On December 22nd, a limited, special edition of Metallic Spheres, the collaboration between The Orb and David Gilmour, was released in Japan.
With a definite eye on the Japanese market (as music fans there do like inclusive packages), Sony have brought together the various elements that have been seen in other countries, and coupled these with a pair of special music videos which haven't been commercially released elsewhere.
As a reminder, this cross-over album release from The Orb sprung from the Chicago sessions, and the standard album consists of the "Metallic Side" and "Spheres Side". The Japanese edition also includes a bonus disc featuring the alternative mix of the album created with the new "3D60" process, which creates a 360-degree sound experience when heard on headphones, using stereo tracks without the need for any special audio equipment. It also includes a special edit, alongside the aforementioned music videos.
Somewhat uniquely, the Japanese edition is on the new, high-fidelity Blu-spec CD format (which is compatible with standard CD players) which you can find out more about below...
Here's the release's tracklisting:
Disc 1: whole stereo album
- 3D60 Mix of whole album
- Ambient mix (13 minutes)
- Edit of 'Hymns To The Sun' from the 3D60 mix
- Video of 'Hymns To The Sun' (Gavin Elder version)
- Video of 'Hymns To The Sun' (Stylorouge version)
This special, limited edition can be ordered to import from Japanese retailers (should you be able to negotiate your way around their sites) or alternatively, you can purchase it through Amazon Germany, Amazon.com and Amazon Canada. Orders should be possible soon through Amazon UK, Amazon France, and possibly also Amazon Italy. Our thanks to Kees Nijpels for the info on this release, particularly the Blu-spec explanation.
Info on the Blu-spec format:
The Blu-spec CD format boasts a new approach to the faithful reproduction of music by utilizing the leading edge blue laser diode technologies optimized for the manufacturing of Blu-ray. During the manufacturing of CD, laser beam is pinpointed to encode data on the microscopic tracks moulded on the polycarbonate plastic constituting the surface of the disc.
Compared to the conventional laser beam used for the manufacturing of standard CD, the blue laser beam used for the manufacturing of Blu-spec CD has a shorter wavelength, allowing more accurate encoding of the data. The use of the laser also eliminates the need to use cooling fans that cause vibrations. Furthermore, polycarbonate plastic optimized for Blu-ray is used to ensure accurate reading of the data. Amazingly and importantly, Blu-spec CD format is fully compatible with standard CD players.