After being disappointed in the remastered version of Blue Bell Knoll, I was having trouble deciding whether to purchase another in the Twins' new remaster series. After I tentatively gave HOLV a shot, I was flabbergasted. The sound has come alive! What was previously leaden and muffled has been set free into the sparkling ether. And keep in mind-- I had never considered the production on the original album to be lacking-- maybe a tad overreacting to the bright sound of Blue Bell Knoll two years previous, but rich, full and melodic nonetheless. What a difference thirteen years makes! It's like listening to a brand new release. The sound is no longer so midrange-heavy; the instruments have been lifted and separated just enough to delineate them, while preserving the gauziness of the original. The vocals have a newfound space and importance, as if Elizabeth just got through clearing her throat. And the bass! Chunkier, crunchier, it actually makes my Grados pulsate during 'Cherry-coloured Funk'. This newfound clarity is even more apparent on 'Fifty-fifty Clown', which must be one of the most timelessly futuristic pop songs ever produced. It shimmers more forcefully now, chugs along more insistently, and leaves you wanting more. It's amazing how a good remaster can change your feelings about a song; I had never been a huge fan of the title track, but now I have rediscovered it--it's more balanced, less honk-y. I can honestly recommend this remaster as a must-have for real Cocteau Twins fans, it's that much better. One of the richest, most luxurious albums ever. *** Oh, and fellow Twins fans/reviewers: hey! don't be blithely glossing over the song titles. Elizabeth worked too hard on them for you to dismissively call them "Track 1" or "Track 9". Sheesh. Learn them and use them-- they're windows into the songs themselves. They cross-reference each other and provide a huge chunk of the only insight into Elizabeth's lyrics that exists. Show some respect!