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Forum: Collecting Items

Topic: B-Sides of Siamese Dream Tape research

This topic contains 7 replies, has 1,073 voices, and was last updated by Profile photo of Arthur Arthur 9 years, 6 months ago.

On Arthur wrote:

What follows is a long piece. It is the report, and some sidenotes, recently created for a collector that bought this B-Sides tape a while back. This is how we SPfreaks try to handle member questions and do some proper research… With thanks to the collector trusting us with his precious tape, and also with many thanks to my fellow researchers. Enjoy reading!

Analysis of a Smashing Pumpkins tape, done by 3 SPfreaks

http://www.spfreaks.com/Default.aspx?pa … &item=1096

Some tape-related facts

Name on tape: B-Sides From Siamese Dream
Current owner \"X\", bought from \"Y\", that sold it as a Virgin inhouse demo tape in Spring 2007.
Note: We all consider \"Y\" being a very trustworthy source for rare Smashing Pumpkins material.

Tracklist on j-card

01. – Obscured
02. – Whirl
03. – Kitty Kat (Distorto Mix)
04. – Apathy
05. – Blew Away (Version #1)
06. – Blew Away (Version #2)
07. – Pissant
08. – French Movie Theme
09. – Purr Shnickety
10. – Glynis
11. – Kitty Kat
12. – Frail And Bedazzeled

The tracks on both the A-side and the B-side are the same, in the same running order, as the j-card states.

Billy Corgan, December 2, 2008 : "Not everyone understands our death trip. But you do. And that's what matters."
Profile photo of Arthur
Moderator
On Arthur wrote:

Historical background per track, after listening and digital analysis of each track

Note 1: The digital analysing is done with a pro tapedeck and CoolEdit software.
Note 2: the given release dates are for the commercial releases, promo material from 1 or 2 months earlier can contain the same track also.

Obscured was recorded 1990/12/??-1991/03/?? Smart Studios, Madison (WI) during the Gish recording sessions and released for the first time on Today UK CD single, vinyl and tape 1993/09/30.

Whirl was recorded 1992/12/??-1993/03/?? Triclops Sound Studios, Georgia during the Siamese Dream recording sessions and released for the first time on Pisces Iscariot US CD, vinyl and tape 1994/10/04 as Whir. Whirl was an early working title in 1992, as can be seen for example on the Quiet, and 20 Other Songs tape from 1992/11/??.

Kitty Kat was recorded 1992/12/??-1993/03/?? Triclops Sound Studios, Georgia during the Siamese Dream recording sessions and released for the first time on Today UK CD single, vinyl and tape 1993/09/30 as Hello Kitty Kat. Kitty Kat was an early working title in 1992, as can be seen for example on the Quiet, and 20 Other Songs tape from 1992/11/??.

Apathy was recorded 1992/12/??-1993/03/?? Triclops Sound Studios, Georgia during the Siamese Dream recording sessions and released for the first time on Today UK red vinyl 1993/09/30 as Apathy’s Last Kiss. It appeared on CD for the first time on Today JP 1994/01/26. This is (to our knowledge) the first time this track is OFFICIALLY labeled by it’s early working title.

Blew Away was recorded 1993/04/?? (Spring 1993) Soundworks Studio, Chicago (IL) and released for the first time on Disarm UK CD and vinyl 1994/03/22. It’s first appearance on tape is 1994/01/19, on a HUT promo tape called Disarm, featuring all the b-sides from every format of the UK Disarm single.

Pissant was recorded 1992/12/??-1993/03/?? Triclops Sound Studios, Georgia during the Siamese Dream recording sessions and released for the first time on Cherub Rock UK CD single and vinyl 1993/07/13. No known earlier promo’s on any format.

French Movie Theme was recorded 1992/12/??-1993/03/?? Triclops Sound Studios, Georgia during the Siamese Dream recording sessions and released for the first time on Cherub Rock UK CD single and vinyl 1993/07/13. No known earlier promo’s on any format.

Purr Shnickety (misspelling of Purr Snickety) was recorded 1992/12/??-1993/03/?? Triclops Sound Studios, Georgia during the Siamese Dream recording sessions and released for the first time on Cherub Rock UK vinyl 1993/07/13. No known earlier promo’s on any format. It’s first (and only) digital appearance was on DSP’s like iTunes, Real/Rhapsody and Napster (amongst many others) on 2005/04/05. This fact proved to be very important in determining if the tape is genuine or a hoax.

Glynis was recorded 1993/04/?? (Spring 1993) Soundworks Studio, Chicago (IL) and released for the first time on No Alternative US CD and vinyl (and tape? unknown…) 1993/11/?? or 1993/12/??. The fact that it was known already in 1993/10/?? that Glynis was not intended to be used as a b-side was very confusing at first. Why call the tape B-Sides Of Siamese Dream with Glynis on it?

Frail And Bedazzeled (misspelling of Frail And Bedazzled) was recorded 1992/12/??-1993/03/?? Triclops Sound Studios, Georgia during the Siamese Dream recording sessions and released for the first time on Pisces Iscariot US CD, vinyl and tape 1994/10/04.

