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Thread: Renaissance: Azure DOr, Expanded 2CD/Blu-Ray Set November 25, 2022

  1. #1
    (aka timmybass69) timmy's Avatar
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    Renaissance: Azure DOr, Expanded 2CD/Blu-Ray Set November 25, 2022

    This is a strange album compared to the rest of the Renaissance catalog. Gone are the orchestral instruments replaced by the mighty Yamaha CS-80. Azure DOr is one of the first albums I purchased by Renaissance, which introduced me to the band. Though the mix has always been a bit muddy, I grabbed a Japanese SHM CD some years ago that sounded quite good. This new release will include the original mixes remastered AND new stereo mixes.

    Now, I must remember to make a playlist for the album that does not include "Only Angels Have Wings."

    https://www.cherryred.co.uk/product/...d-blu-ray-set/

    NEW 3CD CLAMSHELL BOXED SET OF THE CLASSIC 1979 ALBUM BY RENAISSANCE.
    NEWLY REMASTERED FROM THE ORIGINAL MASTER TAPES.
    FEATURING NEW 5.1 SURROUND SOUND AND STEREO MIXES PLUS PREVIOUSLY UNRELEASED SESSION OUT-TAKES MIXED BY STEPHEN W TAYLER.
    WITH ADDITIONAL VIDEO CONTENT FILMED AT THE MILL HOUSE AND BRAY STUDIOS IN 1979.
    INCLUDES AN ILLUSTRATED BOOKLET FEATURING AN ESSAY WITH EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEWS.

    "An expanded edition of the classic Renaissance album Azure DOr. Issued in April 1979, the album followed the successful A Song For All Seasons and the hit single Northern Lights released the previous year. The line-up of highly gifted vocalist Annie Haslam, Michael Dunford (acoustic and electric guitars), John Tout (keyboards, vocals), Jon Camp (bass, acoustic and electric guitars, vocals), and Terry Sullivan (drums, percussion) had recorded a series of acclaimed albums that fused classical music influences with progressive rock and had earned a loyal following in Europe and had enjoyed wider success in the United States and Japan.
    Working once again with David Hentschel (who had also produced the albums A Trick Of The Tail and Wind And Wuthering for Genesis), the record featured excellent material such as Jekyll And Hyde, Kalynda and The Flood At Lyons and would be the last album by the bands classic line-up and their last to chart in the UK.

    This expanded edition comprises two CDs and a region-free Blu-ray disc featuring a newly remastered original stereo mix from the original master tapes and also includes stunning 5.1 Surround Sound and stereo mixes by Stephen W Tayler (which add new depth to the recordings) and additional unreleased bonus material from the album sessions. The Blu-ray disc also includes bonus visual content from a promotional film made at The Mill House and Bray Studios in 1979, plus an illustrated booklet with a reproduction of the bands 1979 UK tour program and a new essay with exclusive interviews."
    "Why is it when these great Prog guys get together, they always want to make a Journey album?"
    - fiberman, 7/5/2015

  2. #2
    I have only recently gotten into Renaissance. I’ve picked up the other Esoteric editions; I’m in for this one, too.
    I want to dynamite your mind with love tonight.

  3. #3
    Here's a bit few know. I talked with Mickey Dunford shortly before his tragic death. In our conversation he expressed a desire to perform this album live. A shame it never came to pass!
    Sleeping at home is killing the hotel business!

  4. #4
    I was late to the Renaissance party, it wasn't until Northern Lights became a hit that started listening to their music and quickly acquired their back catalog. So Azure D'Or was the first new album for me and I saw them many times live (until 1983). It always was a bit disappointing compared the great run of albums that preceded it, no real epic song. Nice enough but not great. Not sure if I will get this or not.

    If they decide to reissue Timeline, that will be a hard pass!

