The copy we are selling is similar to the one pictured above.
Side One: Mint Minus to Mint Minus Minus*
Side Two: Mint Minus to Mint Minus Minus
- A stunning pressing with Shootout Winning Triple Plus (A+++) sound or close to it from first note to the last - exceptionally quiet vinyl too
- One of the best copies to hit the site in years, with sides that are full-bodied, lively and present, with a solid bottom end
- More important, here is all the rock and roll energy that would simply be missing in action on any reissue made these days
- It's tough to find good Grand Funk sound on audiophile quality playing surfaces, but these sides did the trick
- 4 1/2 stars: "Sonically, the record was sharp and detailed and the band's playing was far tighter and more accomplished... The album's title song, an autobiographical account of life on the road written and sung by Brewer, was released in advance of the album and became a gold-selling number one hit, Grand Funk's first really successful single."
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*NOTE: Track 3 on side 1 ("Creepin'") plays closer to Mint Minus Minus.
If you don't already know, take our word for it: not many copies of this record will have much in the way of good sound. Grand Funk was not a band marketed to audiophiles. Their recordings tend to be crude and compressed, more radio-friendly than home-stereo-friendly. This copy is a BIG step up from every other that we played. You'll have a very hard time finding another one with two sides as good as this!
This vintage Capitol yellow vinyl pressing has the kind of Tubey Magical Midrange that modern records can barely BEGIN to reproduce. Folks, that sound is gone and it sure isn't showing signs of coming back. If you love hearing INTO a recording, actually being able to "see" the performers, and feeling as if you are sitting in the studio with the band, this is the record for you. It's what vintage all analog recordings are known for -- this sound.
If you exclusively play modern repressings of vintage recordings, I can say without fear of contradiction that you have never heard this kind of sound on vinyl. Old records have it -- not often, and certainly not always -- but maybe one out of a hundred new records do, and those are some pretty long odds.
What The Best Sides Of We're An American Band Have To Offer Is Not Hard To Hear
- The biggest, most immediate staging in the largest acoustic space
- The most Tubey Magic, without which you have almost nothing. CDs give you clean and clear. Only the best vintage vinyl pressings offer the kind of Tubey Magic that was on the tapes in 1973
- Tight, note-like, rich, full-bodied bass, with the correct amount of weight down low
- Natural tonality in the midrange -- with all the instruments having the correct timbre
- Transparency and resolution, critical to hearing into the three-dimensional studio space
No doubt there's more but we hope that should do for now. Playing the record is the only way to hear all of the qualities we discuss above, and playing the best pressings against a pile of other copies under rigorously controlled conditions is the only way to find a pressing that sounds as good as this one does.
What We're Listening For On We're An American Band
- Energy for starters. What could be more important than the life of the music?
- Then: presence and immediacy. The vocals aren't "back there" somewhere, lost in the mix. They're front and center where any recording engineer worth his salt would put them.
- The Big Sound comes next -- wall to wall, lots of depth, huge space, three-dimensionality, all that sort of thing.
- Then transient information -- fast, clear, sharp attacks, not the smear and thickness so common to these LPs.
- Tight punchy bass -- which ties in with good transient information, also the issue of frequency extension further down.
- Next: transparency -- the quality that allows you to hear deep into the soundfield, showing you the space and air around all the instruments.
- Extend the top and bottom and voila, you have The Real Thing -- an honest to goodness Hot Stamper.
Mint Minus Minus is about as quiet as any vintage pressing will play, and since only the right vintage pressings have any hope of sounding good on this album, that will most often be the playing condition of the copies we sell. (The copies that are even a bit noisier get listed on the site are seriously reduced prices or traded back in to the local record stores we shop at.)
Those of you looking for quiet vinyl will have to settle for the sound of other pressings and Heavy Vinyl reissues, purchased elsewhere of course as we have no interest in selling records that don't have the vintage analog magic of these wonderful recordings.
If you want to make the trade-off between bad sound and quiet surfaces with whatever Heavy Vinyl pressing might be available, well, that's certainly your prerogative, but we can't imagine losing what's good about this music -- the size, the energy, the presence, the clarity, the weight -- just to hear it with less background noise.
- We're An American Band
- Stop Lookin' Back
- Black Licorice
- The Railroad
- Ain't Got Nobody
- Walk Like a Man (You Can Call Me Your Man)
- Loneliest Rider
AMG 4 1/2 Star Review
Sonically, the record was sharp and detailed and the band's playing was far tighter and more accomplished. Most important, someone, whether the band or Rundgren, decided that gruff-voiced drummer Don Brewer should be employed as a lead singer as often as guitarist Mark Farner. Brewer also contributed more as a songwriter, and the results were immediate. The album's title song, an autobiographical account of life on the road written and sung by Brewer, was released in advance of the album and became a gold-selling number one hit, Grand Funk's first really successful single.