Billy Corgan, December 2, 2008 : "Not everyone understands our death trip. But you do. And that's what matters."
Profile photo of Arthur
Moderator
On Arthur wrote:

Further analysis of the tape

1. The tape itself is exactly the same style of tape used for Virgin inhouse demo’s around 1993. SPfreaks.com has a few examples online.
2. The lack of Virgin logo’s is very uncommon, there are no known inhouse tapes like this.
3. The j-card looks genuine, including yellow-ish spots on places where you would expect them.
4. Following the tape running order and it’s commercial releases:

01. – Obscured – Today UK CD single, vinyl and tape 1993/09/30
02. – Whirl – Pisces Iscariot US CD, vinyl and tape 1994/10/04 as Whir
03. – Kitty Kat (Distorto Mix) – Today UK CD single, vinyl and tape 1993/09/30 as Hello Kitty Kat
04. – Apathy – Today UK red vinyl 1993/09/30 as Apathy’s Last Kiss
05. – Blew Away (Version #1) – Disarm UK CD and vinyl 1994/03/22
06. – Blew Away (Version #2) – Disarm UK CD and vinyl 1994/03/22
07. – Pissant – Cherub Rock UK CD single and vinyl 1993/07/13
08. – French Movie Theme – Cherub Rock UK CD single and vinyl 1993/07/13
09. – Purr Shnickety – Cherub Rock UK vinyl 1993/07/13
10. – Glynis – No Alternative US CD and vinyl 1993/11/?? or 1993/12/??
11. – Kitty Kat – Today UK CD single, vinyl and tape 1993/09/30 as Hello Kitty Kat
12. – Frail And Bedazzeled – Pisces Iscariot US CD, vinyl and tape 1994/10/04

One way it looks like a random mix of tracks, on the other hand the Cherub Rock b-sides are kept close to each other. Cherub Rock has the earliest release date of all tracks, which is 1993/07/13.

Further analysis of the music on the tape

Here we came to both a few amazing discoveries, as well as a few very disappointing facts.

Amazing: the quality of recording is just outstanding, almost extreme. It means at least 2 things: the sources are of high quality, and same for the tape itself. All tracks reach in the 20,000 Hz, or above. Normally a tape would cut at 18,000 Hz, or lower. This means the tracks all came from a digital source or a studio master, and are definately not vinyl- or tape sourced. Also, all tracks are the mastered tracks (done by Howie Weinberg of Masterdisc Corporation as we know) and are the versions that were used on the official releases, mentioned above. There is no doubt about that.

Amazing also: Purr Snickety was digitally compared to the only known digital source from 2005/04/05. This online source is cut at 16,000 Hz, while, as stated above, the tape gives the listener 20,000+ Hz. We can call this Purr Snickety version the highest quality version around at this moment. At the same time we can say this proves the authenticity of the tape, as only a studio master could be used to create this tape.

Disappointing: Blew Away (Version #1) and Blew Away (Version #2) are exactly the same tracks, there is no difference between them. Not any. Presuming this is a genuine Virgin inhouse demotape, this can only be explained by a rather wild guess that the person recording the tape made a mistake in programming the machines, and putting 2 same tracks behind each other, while this person intended to record 2 different versions.

Disappointing also: Kitty Kat (Distorto Mix) and Kitty Kat are exactly the same tracks, with 1 slight difference. Distorto Mix is recorded with a 1,39 decibel higher level as the other version. This was only noticed on the digital analysis, a standard listening ear can and will not determine this. We can only guess why this happened. For the moment this fact creates a lot of confusion and adds to the idea of a hoax tape.

Billy Corgan, December 2, 2008 : "Not everyone understands our death trip. But you do. And that's what matters."
Profile photo of Arthur
Moderator
On Arthur wrote:

Dating the tape

Our guess would be, when the tape is real, the tape is created between the latest recording date of any track and the earliest release date, this gives the following timeframe: 1993/04/?? (Spring 1993) (Soundworks Studio) and 1993/07/13 (Cherub Rock release). This would mean it is not intended to be spread as a hoax in the SP community. This timeframe also explains why Glynis was still intended to be a b-side at that moment. However, around 1994/10/?? or a bit later is also possible, as for sure all tracks were mastered by then.

When the tape is a hoax, it’s created in 2005.

Questions unanswered

-Why create an inhouse tape at Virgin in this specific running order with so many mistakes in the tracklist?
-Why not putting the other tracks like Soothe on it instead?
-Why master so many (b-sides) tracks at the same time in this period at Masterdisk Corporation, while Siamese Dream already exceeded budgets and release them in the period 1993/07/?? – 1994/10/??.
-Why wasn’t the official j-card of Virgin used?
-Where was the tape between the creation date in 1993/1994 and Spring 2007, when it appeared on the market?

To cut a long story short, we send an email to the seller with lots of questions, telling him we are very doubtful about this tape, thinking it was created just a few years ago. This was his response.

