Debut Album From Memphis Pop Icon Reissued On Vinyl LP!
Remastered From The Original Analog Tapes!
Available On Vinyl For The First Time Over 4 Decades!
Analog Planet Rated 10/11 Music, 10/11 Sonics!
A Memphis pop icon, Van Duren was not only a contemporary of Big Star, he played with both Chris Bell and Jody Stephens in The Baker Street Regulars. Managed by Andrew Loog Oldham (The Rolling Stones), his 1978 debut album, Are You Serious?, found folks comparing him to artists like Todd Rundgren and Paul McCartney. He recorded a second album, which was shelved, then eventually released in Japan without his involvement.
Now, four decades later, thanks to the acclaimed documentary Waiting: The Van Duren Story, and its soundtrack, many discovered Van Duren for the first time, while those who knew about him found out what really happened. Finally, Are You Serious? returns, remastered from the original analog tapes on LP.
Thirteen originals written by Duren (with Jody Stephens being the only co-writer on one track), and packaging featuring new liner notes from Van and previously unseen photos, it's time to get serious about the album that has had collectors searching high and low for a copy for years. Looking and sounding better than ever, it's time for Are You Serious?
Van Duren, like Big Star, had to wait patiently before his first two albums were given the deluxe reissue and remastering treatment that Omnivore has recently provided in their reissue of 1978's Are You Serious? and 1980's Idiot Optimism. Those with an original pressing of Are You Serious? know that it is expensive to track down in great shape. There are a few versions of the original which collectors can vie for: 2 U.S. releases, one of which was mastered by Robert Ludwig with the famed 'rl' deadwax notation, 2 UK variants and an Australian pressing (at least, according to what's currently in Discogs). In the case of Idiot Optimism, this is truly the first time that the vision Van had for the album was allowed to come to fruition. While I haven't heard a copy of the original Ludwig mastering, it's hard to imagine it gets much better than what Omnivore currently offers. Michael Graves' mastering and Jeff Powell's vinyl mastering of both albums have plenty of punch, midrange appeal and power; vinyl and CD of both albums sound excellent and maintain the sonic feel of the late 70s.
- Vinyl LP
- Available on LP again after 40 years
- Remastered from the original analog tapes
- Vinyl mastered by Jeff Powell at Take Out Vinyl/Phillips Recording Service, Memphis, TN
- New liner notes from Van Duren
- Previously unseen photos
- Chemical Fire
- This Love Inside
- Oh Babe
- Grow Yourself Up
- Positive (Wedding Song)
- New Year's Eve
- So Good To Me (For The Time Being)
- Yellow Light
- For A While
- Stupid Enough
- The Love That I Love