PRETENDERS II - SACD Hybride - Edition Limitée Numérotée
1982 Sophomore Album a Landmark Hybrid of American and English Rock
Final Record Made by the Band's Amazing Original Lineup
Mastered from the Original Master Tapes: Extraordinary Dynamics and Transparency
Why mess with a great formula if there’s no need to change? The Pretenders espoused this winning philosophy on the magnetic Pretenders II, a spectacular sophomore record that lived up to the promises of its breakthrough debut and replicated the 1980 effort’s distinctive, can’t-miss musical and lyrical flair.
Part pop, part new-wave punk, part R&B, part soul, and 100% pure melodic rock n’ roll, Pretenders II continued to send the quartet on its quick rise to the top and still serves as an admitted inspiration for bands ranging from Kings of Leon to Garbage. The key to the record’s enduring appeal lies in the chemistry between iconic frontwoman Chrissie Hynde and inventive guitarist James Honeyman-Scott. Akin to legendary pairings like Mick Jagger and Keith Richards, or Steven Tyler and Joe Perry, the male-female duo operates as an inseparable team, with one member rousing the other and driving them to greater heights.
Hynde’s now-classic moody songwriting—at once tough, sexual, and disciplined as well as human, vulnerable, and romantic—and Honeyman-Scott’s tasteful riffs and deep-rooted rhythms hit their peak here, particularly on edgy cuts such as “The Adultress” and “Message of Love,” but also on touching fare such as the hit rendition of the Kinks’ “I Go To Sleep.” It’s an apropos cover choice, as the importance of English rock’s impact on this album combined with Hynde’s American background to make the sharp, biting 12-song set terrifically unique.
Hynde grew up idolizing R&B singers such as Sam Cooke, James Brown, and Dionne Warwick as well as boundary-pushing instigators like Iggy Pop. Yet she also became enthralled with the rawness and verve of the U.K.’s punk scene, and ultimately lived overseas for several years, adopting the leather-jacket look and don’t-take-no-mess attitude. On Pretenders II, Hynde and her Welsh cohorts draw from both the American soul and English punk disciplines, creating classy albeit barbed music that has always been and will always be instantly identifiable as the Pretenders. Of equal importance, Pretenders II claims a significant history in that it represents the final statement the original band would make together. Bassist Pete Farndon was fired in 1982, and immediately thereafter, Honeyman-Scott died of a heroin overdose, effectively ending one of the greatest partnerships in rock.
Mobile Fidelity is honored to offer Pretenders II in the greatest sound the album has ever known. Pristinely mastered from the original master tapes and sporting amazing improvements in dynamics, transparency, punch, imaging, and pacing, this numbered limited-edition hybrid SACD brings to life one of the 80s’ true landmark recordings in a way that not only does justice to Chris Thomas’ legendary production but puts Hynde and her musical soulmates in your listening room as if the four of them just got together for the first time, all over again.
"Where so much detail in the original LP remains lost, the SACD gives the players much more of their own space. Hynde’s trademark warble comes through loud and clear, possessing more texture on slow songs and more growl on uptempo tracks. Thanks to the improvements, “Bad Boys Get Spanked” sounds more serious, and as a bonus, you can now clearly hear Clint Eastwood say, “You don’t listen much, do you asshole?” towards the end of the tune."
--Jeff Dorgay, TONE Audio, Issue 34
Pretenders Pretenders II Track Listing:
1. "The Adultress" – 3:55
2. "Bad Boys Get Spanked" – 4:04
3. "Message of Love" – 3:26
4. "I Go to Sleep" – 2:55
5. "Birds of Paradise" – 4:14
6. "Talk of the Town" – 2:45
7. "Pack It Up" – 3:50
8. "Waste Not Want Not" – 3:43
9. "Day After Day" – 3:45
10. "Jealous Dogs" – 5:36
11. "The English Roses" – 4:28
12. "Louie Louie" – 3:30