Category Archives: UK

[UPDATE] Wishbone Ash 30CD Box – The Vintage Years 1970-1991

We now know that this limited Edition 30CD The Vintage Years 1970-1991 Box set featuring a TON of classic Wishbone Ash material including bonus session tracks will be released on April 20 of 2018. The set is limited to only 2500 copies worldwide and will carry a price tag of $337 (US), and £250 (UK).  This set is currently on pre-order.

We also know a bit more about inclusions. The set will not only contain remastered albums (many from original source tapes, as I’ve long understood Wishbone Four, and There’s The Rub original tapes to be considered gone for good) from the Wishbone Ash debut through Strange Affair albums, but also a wealth of bonus material. You can expect ‘rare album outtakes, B-sides, and 12 previously unreleased studio tracks’, all slipcased within mini-LP cardboard gatefold sleeves.

The Live collection will include the first  Live Dates album, Live Dates Volume Two, and Live in Tokyo. The additional live sets include eight previously unreleased live shows, all between the golden era of 1973 through 1980:

  • Portsmouth Guildhall 1973 (2CD) from the Wishbone Four / Live Dates tour.
  • Southampton University 1973 from the Wishbone Four / Live Dates tour.
  • Edinburgh Usher Hall 1976 from the New England tour.
  • Marquee Club 1977 from the Front Page News tour.
  • Newcastle City Hall 1977 from the Front Page News tour.
  • Bournemouth Winter Gardens 1978 (2CD) from the No Smoke Without Fire tour.
  • Guildford Civic Hall 1980 (2CD) from the Just Testing tour.
  • Chelmsford Odeon 1980 from the Blowin’ Free tour.

We know that tracks from the Portsmouth Guildhall show were used in the original Live Dates set. Here, we get the entire show over 2CDs. Unfortunately, that’s all from that album. (This means that a Deluxe Edition of Live Dates is STILL a viable grail set with ALL shows remastered and presented, along with a rich booklet of remembrances, and memorabilia included. C’mon Universal, Martin, and Andy! Please?!)

The Box will also include 156-page book of photos, memories, and other goodies. A 36-poster book is added as are four fold-out posters reproductions of original posters for: Christmas at the Palace Dec 1973, Live Dates European tour – Hamburg Musikhalle 1974, Europe 1975 tour, and the Front Page News tour – Empire Pool Wembley 1977.

A facsimile promo pack from MCA is stuffed into this box along with a 7″ flexidisc of “Blind Eye”. To finish the box, signed photos of the band members will be provided.

You can pre-order here. Don’t assume they will be there when you’re ready. Just sayin’!

Expect another update when we received the exact tracklist of every CD.

 

The Damned, Stiff Singles 1976-1977 7″ Vinyl Box In January

When the musical climate began to shift after 1975, The Damned were one of the few bands out in front of the trend. They released Damned Damned Damned in 1976 on Stiff Records, a growing influential label that also gave stage to Elvis Costello and a host of other popular rising talents. The debut album gave us “New Rose” followed by “Neat Neat Neat”. There was no doubt that a new style was coming and these mentioned singles were a strong forerunner of the genre of punk rock! Stiff Records ran its course after about ten years, ceasing operations in 1986. However, it lit the way for Ian Dury, Lene Lovich, Nick Lowe, The Pogues, Devo, and many others before shutting its doors.

The Damned released five singles (with B-sides) for Stiff Records in the UK before leaving the label. The first was the previously mentioned gem, “New Rose”, flip-sided by a non-album track, “Help”. Their second single, “Neat Neat Neat” helped push the single trend further with a flip side of two cuts, “Stab Your Back”, and “Singalonga Scabies”. If you still have those, then you’re quite the collector. But if you don’t, BMG along with Pledge Music, will release a Boxed set of 7″ vinyl singles with the original Stiff label. The Box is being called The Damned, Stiff Singles 1976-1977.  In addition to the vinyl singles, there will be a Damned embroidered patch.

The singles included are as follows:

Single1:

A – New Rose
B – Help

Single2:

A – Neat Neat Neat
B – Stab Your Back
B – SingalongaScabies

Single3:

A – Problem Child
B – You Take My Money

Single4:

A – Don’t Cry Wolf
B – One Way Love

Single5:

A – Stretcher Case Baby
B – Sick Of Being Sick

The Damned, Stiff Singles 1976-1977 Box is scheduled for January 26, 2018.

