but by 1970 (ATMP) they were mixing directly into stereo weren't they? I get that the early albums have forced stereo mixes and therefore arent true stereo but by then they were making natural stereo recordings i thought.
It kind of sounds a bit like inverted snobbery to me. What i mean is stereo is far more natural sound, its how we hear things in everyday life. And besides from what i understand, you cant hear true mono as it should be on a 2 speaker hi fithat we all have now so unless you have such a player isnt forced mono the same mess as forced stereo?
Forced mono is basically a 'fold down'. You can get the effect by flicking the mono switch on the hi-fi whilst playing a stereo recording. Sounds like crap.
I imagine that by 'forced stereo', you mean some of the crap that Capitol released in 63, and 64. Given a set of mono masters they contrived to produce a kind of faux stereo. I've heard bootleggers do it better! The later released stereo stuff in the UK, is mixed for stereo. I'm unaware if the Capitol Albums boxed sets were remixed properly for stereo, or if they're the original mixes. Whatever, they sound awful.
At least with 'forced stereo' you get to hear everything, though not necessarily in the ear that it was intended! Fold downs into mono just sound dreadful, but a good mono mix can be a revelation. Try listening to the mono version of Sgt. Pepper.