ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

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ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby LarryD » Mon Mar 12, 2018 6:04 pm

I didn't even know this was in the works .... thanks to Ken tipping me off to this one. Grabbed this one immediately from The Lasers Edge for $20. It's worth every penny imo. I'm a chump for two things : 1) Concept disc 2) Remasters (that are well done). Count "The Visitor" as one in the well done category of re-masters, not to mention one of my favorite discs of all time ....... if you are already a fan, no need to jump into the history here...... so what does the remaster sound like ? Here it is in a nutshell.......and I noticed this immediately upon hitting PLAY.

- wider sound stage
- vocals more up front, can easily hear the words now
- either added sound effects, or ones that we couldn't hear before. Right off the bat, I heard things in the background that I never heard before.
- deeper and cleaner bass
- deeper kick drum
- little bit edgy in the highs, but that is to be expected in a remaster
- 2nd bonus disc with 6 songs from The Visitor played live, acoustic, or demo

Playing this disc again brought back so many memories of that time -- and especially in the time of my Neo-Prog hunting days...... this disc was like the pyramid of what I was looking for in music .... and in playing it now, it still holds true......an absolute masterpiece imo........ Now if only Arena would get out again and do a show of "The Visitor" re-visited and not just play in Quebec and head back to England .... yeah I know pipe dream .......

My only bitch of this package is this .... and I'm not trying to be funny. It's a double folded digi-pak (which I can't stand to begin with), but on the side of the package, the title of the disc is missing ..... YES I kid not ..... if you put it in your rack, you won't be able to tell what the disc is .... no writing on it whatsoever........ it's blank and green !!!!!! yeah yeah yeah -- small caveat to pay for this gem, but still ... come on Clive.........

In the end -- it's ultimately one of the greatest concept discs ever written imo ...... if you're a fan, do not hesitate.

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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby ToddS » Tue Mar 13, 2018 7:40 pm

Thanks for the report bro. Looks like a winner.
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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby Random Axe » Tue Mar 13, 2018 10:16 pm

I'll have to relisten to this because I found pretty much all Arena bland and void of melody and have never really liked any of their albums. I'm willing to try again, though. perhaps Ive gotten smarter

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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby GaetanL » Tue Mar 13, 2018 10:27 pm

They will play this album entirely...

http://www.arenaband.co.uk/arena-double ... tour-2018/
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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby LarryD » Wed Mar 14, 2018 7:31 am

GaetanL wrote:They will play this album entirely...

http://www.arenaband.co.uk/arena-double ... tour-2018/


*** Of course they are..... I'd forgotten about that show....... they just couldn't add a few more dates in the US for us, could they ......... I'd say I would make that road trip, but things are crazy right now for me to say yes........ damn !!!!!!!

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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby Stevie WOnder » Thu Mar 15, 2018 3:21 pm

The visitor from beginning to end! In my own town!!! Yeah baby!!! :mrgreen:
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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby LarryD » Sat Mar 31, 2018 9:26 am

Like Claus is surprised about hearing crickets on that classic thrash band he posted on -- I'm double surprised that no one is biting on this one either....... one of the great Neo-Prog classics of all time ......and no one cares about the re-master ?

I think we've done it before, but I'm going to resurrect it again ..... I want to do a re-master post and find out what everyone's thoughts are on the subject..... I, and a couple of others, seem to be ecstatic about re-masters, but the rest don't seem to care...... I'll do up a separate post on that, no need to respond here ...... just scratching my head on this one .......

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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby introclaus » Sat Mar 31, 2018 9:44 am

LarryD wrote:Like Claus is surprised about hearing crickets on that classic thrash band he posted on -- I'm double surprised that no one is biting on this one either....... one of the great Neo-Prog classics of all time ......and no one cares about the re-master ?

I think we've done it before, but I'm going to resurrect it again ..... I want to do a re-master post and find out what everyone's thoughts are on the subject..... I, and a couple of others, seem to be ecstatic about re-masters, but the rest don't seem to care...... I'll do up a separate post on that, no need to respond here ...... just scratching my head on this one .......


