Virgin Records has released four Hybrid SACDs by David Bowie and Roxy Music in the U.S. market. The SACDs were released earlier this year in Europe on the EMI (David Bowie) and Virgin (Roxy Music) labels.
Even though the Bowie SACDs originated on the EMI label in Europe, and retain the same packaging and markings in their U.S. SACD release (including a “Made In Holland” sticker on the back of each SACD), they are officially on the Virgin Records label for this U.S. release.
3 David Bowie Albums on Hybrid SACD
The three new David Bowie SACDs are “Let’s Dance”, “Scary Monsters (and Super Creeps)” and “Ziggy Stardust”. All three feature Stereo CD Audio and Stereo SACD tracks mastered by Peter Mew at EMI’s famous Abbey Road Studios.
The Ziggy Stardust SACD is a Hybrid Surround Sound SACD. It features a new 5.1 Surround Sound mix by Ken Scott and Paul Hicks at Abbey Road Studios. Hearing Bowie favorites like “Starman” in 5.1 Surround is a treat. One hopes that if there are to be further Bowie SACDs from EMI, they should also be given an added 5.1 Surround Mix like this one.
- David Bowie – Let’s Dance (Virgin Records/EMI 7243-543319-2)
- David Bowie – Scary Monsters (Virgin Records/EMI 7243-543318-2)
- David Bowie – Ziggy Stardust (Virgin Records/EMI 7243-521900-2)Roxy Music’s Avalon SACD
Roxy Music and SACD fans will be very pleased to hear that this Virgin Records U.S. SACD release also includes the 21st Anniversary Edition of Avalon by Roxy Music. This Hybrid Surround Sound SACD was initially released in Europe in July and has rapidly become one of the year’s most popular Surround SACDs. In fact, it was recently nominated by the editors at High Fidelity Review as one of five such high resolution audio discs for a HFR Reader’s Choice Award (see link below). To be able to pick up a copy for only $15.99 at Best Buy these days is indeed good news.
- Roxy Music – Avalon: 21st Anniversary Edition (Virgin Records ROXYSACD9)Times Are Changing
Importing Hybrid SACDs that were initially available in Europe marks quite a switch from the early days of the SACD format. At that time, almost all of the big name artist SACDs were initially marketed in the U.S. and were later brought to the European and Japanese markets.
In the last year, we’ve seen the addition of Hybrid SACD replication capacity in Europe, Japan and Hong Kong from Sony, Sonopress (2nd Hybrid replication line) and Viva. The result has been new SACD titles by local artists and more recently major name artists that appear in these markets ahead of the U.S.
SACD fans have sought out these SACDs through several web sites including Amazon.Fr (France), Amazon.co.uk (U.K.), Amazon.de (Germany), HMV.co.jp (Japan), MalMusic.Com (Hong Kong) and Super Audio CD Shop (Austria). EMI’s decision to bring the Bowie and Roxy Music SACDs directly to the U.S. market recognizes the increasing interest in these titles as well as a desire to sell them directly vs. via overseas web site sales.
More SACD Releases from EMI Europe
While Virgin Records in the U.S. brings the three David Bowie albums and Roxy Music’s Avalon Hybrid SACDs to the U.S., their peers at EMI Europe continue to release interesting catalog material on Hybrid SACD. The latest albums in this category include four Hybrid Stereo SACDs by Simple Minds and Talk Talk.
We’ll have to watch and see if these albums (and some of the earlier EMI SACDs from groups including Spandau Ballet and David Bridie) make it to the U.S. market directly in the months ahead. In the mean time, these new SACDs will be available to U.S. fans only via European web sites that carry SACDs.
- Simple Minds – New Gold Dream (Virgin SACDV 2230)
- Simple Minds – Once Upon A Time (Virgin SACDV 2364)
- Talk Talk – Spirit Of Eden (EMI UK 7243-591455-2)
- Talk Talk – The Colour of Spring (EMI UK 7243-591452-2)Availability
The three David Bowie Hybrid SACDs from EMI and the Roxy Music Avalon Hybrid SACD from Virgin are now available in record stores in the U.S. including Best Buy and Tower Records. They are also available from web sites in the U.S. that carry SACDs including Acoustic Sounds, CD Universe, Elusive Disc, Music Direct and Red Trumpet.