Now CD errors

rsz_now_6_cd

The purpose of this page is to document the errors with the ongoing series of Now That’s What I Call Music CD reissues. While it’s great to see these early albums emerge on CD at last, the quality control has been slipshod with numerous mistakes. It’s clear that the best time to do this would have been in late 1987 or early 1988 – just after Now 10 came out, the first one to have the same number of tracks on LP, cassette and CD. While impossible to know for sure, these releases could have come in a chunky fatbox, there would have been few or no licensing issues & they probably would have exactly matched the originals.

Now 6 errors (10 out of 30)
Nik Kershaw – When A Heart Beats (Album version used instead of mix with earlier fade which was on Now 6 LP)
Eurythmics – There Must Be An Angel (Playing With My Heart) (Greatest Hits / Ultimate Collection mix which is just a fade of the album version. The 7″ edit was on the Now 6 LP)
Bryan Adams & Tina Turner – It’s Only Love (Omitted from CD)
Marillion – Lavender (Album version used instead of longer single mix which was on Now 6 LP – very obvious and a schoolboy mistake)
Midge Ure – If I Was (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 6 LP)
Madness – Uncle Sam (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 6 LP – difference of over 1 min)
The Communards – You Are My World (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 6 LP)
Paul Hardcastle – Just For Money (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 6 LP – difference of nearly 1 min)
Baltimora – Tarzan Boy (Original version used instead of shorter Summer Remix 7″ which was on Now 6 LP)
Cameo – Single Life (ROW 7″ mix used instead of UK 7″ mix which was on Now 6 LP)

UB40’s Don’t Break My Heart album version appeared on the original Now 6 LP and is also here. The original 7″ mix of it and You Are My World are still MIA on CD.

Now 5 CD errors (11 out of 30)
Scritti Politti – The Word Girl (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 5 LP – over 1 min longer)
Stephen TinTin Duffy – Icing On The Cake (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 5 LP – over 1 min 20 secs longer)
Kool And The Gang – Cherish (Original Now 5 was very close to album version. This is 3:44 and is shorter than the 7″ mix)
Paul Young – Every Time You Go Away (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 5 LP – over 1 min longer)
Marillion – Kayleigh (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 5 LP – very obvious as album segues evident)
Bryan Ferry – Slave To Love (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 5 LP)
Pat Metheny Group & David Bowie – This Is Not America (Omitted from CD)
Sister Sledge – Frankie (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 5 LP)
Simply Red – Money’s Too Tight (To Mention) (Seems to be the 4:28 mix used on the 1996 Greatest Hits – 50 seconds longer than 7″ mix which was on Now 5 LP)
Jaki Graham – Round And Around (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 5 LP)
Loose Ends – Magic Touch (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 5 LP)

Fine Young Cannibals and Phil Collins tracks appear to have been faded very slightly on the original Now 5 LP – we’re talking a couple of seconds so not including these as errors.

Now 4 CD errors (9 out of 32)
Nick Heyward – Warning Sign (Now 4 LP has the 7″ mix which contains two raps – at 2:07 and 2:55. This slightly shorter version doesn’t)
Culture Club – The War Song (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 4 LP & original CD)
Style Council – Shout To The Top (Matches the mix used on The Singular Adventures Of which runs very slightly longer than the one used on Now 4 LP & original CD)
Thompson Twins – Doctor Doctor (Album version used. On the Now 4 LP & original CD it ran about 10 seconds shorter – possibly video version)
The Kane Gang – Respect Yourself (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 4 LP. Very obvious – 1 min 45 secs longer)
Big Country – East Of Eden (7″ mix included here. The version on the original Now 4 remains unique – at 3:35 an extra chorus is sung instead of the instrumental break)
Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark – Tesla Girls (Compilation version used – as on 1988’s Best Of OMD. About 8 seconds longer than 7″ edit on Now 4 LP)
Kim Wilde – The Second Time (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 4 LP. Quite a different beginning)
Eugene Wilde – Gotta Get You Home Tonight (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 4 LP. Very obvious – 1 min 45 secs longer)

It’s good to see that the original CD should remain sought after given that it contains correct versions of three of the above tracks

