| The 'Floyds of London' roio has now been seen labelled as Pink
Floyd Meddler with what looks like some kind of black inked
rubber stamp. This perhaps confirms the rumour that Floyds of
London is the 'original packaging' version of Meddler. Previous
versions had no mention of Meddler at all.
Original announcements seem to be intact. Sound quality is
SUPERB, though mono it seems. One of These Days really wails!
It is great.
This disc is an instant collectors item - buy it on sight!
I just got my copy of "Meddler" today and...well, dammit, I'm
disappointed. First and worst, the entire thing--ALL of it--is
in mono. Completely. Entirely. Start to finish. Also:
1. The edit between the applause after John Peel's introduction
to "Fat Old Sun" and the start of the song is clumsy and
2. Peel's spoken bridge between "Fat Old Sun" and "One of these
Days" is missing the reference to how "Fat Old Sun" sounded on
the prior year's show. This is no doubt because the edited U.S.
versions of this broadcast omit the reference, however the
complete version _has_ been issued on ROIO vinyl at least once.
3. The opening "thuds" to OOTD have been snipped.
4. The edit between Peel's intro and "Echoes" is again very
clumsy and the first little false-start "pings" have been
5. Beginning at 0:49 in track 3 ("Echoes") faint applause has
been inexplicably mixed in.
6. "Echoes" ends with mixed-in applause not on the recordings
I've heard previously, though perhaps that's how it's now
circulating to broadcasters.
7. "Embryo" has a WNEW station ID right in the middle, though
this is a rare recording and possibly the best available.
Having said that, it's a very _clean_ mono and does sound quite
good. And I'm _very_ happy to have "Embryo" and "Blues" on
there. But it's still mono, badly edited and very
disappointing. I'm bummed because, quite frankly, I did a
better job compiling a complete version of FOS, OOTD and E from
a tape of a radio broadcast + an old vinyl ROIO by using a
plain-Jane minidisc recorder. I was hoping this would put my
cut 'n' paste job to shame, but sadly, the opposite is true.
Oh, yeah, the "Harvested" label is a hoot, too.
This is the complete broadcast, with the Embryo and
instrumental Blues track missing from other RoIOs of this show.
Sound is fantastic throughout. The Embryo and Blues are from a
different source than the first three tracks, and is
subsequently of different sound quality, but still great
sounding none the less. The only drawback (to some) is that the
disc is in mono. I really didn't notice,as I was far too busy
enjoying the crisper, clearer sound than the "Echoes" Cd RoIO I
already have, and the additional tracks.
It's also nice to see a RoIO without all of the typical typos,
wrong song titles,etc. If you didn't no better, based on the
packaging alone, you would swear this was an official release.
The liner notes are well done as well. Despite of all the busts
in the industry, I hope this is an indication of quality
products to come. A must have CD.
This is the entire show of this historic performance. It was
originally to have been made by Cool Daddy Productions (Azimuth
Coordinator) However, after difficulty with dealing with Cool
Daddy, the CD was made by someone else. This is a Limited
Edition version with only 385 made! The sound quality on the
first three tracks far surpasses the Swingin' Pig version. The
two rarer tracks are about of the same quality as the Swingin'
Pig ( had Swingin' Pig included these songs that is.) A
beautiful job. The inside of the disc has a funny take on the
Harvest label logo under the clear tray. The inside of the
sleeve has the picture from the gatefold of Meddle with notes
about the history of the recording, and how it came to appear
on this roio. This is a must have, being (imho) one of Floyd's
best shows. Very enjoyable listening and a nice collector's
piece at only 385.
The dissappointment of Meddler could easily be blamed on the
unfortunate circumstances created by the Azimuth Coodinator
fiasco (comments entered under that title are the prologue of
this story). It could be blamed on almost 200 pre-sold copies
that never existed. It could be blamed on a veteran audio
engineer who really fucked up. It could be blamed on reaching
for too high a goal, heralding Meddler as the "next great
thing". But unfortunately the final decision to send Meddler to
the RoIO ovens was mine, and in that I am to blame for it's
failure. Meddler should have never been released without the
few missing bits, and especially not in MONO!
The Paris Cinema show from 1971 is one of my all-time
favorites. It represents the band as a "band", four men who
have been maturing musically and who would shortly reach a
major turning point in their career. Growing up in the 70's, my
friends and I always listened to the King Biscuit Flower Hour
and the BBC Rock Hour, and each time this Floyd show aired, we
would always tape it, upgrading our older tape copies.
It's a classic show that has been re-released on RoIO's (vinyl
and CD) time and time again (check out all the links to it!).
Then why would I want to attempt to release it yet again?
All the other RoIO's were far from "perfect" sound quality. The
vinyl RoIO's, even the best of them, had the usual "pops" and
"ticks" associated with that format. All of the CD RoIO's
seemed to be either copied directly off those early vinyl
copies, or from tapes off radio broadcasts (similar to the ones
I made years ago). Who even knew what generation these tapes
came from, but regardless, the CD RoIO's sounded dull and
I not only had a pristine copy of a BBC transcription LP from
1981 (show #214, broadcast the week of April 5th), but I also
had the Westwood One CD's of the combined 1970 & 1971 shows
(#93-39 broadcast the week of September 20, 1993) and a 2nd
generation tape copy of "Embryo" and "Blues" from the WNEW
broadcast. I figured that with all these sources, I could go
into a studio, record all of them straight into a digital
enviornment, and re-edit the entire show into it's original
structure without any noise or generation loss.
