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⭐ Official Review [Album]: "AS TIME GOES BY" (UICY-1060)

HOW WOULD YOU RATE THIS ALBUM?

  • ***** (BEST)

    Votes: 10 11.9%
  • ****

    Votes: 35 41.7%
  • ***

    Votes: 32 38.1%
  • **

    Votes: 5 6.0%
  • *

    Votes: 2 2.4%

  • Total voters
    84
Those Good Old Dreams sounds as good as an old lady teacher dragging her fingernails across a chalkboard! The upper echelons of A&M should’ve over ruled and consigned it to the vaults.
I was talking with a friend from Argentina the other day - also a Carpenters fan - about MIA. And I remembered, if my memory does not fail, Evelyn Wallace or whoever was writing the newsletter by then, comparing Top of the World with Those Good Old Dreams as becoming a potential hit. We agreed with my friend that TGOD was a good song, but I told her right there that what worked in 1973 was not going to work in 1981!
 
Mine is the Japanese disc, 2001. I got it, and the Rainbow Connection single the same day in August of that year. I remember I went on a road trip right after during the Labor Day weekend, and played it for some friends. We use Rainbow Connection at our dances. Excellent waltz! It has the new address for A&M listed as 2220 Colorado Ave. Santa Monica, Ca. 90404. Interesting.
 
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I just noticed, the first post in this thread says the release date was August 2002. I’m pretty sure this CD was out in Japan in August 2001 (and 2004 in the US).

It was definite released August 1. 2001. For years I thought it had been released in 2000, but that’s because Richard’s liner notes are dated from that year.
 
The Japanese obi itself has a date of August 1, 2001, not to mention the insert and CD itself with a 2001 copyright. I have fixed the initial post in this thread.
 
How interesting—per Discogs, there was a disc released in the US with a copyright date of 2001:


And according to the Japanese release, the CD was released August 1, 2001 in Japan.

Happy almost 20th birthday, As Time Goes By!
Based on some Internet research, I think this might be a Maylasian CD from 2001. Other Asian territories released the disc in 2001.

You can always tell the US edition from 2004 in that the hidden track, "And When He Smiles" is no longer hidden, and is listed in the track listing.
 
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...

Then we get one of highlights of the CD: Leave Yesterday Behind. A work lead that Richard finished in 1999. After the energetic space medley, LYB gives us a chance to catch our breath before the album rockets into its final couple of tracks.

...
Yes, but not only one of the highlights of the album - much more than that, one of the highlights of her recording career - this song, along with a small, select group of others like "One More Time", You're The One", "Where Do I Go From Here" and "A Place to Hideaway" showcase Karen's warm, resonant, calming, heart warming and soul-seeking (yes, I did say that) voice wonderfully - more so than most of their songs...songs apparently too good, or simply too beautiful, to be released as singles, or in some cases too gorgeous to even be included as album cuts when recorded...

On the small chance that there are some here who haven't seen it, here is the lovely Robert Patterson video of "Leave Yesterday Behind" and his comments about it:




In 1977, while on summer hiatus of "Three's Company," John Ritter costarred with Carrie Fisher in a made for tv movie "Leave Yesterday Behind," about a man who is paralyzed from the waist down following an accident while playing polo. He moves in with his grandfather and meets a young horse trainer (Carrie Fisher) and falls in love with her. Realizing that she is falling for him, too, he tries to hide his feelings, since he doesn't know what sort of future he can offer her. The film aired on ABC TV in May 1978. The title song was written by Fred Karlin (who co-wrote "For All We Know"), hence the similarities in the opening theme of both songs. In 1978, while working on their first Christmas album, Karen and Richard also recorded several songs for what was intended to have been a 10th-anniversary album, including "Leave Yesterday Behind.". But personal and health issues for both Karen and Richard prevented them from finishing the album and the songs were relegated to the vaults of A&M.