Now 3 CD errors (15 out of 30)
Nik Kershaw – I Won’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 3 LP)
Sister Sledge – Thinking Of You (Closer in length to the album version and slightly longer than the 7″ mix used on original Now 3)
Orchestral Manoeuvres In The Dark – Locomotion (Original Now 3 was 3:53 in line with the 7″, this fades early here at 3:44)
Ultravox – Dancing With Tears In My Eyes (Original Now 3 was 4:10 in line with the 7″, this fades early here at 4:04)
Frankie Goes To Hollywood – Two Tribes (Cowboy & Indians 7″ instead of We Don’t Want To Die 7″ picture disc)
Womack & Womack – Love Wars (Album version used instead of 7″ edit which was on Now 3 LP – nearly 2 minutes longer here)
Style Council – You’re The Best Thing (Slightly longer than the 7″ mix used on original Now 3 but only a few seconds – identical length to video version)
Bob Marley & The Wailers – One Love / People Get Ready (Omitted from CD)
Bronski Beat – Smalltown Boy (Now 3 LP used the longer version of 5:02 which was also on the 7″ picture disc; the CD has the shorter 7″ mix 3:55)
Cyndi Lauper – Time After Time (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 3 LP)
Bananarama – Robert De Niro’s Waiting (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 3 LP)
Thompson Twins – You Take Me Up (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 3 LP)
Gary Glitter – Dance Me Up (Omitted from CD)
The Art Company – Susanna (Album version which is also on some 7″ copies. However shorter DJ edit 7″ was on Now 3 LP – 46 second difference)
David Sylvian – Red Guitar (Album version used instead of 7″ mix which was on Now 3 LP. The 7″ mix has never been on CD so another missed opportunity)

Now 2 CD errors (8 out of 30)
Madness – Michael Caine (Album version)
Joe Fagin – That’s Livin’ Alright (Different take, not the 45)
Snowy White – Bird Of Paradise (Too long, not the single mix)
Frankie Goes To Hollywood – Relax (Come Fighting instead of the original 7″ AKA Move)
Eurythmics – Here Comes The Rain Again (It’s the album edit)
The Smiths – What Difference Does It Make? (Again, album version not the never-on-CD-before 7″ edit)
Re-Flex – The Politics Of Dancing (They use a shorter edit)
Paul McCartney – Pipes Of Peace (This has longer intro and is the album version)

Now 1 CD errors (4 out of 30)
Limahl – Only For Love (20 seconds longer on CD – album version rather than unique edit that was on the original Now 1)
Malcolm McLaren – Double Dutch (They use album version rather than 7″ mix which was on the original Now 1)
New Edition – Candy Girl (Album version instead of 7″ mix)
Simple Minds – Waterfront (Missing sticks intro that’s from the original single)

The 25th anniversary CD and 2018 reissue are identical in content. The former has a cardboard vinyl replica sleeve while the later edition comes in a jewel case.

12 Responses to Now CD errors

  1. Martin Davis says:

    Quite shocking that there were so many instances where the versions of the tracks on the CD reissues don’t match the versions contained on the original LP/Cassette versions.

    Isnthere any known reason as to why the David Bowie track is ommitted from Now 5?

    • nlgbbbblth says:

      “Unable to secure rights” is the reason given. Nothing more. Possibly licensing refusal from Pat Metheny or the label that originally issued the soundtrack – The Falcon & The Snowman.

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  3. bwci.bo says:

    What is the difference between the 7″ and L{ versions of Nik Kershaw’s I Won’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me? I thought they were the same? Is there a mix difference I’m missing? Thanks.

  4. nlgbbbblth says:

    Updating the argument that this is mostly down to lack of attention to detail:

    I’d certainly cut the Now compilers some slack on these tracks

    Limahl – Only For Love (Now 1 fades 20 seconds early – seems to be unique. Never on CD)
    Malcolm McLaren – Double Dutch (7″ version never on CD)
    The Smiths – What Difference Does It Make (7″ version never on CD – although download was available c 10 years ago)
    The Art Company – Susanna (DJ Edit rare if ever on CD)
    David Sylvian – Red Guitar (7″ version never on CD)
    Nick Heyward – Warning Sign (7″ version never on CD)
    Big Country – East Of Eden (Unique edit never on CD)
    Jaki Graham – Round & Around (Rare if ever on CD)
    Loose Ends – Magic Touch (Rare on CD)
    Nik Kershaw – When A Heart Beats (Rare if ever on CD – may be a unique early fade)
    The Communards – You Are My World (7″ version never on CD)
    Paul Hardcastle – Just For Money (Rare on CD)
    Cameo – Single Life (Rare on CD)

    That’s a total of 13.
    I’ll also give the benefit of the doubt on the 4 omitted tracks as licensing can be complicated.
    So that’s 17.

    57 errors in total which means for 40 of them, they had no excuse for getting it wrong – 70% were avoidable. By avoidable, I mean that the single mixes are previously available on CD on other recent compilations or other releases from the artists. Some a bit trickier to find than others but none impossible.

  5. Mark Colgan says:

    Did anyone compare later LP to their issued at the time CD? Say Now 20 or whatever, maybe these errors between LP and CD have happened all alone. Shortened mixes would be needed to keep the vinyl groove deep enough, not such an issue for the CD.

    • nlgbbbblth says:

      I stopped buying the vinyl at the earliest opportunity so unsure. If there are variances, I’d imagine they’re in the later ones maybe 25-35 as they had up to 39 minutes of music per side – shocking quality.

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