As I gear myself up for seeing The Monkees Present Mike and Micky concert next week, I thought I’d take out some Monkees CDs and give them a spin.
I happened to stumble across a nice little CD called “The Monkees Forever” which has a good selection of hits and also includes 2016’s “She Makes Me Laugh” from the terrific “Good Times” album so out it popped into my CD player.
This CD came out in 2016 for the Monkees 50th anniversary but at the time I really didn’t have much interest in it and I passed it up in favor of all the other groovy new Monkees releases that were being released that year.
Just a couple of months ago I happened upon the Japanese SHM-CD version of this album which includes the song “Star Collector” as a bonus track on sale no less so of course I finally took the bait and added this CD to my collection – and I’m certainly glad I did!
As I’ve posted before, I think the Japanese SHM-CDs (Super High Material) actually do have improved sound (at least on my CD player) and this CD is no exception. I can’t speak to the Rhino US version of this CD as I don’t own it but the SHM-CD of “Forever” sounds really wonderful!
I was expecting to be underwhelmed with the sound for some reason but was pleasantly surprised that this is now one of my favorite sounding Monkees discs. In fact it’s now my go-to disc for a quick Monkees fix and for that it fit the bill tonight just perfectly.
And since I was talking about Japanese Monkees CDs I thought I’d also include a really nice mini-Lp Blu-Spec CD of the “Davy Jones” album that came out in 2013.
This CD has the same track selection as the U.S. Friday Music disc called “Davy Jones: The Bell Recordings” but comes in a wonderful reproduction of the original Japanese Lp sleeve and also includes a small two-sided poster and booklet with the lyrics to the songs printed in Japanese.
Blu-Spec CDs are also supposed to be made with the same materials as a Blu-Ray disc which is said to enhance the sound quality as compared to regular CDs.
In my experience the Blu-Spec CDs don’t have as much of a sound difference as the SHM-CDs but this disc does indeed sound sweet and you just can’t beat the lovely packaging.
I used to play the “Davy Jones” album quite often as a kid so it’s really wonderful to rediscover this album again in the digital age.
Not every track works but songs like “Road to Love”, “Rainy Jane”, “Girl” (from the Brady Bunch episode but presented here in its 45 mix) and especially “Look at Me” are really good songs and Davy Jones was at the height of his vocal powers for these 1971 sessions.
I think there’s enough solid songs on this album to highly recommend it and if you’re a Davy Jones fan then it’s a must buy either in the regular U.S. version or this terrific Japanese mini-lp version.
So in honor of the current Monkees concert tour here’s a look at these two wonderful Japanese CDs with pictures (as usual) for those who’ve never had a chance to see them.
If you’ve never owned these CDs the Japanese versions aren’t hard to find and in my opinion are certainly worth the hunt.
Until next time be well and … Here they come …