BURNING THE GROUND EXCLUSIVE 1988
Seasons Greetings! I originally posted this 12″ on December 21, 2011. I really love this EP and wanted to give it a proper transfer. This is the first restoration using the new Ortofon 2M Bronze. I really hope that it is an upgrade and you will be able to hear the difference.
Crackers International is a Christmas EP released by Erasure in 1988, in between the albums The Innocents and Wild!.
The EP appeared in several different versions. The original UK release by Mute Records consisted of four original, self-produced tracks. In the UK, where at the time EPs were eligible for the singles chart, it became one of Erasure’s most successful releases, matching the number two peak of 1986’s “Sometimes.” It was promoted with a simple music video for the lead track “Stop!”, showing Clarke and Bell performing the song on a stage surrounded by “stop”, “no entry”, “give way” and similar road signs.
In the U.S., Crackers International was still considered an EP, although two remixes were added (bringing the track list count to six) when Sire Records released it. In the U.S., where EPs chart on the Billboard 200, it hit number seventy-three. The song “Stop!” was also released as its own stand-alone single in the U.S., just barely making an appearance on the Billboard Hot 100 (number 97). On the U.S. Hot Dance Music/Club Play chart “Stop!” / “Knocking on Your Door” peaked at number four as a double-sided entry.
Additionally, a version of the EP was released in the UK by Mute Records in a very limited-edition, seasonal pressing, titled Crackers International Part 2. Released originally in 12″ vinyl with extended versions of “Stop!” and “Knocking on Your Door”, both remixed by Mark Saunders, it also added the Christmas standard “God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen”. It was subsequently released as a compact disc containing the original 7″ versions of “Stop!” and “Knocking on Your Door” (also of note is the fact that there were two different versions of the single mix of “Stop!”, one with a fade, and a slightly longer one with a ‘cold’ ending).
Sire Records commissioned some mixes for the song by Justin Strauss, who previously had remixed A Little Respect for the U.S. market, but the mixes remain unreleased. This versions can be found on the Soundcloud page of Justin Strauss.
Twenty-five years after Crackers International, in 2013, Erasure would finally release a proper Christmas album, titled Snow Globe.
Stop! (Mark Saunders Remix) 5:46
Knocking On Your Door (Mark Saunders Remix) 6:04
God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen 3:10
Arranged By –
Mixed By –
Written-By – Trad.*
Vinyl: Near Mint
Sleeve: Near Mint
||U.S. Billboard Hot 100
||Stop!/Knocking On Your Door
||U.S. Billboard Hot Dance Music/Club Play
Label: Mute – L12 Mute 93
Format: Vinyl, 12″, EP, 45 RPM
Released: 28 Nov 1988
Design, Art Direction – Me Company
Engineer – Alan Moulder
Engineer [Assistant] – Cameron Jenkins, Jock Loveband
Illustration – James Marsh
Find the 12″ on DISCOGS
Turntable: Pro-Ject Debut Carbon (DC)
Cartridge: Ortofon 2M
Stylus: Ortofon 2M Bronze
Isolation: Auralex Acoustics ISO-Tone Turntable Isolation Platform
Platter: Pro-Ject Acryl-It platter
Stabilizer: Pro-Ject Record Puck
Phono Pre-amp: Bellari VP130 Tube Phono Preamp
Tube: Tung-Sol 12AX7ECC803-S Gold Electron Tube
Soundcard: ESI Juli@
Record Cleaning: VPI HW 16.5 Record Cleaning Machine
Artwork Scans: Brother MFC-6490CW Professional Series Scanner
Recording/Editing: Adobe Audition 3.0 (Recording)
Down Sampling: iZotope RX Advanced 2
Artwork Editor: Adobe Photoshop CS5
Click Removal: Manual
FLAC/MP3 Conversion: dBpoweramp
M3U Playlist: Playlist Creator
All vinyl rips are recorded @ 32bit/float
FLAC (Level Eight)
Artwork scanned at 600dpi
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