To Understand: The Early Recordings of Matthew Sweet

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
Universal's reissue label Hip-O is distinguished by its willingness to license recordings from other record companies to create definitive compilations. This collection, unlike other Hip-O releases, is not the "ultimate" Matthew Sweet, but rather the ultimate early Matthew Sweet, which is to say, Matthew Sweet prior to the commercial breakthrough he enjoyed with his 1991 album Girlfriend. Compilation producer Mike Ragogna is able to use Sweet's 1989 album, Earth, released on A&M Records, now part of the Universal catalog, and various B-sides recorded around the same time as that album, as an anchor for the collection, occupying ten of the 22 tracks. But Hip-O has ...
See more details below
Available through our Marketplace sellers.
Other sellers (CD)
  • All (1) from $6.99   
  • Used (1) from $6.99   
Close
Sort by
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Note: Marketplace items are not eligible for any BN.com coupons and promotions
$6.99
Seller since 2007

Feedback rating:

(204)

Condition:

New — never opened or used in original packaging.

Like New — packaging may have been opened. A "Like New" item is suitable to give as a gift.

Very Good — may have minor signs of wear on packaging but item works perfectly and has no damage.

Good — item is in good condition but packaging may have signs of shelf wear/aging or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Acceptable — item is in working order but may show signs of wear such as scratches or torn packaging. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Used — An item that has been opened and may show signs of wear. All specific defects should be noted in the Comments section associated with each item.

Refurbished — A used item that has been renewed or updated and verified to be in proper working condition. Not necessarily completed by the original manufacturer.

Very Good
2002-10-01 Audio CD Very Good Minor use wear.

Ships from: Poughkeepsie, NY

Usually ships in 1-2 business days

  • Canadian
  • Standard, 48 States
  • Standard (AK, HI)
  • Express, 48 States
  • Express (AK, HI)
Page 1 of 1
Showing All
Close
Sort by

Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - William Ruhlmann
Universal's reissue label Hip-O is distinguished by its willingness to license recordings from other record companies to create definitive compilations. This collection, unlike other Hip-O releases, is not the "ultimate" Matthew Sweet, but rather the ultimate early Matthew Sweet, which is to say, Matthew Sweet prior to the commercial breakthrough he enjoyed with his 1991 album Girlfriend. Compilation producer Mike Ragogna is able to use Sweet's 1989 album, Earth, released on A&M Records, now part of the Universal catalog, and various B-sides recorded around the same time as that album, as an anchor for the collection, occupying ten of the 22 tracks. But Hip-O has licensed some tracks by the Buzz of Delight, Sweet's early-'80s duo with drummer David Pierce, including several that were previously unreleased from DB Records, as well as four tracks from his 1986 Columbia Records album Inside, a track from the Golden Palominos' disc The Blast of Silence, and, from I.R.S. Records, a previously unreleased demo by Sweet and R.E.M.'s Michael Stipe performing under the name Community Trolls. The result is a fascinating examination of Sweet's musical development. The Buzz of Delight tracks are very much in the Athens, GA, alternative rock sound of the early '80s, reminiscent of R.E.M.'s recordings of the same period. The tracks from Inside find Sweet going for a heavily produced pop sheen with plenty of shimmering echo, similar to the kind of one-man-band recordings Dwight Twilley had been making a few years earlier. The Earth tracks look forward to the better-realized Girlfriend, even concluding with a demo version of that album's title song. And the Stipe collaboration is an appropriate coda. Sweet fans should rejoice at this release, not only for its valuable rarities, but also for the portrait it provides of his promising early work.
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • Release Date: 10/1/2002
  • Label: Fontana A&M
  • UPC: 731455622225
  • Catalog Number: 556222

Tracks

Disc 1
  1. 1 Southern - Buzz of Delight (3:24)
  2. 2 Christmas - Buzz of Delight (3:25)
  3. 3 Briar Rose - Buzz of Delight (3:29)
  4. 4 The Story of Love - Buzz of Delight (3:19)
  5. 5 Ninety-Six Sheets - Buzz of Delight (2:40)
  6. 6 Quiet Her (3:28)
  7. 7 Blue Fools (3:42)
  8. 8 We Lose Another Day (3:11)
  9. 9 Save Time For Me (4:12)
  10. 10 Something Becomes Nothing (5:04)
  11. 11 Easy (4:23)
  12. 12 When I Feel Again (3:34)
  13. 13 Wind and the Sun (3:41)
  14. 14 Love (4:37)
  15. 15 Vertigo (3:13)
  16. 16 Having a Bad Dream (3:21)
  17. 17 To Understand (3:32)
  18. 18 You Gotta Love Me (3:52)
  19. 19 Silent City (2:43)
  20. 20 Divine Intervention (4:16)
  21. 21 Good Friend (3:33)
  22. 22 Tainted Obligation - Community Trolls (3:06)
Read More Show Less