In general I think remastered are fine if we are talking about an album that didn’t sound too great to begin with because of how it was done first (ehmmm Nevermore), or because of age (the Deathrow album), but something fairly new that already sounded great in the first place such as the Arena disc won’t see me spending my $$$.
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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby LarryD » Sat Mar 31, 2018 3:04 pm

I
n general I think remastered are fine if we are talking about an album that didn’t sound too great to begin with because of how it was done first (ehmmm Nevermore), or because of age (the Deathrow album), but something fairly new that already sounded great in the first place such as the Arena disc won’t see me spending my $$$.


*** I can agree with this ..... but, the disc is 20 years old. The sound on it was very good ......lots of people say that, and I agree. But, the re-master brings out the subtle nuances that maybe technology couldn't bring out (or maybe it was the budget at the time), and now when I listen to it, it's like a whole new disc. The excitement that feeling like this generates is well worth the $20 to buy it all over again .......... :wink:

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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby introclaus » Sat Mar 31, 2018 3:52 pm

LarryD wrote:I
n general I think remastered are fine if we are talking about an album that didn’t sound too great to begin with because of how it was done first (ehmmm Nevermore), or because of age (the Deathrow album), but something fairly new that already sounded great in the first place such as the Arena disc won’t see me spending my $$$.


*** I can agree with this ..... but, the disc is 20 years old. The sound on it was very good ......lots of people say that, and I agree. But, the re-master brings out the subtle nuances that maybe technology couldn't bring out (or maybe it was the budget at the time), and now when I listen to it, it's like a whole new disc. The excitement that feeling like this generates is well worth the $20 to buy it all over again .......... :wink:



20 years isn’t that much :) it sounded great then so buying it again for “nuanced” isn’t justifiable for me, sorry.
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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby Sir Exar Kun » Sat Mar 31, 2018 4:57 pm

While a fantastic album to be sure, I never thought this needed a remaster in the first place, so much like the Haken reissues I felt no need to order it up.

Immortal? was my first introduction to Arena, but "The Visitor" is without question the high water mark. Must own material here.
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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby ToddS » Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:26 am

Same here. Didn't feel the need for a remaster, but I still have an eye on it, and may grab it at some point.
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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby ToddS » Sun Apr 01, 2018 10:27 am

Sir Exar Kun wrote:While a fantastic album to be sure, I never thought this needed a remaster in the first place, so much like the Haken reissues I felt no need to order it up.

Immortal? was my first introduction to Arena, but "The Visitor" is without question the high water mark. Must own material here.


Aquarius is well worth it imo. Visions not so much.
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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby LarryD » Mon Apr 02, 2018 8:51 am

At the risk of appearing like I'm trying to make everyone shell out $20 for "The Visitor" .... I should write my post on re-masters and take it out of this thread.

I am in agreement with everything everyone says about a re-master. There are good ones, and unnecessary ones. I don't think there are any bad ones, except in maybe dissecting a particular one, and pointing to maybe something like excessive bass, vocals out front too much, etc .....

But strictly speaking "The Visitor" -- yes it's only ( and I say only hehehe ), 20 years old - but the difference in sound quality and nuances are very apparent, noticeable and welcome to these ears. I'm almost inclined to say that some things were added in to the mix, unless they were already there and they are just now being heard for the first time ....

Let's look at quite a younger disc - Haken / Aquarius and Visions. Both are great sounding discs to begin with, and very young for a re-master. I'm sure some are rolling their eyes asking why would a band do this so soon ? One listen to Aquarius on a good system and you will have your answer. Visions, not so much as that was a very good sounding disc from the start. So really there is much debate on this subject, I'll start the new thread on re-masters in a few minutes and we can go from there ......

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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby introclaus » Mon Apr 02, 2018 11:29 am

LarryD wrote:Let's look at quite a younger disc - Haken / Aquarius and Visions. Both are great sounding discs to begin with, and very young for a re-master. I'm sure some are rolling their eyes asking why would a band do this so soon ? One listen to Aquarius on a good system and you will have your answer. Visions, not so much as that was a very good sounding disc from the start. So really there is much debate on this subject, I'll start the new thread on re-masters in a few minutes and we can go from there ......