The Damned are currently recording a brand new album expected o be released in 2018 at some point!

 

New Echo & The Bunnymen Set, The Stars, The Oceans & The Moon, In 2018

In the ’80s, Echo & The Bunnymen provided their music in what I often call the richest vein in Rock history (1976-1985). Formed in 1978, with a first label issue in 1980 (Crocodiles), and their major label debut, the self-titled Echo & The Bunnymen, the band enjoyed hits like “The Pictures On My Wall” (1980), “A Promise” (1981), and sustaining well into the ’80s with hits like “Lips Like Sugar” (1987), and “The Game” (1987).  In fact, Rolling Stone Magazine’s oft consulted 500 Greatest Albums of All Time pegged the band’s second release, Heaven Up Here (1982) as important enough to be included.

Over time, Ian McCulloch would leave to a solo career, and the band would become a shell of itself. Nevertheless, things being what they are, McCulloch would come back with Will Sergeant, and briefly with Les Pattinson. Together, they would release What Are You Going To Do With Your Life? (1999), Flowers (2001), Siberia (2005), The Fountain (2009), and Meteorites (2014).

On May 18, 2018, core members McCulloch, and Sergeant, (as Echo & the Bunnymen) will release their next studio set, The Stars, The Oceans & The Moon. The new album will consist of Echo & The Bunnymen classics reformed and reimagined with strings. It’s an album that McCulloch says he had to do for himself. We just get lucky enough to join in. Additionally, there will be some new songs as well. All in all, here will be fifteen tracks (unknown at this point).

The Stars, The Oceans & The Moon will be released on CD, 2LP, DD, and Cassette. Extra bonuses include 2LP picture discs, if ordered though band’s online store.

 

New Simple Minds Album, Walk Between Worlds, In 2018

In 2014, Simple Minds revitalized interest in the band by releasing a new set of recordings that provided acoustic versions of their classic songs. It also helped that their 2014 studio set, Big Music, performed well. With that interest still high, it’s good to see the band plan a return to the studio realm with brand new music.

On February 2, BMG will release the 20th studio set by Simple Minds, which will be called Walk Between Worlds. The new album will feature eight new songs! (I’m so pleased to see a return to well thought out quality songs by releasing less tunes rather than cramming a CD with tracks because you can!)

Walk Between Worlds will be a somewhat different approach with half the album revisiting the sounds and styles of post-punk era dance-oriented songs, and other parts using orchestrations. I’m interested for he promise of this album.

Walk Between Worlds will be released on CD, Deluxe CD (with extra songs), DD, LP, and 2LP Deluxe. Here’s the breakdown:

The Deluxe CD, Deluxe DD, and Deluxe 2LP will provide three extra songs (a live version of “Dirty Old Town”, and studio tunes “Silent Kiss”, “Angel Underneath My Skin”.

 

Fleetwood Mac 1975 “White Album” To Be Expanded and Remastered

With the reissues of several Nicks/Buckingham-era classic albums, it was only a matter of time to get to the album that started that lineup. Their eponymous 1975 multi-platinum set that gave the world “Over My Head”, “Say You Love Me”, “Warm Ways”, and “Rhiannon” was ripe for the reissue pipeline. And while I personally love the pre-Buckingham/Nicks-era lineup better, I certainly do NOT hate this lineup.

On January 19, 2018, Rhino will release the next Fleetwood Mac reissue in several variations. Of course, the music here is newly remastered. But you will have choices with a single CD, (which features the primary album), a 2CD Expanded Edition that provides an additional four single edits on the first CD, and seventeen bonus pieces that show off the creative process of this album with embryonic early takes and versions, as well as a collection of live studio cuts.

There will be also be a Deluxe package that will deliver 3CDs, a DVD, and a vinyl LP of the original album. And a few things more for the avid Fleetwood Mac fan. This box provides the same two CDs as the Deluxe 2CD set, but will add in a CD of a collection of live tracks from three separate shows (Capitol Theatre – Passaic, NJ  10/17/1975; Jorgensen Auditorium – University of Connecticut Storrs, CT 10/25/1975; Campus Stadium – University of California 05/02/1976).