  5. #5
    I liked this album, and I’m down for this reissue.
    "what's better, peanut butter or g-sharp minor?"
    - Sturgeon's Lawyer, 2021

  6. #6
    Insect Overlord Progatron's Avatar
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    Looking forward to this. I like the album and this will be a nice upgrade to my rather lame Repertoire cardboard sleeve edition.
    Interviewer of reprobate ne'er-do-well musicians of the long-haired rock n' roll persuasion at: www.velvetthunder.co.uk and former scribe at Classic Rock Society. Only vaguely aware of anything other than music.

    'The best stuff is really when Mick Pointer was a baby, banging on pots and pans. That was their most "out there" stuff.' - JKL2000

  7. #7
    I could never get into this one. It's nice enough, but gone is the epic songwriting.

  8. #8
    Love this album! New stereo mix sounds intriguing. Hentschel's productions usually were kind of murky.

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    I am a fan of Azure. I may be purchasing this set, but I'd like to hear some reports about the remix first. My original vinyl always sounded very "tinny". I'm not much of an audiophile, but it was the rare case where even 40 years ago I was viscerally underwhelmed by the sound. My current CD (Wounded Bird) is sort of an improvement, with a more pronounced low-end. But the trade-off is that now the bottom sounds muddy. So there is definitely room for improvement.

  10. #10
    My exit point. Only The Flood at Lyons hints at the glories of the past.
    Macht das ohr auf!

    COSMIC EYE RECORDS

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    I call this album "Genaissance" because there are so many parallels with Duke-era Genesis. They used the same producer, so it's not a surprise. I actually like this one better than their earlier albums.

    It would be nice if Cherry Red released this in hi res digital and not just CD.

  12. #12
    Quote Originally Posted by Soc Prof View Post
    I call this album "Genaissance" because there are so many parallels with Duke-era Genesis. They used the same producer, so it's not a surprise. I actually like this one better than their earlier albums.

    It would be nice if Cherry Red released this in hi res digital and not just CD.
    Well it is in hi res on the Blu-Ray along with the 5.1 mix - unless you mean for streaming in which case you will have to wait and see........ :-)
    Last edited by ollie woodpecker; 09-12-2022 at 01:31 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Soc Prof View Post
    I call this album "Genaissance" because there are so many parallels with Duke-era Genesis. They used the same producer, so it's not a surprise. I actually like this one better than their earlier albums.

    It would be nice if Cherry Red released this in hi res digital and not just CD.
    Genaissance is exactly right! I was in junior high when this came out originally. My friends and I would pick up promo albums that had been given to radio stations and ended up in the used bins of Poo Bah Records in Pasadena. One of my prog friends picked this up out of the bins and played Kalynda for me and I was hooked! The song was not in the epic prog vein I loved at the time, thinking of songs like Awaken, One for the Vine and Dogs, but I loved the guitar work and Annie's voice so I picked up some of their earlier records and discovered many prog epics! Still one of my favorite bands and this album holds a spot in my heart since it was my first by them.

  14. #14
    Quote Originally Posted by Aquatarkus View Post
    Genaissance is exactly right! I was in junior high when this came out originally. My friends and I would pick up promo albums that had been given to radio stations and ended up in the used bins of Poo Bah Records in Pasadena. One of my prog friends picked this up out of the bins and played Kalynda for me and I was hooked! The song was not in the epic prog vein I loved at the time, thinking of songs like Awaken, One for the Vine and Dogs, but I loved the guitar work and Annie's voice so I picked up some of their earlier records and discovered many prog epics! Still one of my favorite bands and this album holds a spot in my heart since it was my first by them.
    That's really cool! Kalynda is such a beautiful song.

    Genaissance -- I like it.
    "what's better, peanut butter or g-sharp minor?"
    - Sturgeon's Lawyer, 2021

  15. #15
    Member Paulrus's Avatar
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    Love this album (interesting how many here like it, contrary to popular folklore.) I thought the promo film was wonderful as well -- hopefully it's better picture quality than my Nth gen VHS copy! And for those saying "there's no epics", the comparisons to ATTW3-era Genesis is a good one. Yeah, there's no 20 minute track, but the music still has that epic grandeur and scope to it, even if the songs aren't as long.
    I'm holding out for the Wilson-mixed 5.1 super-duper walletbuster special anniversary extra adjectives edition.