The song finally appeared on CD in 2001 (23 years later!) on the Japanese release of "As Time Goes By." The vocal track by Karen is a work lead intended to familiarize studio musicians with the song as well as Richard's arrangement of it. After a music track had been recorded, Karen would then have gone back into the studio and recorded a new vocal. This work lead as heard here shows Karen's dedication to her craft as she gives yet another heartfelt performance, even on a track which was never intended to have been heard by anyone. This recording features a performance by Tommy Morgan on the harmonica. He also played harmonica on the Carpenters recordings of "R
ainy Days and Mondays" and "Desperado".
 
Last night I had the CD playing again, and I had had the “random” option set for another CD, so my PS3 was playing the tracks out of order. And it was interesting how the PS3 played I Got Rhythm as the last track. Especially how Rhythm ends cold with the drums and other instruments just stopping. That was a really interesting way for the CD to end, and I was thinking, what if, besides moving “And When He Smiles” was Rhythm the final hidden track, what would others think?
 
^Works well as an album closer. It's put together like a "showstopper".
 
I just recently purchased this album from Qobuz and i am enjoying it. My favorites are the carpenters/como medley and many others. Does anyone have any fun trivia regarding this album.
It's been years, but a long long time ago (in the mid-2000s), the unremixed/unremastered demo for "Nowhere Man" floated out there in Carpenter-land. Here's some info from Richard's website: Carpenters •• Nowhere Man

Some other oddities (not quite trivia tho), on a lot of these tracks that had TV studio vocal recordings (so--"Karen/Ella Medley" during Ella's parts, "Carpenters/Como Medley" during Perry's parts, and "Hits Medley '76," during Karen's parts), you can sometimes hear "doubling," especially when it comes to drum lines/the hi-hat. On "Hits Medley '76," there is a high-pitched noise throughout Karen's vocals. I'm only assuming it's from the TV audio. The high-pitched noise disappears during Tony Peluso's guitar solo, for instance. I wonder if Karen sang the lead vocals in the TV studio on this one, which wouldn't necessarily make sense to me because that's not how they usually did it, but it's always a possibility...

EDIT: Looking at the spectrogram, it seems like the high-pitched noise I'm hearing is right under 16 kHz. The line fades whenever Karen's lead vocal is not present and comes back roaring immediately when Karen's lead vocal comes in. I'm assuming now there was some sort of interference or tape oddity in the studio that caused this. On speakers it's not really noticeable, but when I have my earbuds on I notice it and I have a hard time listening to it. :\
 
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I also could be wrong, but I believe that "And When He Smiles" was recorded in a proper recording studio in mono, and the Carpenters lip-synced to it on stage; that's why there's no applause in the intro or outro of this recording. But for this album, Richard overlaid a new recording of an orchestra in stereo, which gives it that nice stereo sound stage. It makes you almost forget that the rest of the song was recorded and mixed in mono for TV!
 
I also could be wrong, but I believe that "And When He Smiles" was recorded in a proper recording studio in mono, and the Carpenters lip-synced to it on stage; that's why there's no applause in the intro or outro of this recording. But for this album, Richard overlaid a new recording of an orchestra in stereo, which gives it that nice stereo sound stage. It makes you almost forget that the rest of the song was recorded and mixed in mono for TV!
"And When He Smiles" was recorded live on the soundstage. The way Richard got around the applause was the final musical figure—a pairing of 8th notes overdubbed prior to mix down, on his Wurlitzer—which allowed the native track to be pulled out of the mix before the audible applause.
 
I love this CD. It contains "Leave Yesterday Behind". I wanted that song since I heard it in the TV movie of the same name staring John Ritter. It was written (if Memory serves me right - by the same people who wrote "For All We Know." I did record the movie so I could hear it that way, but I was so disappointed that it wasn't included on one of the following albums. I also love "The Rainbow Connection". Didn't Karen sing it on one of their specials. I can see her standing by a booth where Kermit and Miss Piggy were bobbing about while she sang. It was also nice to hear "Nowhere Man.' I didn't know she had recorded it. I have a version by Vikki Carr which is terrific, so I knew how that song could be done. And of course "California Dreamin'." I don't consider these outtakes at all. They are wonderful performances. I would like to hear the original version of "You're Just In Love" that was performed by Karen and John Davidson though. I remember it from one of their specials.
 