The included DVD for the Deluxe Box will contain high-quality Stereo (96kHz/24-bit) of the album’s original tracks as well as 5.1 Surround remixes. The 180g-weight black vinyl LP will be home to the original album tracks. All these will be housed in a 12″x 12″ embossed box (as seen below). The packed in book will provide photos, information and credits, memorabilia, new interview pieces, and new notes.

Several  early takes of popular songs from the album will be available individually as digital downloads or promo single streams (DD). Those are “Monday Morning (early take)” on 11/16/17, “Landslide (early version)” on 01/06/18, and “Say You Love Me (early version)” on 01/13/18.  Also, the CD and 2CD versions will be issued as DDs.

CD1 (Original Album, 2CD Expanded with 4 previously released bonus singles):
01. Monday Morning
02. Warm Ways
03. Blue Letter
04. Rhiannon
05. Over My Head
06. Crystal
07. Say You Love Me
08. Landslide
09. World Turning
10. Sugar Daddy
11. I’m So Afraid
12. Over My Head (Single Version)
13. Rhiannon (Will You Ever Win) [Single Version]
14. Say You Love Me (Single Version)
15. Blue Letter (Single Version)

CD2 (Bonus Selections):
01. Monday Morning (Early Take)
02. Warm Ways (Early Take)
03. Blue Letter (Early Take)
04. Rhiannon (Early Take)
05. Over My Head (Early Take)
06. Crystal (Early Version)
07. Say You Love Me (Early Version)
08. Landslide (Early Version)
09. World Turning (Early Version)
10. Sugar Daddy (Early Take)
11. I’m So Afraid (Early Version)
12. Over My Head (Live from The Burbank Studios, Burbank, CA, 1/26/76)
13. Rhiannon (Live from The Burbank Studios, Burbank, CA, 1/26/76)
14. Why (Live from The Burbank Studios, Burbank, CA, 1/26/76)
15. World Turning (Live from The Burbank Studios, Burbank, CA, 1/26/76)
16. Jam #2 (Remastered)
17. I’m So Afraid (Early Take Instrumental)

CD3 (Live Selections):
1. Get Like You Used To Be (Live at Capitol Theatre, Passaic, NJ, 10/17/75)
2. Station Man (Live at Jorgensen Auditorium, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT, 10/25/75)
3. Spare Me A Little (Live at Jorgensen Auditorium, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT, 10/25/75)
4. Rhiannon (Live at Jorgensen Auditorium, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT, 10/25/75)
5. Why (Live at Jorgensen Auditorium, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT, 10/25/75)
6. Landslide (Live at Jorgensen Auditorium, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT, 10/25/75)
7. Over My Head (Live at Campus Stadium, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA 5/2/76)
8. I’m So Afraid (Live at Capitol Theatre, Passaic, NJ, 10/17/75)
9. Oh Well (Live at Capitol Theatre, Passaic, NJ, 10/17/75)
10. The Green Manalishi (With The Two Pronged Crown) [Live at Capitol Theatre, Passaic, NJ, 10/17/75]
11. World Turning (Live at Capitol Theatre, Passaic, NJ, 10/17/75)
12. Blue Letter (Live at Capitol Theatre, Passaic, NJ, 10/17/75)
13. Don’t Let Me Down Again (Live at Jorgensen Auditorium, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT, 10/25/
14. Hypnotized (Live at Jorgensen Auditorium, University of Connecticut, Storrs, CT, 10/25/75)

DVD (96kHz/24-bit Stereo, 5.1 Surround Remixes):
01. Monday Morning (5.1 Surround Mix)
02. Monday Morning (5.1 Surround Mix)
03. Monday Morning (5.1 Surround Mix)
04. Rhiannon (5.1 Surround Mix)
05. Over My Head (5.1 Surround Mix)
06. Crystal (5.1 Surround Mix)
07. Say You Love Me (5.1 Surround Mix)
08. Landslide (5.1 Surround Mix)
09. World Turning (5.1 Surround Mix)
10. Sugar Daddy (5.1 Surround Mix)
11. I’m So Afraid (5.1 Surround Mix)
12. Monday Morning (24/96 Stereo Audio)
13. Warm Ways (24/96 Stereo Audio)
14. Blue Letter (24/96 Stereo Audio)
15. Rhiannon (24/96 Stereo Audio)
16. Over My Head (24/96 Stereo Audio)
17. Crystal (24/96 Stereo Audio)
18. Say You Love Me (24/96 Stereo Audio)
19. Landslide (24/96 Stereo Audio)
20. World Turning (24/96 Stereo Audio)
21. Sugar Daddy (24/96 Stereo Audio)
22. I’m So Afraid (24/96 Stereo Audio)
23. Over My Head (Single Version)
24. Rhiannon (Will You Ever Win) [Single Version]
25. Say You Love Me (Single Version)
26. Blue Letter (Single Version)

