Finally picked up my copy of this album today!!!
I just finished listening to it and I have to say I am VERY impressed with both CD's!!! The sound quality seems MUCH improved over the original RCA CD that came out in the early 90's!
I really enjoyed some of the outtakes, including the additional verse in IT'S DIFF'RENT NOW!! It is such a shame that he didn't record the whole song...it is such a beautiful ballad!!!
Alternate take 7 of FOR OL' TIMES SAKE is simply stunning...it's a shame that it broke down at the end. As I listened to it, you could hear a slight roughness in Elvis' voice which truly made the lyrics seem that much more personal to him...A TRUE BEAUTY!!!
I also enjoyed all of the outtakes of IF YOU DON'T COME BACK....one of the more underrated songs of the 70's, in my opinion.
It's a shame though, that they couldn't find the other alternate takes of the title song...it would be interesting to see how this song evolved from the early takes to the master take (take 10).
On first listen, I thought I would be a bit disappointed in the rough mixes...they sounded pretty close to the finished versions to me. But the false start on JUST A LITTLE BIT, along with the extended fade out on RAISED ON ROCK were a nice treat!!
As for the instrumentals that Elvis never got a chance to record vocals for...they are all beautiful sounding songs and I wish he would have gotten around to finishing them!!! COLOR MY RAINBOW is an especially pretty song and I would have loved to hear a completed version of it!
The packaging for RAISED ON ROCK is slightly disappointing....especially the cover photos which seem a bit dark and blurred to me. The booklet is nicely done though, with lots of session information along with some copies of various memos that were sent around the time of recording the album...a nice way to gain some additional insight into the album. There are a couple of pictures in the booklet but again they suffer from blurriness.
Overall, I am quite pleased with this upgrade!!! I have been looking forward to it for quite some time now, and thankfully, FTD didn't let me down!!