Scritti Politti ‘Cupid & Psyche 85’ Japanese re-issue CD [Rough Trade / Beat Records, RTRAD695CDJP, 2022]

It’s a particular favourite of mine, this album, what with its high-tech, high-sheen finish of meticulously crafted pop – it got a vinyl re-release last year on Rough Trade and for some reason the CD issue was delayed… and now there is a Japanese issue too with one extra track…

Scritti Politti 'Cupid & Psyche 85' 2022 Japanese re-issue CD - front cover design and some of the additional inserts/disc
^ Scritti Politti ‘Cupid & Psyche 85’ 2022 Japanese re-issue CD – front cover design and some of the additional inserts/disc

It was going to be just a straight re-release of the existing CD incarnation, which featured the original album tracks plus four additional bonus tracks of some of the ‘Versions’ from the contemporary single B sides. As it turns out, it is not just a straight re-issue and there are differences… and to add to that, there is this, the Japanese CD re-release which comes with an extra bonus track for Japan only.

Scritti Politti 'Cupid & Psyche 85' 2022 Japanese re-issue CD - rear cover design, disc label and the two inserts (English language one folded out, back of Japanese language booklet)
^ Scritti Politti ‘Cupid & Psyche 85’ 2022 Japanese re-issue CD – rear cover design, disc label and the two inserts (English language one folded out, back of Japanese language booklet)

So, the main differences to be aware of straight off the bat;

  • On both the European 2022 CD edition and this Japanese 2022 CD edition, the original UK album/CD album mix of ‘Perfect Way’ has been dropped and is replaced with the UK 12″ A side mix* (duration approx. 4’33”) in its place (as far as my ears can tell, as it does not definitely state this in the track title credit). I think this mix was on the US CD editions of the album?
    • Is this mix by John Potoker or Francois Kevorkian? The UK 12″ sleeve/labels credit Kevorkian, the US album credits John Potoker. Doesn’t help that the UK 7″ credits are definitely mixed up, with discrepancies between the sleeve and the label.
  • On this Japanese edition, the ‘Version’ of ‘Hypnotised’ is the shorter version from the B side of the original 7″ release (duration:  approx. 4′ 22″) – whereas the previous UK CDs featured the longer version from the 12″ B side. (Interestingly, looking back on things, the Japanese CD editions always seem to have featured the shorter ‘version’ of this track all along…)
  • The bonus track on this CD ‘for Japan only’ is the ‘Perfect Way (Version)’ (duration: approx. 5′ 04″) that was featured on the B sides of the UK 7″ and 12″ singles (and is credited to Francois Kevorkian). I could be wrong, but I think this is its first appearance on CD. Note: Although the sleeve of the UK 12″ of ‘Perfect Way’ states ‘Long Version’, both 7″ and 12″ versions of the B side were in fact the same duration.

It comes in a beautiful replica album sleeve recreation, as you can see reimagined as a gatefold edition – as well as this there are two inserts a full colour gloss fold-out (same as the European edition) with album lyrics and credits on one side and new sleeve notes from Green and David Gamson on the other. There is also a Japanese text booklet too as well as the customary ‘obi’ too.

Scritti Politti 'Cupid & Psyche 85' 2022 Japanese re-issue CD - gatefold
^ Scritti Politti ‘Cupid & Psyche 85’ 2022 Japanese re-issue CD – gatefold

So, its a pity that there couldn’t have been a more definitive re-release that compiles more of the various mixes out there – not least to include even one of the multitude of ‘Perfect Way (Way Perfect)’ mixes released in the US. Looking back on other issues on CD has revealed for me the fact that there is actually quite a bit of regional variation out there, so I expect to revisit this before too long… for example, I didn’t realise that the US CD edition included the shorter, remix version of ‘Lover To Fall’ that I assume is the same as the version issued as a single in France.

