King Diamond Comments On The Release Of Remastered Albums
Band Photo: King Diamond (?)
King Diamond has issued the following statement about the upcoming remastered re-releases of previous albums:
"Hail to all of you.
"I've seen a lot of valid questions on our covenworldwide.org forum regarding the remasters and I think they deserve to be answered by myself. First of all, it's great to see that you like Andy's improvements on the sound of these remasters. Just wait till you hear House of God.
"The process has been another little nightmare for us to get done the right way. We wanted to have the remastered albums with an included CD-ROM video of a song from the respective album as a bonus. Fortunately, I always thoroughly check our products myself before they go into pressing. When I got the first two remasters from a U.S. mastering lab, I was sure that they must have done something wrong. The music, which I have stated from the beginning is the absolute most important part of these remasters (not the bonus material) sounded way inferior to what I know Andy did. Also, when checking the CD-ROM footage, it looked horribly grainy and shitty and it had become badly out of synch compared to what I have put together here at home. After getting in touch with Metal Blade who got in touch with the mastering lab, the message I got back was 'we have not changed anything, this is exactly what we got'. BUT IT HAD DEFINITELY CHANGED.
"We now decided to let Andy himself have a go at adding the CD-ROM bonus footage to the remastered album. I couldn't believe it when I realized Andy's version was identical to the one from the U.S. mastering lab. Metal Blade now checked around with several other mastering labs, asking if this was normal or whether something was done totally wrong on our end. The same answer came back from everybody, that yes, you should expect a quality loss in the music when adding a CD-ROM to the same disk. At this point, we were about to scrap the whole idea of adding the CD-ROM since there's no way in hell I would sacrifice the great sound Andy had achieved just to have that in there. Tracy at Metal Blade was the one who came up with what I thought was a great idea, to leave the music alone on the disk and then make the bonus footage available as a free download. This would maintain Andy's sound quality and also maintain the quality of the bonus footage since it would not have to be compressed from approximately 1.3 Gigabytes down into a 130 Megabyte file size. So, this way we would be able to provide the best possible quality to all of you for both the album itself and the bonus footage.
"This of course meant more work for the label to set up the website where you can find the bonus footage, and was not a budget issue. They did however tell me that the footage would be available for everybody, not just those who bought the album since implementing codes, etc. would be too much too late to get done in time for the release. My personal view on that is that I have never thought that you should buy the remasters just to get the bonus footage anyway. As you might have noticed, there have never been King Diamond releases with specific bonus tracks added for just certain areas. For example, Japanese labels have several times asked us for exclusive bonus for their releases, which we have always rejected for various reasons, including that I don't see why certain territories should be treated better than others. I hope that answered some of the questions you had regarding the actual material sound and bonus of the remasters.
"The following is regarding the artwork. The intention here was to revamp the inside of the booklets, not the actual covers themselves. A phone call from Metal Blade's artworker assured me it wouldn't be that easy. The entire artwork for Spider's Lullabye and The Graveyard had been lost in a computer meltdown where a lot of old Metal Blade stuff was stored, so we had to start from scratch. As you can imagine, this was a major pain the ass and very time consuming. Regarding Voodoo and House of God, I was initially told the same and a major search was put in gear to see if Massacre possibly had some of these lost files. Eventually most of the files showed up intact at a Metal Blade search and you will find very little change on the front covers. The back covers have been changed a bit and the insides have been totally revamped which is all what was originally intended. So there you have it.
"The bonus footage that will be available for Voodoo and House of God will be the two title tracks. So all in all, you will eventually have access to four live editions with footage of songs that was not included on our double live CD. The Spider's Lullabye and The Graveyard remasters are out in the U.S. but will not be released in Europe by Massacre until October 23rd. Massacre's versions will have an inlay card that directs the European fans to Metal Blade's website, which will be the only website where you can find the bonus footage. It made no sense to have a separate site set up with Massacre.
"At last, I want to say that work on the King Diamond DVD set is still underway and we're really beginning to make some great progress. This has taken so much longer than expected because of so many technical issues that I won't bore you to death with here, but we recently acquired a brand new noise reduction program that we're using to enhance all the footage, and it's amazing how much better everything is beginning to look compared to the original tapes. I really think you're going to love this stuff once it's done. Gotta get back to this and transcode four different tests for the 1997 Copenhagen VEGA King Diamond show which, if I remember right, is taken from the first show of the King Diamond/Mercyful Fate European double header tour."
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