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Category:    Home > Reviews > Rock > Pop > Dance > Electronica > Concert > Compilation > Erasure Total Pop! Deluxe Box (Rhino/3 CD + 1 DVD Box Set)

Erasure Total Pop! Deluxe Box (Rhino/3 CD + 1 DVD Box Set)

 

Picture: B- Sound: B Extras: B- Music: B-

 

 

Erasure is a band, much like Depeche Mode, that never remained as strong in mainstream music when compared to how well the band continued on in Europe and around the world. For some, Erasure is almost like a happier version of Depeche Mode, which this new box set called Total Pop! will quickly demonstrate through 40 of their hits just how much material this band has stretched across 25 years and counting.

 

We covered their release of Union Street when it arrives a few years ago, you can read that review here.

 

This box set includes everything that a true Erasure fan could really want, including the first two discs, which contain their 40 hits, plus the 2009 remix of the song Always. These have been remastered from the original tapes, so we have to assume that this is the best version of these songs in one location, the hits include Who Needs Love Like That, Oh L Amour, Chains of Love, Take a Chance on Me, Always, Rock Me Gently, Solsbury Hill, In My Arms, and several other of their most memorable pieces of work. In addition though we have a third disc, which contains all live recordings taken from 1987-2007 and showcases the band through 2 decades on various tours, the song list here includes tracks like Am I Right? Piano Song, Oh L Amour, and is a good sampling of the transformation of the band not only in their stage presence, style, and delivery, but also in their maturity of material and ability to execute songs in different arrangements based on the venue and the era.

 

This is further evident in the DVD bonus disc, which contains Erasure at the BBC from 1986-2005, plus recordings from the Top of the Pops in 1988, 1991, 1994, 1997, 2003, and 2005, each time we get a more evolved look for the band, which demonstrates that while time may move on and change the physical appearance of the band, the sound is still unique to them and the professionalism of the band has evolved to newer heights as the formation found its overall bearing. There are a few other bonus appearances on this as well, all of the recordings are solid performances, but are of course dated accordingly and both the video and sound quality change accordingly, but never too drastic.

 

In addition to an already packed box set full of three great CDs and a awesome bonus disc, there is also a great colorful booklet inserted into the set that features information about the band, and interview section, and great photography work through the years capturing the band all around the world, which makes for a formidable extra and certainly justifies getting this set along with the great content on the discs. The only thing missing here would be the bands music videos!

 

From a technical point of view, the set is newly remastered and the PCM CD sound is on par with any remastering that we have heard to date on CD, although wed love to get our hands on an SACD recording of the band at some point in time, a few years ago Depeche Mode released their catalog in Europe on SACD and greatly improved the sonic vibrancy of their older masters and brought forth a new dimension to their music. The DVD and live CD fare a bit different as we experience a bit of variance in the overall recording since we are talking about 2 decades worth, the live material doesnt detract too much from the intended nature of the songs, but fullness and warmth of the studio recordings are clearly the way to hear the band, the quality on the video is also up and down, the older Top of the Pops is more washed out and feels degraded, the newer material looks better, but is still hindered by the standards of DVD.

 

Fans will enjoy this set regardless, new and curious consumers may find that this is a great way to catch up on a band that has been around much longer than most would assume and have more material out there than the U.S. radiowaves would allow us to believe. Catch up now!

 

For even more Erasure, try this link to their Live In Cologne DVD:

 

http://www.fulvuedrive-in.com/review/3114/The+Erasure+Show+-+Live+In+Cologn

 

 

- Nate Goss


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