Because some of the source material came from the BBC vinyl LP,
as clean as any LP is, there were still a few pops and ticks
that had to be removed. A second studio was used to digitally
"de-click" my master DAT that was created by the first studio.
It was this 2nd DAT that was used to master Meddler to CD.
Meddler was supposed to be released by Cool Daddy (or it's
Floydian "Comfortably Cool"), and was going to be packaged in a
tin box (that looked like it was once used to hold Sucrets) and
was accompanied by an equally unimpressive booklet. In good
faith, many pre-orders were taken for this title, even though
literally thousands of dollars of orders were still
unfullfilled with the AzCo box. "Just send MORE MONEY and I can
get everything done," was David's answer to all the unfilled
orders. I felt responsible for hooking up legitimate and very
trusting sources to this Friscan bastard, and was glad that I
held back on sending him the DAT for Meddler's mastering to CD.
And when I told him to go fuck himself and that I didn't want
anything to do with him, he promised to own up to all
obligations within a couple of weeks. Meanwhile, not only were
people screaming for their pre-paid orders for the AzCo, now
they were also screaming for their pre-paid copies of Meddler
as well, a title that would probably not be produced.
This threatened to bankrupt one trusting individual as well as
destroy a beloved Floydian institution, and I couldn't let that
happen. The profits from Meddler would certainly take alot of
the monetary burden off the idividual who had to return all the
money from the unfilled AzCo orders. So, I dumped some more
money into the project and went to a 3rd studio to remaster the
DAT to CD.
The engineer who mastered it to CD noticed that the stereo
separation on my DAT was either very subtle or non-existant. I
didn't know what to say...I THOUGHT my masters were in stereo.
Anyway, I was past the point of no return (I was paying for
this studio time regardless) and when I returned home, I
realized I had a serious problem when I found my masters were
in fact stereo! What the fuck happened? What to do? So much
pressure to get this one out. It was due months ago! The sound
quality is incredible, but the mono issue really dug into me.
But alas, after debating with the person who was really in
trouble, we decided to go ahead with the pressing.
There were other factors involved as well. It was very tricky
having Meddler produced stateside, and we approached the
factory as a legitimate client. We even had them sign phoney
BBC disclosures agreeing to press a limited amount of copies,
and returning their "glass master" to us (which they would
normally hold onto for a year). Figuring out how Meddler ended
up being mono (I couldn't play the DATs I was creating...I
didn't have a deck), and then fixing it would have taken too
long and would have disturbed the schedule with the factory.
Meddler was ultimately released in perfect mono, with
surprisingly few critics. But one particular posting to
"Echoes" (that is also posted with these comments) brought up
some major flaws (as well as some petty bullshit) that caught
me by surprise.
I knew that my Westwood One CD's of the combined shows did not
include "Fat Old Sun", the first 50 seconds of "Echoes" or the
original DJ banter. That would be cut in from the vinyl source.
But in my ignorance, I didn't realize that WW1 also edited the
opening bass lines from "One Of These Days" (the band was known
for beginning the song without it on occasion). Also, because
we were mixing in the first minute of "Echoes" (which came from
BBC vinyl) with the rest of the song (from the WW1 CD), a bit
of the crowd can be heard as the two formats are
cross-dissolved. I couldn't live with all this shit. It had to
To prevent a long story from drawing out any further, here's
what happened in the end. The engineer who de-clicked the
original DAT, somehow fucked up and turned it into a mono
signal. He said he would fix it for me, all I had to do was
return the DATs to him. The next day I called to confirm that
the tapes had arrived. There was good news, the DATs arrived;
and there was bad news, the engineer suddenly no longer worked
at that studio. Thankfully, the guy running the place
sympathized with my position, and said he would redo it for me
when he had time.
Two weeks later I got the de-clicked tape back and went back
into the 3rd studio to remaster it back to CD, but this time we
started from scratch! All the pieces were input back into the
digital, non-linear editing system, restoring the entire OOTD
and also the original ending (and crowd response) of "Echoes."
Just to amuse myself, I also added John Peel's original intro
just before "Embryo." This gave me the best of both world's;
the original BBC Rock Hour just as I used to hear it when I was
a kid, and now the extra songs were included as well.
Everything is in perfect stereo and what a difference that
makes. You can distinctly here what each band member is playing
throughout the recording.
I'd love to share this CD with everyone, and maybe one day it
will happen. But for now, those days are behind me. Working
with Great Dane was one thing, but all this other shit one has
to deal with (not to mention the legaltiy) is just too much. I
eventually did run off 10 CDR's from my stereo master which are
now in the hands of a few fortunate people who I know really
appreciate the quality and the amount of effort that went into
creating it. I wonder if the band actually realize what an
incredible official release this would make?! They really
should produce it, because for now, I'm through meddling....
As the author above noted, there is indeed a stereo version
about in extremely limited quatities. You will know if you have
one :-) These discs came with original Meddler packaging and
are unmarked CDR's. As noted the starts and endings are now in
place and the disc is truly a joy. Over time I am sure that
copies of this disc will filter through to people who know
people who know people... until someone presses a whole bunch!