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Does a Berlin '80 matrix exist?


Michael Fry
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Anyone out there know if anyone's attempted this?

I know Sue Dounim did a sbd/aud matrix of Whole Lotta Love from this show and it was very good but I  can't seem to find anything else. If any show needed a bit of a matrix helping hand, it's this one!

ZepHead315 - I consider you to be the fountain of all knowledge on this matter - are you aware of any worthy attempts? Cheers! 

Edited by Michael Fry
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I've seen one or two matrixes on Black Beauty but can't remember much about them. I can't imagine they were very good. I agree that a matrix for this show would be interesting, although I sincerely doubt it would put the performance in a better light lol.

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Posted (edited)
4 hours ago, ZepHead315 said:

I've seen one or two matrixes on Black Beauty but can't remember much about them. I can't imagine they were very good. I agree that a matrix for this show would be interesting, although I sincerely doubt it would put the performance in a better light lol.

Point taken!

However, I recently listened to this to re-evaluate whether it truly deserved its reputation and found that 2/3 of it was pretty good. Once I removed SIBLY, White Summer, Kashmir and Stairway, I  was left with a pretty decent gig that I could thoroughly enjoy. I then made a slight adjustment to the set list order:

TKAR, NFBM, BD, ITE, TRS, TU, AML, RAR, WLL

and voila! A gig that stands up to repeated listening as much as any other 1980 gig and in fact better than some. Fitted on a single CD too!

What also seemed to make a difference was using the Mid Summers Night In Berlin remaster by nakedeye25. A matrix would have been even better but this remaster seems to be the best version I have so far heard. 

I had forgotten just how good  ITE, Trampled and All My Love were, I think.

 

Edited by Michael Fry
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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, conquistador said:

There is a really good matrix of the July 1980 Berlin show.  I can't remember the name, but I've had it on my hard drive for over 10 years.

 

So glad you confirmed that, Conquistador. Any idea who did it? Would be amazing if it were Bluecongo or someone like that although I suspect it would be on lists if that were the case.

Edited by Michael Fry
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Thanks, Xolo.

From what I can tell, by downloading a file from each boot, the boots marked sbd/aud only use the audience source to fill gaps in the soundboard rather than being used to create a true matrix.

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On 6/21/2021 at 1:16 PM, Michael Fry said:

So glad you confirmed that, Conquistador. Any idea who did it? Would be amazing if it were Bluecongo or someone like that although I suspect it would be on lists if that were the case.

As soon as I can locate my external hard drive, I'll see what it is.  I converted my personal stuff to mp3 years ago, so I would not be comfortable sharing it in it's inferior format.  However, I'm sure the source is still out there and I will get back to you on it!

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On 6/19/2021 at 6:11 AM, Michael Fry said:

Anyone out there know if anyone's attempted this?

I know Sue Dounim did a sbd/aud matrix of Whole Lotta Love from this show and it was very good but I  can't seem to find anything else. If any show needed a bit of a matrix helping hand, it's this one!

ZepHead315 - I consider you to be the fountain of all knowledge on this matter - are you aware of any worthy attempts? Cheers! 

I found my Berlin matrix.  I downloaded it in September of 2009.  Like I said, I don't feel comfortable sharing my compressed version, but I'm sure the original is out there somewhere.  Here are the notes from the text file...

"Led Zeppelin
1980.07.07
Berlin, Germany
Eissporthalle

Soundboard and Audio Matrix
"The Last Flight" -  An Achilles-Cooleyez Production
Both sources:  EVSD Eternal Magic Discs 1-4 > EAC > WAV > FLAC > BitTorrent > WAV >Audacity 1.2.3 > 
WAV > FLAC Level 8 (options used: Verify, Align on sector boundaries)"

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That is good news indeed! Hopefully it will breathe the life back into the gig's 3rd quarter! Things took a turn for the worse from about SIBLY up to STH , I reckon. The rest of the gig is top notch 1980 though.

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Posted (edited)

Thanks for all your advice on this one. Went to Zoso.me and saw that "The Last Flight" -  An Achilles-Cooleyez Production is indeed there right at the bottom of the list. It's not identified as a matrix so either it's easy to miss or it just popped up in the last week or so!

I can confirm that it is an excellent matrix. For me, it's now the most enjoyable way of experiencing the show. As for the dodgy songs, SIBLY really benefits from this mix and it's especially nice to hear the crowd enthusiasm and the slight thickening of the guitar sound. White Summer is unfortunately still a complete disaster and you can sense how uncomfortable the audience feel. Happily, STH is definitely improved. The guitar solo isn't exactly top notch but at least his runs sound slightly more fluid and you can better appreciate what he's trying to achieve.