\"Hello Arthur,

My apologies for the delay in my reply. I have been on Holiday and then in and out of the office with a friend here from Australia and now my kids starting back at school. All three of your messages were here waiting for me. My friend \"Z\" who works with me obviously could not answer any of the questions etc.

First of all I must say that I am no less then completely impressed by your efforts to document this tape which on the other hand is not too surprising since you are a collector and running the SPfreaks website. As for your synopsis about when the tape was made is totally and completely impossible. It has been stored in a box along with the other tapes & CD’s for much longer then 2005. As I mentioned to \"X\", I received all of this stuff including many other Virgin items including the Stones, David Bowie, Jagger solo, Lenny Kravitz, Janet Jackson & so much more… It came from a heavy duty Virgin executive who cleaned out his storage room. It was truly a ridiculous amount of stuff… I was able to pick what I wanted and I left nothing behind… As I mentioned to \"X\", I still have some incredible stuff left…

I think that regardless of logic sometimes things are just not to be explained. I have found this with many promo only items, Cassettes, CD’s and records. I described it to the best of my ability given the circumstances and knowledge I had of the situation with the tape and were it originated.

I would like your further thoughts and also please let me know if I can provide any other details to help.\"

Conclusion

Though some extra questions are send, and answers are awaited, we now presume this \"B-Sides From Siamese Dream\" tape is no hoax, but a genuine Virgin inhouse promo tape. Keep you posted when we have more news…

Last but not least, we like to advise every collector to do proper research before buying expensive items… Remember the 1994 Earphoria promo?

Billy Corgan, December 2, 2008 : "Not everyone understands our death trip. But you do. And that's what matters."
Profile photo of Superlordspamulon
Member
On Superlordspamulon wrote:

whoa… that is amazing how much research you put into there… a lot of the stuff you pointed out i would never have even known to look for

well done!

So apparently I don't post very often these days
Profile photo of bleedingtheorchid
Member
On BleedingTheOrchid wrote:

yea nice job freaks. keeps me wondering the other titles do exist anyway… kitty kat is pretty nice song wonder how the other version would be

Emptiness is loneliness, and loneliness is cleanlinessAnd cleanliness is godliness, and god is empty just like meIntoxicated with the madness, I'm in love with my sadness
Profile photo of Cool As Ice Cream
Moderator
On Cool As Ice Cream wrote:

Amazing also: Purr Snickety was digitally compared to the only known digital source from 2005/04/05. This online source is cut at 16,000 Hz, while, as stated above, the tape gives the listener 20,000+ Hz. We can call this Purr Snickety version the highest quality version around at this moment. At the same time we can say this proves the authenticity of the tape, as only a studio master could be used to create this tape.[/quote:81avpge3]
Are you sure this is the correct conclusion?

I mean, if you would record the 16kHz track to cassette and then transfer it back to a digital file, will it still cut at 16k? Or does the cassette add some noise that possibly changes this property?

I personally don’t know, as I never tried it. But if you want to conclude that only a studio master can have been the source for this track on the cassette, you have to be sure it would have been impossible to create this tape with the iTunes file, or with a vinyl rip.

Profile photo of Arthur
Moderator
On Arthur wrote:

I mean, if you would record the 16kHz track to cassette and then transfer it back to a digital file, will it still cut at 16k? Or does the cassette add some noise that possibly changes this property?

I personally don’t know, as I never tried it. But if you want to conclude that only a studio master can have been the source for this track on the cassette, you have to be sure it would have been impossible to create this tape with the iTunes file, or with a vinyl rip.[/quote:r99cqxi3]
The tech guy told me this. Every tape has tape hiss in the higher regions, mixed with sound. When a digital track is cut, it just has nothing above the cut. Utter silence, no digital statistics. And a vinyl rip is rather easily noticed, same as a tape copy, as the hiss and other disturbance is "doubled up". Also ageing creates loss, which was not visible on this tape. Overall, the digital statistics of this tape were just too… good to be true. The whole tape, including Purr Snickety, contained visible traces of sound and/or tape hiss in areas where you wouldn’t expect them.

However there is a point in your comment which was not that clear in the report. Purr Snickety is a track that hardly comes (or even doesn’t come) above the 16,000 Hz by itself. It was the overall listening experience of 3 people, combined with the digital analysis that made us realise this tape was pretty cool and of an awesome quality. Presuming it is not a hoax tape, and Purr Snickety was only available after 2005 from iTunes, the only source could have been in the studio. Meaning this version of Purr was the best one available between 1993/1994 and 2005 outside the studio. Even now it can compete with the iTunes version, as it has every tiny little sound that nobody can hear above the 16,000 Hz. I hope this clears it up a bit.

When it is a hoax tape, it’s a pretty good one. Its looks and feels are pretty right, and it even smelled right (another way to determine things, yes!). For the moment however we trust the seller to have sold a genuine Virgin inhouse tape, mainly based on his email. But the collector’s value has dropped a bit as it didn’t contain the songs from the very promising tracklist.

(I hope I told the right things, if not I’m sure the other guys will kick my ass and I will report that here soon after :P )

Billy Corgan, December 2, 2008 : "Not everyone understands our death trip. But you do. And that's what matters."

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