LP (Original Album)

30CD Wishbone Ash Box, The Vintage Years 1970-1991 Planned For 2018

Earlier this year, it was announced that Wishbone Ash has a massive Box set arriving “at some distant point”. Well, although that point is still not precisely known, we have been given the satisfactory ‘April of 2018’ date. And that works well enough for me.

The newly assembled box has a wealth of music from the band during their first sixteen albums including a lot of live music. As a fan of Live Dates, I have extreme hope that many of the unused songs collected from the shows will find themselves here. (I STILL advocate for the assembly and reissue of an EXPANDED and REMASTERED Live Dates album with ALL songs from ALL four shows, plus a rich booklet of bonuses, remembrances and memorabilia. It’s a project I’d crowdfund!)

The new Box – being released by Madfish (a division of Snapper Music) –  will be called The Vintage Years 1970-1991. It will house 30 CDs of classic Wishbone Ash including sixteen studio efforts through (I assume) Strange Affair, three live albums (both Live Dates and Live Dates II, and perhaps Live in Memphis), and 11 (!) CDs of previously unreleased live sets dating from 1973 through 1980. Also included will be a hard-bound 154 page book, a poster book, four reproduction posters, a “facsimilie MCA debut album promo pack”, a Japanese replica 7″ flexidisc, and signed photos of each band member. The BAD news is that there will ONLY be 2500 copies available for purchase worldwide.

According to Martin Turner, the pricing is yet to be announced, but the set will be available for pre-order on November 30 (2017). It won’t be cheap but then again, what definitive Boxed set is. It depends on your love for the band. For me, this is a must have. Unfortunately, there is also not an available track list of the bonus inclusions and the live sets. I assume these will materialize on November 30 along with the order link.

 

 

Midge Ure Reimagines Ultravox, Solo Songs In Orchestrated

The late ’70s and early ‘8os were a rich fertile ground for Rock and Roll when its greatest level of evolution occurred. Sounds were simplified, music was crafted in different ways than they were previously. And for fans, there were a wealth of great bands like Talking Heads, Buzzcocks, OMD, Joy Division, Tears For Fears, Simple Minds, Skafish, The Police, Elvis Costello, and hundreds more. One of the bands of the late ’70s was Ultravox!

Ultravox! released their first album for Island Records. For vocals, there was John Foxx. That incarnation was a post-punk styled sound that was exciting and quite listenable. This lineup lasted through the first three albums before Island dropped them for poor sales. (Yeah, it surprises me, too!). But after Foxx, along with Robin Simon, went on to other things, the remaining members refused to die. Instead, they brought in Midge Ure, the singer from Rich Kids, and Visage. Drawing interest from Chrysalis Records, Ultravox released Vienna, essentially remaking the band into something more powerful. And for five magnificent albums (Vienna – 1980, Rage In Eden – 1981, Quartet – 1982, Lament – 1984, U-Vox – 1986), the band thrived.

On December 1, Midge Ure will revisit some classic Ultravox songs – including “Vienna”, “Dancing With Tears In My Eyes”, “Hymn”, and “Lament”, and reimagine those songs in a uniquely orchestrated way. In addition, Midge Ure also revisits songs from his own solo works, songs that include “Breathe”, “If I Was”, “Fragile”, along with a brand new Midge Ure tune, “Ordinary Man”.

The new album is being called Orchestrated. It’s promised to be different than you might expect. Listen below to the provided track (“Breathe” for your personal assessment.

Thus far, this is a UK issue only.

OrchestratedMidge Ure

01. Hymn
02. Dancing with Tears in My Eyes
03. Breathe
04. Man of Two Worlds
05. If I Was
06. Vienna
07. The Voice
08. Ordinary Man
09. Death in the Afternoon
10. Lament
11. Reap the Wild Wind
12. Fragile

 

New Neil Young Album, The Visitor, For December

Neil Young has wasted little time in bringing his next album to the strong collection of fans he has amassed over the decades since his arrival in the ’60s. Earlier, Neil Young has released his previously unreleased acoustic set from the ’70s, Hitchhiker. But hat’s material from the past and thus a curiosity. What’s he doing now?

