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Thursday, 29 November 2012

The chances of this Album being better than the original are a million to one...

Jeff Wayne's musical version of War of the Worlds was a big album during my youth and one that I still listen to from time to time, so I was intrigued to discover that a new version of the album subtitled: The New Generation was coming out. The album is released this week in the wake of the successful stage show which features an holographic Liam Neeson in the role of the narrator which was originally played by Richard Burton.

I had mixed feelings over buying the album since I heard that Gary Barlow, the cock-eyed git from boy band Stuff That and the X-Factor, would be performing the beautiful Forever Autumn which was of course handled by Justin Haywood on the original album, but I need not have worried since Barlow simply impersonates Haywood's delivery and gives us a version that is 99% identical to the original ballad.

In fact the new version of the album is basically the old album with some added dialogue and sound effects and may not be worth buying if you own the original. The biggest improvement is in the packaging since this new CD pack comes in a wonderfully illustrated retro looking book with the CD slipping into unobtrusive sleeves - it looks wonderful on the shelf.

I can't help thinking that it would have been better to remaster the original album, adding the extra sound effects, guitar riffs and drum breaks you find on the new version. The original is 35 years old and is still being talked about, hence the stage show and this new album version. Still it's a good album and essential if you don't have the original but I'd bet that in another 35 years it will only be the original you are able to buy.

If it ain't broken then don't fix it and I must be honest I think this album is rather pointless...





1 comment:

Monty said...

You beat me to it on this; I was going to post a near identical verdict myself, having listened to the new stuff and not being particularly impressed. I love the original and have had a copy ever it came out; I'm afraid the 'New Generation' don't cut it...I think Jeff Wayne may have done a 'George Lucas' with this one...