Today

Jul 18, 2005
Today
The latest outing on the FTD label in the classic album series on 7” format is "Today", Elvis’ last proper attempt to record an album at a studio. Design The first thing that catches the eye is the poor print work on the cover. You can see where theu used the Photoshop eraser tools and pasted in the word "Today". The colors are very dull less vivid than the original album. The same goes for the back and the front of the booklet. This is not acceptable for the "ultimate" release - as a lot of fans buying this album once again probably consider it - of the "Today" album. A nice touch is the "T-R-O-U-B-L-E" sticker just like the original. Content First the booklet, that is pretty good. Nice memorabilia shots, candids and good info on the sessions and the history of the original album. The first CD starts with the original album as we all know it. We can even add “so well”, since it used to be one of the favorites almost three decades ago. Only ten tracks, but at least it was a real attempt to make a good sounding album. The outtakes bring some new material, but not too much. To be honest, only “Bringin’ It Back” is new, since it is quite different from the master. Elvis approached the song with an alternative timing. The other outtake(s) we were really looking forward to were those of “Pieces Of My Life”. Unfortunately take 2 is just a false start, and take 3 doesn’t really differ much from the master. CD 2 starts with the rough mixes of the album. We can understand Elvis wasn’t satisfied completely and wanted things changed. The “highlight” is “I Can Help”, with a clumsy James Burton (which is a collectable itself). The bass is very upfront, as is the piano. We don’t mind hearing Glen D. so well, but we completely agree with Elvis on Duke Bardwell’s bass playing. Still it is something different… like “Woman Without Love” proofs that Felton Jarvis’ “finishing” touch with overdubs are totally unnecessary. It is the only version of those first mixes we like better than the one that ended up on the album. The outtakes following these mixes were all released on FTD’s “6363 Sunset”. We do hope Ernst and Roger will not repeat themselves too much releasing the same material on different albums. Conclusion Gladly the content is much better (as expected) than the jacket. Not much really new material, but both CDs give a good listen and are very enjoyable. But we must ask the producers to pay attentention to the quality of the complete package. Both sound and picture wise, most fans re-buy this release as the ultimate (and hopefully last edition of) "Today" album and they should get what they expect / hope for.
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Tracklisting