Scritti Politti 'Cupid & Psyche 85' 2022 Japanese re-issue CD - front cover design, disc label, obi and the two inserts (English language one folded out, front of Japanese language booklet)
^ Scritti Politti ‘Cupid & Psyche 85’ 2022 Japanese re-issue CD – front cover design, disc label, obi and the two inserts (English language one folded out, front of Japanese language booklet)

A word of caution however – this one hell of a loud CD – the mastering is HOT! A couple of screenshot comparisons below of ‘Absolute’, from my original CD issue from the ’80s and this 2022 Japanese edition.

WAV file display in Audacity for 'Absolute' from original UK CD edition
^ WAV file display in Audacity for ‘Absolute’ from original UK CD edition
WAV file display in Audacity for 'Absolute' from 2022 Japanese CD edition
^ WAV file display in Audacity for ‘Absolute’ from 2022 Japanese CD edition

3 Replies to “Scritti Politti ‘Cupid & Psyche 85’ Japanese re-issue CD [Rough Trade / Beat Records, RTRAD695CDJP, 2022]”

  1. So much to absorb here! My neighbor gave me the Rough Trade 2021 LP for my birthday. It’s nice to have the embossed, foil-stamped sleeve, but these CD variants are driving me crazy. Especially the bomb dropped with the US CD. I got the original UK CD and that’s all I’ve had on that format. I’ve seen that the UK 1st pressing LP had a different mix of “Perfect Way” and am I right in saying that it used the UK 12″ A-side @ 4:30 while the 1st UK CD had a 4:47 mix NOT by Potoker?

    And the French “Lover To Fall” Potoker remix has long been on my want list on FR 7″/12″, but it will hurt in postage. Do you mean to tell me that I could have picked up a US CD of C+P85 and can have this track on CD? Wait a minute – there’s a US CD of CP+85??! Can’t say I’ve ever seen that.

    I’m agog at the new JPN CD strictly for having the embossed, foil-stamped cover in that precious form! Talk about “Small objects of desire!” The version mix is nice but when will we get the ultrabox of C+P85 with 3 discs worth of mixes? I’ll withhold my money until this happens! [apart from that US CD, which I should be able to get cheaply enough! [checks favorite US dealer…yes!]

  2. I must say, it has been a revelation to me too… who knew?! It is even more complicated than I first thought, as the Rough Trade vinyl LP re-issue of ‘Cupid & Psyche ’85’ from 2021 has a different mix of ‘Perfect Way’ from what is on the Japanese 2022 CD, by comparison – this makes it even more baffling – you’d think they would be consistent between the formats. As best as I can unravel at the moment, short of finding copies of everything to give a close listen to, is this…

    • My original UK CD copy is a later edition (from the Virgin EMI years – cat no. CDV 2350 / 0777 7 87497 2 1) – this contains the mix with a timing of approx. 4’44” – when it starts, it has four passes of the opening melody – there is then a very definite pause before the main drum rhythm and bass synth sequencer kicks in. (There is a ‘demo’ version of ‘Perfect Way’ kicking around the internet for some while now – it is very similar to that, if you know it.) This same mix is on the 2021 Rough Trade re-issue LP I have. It is also on the original Japanese LP edition.
    • My original UK vinyl copy (Virgin V2350 – gold embossed ‘Cupid & Psyche’ title with red embossed ’85’ print) has the mix that I am familiar with with from the UK 12″ A side of ‘Perfect Way’, duration of approx. 4’33” – credits for this are a bit mixed up as the UK 12″ single credits Francois Kevorkian for the remix – this same mix also appears on the US CD I have (Warner Bros. Records 9 25302-2), which very definitely credits John Potoker for this mix. This mix has only two passes of the opening melody and there is hardly any gap before the main rhythm kicks in.
    • That US CD I now have (Warner Bros. Records 9 25302-2) does indeed have the shorter John Potoker mix of ‘Lover To Fall’ that was used on the French 7″ single. The main difference, apart from the shorter duration, is that the snare drum sounds quite different.

    The 2022 UK/EU CD also comes in a gatefold mini LP ‘small object of desire’ sleeve – but lacks that extra B side mix of ‘Perfect Way’ bonus track. It is otherwise no different in terms of the music, it seems.

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