Most likely this was done because they changed record labels ... we did that back in the day with all the first 4 Manticora albums when we went to a new label - that way we can make sure that the new fans pick up the "new" version rather than the "old" one. It's not as much meant to get older fans to buy the album all over (although the band obviously won't complain if that happens), but only to "gently steer new fans in the right direction".
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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby gazinwales » Tue Apr 10, 2018 3:50 pm

I was looking at getting this direct from the band, but prices are pretty steep to say the least.

Anyhow, new album is out in a few weeks, just got Unquiet Sky, and it's better than expected.

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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby LarryD » Tue Apr 10, 2018 6:11 pm

gazinwales wrote:I was looking at getting this direct from the band, but prices are pretty steep to say the least.
Anyhow, new album is out in a few weeks, just got Unquiet Sky, and it's better than expected.


*** I agree - I paid $20 for mine, and I guess it covers all of the new design as well as the re-master. I am baffled at the lack of enthusiasm of grabbing this re-master, but I guess we discussed that in other posts...... it does seem more expensive that re-masters from other bands, but what the re-master did for the disc for me was well worth the price......that and it being one of my favorite Neo-Prog discs of all time ......

I didn't grab "The Unquiet Sky" until a year after it came out - I was down about Rob Sowden leaving the band, and it took several people here to convince me to grab it....I did, and it's very good, although not in the "great" category I expect from Arena. Releasing that crappy 20th anniversary show DVD (meaning crappy quality) didn't help matters for me trying to get used to the new singer.......will definitely check out the new disc, I think the years with this band are starting to get to me though ....... :(

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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby introclaus » Tue Apr 10, 2018 7:50 pm

LarryD wrote:I didn't grab "The Unquiet Sky" until a year after it came out - I was down about Rob Sowden leaving the band, and it took several people here to convince me to grab it....I did, and it's very good, although not in the "great" category I expect from Arena. Releasing that crappy 20th anniversary show DVD (meaning crappy quality) didn't help matters for me trying to get used to the new singer.......will definitely check out the new disc, I think the years with this band are starting to get to me though ....... :(


Both “The Unquiet Sky” and “The Seventh Degree of Separation” are awesome. I didn’t think I was gonna like them as much as I do, but every time I go back and listen to them I like them more and more. In fact, I think those are the best Arena discs since The Visitor. Paul Manzi is a reall good vocalist and fit this band perfectly.
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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby Sir Exar Kun » Wed Apr 11, 2018 8:24 am

I am baffled at the lack of enthusiasm of grabbing this re-master, but I guess we discussed that in other posts......


I am baffled that things like the new Threshold and Lords of Black AREN'T doing it for you, yet every time something gets remastered you're performing cartwheels about it..... :)
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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby LarryD » Wed Apr 11, 2018 8:26 am

Sir Exar Kun wrote:
I am baffled at the lack of enthusiasm of grabbing this re-master, but I guess we discussed that in other posts......


I am baffled that things like the new Threshold and Lords of Black AREN'T doing it for you, yet every time something gets remastered you're performing cartwheels about it..... :)


***Touche. But that's because they are re-mastering discs that I love. :wink:

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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby GaetanL » Wed Apr 11, 2018 1:18 pm

introclaus wrote:In general I think remastered are fine if we are talking about an album that didn’t sound too great to begin with because of how it was done first (ehmmm Nevermore), or because of age (the Deathrow album), but something fairly new that already sounded great in the first place such as the Arena disc won’t see me spending my $$$.

This is pretty much what I think also.

I love this album. The only reason for me to buy this again would have been really interesting bonus like an unreleased track (not only a different version of an already released track). This is not the case here.
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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby GaetanL » Wed Apr 11, 2018 1:53 pm

GaetanL wrote:(not only a different version of an already released track)

Sometimes they interest me also...
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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby ToddS » Wed Apr 11, 2018 5:42 pm

For me, it all comes down to does it sound better. That’s it.
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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby LarryD » Thu Apr 12, 2018 11:53 am

ToddS wrote:For me, it all comes down to does it sound better. That’s it.


*** I can confirm this part....... :wink:

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Re: ARENA / The Visitor - remastered.......WOW !!!!!

Postby gazinwales » Fri Apr 13, 2018 4:52 pm

Just heard the new 2 min trailer for the new album, it's on the band's official FB page.
All I can say is wow, a glorious return to the prog heavy, keyboard ladened sounds of classic Arena.


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