I am so grateful to Richard for making the effort to clear all the copyright issues to get this project out. This album is a passion project and may be not as cohesive as previously albums Richard had put together.

This makes it extra special. I love that it echos different times in their recording career. I do not agree that it was necessary the only releasable material left. We all know very well that Karen being the singer she is, could knock out a take in such a magical way. Look at Now, trying to get that feeling again. Without a song is a prime example where Karen and Richard went in the studio and recorded all the parts on their own dime for their private collections. What a treat it was to hear the full version after the reduced track used on the magnificent compilation album Interpretations. Also having 3 previous unreleased tracks.

Leave yesterday behind is another highlight, a long with superstar/rainy days and Mondays. Rainbow Connection will always be the magical jewel for me and to have Richard reinterpret this on his new album, just shows what a fantastic song it is (I know Karen wasn't a fan of this song). Let's not forget the Ella and Karen duet, that is worth just buying this album for

I wish Richard had included some of his leads of tracks recorded during their career as track titles were often mentioned in the Carpenters fan club leading up to MIA sessions. Your just in love, being a prime example of how much I love a Richard lead.

I think this album was only appreciated by fans and unfortunately should of been a much bigger success. It is a solid album and I wish it hadn't ended being so far the last album Richard has released of the Carpenters. He picked great cuts and did something different, which was no different say than Passage or MIA. A mixture of styles and I applaud him for this.
 
I like the album/cd. I am (still) not a Medley fan.
I started re-reading the posts and was caught off-guard with this earlier reading:
"The only songs that don't do it for me are the 1960s demos."
That is interesting only because those are my two favorites on this cd ! Nowhere Man & California Dreaming.
The other one I love is And When He Smiles.
Do not care for Leave Yesterday Behind (mostly because of the arrangement).
But, thankfully we got these songs at all.
 
I like the album/cd. I am (still) not a Medley fan.
...
Do not care for Leave Yesterday Behind (mostly because of the arrangement).
What is it exactly about the arrangement that you don't care for? The prominent use of the harmonica?
 
I love this CD. It contains "Leave Yesterday Behind". I wanted that song since I heard it in the TV movie of the same name staring John Ritter. It was written (if Memory serves me right - by the same people who wrote "For All We Know." ...Fr

From Richard's website:

This song [words and music] was written for a made-for-television movie of the same name by Fred Karlin, who wrote the music to 1970’s “For All We Know,” of which it is reminiscent. Recorded in 1978, the same year as the film, Karen’s vocal is a “work lead”, sung so bassist and drummer could react to the melody and not just read a rhythm chart. The recording was not completed until 1999, when I added the orchestration and backing vocals.

A "work lead" indeed...or polished masterpiece - for Karen, the same thing...
 
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^^Actually, the harmonica is one of the things I like most about the arrangement (I like the strings at the very end, too).
The drum 'beat' is virtually non-existent. Their is no 'oomph' to the song, no 'meat.'
The song, Leave Yesterday Behind, is simply too subdued for me (elevator music for sure),
although --as usual--Karen's vocals are beautiful.
 
There's a current joke (of sorts): a guy comes out of a supermarket and runs into a buddy and says, "I must be getting old - they're starting to play some really cool music in there!" The same thing might be going on in elevators. If this is "elevator music" lets hope it's a long ride to the top...and actually, when you think about it, maybe a third or more of the Carpenter catalog might be heard there...please, give me an album full of such "oomph-less" and "meatless" gems...
 
I love the harmonica on both Nowhere Man and LYB, that sound always goes well with Karen’s tones. LYB really needed work on its arrangement to lift it up with more punch, and Karen’s vocal (a work lead) would’ve had more oomph for sure if she did a final take. She sounds as pleasant ever but kind of sleepy which makes sense for basically a rough draft.
 
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