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Please note that we will be closed Saturday December 22nd through Tuesday January 1st.

If you would like to receive your order before Christmas, please make a note in your order comments and we will do our best to accommodate you. Any orders received after midday this Friday will not ship until the New Year.

Happy Holidays from the Better Records crew!

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Super Hot Stamper

The Cars
The Cars

  (Item #: cars_cars_1812_2) 

Our Price: $169.99

  • With superb Double Plus (A++) , this is an outstanding pressing of The Cars' debut album
  • You may have heard these songs a million times, but you'll be shocked at just how much better they sound on this very pressing
  • A Better Records Top 100 title, the band's masterpiece, and a New Wave Must Own Classic from 1978
  • 5 stars: "Whereas most bands of the late '70s embraced either punk/new wave or hard rock, the Cars were one of the first bands to do the unthinkable — merge the two styles together. With flawless performances, songwriting, and production (courtesy of Queen alumnus Roy Thomas Baker), the Cars' debut remains one of rock's all-time classics."
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Super Hot Stamper

The Cars
Candy-O

  (Item #: cars_candy_1810) 

Our Price: $149.99

  • A killer copy of The Cars' New Wave Classic, boasting outstanding Double Plus (A++) sound on both sides
  • Some of the best sound you'll ever hear on Candy-O -- big, punchy, DYNAMIC, clear and lively
  • A great lineup of songs with Demo Disc sound quality, thanks to Roy Thomas Baker's production
  • AMG raves it's "... the rare follow-up to a classic debut... it may be one of the best second albums ever made, full of great songs, inspired performances, and sporting a still-perfect sound."
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Jefferson Airplane - Surrealistic Pillow

Do the Choruses of She Has Funny Cars Hold Up?

  (Item #: jeffesurre_depth) 



Presenting another entry in our extensive Listening in Depth series.

Before we get into the sound of Surrealistic Pillow, I'd like to point out that Hot Stampers for this title -- and the shootouts that allow us to find them -- are becoming increasingly rare. I'd be surprised if we can even find enough clean copies to play once a year nowadays. As unfortunate as it may be it is nevertheless a reality. With clean Led Zeppelin RL pressings frequently commanding $1000 and up on ebay, you can be pretty sure we won't have many of those to sell you in the months and years to come either.

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The Cars - Candy-O

Listening in Depth

  (Item #: cars_candy_depth) 



Another in our series of Home Audio Exercises with advice on What to Listen For (WTLF) as you critically evaluate your copy of The Cars' second album.

This is one of our favorite recordings -- a former member of our Top 100 -- for one very simple reason: it's got Big Rock Sound in spades! Drop the needle on Let's Go and check out the sound of the big floor tom. When the drummer bangs on that thing, you will FEEL it! It's similar to the effect of being in the room with live musicians -- the difference between just hearing music and also feeling it. That's what you get from a Hot Stamper copy.

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The Cars - Candy-O

Nautilus Debunked

  (Item #: cars_candy_debunk_2014) 



Sonic Grade: F

A Hall of Shame pressing and another Half Speed debunked.

This Nautilus Half-Speed Mastered LP, like The Cars first album they did, is pure compressed muck. Another one of the worst half-speeds of all time. For those who are interested we've reprinted a customer's letter below as well.

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The Cars - Candy-O

Our Shootout Winner from 2006

  (Item #: cars_candy_2006) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Rock Hall of Fame.

This Minty Elektra LP has two OUT-OF-THIS-WORLD sides! TRIPLE PLUS/TRIPLE PLUS! As far as we know, this is the only New Wave rock record with DEMO DISC sound ever made. We’re talking huge amounts of dynamic energy, tons of bass, a luscious midrange, all topped with a sweetly extended high end. I always knew there were superb sounding copies of this album, but I honestly had no idea they any could sound like this. There is only one copy that earned our coveted Triple Plus designation for both sides, and this is it. As Good As It Gets.

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The Cars - The Cars

Nautilus Debunked

  (Item #: cars_cars_debunk) 



Sonic Grade: F

A Hall of Shame pressing and another Half Speed debunked.

This Nautilus Half-Speed Mastered LP is pure mud -- compressed; thick and congested, a disaster on every level, much like their atrocious remastering of Candy-O. If you own this Audiophile BS pressing (NR-14) and you can't hear what's wrong with it, you seriously need to consider revamping your system.

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The Cars - The Cars

Our Shootout Winner from 2011

  (Item #: cars_cars_2011) 



A distinguished member of the Better Records Rock and Jazz Hall of Fame.

As you may remember from our last go around with The Cars’ debut, we proclaimed that new White Hot Stampers had been discovered, and indeed they had. These, dear reader, are the very ones of which we spoke, and let me assure you, they are every bit as good. They just plain blow the doors off our previous favorites, which is both shocking and wonderful. The King is Dead, Long Live the King!

Talk about jumping out of the speakers, the energy level of this copy is completely OFF THE CHARTS. You’ve probably heard these songs a million times, but you’ve NEVER heard them sound like this. Both sides have FREAKISHLY GOOD SOUND -- dynamic, spacious and ALIVE!

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The Cars - The Cars

Ramping Up the Horsepower Like Crazy

  (Item #: cars_cars_wtlf) 



Another in our series of Home Audio Exercises with specific advice on What to Listen For (WTLF) as you critically evaluate your copy of the classic first Cars album.

The best copies must have one absolutely essential quality if this groundbreaking New Wave album is to come to life -- a huge, spacious soundstage.

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The Cars - The Cars

We Love Dynamic Choruses, and These Are Amazing!

  (Item #: cars_cars_choruses) 



Another in the long list of recordings that really comes alive when you Turn Up Your Volume.

The hottest of the Hot Stampers did one easily recognizable thing better than the Also-Rans, and it was apparent pretty much from the get-go. The multi-multi-multi-tracked Power Pop Choruses on the best copies don't strain (a very common problem), they are bigger and more powerful, they stretch from wall to wall, and the voices that make them up are separated much more than on other copies.

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The Cars

Here's the Big Rock Sound We Love

  (Item #: cars_overview) 



The first two Cars albums were both in The Better Records Rock and Pop Top 100 at one time, with good reason: they're superb recordings. The Cars have been in "heavy rotation" on my system since their albums came out in the late '70s. We started doing shootouts for both right around 2006 or 2007, and they continue to be a regular feature of our Rock Hot Stamper section, not to mention some of the most fun shootouts we do in any given week.

Before then had you ever read a word in any audiophile or record collecting publication about how amazing the originals can sound? Of course not. Most of the audiophile types writing for the stereo rags wouldn't know a good record from a hole in the ground.

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