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Old Sep 19, 2004, 12:07 PM   #1
Sun King
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Default The Alternate series by Pear.

Many alternate series exists. The walrus bootleg label also has an alternate series, but with many tracks lifted from the Anthology cd's. More attractive is the Alternate series by Pear.All their releases in this Alternate series comes in digi packs.

In general this is a good series for fans just beginning with their bootleg collection.Fans who have a lot of bootlegs already, will buy the same tracks again. The pear label is a copy label, which means that it doesn't release new material, but lifts well known studio outtakes, rehearsals, demo's and live recordings from other older bootlegs. A lot comes from Yellow Dog bootlegs. So while there is nothing new, some of these older bootlegs are not so easy to find, and the Pear cd's often collects together a nice selection of some of the best outtakes and recordings. But not all is perfect.

While these are nice cd's to listen to. The mix of good studio quality outtakes and live recordings, often in a bad sound quality, ruins the listening pleasure for me. It makes the cd’s a less coherent unit. This is especially the case with the first four Beatles albums. Which also include many BBC tracks.
I have opted not to buy the first four of this set, cause I rather listen to the full BBC shows on my BBC cd’s. Also many of the early takes are lifted directly from Yellow Dog’s Unsurpassed Masters set. And while the claim of no anthology tracks is technically correct, they don’t lift directly from the Anthology cd’s, some versions of songs are almost the same. Less or no reverb on “Can’t Buy Me love” for example, as if you would hear the difference.

I will briefly review some of the cd’s that I do own. I already did an review for the Alternate One, from this series, which you can find here.
The Alternate One The reviews refer to the more recent, silver disc releases, not the original cd-r versions, who sometimes have slightly different tracklists.
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Old Sep 19, 2004, 12:14 PM   #2
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Default Re: The Alternate series by Pear.

The Alternate Help!
The Alternate Help has two takes of “Help”.Takes 12 and the instrumental take 5. Once again the take 2 of “Yesterday” without strings has been used. Some live tracks and mono mixes of the other songs. It also claims to have different mixes from the Love Songs album, for the songs “Tell Me What You See” and “You’re Going To Lose That Girl”. You can ignore these, since they are not actually remixes from the original multi track tapes.

From the cd’s I have, this is the one I really shouldn’t have bought.

The Alternate Rubber Soul

Silent Sea released a double cd of Rubber Soul sessions. Called Soul Sessions. There are really not that much difference’s between the many versions of the same songs, included on Soul Sessions. Pear made a nice single cd, with the most important outtakes, and mono mixes.
Tho there are still some unneeded things left, a version of “In My Life” from the “Love Songs” album, but it’s a nice compilation to listen to.

The Alternate Revolver
The Alternate Revolver combines U.S. and U.K. mono mixes, with “Here There and Everywhere” and “Yellow Submarine” from the “Real Love” cd single. The well known take 1 and 2 of Paperback Writer, as well as the rough mix of “Rain” has also been lifted from other bootlegs.

I bought the first version of this on cd’r years ago, when I didn’t have much else. It’s just a nice cd to listen to, helped of course by the fact that there are no live recordings included.

The Alternate Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band

The Alternate Sgt. Pepper includes the mono version of the album. I only have my scratchy mono vinyl album to compare this to, and needles to say, this cd sounds much better. A clean copy of the mono album, tho I suspect that Dr. Ebbet did a better job with his vinyl transfer. Not sure what Pear’s source is, I can only assume that it comes from one of these German digi pack releases, that would make the Doc’s version preferable.

The only other thing of interest is the Acetate version of “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band”. It comes from Yellow Dog’s new 2002 edition of Acetates. If you have the first edition of Acetates and the Alternate Sgt. Pepper’s by pear, there is really no need to go after Yellow Dog’s double cd.
The sound quality of the acetate isn’t very good, but that’s not important. It’s one of the better things that have surfaced on the bootleg market in recent years, especially from that Beatles era. It’s basically the released version, but without the guitar solo, overdubs and sound effects. It doesn’t have the cross fade into “With A Little Help”, and it last 30 seconds longer then the released version, as you can hear the full ending of the song. It’s been awhile since something “new” was released.

The Alternate White Album
The Alternate White Album, is my favourite from the set. It’s my favourite period, and also I haven’t found part 4 of Yellow Dog’s Unsurpassed Masters set yet. So I don’t have most of this material elsewhere. It's ofcourse a double cd.

It’s a great compilation of White album outtakes, and mono mixes. Ofcourse the mono “Helter Skelter” is included, “Blackbird” and “Piggies” with differently placed animal sounds. One highlight is the long version of “Sexy Sadie”, the released version has 38 seconds at the end edited out, here you can find the full unedited version. Many tracks from the Peter Sellers tape are included here again, but this is an excellent alternate for anyone who can’t find “Unsurpassed Masters 4” and “The Peter Seller Tapes” bootlegs. This also saves you from buying Yellow Dog’s, two double cd set of “Control Room Monitor Mixes”, since the most interesting tracks are included on this Pear double cd. About 50 seconds of Paul on organ singing “While My Guitar Gently Weeps”. See the Acetate of “Sgt. Peppers” for my reaction. And the “Sexy Sadie” monitor mixes. Where we can hear an uncensored version of the song. John singing “Who the [censored] you think you are”.While you can hear it uncensored on the bootleg, it's censored here These are among the other highlights.
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Old Sep 19, 2004, 12:36 PM   #3
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Default Re: The Alternate series by Pear.

The Alternate Abbey Road
Most of The Alternate Abbey Road has been lifted from Yellow Dog’s Unsurpassed Masters 5 cd. I don’t have that cd, but I do have a copy of Vigotone’s “No. 3 Abbey Road N.W. 8 cd. Doug Sulpy’s book tells me that the jam at the end of the basic track of “Something” ends abruptly on Vigotone’s version, which indeed it does, but fades out at on Yellow Dog’s version, which it also does on the Pear cd. He also mentions that there is a gap during the first verse of the basic track of “Carry That Weight” on the Vigotone’s version, but not on the Yellow Dog cd, and there is no gap on this version by Pear, I can only conclude that Pear used their material from “Unsurpassed Masters” and not from “No. 3 Abbey Road”.

The outtakes are mostly in good quality, however on every bootleg of the Abbey Road, the long medleys are in very poor quality,and have tape damage during “Golden Slumbers”. Pear tried to make a complete alternate album, but since there are no outtakes for “Come Together” and “Here Comes The Sun”, they made use of the One To One rehearsal for “Come Together” and the Saturday Night Live performance of “Here Comes The Sun”. I feel they are a bit misplaced on this cd. Since the only other option was to use take 1 of Come Together from the Anthology cd’s, I think it might have been better to leave this two tracks off all together.

This is as complete as you’re going to get regarding “Abbey Road” outtakes. Everything from “Unsurpassed Masters 5” except for the Let It be tracks have been included. Nothing left from Vigotone’s cd either, apart from the Donovan sessions. Wait the only thing they could have added was the long vocal booth version of “Oh Darling”, otherwise pretty complete and all you need.

The Alternate Let It Be

I can be brief about the Alternate Let It Be. Yet another compilation of the Get Back sessions. But it’s a nice one, with complete songs and also songs used in the film.

Those were the ones, there are some more but I don’t feel they’re worth getting. At least not for me.Feel free to add your comments.
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