Anyway, thanks to all (especially Achilles and Cooleyez, whoever you are). Hope this matrix now becomes better known as it seems to show that they did go out on a semi-high and that the gig wasn't quite the doom and gloom that some people have considered it to be.

Edited by Michael Fry
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On 7/2/2021 at 2:15 AM, Michael Fry said:

Thanks for all your advice on this one. Went to Zoso.me and saw that "The Last Flight" -  An Achilles-Cooleyez Production is indeed there right at the bottom of the list. It's not identified as a matrix so either it's easy to miss or it just popped up in the last week or so!

I can confirm that it is an excellent matrix. For me, it's now the most enjoyable way of experiencing the show. As for the dodgy songs, SIBLY really benefits from this mix and it's especially nice to hear the crowd enthusiasm and the slight thickening of the guitar sound. White Summer is unfortunately still a complete disaster and you can sense how uncomfortable the audience feel. Happily, STH is definitely improved. The guitar solo isn't exactly top notch but at least his runs sound slightly more fluid and you can better appreciate what he's trying to achieve.

Anyway, thanks to all (especially Achilles and Cooleyez, whoever you are). Hope this matrix now becomes better known as it seems to show that they did go out on a semi-high and that the gig wasn't quite the doom and gloom that some people have considered it to be.

Awesome, I'm glad you found it!

30 minutes ago, in_the_evening said:

I will show my stupidity with bootlegs: what's a matrix?  

Ok, I hope I don't speak out of place, but my understanding is that it is a synchronized mix of audience and soundboard sources. 

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Posted (edited)

 

3 hours ago, in_the_evening said:

I will show my stupidity with bootlegs: what's a matrix?  

Like Conquistador says, a matrix is where both audience and soundboard tapes have been mixed together to play in sync at the same time and just in case you're wondering why this is done here's a (sort of) quick explanation...

Soundboards have instruments and vocals clearly defined, usually with a decent balanced sound, but can be very dry (no reverb at all) which accentuates any mistakes made (e.g. vocal squeaks or guitar finger flubs). Soundboards can also lose the great atmosphere that you get from hearing the crowd at a gig.

Audience tapes record the sound of the venue's natural acoustics (nice bit of reverb!) and capture the crowd's excitement but of course sometimes the sound is distant, the venue's acoustics are terrible and the crowd is louder than the band!

Combine the two together and - voila! - you have the best of both worlds. For it to work it helps if both sbd and aud tapes are decent recordings to begin with but if you get the balance right (70% soundboard and 30% audience, say, but this can vary a lot depending on the quality of the aud) it can help the gig to sound magnificent. One of the largest hurdles is the fact that when recording gigs on tape in the 70s, the tape machines often ran slightly faster or slower than the industry standard resulting in the two tapes not quite being at the same pitch, sometimes even varying by almost a semi-tone. This obviously needs correcting before any sync can be made.

More difficult problems arise in syncing up the two sources if the speed of the original tape machine was not consistent (say, due to failing batteries, for example) which results in fluctuations in the pitch and tempo. Also, some tapes have small cuts or glitches. This all means that the two wav. files can not simply be dropped side by side on the editing software. I've read of people having to sync up the two sources in 30 second segments or even smaller! Imagine doing that for a 3 hour gig and you can see what a massive job it actually is. Extreme patience and determination required! I have nothing but admiration for the fans who do it as there are many other problems they have to correct before the matrix can be thought of as a presentable improvement.

Prime examples of gigs that have really benefited from this are: 1973-7-17 Seattle, 1975-2-12 MSG, 1975-3-21 Seattle, 1975-5-24 Earls Court, 1977-5-28 Landover and 1979-8-4 Knebworth but there are many others, especially from 1980.

One guy, Nite Owl, managed to make a matrix of the 5 Blueberry Hill audience sources - which was a superhuman achievement! (And it's a tremendous listen too.)

There are, however, a few attempts to avoid due to sync issues and some which are OK but not perfect such as the 1977-7-7 Seattle matrix.

Maybe someone out there has compiled a definitive list. That would be very useful. Can't seem to find one when searching the forum.

Anyway, hope that helps. Let me know if you'd like me to message a link to any that you would like to hear.

Edited by Michael Fry
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Posted (edited)

Thanks for the clarification on matrix.  For awhile I thought it might be a collection from different recordings at the same venue, sort of like Bob has an excellent recording of the first 3 songs, then he hit some weird muffle thing, so we picked up songs 4 and 5 from Jenn's recording, but she cut off song 6 to switch the tape, so we got 6 thru 10 from Paul's recording...etc.  Sort of an amalgamation.

Thanks again.

Kind of off topic, but I like the Berlin show.  I like most of the 80 tour, they play a little rougher, not so much showboating.

 

Edited by in_the_evening
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