Welcome to the 18th installment of my reviews for the discography of The Tragically Hip! These are tandem reviews with my amazing wife, Sarah who is posting her own over at Caught Me Gaming. So be sure to check out her write-up for Fully Completely Deluxe Edition right here!
As for me, I already reviewed the fantastic album that is Fully Completely which you can read right here. For this post, I’ll only be focusing on the remastering and the bonus material that is included on this 2CD Deluxe Edition set.
For the remaster of the original songs, I don’t have a 1992 disc to do a side-by-side comparison but I’m confident with saying that there isn’t much of a difference. This is not a remix like several of this album’s tunes got for the compilation, Yer Favourites. I’m sure there are people arguing on a message board somewhere over which version of Fully Completely sounds better. For me, all I can only say is that I don’t miss the original disc.
As for the two bonus songs, Radio Show and So Hard Done By, both are nice additions but I’ll be surprised if they blow your socks off. Both are tacked onto disc 1 following the album’s original tracklist. Radio Show was released as a single to promote this release, but by default, as it is the only song that had not been previously released in any form. It is a slow jam/groove tune that makes for a decent album track.
So Hard Done By is more upbeat than the slow and sleazy version that ended up on the Hip’s following album, Day For Night. I like the Day For Night version better but it is the one that I’m more accustomed to.
Really, the star of the Deluxe Edition is the live show that makes up disc 2. Recorded at the Horseshoe Tavern in Toronto on Sept 13th, 1992, almost a month prior to Fully Completely‘s release on October 6th. The Hip performs the album’s entire tracklist, albeit in a different order, with Twist My Arm from Road Apples being the only outsider.
And the performance is sensational in a down and gritty way.
You can hear the excitement in Gord Downie’s voice as he chatters between the songs, cracking some NSFW jokes, that the band is stoked to get these songs to the public. They know they have the goods and they can’t wait for people to hear it.
The show is delivered raw, which I approve of. I’ll take some bumps and bruises during a performance over a doctored one any day of the week. There are no major mistakes, just small kinks that need to be ironed out. Like how the acoustic guitar during Wheat Kings is slightly out of tune. It definitely adds some charm to those opening chords. But these songs are still relatively new to the band and their crew, so they have some warts. In contrast to the rest of the show, their performance of Twist My Arm is as slick as can be since they are more seasoned at playing it.
Imagine if more bands had a live show like this in their catalogue. AC/DC performing Back In Black, The Rolling Stones performing Let It Bleed, or Tom Petty performing Wildflowers in its entirety before their respective albums were released. My Lord, I want to live in that world. How do I get there?
Anyway, Fully Completely Deluxe Edition is beyond a reasonable price on amazon.ca for $13 moose bucks right now. It is a no-brainer. Sure, you can probably easily find an OG copy (At least here in Canada) for dirt cheap at a pawn shop or used music store, but you’ll be missing out on a great live set. Get this.
Be sure to check out Sarah’s write up! The Hip series returns next Sunday (Maybe) with Man Machine Poem!
Get More Hip from Canadian Grooves!
[EP Review] The Tragically Hip – Self Titled EP
[Album Review] Up To Here
[Album Review] Road Apples
[Album Review] Fully Completely
[Album Review] Day For Night
[Album Review] Trouble At The Henhouse
[Album Review] Live Between Us
[Album Review] Phantom Power
[Album Review] Music @ Work
[Album Review] In Violet Light
[Album Review] In Between Evolution
[DVD Review] That Night In Toronto
[Album Review] Yer Favourites
[Album Review] World Container
[Album Review] We Are the Same
[Album Review] Now for Plan A
[Blu-ray Review] Bobcaygeon
[Album Review] Fully Completely Deluxe Edition
[Album Review] Man Machine Poem
[Blu-ray Review] Long Time Running
[Blu-ray Review] A National Celebration
[EP Review] Saskadelphia
[Book Review] The Never-Ending Present | The Story Of Gord Downie And The Tragically Hip