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Reactions

ibegofyou (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 6, 2005report abuse
In the future, it might be wise for FTD to stick to linear notes that actually pertain to the music sessions. The "behind the scene facts" on the Today cd left me wondering if it were a gossip column. We are all aware of the drug use, relationship break ups & negative news. Please. Simply give us information about the session. Good cd overall...
Jim Hoff (profilecontact) wrote on Aug 5, 2005report abuse
Many nice songs on this collection in my opinion. It's excellent that FTD "upgrades" all the old Elvis claaisc albums on CD with various outtakes, alternates aso. But I can't wait to get my hands on the "Raised On Rock" collection, which I consider muchstronger than the material on "Today".
Coronel Parker (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 30, 2005report abuse
What happen with the sound and the print work?. A great album deserves a more careful mix.
dismas (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 26, 2005report abuse
I am in 100% agreement with the sentiments of Mathias in his original 7/21/05 post. Out of sheer respect alone to the great man's all too often ignored sense of artistry -- not to mention his on-going legend & towering musical legacy -- any and every Elvis project should be approached with the highest degree of care and respect. Remember the TCB and TLC pendants Elvis would pass out among his friends and associates back in the '70s? Those sentiments should be the hallmarks of Sony/BMG/RCA's handling of everything Elvis: Taking Care of Business with Tender Loving Care. I've purchased two copies of every single FTD release so far (one for me and one for my diehard Elvis fan sister), so I don't think I'm asking too much of Ernst & Co when I say "Please, Ernst, don't let a good thing die..." Hold the standards of FTD releases up to the standards of Elvis's music and the truly amazing devotion of his fans. The record company will continue to make money plenty of off Elvis; his music will sound brighter and clearer --and therefore his legacy will not only be remembered, but possibly expanded, and his genuine, dyed-in-the-wool fans will be happier. Who loses? No one. Who wins? Everyone. Peace!
buyep01 (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 26, 2005report abuse
No bray1977 I am glad we have FTD to but they it is a label that is not bootleg and the quality should be as good as possible for the price, I never said I dont like FTD I have all of them but if the quality keeps going down and they keep using songs from other FTD releases its gonna be just another expensive CD with nothing rare or unique about it.
circleG (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 26, 2005report abuse
bray1977 no one (especially me) is saying that we don't want FTD. I have them all and will continue to get them. That said, if FTD are going to be an even more successful venture then quality of product cannot be ignored as casual buyers will be fewer and fewer. Sound mixing on 'Today' is mind boggling to say the least. Some tracks are too quiet, some are are loud and as for 'tiger man jam' thats just too loud when compared to the 70's box set. 'Today' is great to have for the outtakes and i'm glad i have them but the project has been let down by inconsistency in sound levels. if there's a genuine reason for this other than laziness, which is what Mathias is suggesting, I'd love to hear it. 'Elvis by the presleys' Cd just doesn't seem to have this problem.
bray1977 (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 26, 2005report abuse
Buyep01 It has also been said many times that if you dont want it then dont buy it. I think the FTDs are good value for money. Please dont forget that when they end the series then there wil be very little new Elvis releases to buy. Many fans do not have access to bootleg material so depend on FTD to rescue them from the likes of "Love Elvis". Moaning to BMG is not going to make them pump in more money, it is expensive to produce CDs and the FTDs have a limited audience. If you dont like them nobidy is forcing you to buy them. Just my opinion.
buyep01 (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 25, 2005report abuse
OK this thing with FTD has been played out too many times. They are well worth the price when the time is put into them $30-$80 (includind S&H) Mid Quality at best recently for high money. We are posting our opinions and frustrations on this site but is it working. We need some one to get together a site and draw up an online petition to send to EPE and have them fix it or just buy quality imports from another owned company, if no one knows how or will maybe elvis news will have a place open where we can sign it on line and but their disclaimer on it to send to EPE until we do this watch the next 3 will be exactly the same we will buy them as the quality goes down why do yo think BMG releases the same stuff over and over I am guilty to we buy it thats why and never make our self heard.
jb gude (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 24, 2005report abuse
Matthais, I am curious to know which CD you have mastered that you mention is still much appreciated by the fans & collectors.Please do let us know. I for one, have stopped buying most of the FTDs because I feel that it has become a rip off - recycling tracks and like it has been mentioned the "Today" album even without an improvement in the sound quality and often with poor packaging.
NorwayElvis (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 22, 2005report abuse
The only reason that they get away with the FTD duplicate tracklist on "Today" is that we get 2 cds for the prize of 1. Still its a bit annoying. Little bit off topic: Dont understand why so many complain about the mixing on "All shook up"..."At the International" is a little better but not by much. "Baby what you want me to do" on latest release is awsome, best version to this date.
Ton Bruins (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 22, 2005report abuse
When it's possable to release it in DSD sound, then they should do it. It's also wrong that the FTD label puts the same outtakes on "Today" as on another FTD CD "Sunset". Again too much of the old.
ttwiise (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 21, 2005report abuse
Mathias, I could not agree more, this is another opportunity missed, they have the original master tapes in their hands and the just transfer them poorly to digital. These discs cost us good money so why should we not get a good product. I wonder how many copies the recent DSD transferred discs of the 1st three albums sold? they sound terrific! In a nutshell we are buying all these albums for the upteenth time just to get a few unreleased takes, boy most of the today was on a previous FTD, 6363 sunset (bad planning or what). But you must realise by now we will never be treated with anything but contempt by BMG, EPE and all the movie studios that constantly short change us fans. Just look at Tickle me FTD WHAT IS THE POINT other than to fleece us once again!!!!
circleG (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 21, 2005report abuse
Mathias you have a raised a very important point. After reading your views i've just done a quick check on who has been doing the mastering on these 7" cds and i've found that Lene has mastered ALL the cds i rate the worst sound (double trouble really taking the biscuit). 'Elvis-ultimate gospel' has great sound quality so why couldn't 'Today'? Ernst take note; I love FTD as do many fans and have all the releases but this, if it is indeed true, is inexcusable if it could have been avoided. A fan has spoken.
Mathias (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 21, 2005report abuse
Dear Matt W, I K N O W Lene Reidel personally! I met Lene Reidel this spring in Denmark. Lene Reidel is not an Elvis Fan and don`t like his Music anyway!I´m not nasty or rude about poor old Lene, but bad is bad! I`m a profesional soundengineer too, but I never would come up by saying I could do it better! You can judge about my work yourself. I guess I have restored and mastered one of the best sounding soundboard recordings from `76 in `95 and they are still beloved by many Fans and Collectors today. Cheers, Mathias, BTW it`s of course not my real name!
NorwayElvis (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 21, 2005report abuse
Mathias, Forgot that Elvis Recorded live on Stage in Memphis was remixed, Elvis is back has not been remastered with DSD. 7000 copies (approx and worldwide)for each title is correct. 2 years ago there was a big interview with Ernst Jorgensen in MAHM magazine and he said so himself. Also mentioned that jungle room was the biggest seller up to that point. Dont remember which issue had this interview, must search through the magazines if you wanna know.
Matt W (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 21, 2005report abuse
Regardless on each persons opinions on the mastering - you either like it or not - I don't think it's really appropriate to make nasty comments about another persons profession. Stating Lene as being talantless is very rude, especially as you do not know the person, what time or budget constraints they have to work to etc. Critique the product without being nasty to other people.
Mathias (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 21, 2005report abuse
Dear NorwayElvis, I`m realistic, but you´re wrong on some points: The FTD CDs like Elvis Recorded live on Stage in Memphis and Elvis is Back were remastered using DSD-Technology and were not mastered by Lene Reidel! I wouldn`t complain if they hadn`t proofed that they couldn`t do it any better. I certainly know that a CD production costs money and that they are not releasing CDs by sheer kindness. But in fact it`s not that expensive! They still make quite good money with their releases and the sales figures you namened are not correct. 7.000 copies each go for the UK alone, that might be true. But most of all first initial pressings of 20.000 copies are sold out and were already reprinted. Nowadays you can get FTD CDs at nearly every onlineshop! Kind regrds
NorwayElvis (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 21, 2005report abuse
I agree with you Mathias but be realistic, the FTD releases sell only about 7000 copies each and it cost money to make them. In the record business 7000 copies is like nothing, why bother... DSD and special treatment as you call it wont happen on FTD... only main label. In fact im glad they do bother to have the FTD label at all... just enjoy it while it last.
Mathias (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 21, 2005report abuse
Dear Ernst,

