The album I really wanted for the Christmas of 1983 was Styx's Kilroy Was Here. Somehow my grandmother ended up with that part of Santa duties, and apparently disapproved. Instead, what I got was a copy of Toto IV. Let me tell you, when you're a junior-high student wanting to hear "Mr. Roboto," getting "Rosanna" and "Africa" instead is not an acceptable substitute. I played the Toto record exactly once, then threw it into my father's collection in disgust with its general sappiness.
Things are a little bit different nowadays. Yes, I finally bought the Styx album, but by then it was on CD. I eventually picked up an LP copy as well just to appreciate the cheesy liner notes and artwork in its full glory. Somewhere along the line I found myself liking Toto IV enough to buy my own copy of that as well. Then I found it again on gold disc, remastered using Sony's Super Bit Mapping process. Since I'd never been really satisfied with the original CD, I bought that one too. And now Mobile Fidelity has dropped their version in my lap, remastered with their original GAIN system. Three copies of Toto IV; that makes 12 Totos in total, right?
The song is about Rosanna Arquette, in case you were wondering.
"It's a Feeling"
Liner notes on the original CD include a lot of information about the musicians on each track, but not much else. The SBM version adds an LP-size pull-out with pictures of the band. Mobile Fidelity's CD booklet is regular sized, but it includes all the photos and full lyrics. Now you can settle that nagging argument with your friends about the opening to the album: it's "All I wanna do when I wake up in the morning is see your eyes." So there.
If you're suffering with an original CBS Toto IV CD, by all means run out and get the Mobile Fidelity version. It's a big upgrade. Those who already have the now out of print SBM release, there's not as much reason to upgrade. Yes, the MoFi version improves on it, especially during the piano parts, but the differences are generally subtle. And for audiophiles who prefer analog, I now have a vinyl copy of Toto IV for sale. Only played once....
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