrison (Vocals/Acoustic Guitar) | Jim Armstrong (Guitars) | Alan Henderson (Bass) | Peter Bardens (Organ/Piano) | Phil Coulter (Organ/Backing Vocals) | Tommy Scott (Backing Vocals) | ? (Drums)
				
October, 1965, Decca Studios, West Hampstead, London (CD 2; Tr. 15-20) | Producer: Tommy Scott
Van Morrison (Vocals) | Jim Armstrong (Guitar) | Alan Henderson (Bass) | Ray Elliott (Organ/Saxophone) | Bobby Graham (Drums) | Phil Coulter (Piano/Organ)
		
April 19, 1966, Decca Studios, West Hampstead, London (CD 2; Tr. 21 / CD 3: Tr. 19-20) | Producer: Tommy Scott
Van Morrison (Vocals) | Jim Armstrong (Guitars) | Alan Henderson (Bass) | Ray Elliott (Organ) | Dave Harvey (Drums)