Album Credits

Performance Credits
Matthew Sweet Primary Artist, Acoustic Guitar, Bass, Guitar, Harmonica, Piano, Electric Guitar, Rhythm Guitar, Keyboards, Vocals, Melodica, Bells, Casio
Robert Quine Guitar, Electric Guitar, Rhythm Guitar
Syd Straw Background Vocals
Trip Shakespeare Background Vocals
Bernie Worrell Organ, Hammond Organ, DX-7
Bill Laswell Bass
Chris Stamey Bass, Guitar
Peter Blegvad Guitar, 12-string Guitar
Leah Kunkel Background Vocals
Richard Lloyd Guitar
Gary Lucas Dobro, Guitar, Slide Guitar, wah wah guitar
Rusty Anderson Guitar
Howard Benson Keyboards
Anton Fier Drums
Jody Harris Guitar, Rhythm Guitar
David Kahne Acoustic Guitar, Keyboards
Debbi Peterson Background Vocals
Vicki Peterson Background Vocals
David Pierce Percussion, Drums, Bells, Vibes, Glass
Nicky Skopelitis Guitar, Soloist
Michael Stipe Accordion, Vocals
Alan Tarney Piano, Keyboards
Dan Wilson Background Vocals
John Munson Background Vocals
Freed Harm Guitar, Rhythm Guitar
Matt Wilson Background Vocals
Technical Credits
Don Dixon Producer
Matthew Sweet Programming, Producer, Contributor
Buzz of Delight Producer
Howard Benson Programming
Jeff Calder Liner Notes
Anton Fier Producer
Alan Glover Composer
Stephen Hague Producer
David Kahne Producer
John Keane Producer
Scott Litt Producer
Fred Maher Programming, Producer, drum programming
John T. Matarazzo Executive Producer
David Pierce drum programming
Alan Tarney Producer, drum programming
Erick Labson Mastering
Pat Lawrence Executive Producer
David "Leather Sax" Allen Jr. Producer
Ryan Rogers Art Direction
Robin Schwartz Licensing
Michele Horie Art Direction
Community Trolls Producer
Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star

(0)

4 Star

(0)

3 Star

(0)

2 Star

(0)

1 Star

(0)

Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation

Reminder:

  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

 
Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted October 1, 2010

    Well-drawn portrait of the artist as a young man

    Matthew Sweet's career can be neatly divided into three parts: before "Girlfriend," "Girlfriend," and after "Girlfriend." His transcendent 1991 power-pop album has remained the defining release of his career, and fed by the earlier musical explorations cataloged here, proved to be a peak that he's never fully duplicated. This pre-"Girlfriend" work charts the course to power-pop nirvana, beginning with his second band, Buzz of Delight, continuing through a pair of solo albums and culminating with on-the-cusp-of-"Girlfriend" demos. ¶ This collection skips his earliest released work, performed as a sideman (rather than a front-and-center singer-songwriter) with Lynda Stipe's band, Oh OK, but that work's residue can still be heard clearly. In particular, the DIY-sound forged by Oh OK and Mitch Easter in his North Carolina Drive-In studio, and the connections Sweet made with other Athens-based musicians (notably, Oh OK's original drummer, David Pierce), lingered on. ¶ This album picks up with Sweet's work with David Pierce in Buzz of Delight, represented here by two cuts from their out-of-print 1984 EP, "Soundcastles," and a trio of previously unreleased titles. The band's sound brings mind then-contemporaries such as Let's Active, Love Tractor, and The Neats. Chris Stamey dropped by the sessions that produced the unreleased tracks, lending a hint of the dB's sound. Of the unreleased tracks, "Briar Rose" is especially fine, most closely anticipating later directions. ¶ Sweet's Athens connections (specifically, REM manager Jefferson Holt) led to contact with Columbia Records, which in turn resulted in his first album deal as a solo artist. That album, 1986's "Inside" (represented here by tracks #6-9), found Sweet co-writing with Jules Shear and Pal Shazar, and recording with a large number of different producers, including David Kahne (Bangles, Romeo Void, Translator), Scott Litt (REM, dB's, Chris Stamey), Stephen Hague (Erasure, New Order, OMD, Pet Shop Boys), and Alan Tarney (A-ha's "Take On Me"). The synthesizer- and drum machine-heavy productions are too busy for their own good, though Sweet's songs are still charming, and his guitar playing occasionally finds its way to the surface. Overall, these tracks sound like talent strained through well-crafted mid-80s production cliches. ¶ The musical connections Sweet forged on "Inside" -- most notably drummers Anton Fier and Fred Maher -- would have a more lasting career impact than the album itself. Fier brought Sweet into his Golden Palominos' project, having him play bass on the road, and writing and singing the album track, "Something Becomes Nothing." Sweet's appearance with the Palominos cut much closer to the emotional bone than the producer makeovers of "Inside," and, once again, he made another important connection, this time with guitarist Richard Lloyd. ¶ Sweet's second solo album, "Earth" (on A&M), featured Maher as co-producer, "programmer," and occasional co-writer, with Lloyd, and Richard Quine adding superb guitar parts. Released in 1989, Sweet had yet to fully ground his sound, but he was heading in the right direction. Lloyd and Quine's guitars added considerable humanity, taking the edge of the programmed parts, and helping aim Sweet's music towards the pure power-pop sound to which he's would eventually surrender. Highlights of "Earth," represented here by tracks #11-16, include the wistful romanticism of "Easy" and the hummable melody of "Wind and the Sun." Sweet's lyrics could still be clunky, but at least they weren't buried under the mid-80s production gloss of his debut. ¶ Filling out this disc is a quartet of demo versions written and recorded entirely by Sweet during the "Earth" era, and released as rare, bonus B-sides. Most interesting to fans first engaged by

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews