Mike Sander from Germany reviewed the new "The Complete '68 Comeback Special" four CD set. The title he used was "Just another compilation". The review:
Why doing a review about an official release, that shouldn't include too many surprises? Because every Elvis fan is expecting something extraordinary from a 40th anniversary box-set, and might want to know, what he gets in real time.
The box fits exactly to the Japanese paper sleeve editions, and therefore can easily find a place in your collection. It features a beautiful booklet; unfortunately the inner sleeves are not the best protection for the CDs. Maybe in times of internet downloads we must say bye-bye to high quality packages like Platinum and welcome the more economic style.
Surprisingly Sony/BMG selected the "old" mix of the TV-Special, which has been released many times on CD. In Europe usually with some bonus live tracks, featuring most of the studio recordings in stereo. This version is similar to the long time ago Japanese release R25P-1004, but features some bonus songs. Most interesting the versions of 'It Hurts Me' and 'Let Yourself Go', that were taken from A Legendary Performer Vol.3 and find their first release on CD here. Although the sound has been slightly improved, it can not live up to the high sound quality of the alternate BMG-release Memories -The '68 Comeback. The live segments, again, weren't separated by different track-numbers, so, except for the two bonus tracks, nothing new.
CD 2 and 3:
It's a little bit irritating, that Sony/BMG cut the first minute of every show and left out the introduction. Since time on CD 3 is already 77 min, it looks, as if it has been "A matter of time“.
The previous releases Tiger Man and Memories are the only official releases, that are featuring the complete "Sit down shows", so you still shouldn‘t take them out of your collection.
The "Stand up shows" were officially released as a best of mix on Memories and the rest of it on the FTD-label. It's a pity, that now, on their first official CD release, they still are not complete, since all the introductions and 'One Night' (first show) are cut out. So we all must go back to the DVD-release.
Which brings us to the question about the purpose of this release? It's certainly too detailed for the average customer and there's nothing really new for the true Elvis fan. The second rehearsal has already been released on the FTD-label. The other rehearsal finds it's first official complete release here, but the sound quality is average, compared to bootlegs like From Burbank to Vegas (CD) or "Elvis Rocks And The Girls Roll" (vinyl) (which by the way is the best, so far).
So here we have a 40th anniversary box, that's celebrating one of the highlights in Elvis‘ career. Usually we were expecting something special, but everything has been copied from previous CD-releases. It's just another compilation.
First Review Of The New Comeback ReleaseJuly 31, 2008 | Music Source:Elvis Is Still Active In Norway
Steve V wrote on July 31, 2008
elvistruth wrote on July 31, 2008
No way, thanks. It`s a pity that Sony Bmg lost an incredible chance one more time.
JerryNodak wrote on August 01, 2008
Steve V. and I weren't expecting anything special and Sony/BMG proved us prophetic. No thanks!
SnOwMan wrote on August 01, 2008
Linda Kovalcik wrote on August 01, 2008
No,thanks. There's nothing new here. A missed opportunity. Shame on you,BMG!
GeertFromNl wrote on August 01, 2008
Noooooooo,thanks! There are much more imortant things to spend my money on! The FTD's,for example:)
Brian Quinn wrote on August 01, 2008
YES, PLEASE! A wonderful release and all in one package.
Mike.S. wrote on August 01, 2008
Brian, there’s a nice box, a beautiful package, an even more beautiful booklet, with very interesting liner notes. But musically this release is a big disappointment. The original 68 master tapes are still available in very high quality, as proven by the „Memories“ release. With today’s technical possibilities, Sony/BMG could have made a fantastic new release, if they only were interested. I hope FTD will release the TV-Special album in the future as a 2 CD set, concentrating on the best versions with some alternate tracks.
elvistruth wrote on August 04, 2008
My patience with Sony-Bmg has finished. The review from our friends of Norway is definitive. I don't want this poor release. It's incredible! Year 2008 and worst sound that a release of past century. That's only happens with Elvis. For me they are absolutely joking with the fans. Please we can see how are the boxes, regular cd releases of Sinatra, Dylan, Stones, Richard, Pink Floyd, Genesis, Nat King Cole, Dean Martin, Chris Ledoux, Marty Robbins, Jim Reeves, and many more great artist...always better that Elvis . Remember the 70's box released without more of 30 studio master tracks left out? And this was the better box ever (7 unreleased songs), but always incomplete things. And the sound... always I'm working with my pc music program for updating the dry sound of FTD. Yes, more better that many years ago but always worst that the rest of great (or no great) musicians and singers of all time. It's real or a nightmare hear a million of time better sound on music of the 40's that the entire career of Elvis? Sometimes that happen, believe or not. Specially with releases of last couple of years. Elvis absolutely ignored by Sony. And I don't want to speak of the Estate. They are busy thinking how making money with the new toy with Elvis head and animal body. So this is the sad "elvistruth". If only that can be changed...