  16. #16
    Quote Originally Posted by Progtastic View Post

    If they decide to reissue Timeline, that will be a hard pass!
    I was always told not judge a book by its cover but …
    I want to dynamite your mind with love tonight.

  17. #17
    Member jefftiger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by polmico View Post
    I was always told not judge a book by its cover but
    I bought the signed poster of this album on one of their tours through Denver in the early 80s that featured Gavin Harrison (who was very young!). I found the poster a few months back in a tube in my closet. It actually has Gavin's signature!

  18. #18
    I love this album! I bought it immediately after its release and several Renaissance fans around me at that time reacted negatively, but I played it everyday and thought the songs were beautiful. I love the writing! I think it's special

  19. #19
    Member jefftiger's Avatar
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    My reference to a poster was from the previous Time-Line discussion. Getting back to Azure d'Or, I remember buying this on its release date and enjoying it a lot. It was the first Renaissance album that I bought on initial release. I liked the final song, The Flood at Lyons, a lot.

    I recall that its CD release was a bit of a mess. I recall one version that had no high end. A Japanese CD release was a lot better. I also had the Wounded Bird remaster at one point. I look forward to this new version.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ollie woodpecker View Post
    Well it is in hi res on the Blu-Ray along with the 5.1 mix - unless you mean for streaming in which case you will have to wait and see........ :-)
    Yes, good point. I was thinking of "digital" = not physical = download/streaming. IIRC, it's possible to rip WAV files from a Blu-Ray, but I don't have the necessary equipment.

  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by polmico View Post
    I was always told not judge a book by its cover but …
    You gotta admit, Annie was quite the hottie with that totally-80s hairdo.

    EDIT: I thought I would add the visual...

    Renaissance_TimeLine-46551.jpg
    Last edited by arturs; 09-13-2022 at 11:35 AM.

  22. #22
    Member Paulrus's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by jefftiger View Post
    I recall that its CD release was a bit of a mess.
    Someone could write a good article (I think maybe someone has) about the crazy history of Renaissance on CD. I remember when I discovered them in the 90s, the only thing I would see at my local CD shop was a used copy of Tales of 1001 Nights. I would listen to it and think, "I really need to buy these guys' CDs." And I would wait and wait and none of their CDs ever appeared. I think I almost bought that comp half a dozen times because it was all I could find!
    I'm holding out for the Wilson-mixed 5.1 super-duper walletbuster special anniversary extra adjectives edition.

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    I bought this on cassette way back in the 80's, it was never a favourite. Some nice moments on it and some awful moments (Only Angels Have Wings). I did buy it on cd but was ultimately sold on due to lack of plays.

  24. #24
    Member Rajaz's Avatar
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    Being produced by David Hentschel gave me the wrong direction at this time thinking it was going to be as good as the Genesis related albums Duke, A Curious Feeling or Smallcreep's day but with a much different feel specially with Annie Haslam singing. But did not have any similarities at all, no bombastic sounds or epic songs and was a preview of what was to come.

    And that was Camera Camera that I did not even bother buying, ironically it was the only time I saw Renaissance live in Glen Cove, Long Island (1981).

    It wasn't until Tuscany came out in 2000 that renewed my interest in the band and I hope it gets the reissue treatment like this but is a long shot.

  25. #25
    Member BarryLI's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rajaz View Post
    Being produced by David Hentschel gave me the wrong direction at this time thinking it was going to be as good as the Genesis related albums Duke, A Curious Feeling or Smallcreep's day but with a much different feel specially with Annie Haslam singing. But did not have any similarities at all, no bombastic sounds or epic songs and was a preview of what was to come.

    And that was Camera Camera that I did not even bother buying, ironically it was the only time I saw Renaissance live in Glen Cove, Long Island (1981).

    It wasn't until Tuscany came out in 2000 that renewed my interest in the band and I hope it gets the reissue treatment like this but is a long shot.
    Lived in GC at that time, where was the show?

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