if you should read this, I would like to tell you that I`m very dissapointed about your last esacape! This recordings offer the greatest potential for superior sound quality, but you let it happen that we get another mediocre sounding CD.No special treatment, not even DSD.
Next time, I would place a sticker on the cover.

WARNING: Destroyed by Lene Reidel! No effort has been made to obatain superior sound quality, however priority was in making quick cash!

You have very talented soundengineers like Kevin Budd in your team, use them instead of that talentless Lene Reidel. Lene Reidel is just an unkown inhouse engineer at Tocano, Denmark with no reputation in the music world.

You once stated, every one of us makes mistakes and deserves a second chance, sure that`s true, but Lene Reidel had almost 40 second chances and did the same mistakes over and over again and shown no signs of improvement. The re-mixing or re-mastering of an Elvis recording should always be a challenge and not a routine job.

I really liked the idea behind the FTD Classic re-releases, but now it turns out to be a nightmare. I`m an Elvis Fan for almost 30 years now and have spent a little fortune in my hobby and I have a right as a Fan and a customer to get a top notch quality for a high priced product.

Elvis with his music and we the Fans with our money have saved RCA`s and BMG`s Neck more than once. So why should we always take second best?

SonyBMG, you owe it to the Fans and to Elvis!
Lex (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 20, 2005report abuse
The sound is okay in my ears (but not improved), but I think it is quite disturbing that the volume of Tiger Man is much louder than the previous tracks.
NorwayElvis (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 20, 2005report abuse
The main cd tracks are not remastered the way it should be, doesn't sound any better than most of the other releases. Jap paper sleeve edition is still the best version available but not by much. If only this cd was remastered the way promised land was 5(!) years ago... that had amazing sound quality.
Martin DJ (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 20, 2005report abuse
The album sounds good, but so did the regular version. Check out Ernst's Recording Session book: we now have takes one and four of TROUBLE, why not two and three? Compare Ernst's liner notes with his recording session report in the book, where Elvis didn't quite say "Hell, I ain't no country bumpkin"...
Matt W (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 19, 2005report abuse
The question I don't seem to be able to find an answer to is....has the mastering improved, is the sound improved/fixed from the previous CD release of this album. There were some sound artifacts on that version including on I think Woman Without Love some sort of metalic noise near the end of the track.
Ton Bruins (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 19, 2005report abuse
Yes you are right. Good CD but to few new outtakes.
dirklandwehr (profilecontact) wrote on Jul 19, 2005report abuse
This album was always one of my favorites since I listened to it for the first time. So I think it was a good idea to release it that way. The only bad thing about this release is, that there are not too much new outtakes. Otherwise this is a very good cd and I think it has to be in everybodys collection.

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