On December 1, his longtime record label, Reprise, will release his 42nd(!) studio set (counting the curiosities). The new album is being called The Visitor. This album’s collection of ten songs were recorded with Promise of the Real band, a band he worked with on The Monsanto Years in 2015. Peace Trail followed in December of 2016. there is a song off The visitor that has been in circulation for a while, “Children of Destiny”. That song was released on YouTube in June (listen below).

Neil Young does not sleep!

The Visitor will be released on CD, DD, and vinyl 2LP. The 2LP set is scheduled for 2018, on January 5.

 

New U2 Album, Songs Of Experience

For quite some time, the public has waited to see what U2 can come up with musically. After the release of Songs of Innocence, which hasn’t exactly become he band’s next Joshua Tree, the band has teased the upcoming Songs of Experience. While U2 has long passed the time of expiration for me, this isn’t the forum to express any subjective assessments of a band that many still love. Therefore:

On December 1, Island Records will release the next U2 album, Songs of Experience. The band has released two singles from the new album tha are easy track down and listen to.

Interestingly, it appears that Songs of Experience was financed through Pledge Music. It is there that there are several packages available that should prove exciting pick-ups for the fan. There will be a Box Set Deluxe, featuring a 12″ x 12″ rigid casing. Inside there are 2LP, pressed on 180g-weight vinyl in cyan blue color. The 2LPs will contain 16 tracks. Inside the gatefold jacket, a six-panel oversized book is included. A 17-track Deluxe Edition CD is inside along with a poster, a Songs of Experience newspaper, and a download card for the digital tracks.

The album will issue individually on CD, 2LP, a Deluxe Edition, and DD.

U2 has a 15-date tour ready to promote this new album.

Songs of ExperienceU2

01. Love Is All We Have Left
02. Lights of Home
03. You’re The Best Thing About Me
04. Get out of Your Own Way
05. American Soul
06. Summer of love
07. Red Flag Day
08. The Showman (Little More Better)
09. The Little Things That Give You Away
10. Landlady
11. Blackout
12. Love Is Bigger Than Anything in Its Way
13. 13 (There is a Light)
Bonus Tracks
14. Ordinary Love (Extraordinary Mix)
15. Book Of Your Heart
16. Lights of Home (St Peter’s String Version)
17. You’re The Best Thing About Me (U2 vs Kygo) [This song is NOT included on the 2LP set]

 

 

 

New Tom Chaplin (Keane) Album, Twelve Tale of Christmas

With Christmas in the air (it seems), the Holiday-themed music rapidly materializes faster than store displays do. One of the things I miss from my 30 years in California are the walks in malls, tree lighting ceremonies, and the overall, somewhat unnatural, atmosphere. Nevertheless, despite being less than a traditional Christmas with snow, etc, it managed to effectively fill the air with its own brand of magic. With music, the same can be said. Often, what seems like a strange pairing, the magic simply shows up.

On December 8 (November 17 in the UK), Universal will release a holiday-themed album by Tom Chaplin. Tom Chaplin is well known for his time with Keane. It’s been five years since a Keane album, however, Tom released a successful solo effort in 2016 with The Wave. That album produced four singles, and achieved a high position on the UK charts. But even worldwide, the album was well-received. The new album is called Twelve Tales of Christmas. The album will contain a whopping twelve tracks (coincidental?).

Chaplin, like the many of us, still finds a magic in Christmas that isn’t seen or felt by everyone. And not that there are those who hold a special insight; but there are those that never really let it go from their lives.Tom says it like this: “Christmas is my favourite time of year. The passing years have conspired to erode that magic but I still feel it’s presence when I gather together with my family.”

Twelve Tales of Christmas will be released on CD, DD, and vinyl LP. The album’s twelve tracks is a collection of eight originals, and four covers (“Walking In The Air”, “The River”, “2000 Miles”, “Stay Another Day”).

Fortunately for us, there is a single that we can hear and enjoy. With that unmistakable and familiar Keane voice, this should be fun for you to listen to!