As we at The Second Disc HQ love to point out, Morrissey once set his scathing lyrical pen on record companies’ propensity for reissues on The Smiths’ “Paint a Vulgar Picture.” Currently, he must be shitting bricks: Rhino U.K. is planning The Smiths – Complete, a box set compiling the influential band’s entire discography, all newly remastered.
Clever fans spotted the presence of the set on the label’s site late last night (we have super-reader Dean H. to thank for hipping us to it), and our good friends at Slicing Up Eyeballs did a post on the whole affair earlier. But trying to order the set would yield nothing.
Now, however, the set is official: the band’s eight albums – studio albums The Smiths (1984), Meat is Murder (1985), The Queen is Dead (1986) and Strangeways, Here We Come (1987); non-LP singles compilations Hatful of Hollow (1984), The World Won’t Listen (1987) and the U.S.-only Louder Than Bombs (1987) and the live album “Rank” (1988) – will be included in the set, all newly remastered by former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr with engineer Frank Arkwright in London’s Metropolis Studios.
The set is available as a vinyl offering or on CD (with mini-LP replica packaging included throughout), but die-hard fans are going to want to check out the super-deluxe version. And what’s on that, you say? Hit the jump to find out!
This giant-sized box, limited to 1,000 copies, has:
- All of the remastered albums available on CD in mini-LP replica packaging and on 180-gram vinyl (spread over 11 LPs – five single albums and two double albums)
- Twenty-five of the band’s 7″ singles, pressed with “specially reproduced rarities”
- The Complete Picture DVD, which compiled the band’s various videos, short films and Top of the Pops appearances
- Artwork aplenty: A 36″ x 24″ poster compiling every album and single sleeve the band ever put out and 8″ x 12″ prints of all of the album sleeves
- A 12″ x 12″ book of liner notes
- Download codes for all the tracks as 320 kbps MP3s
While it’s certain that some fans can pass this up (there are a few notable omissions from around the band’s discography – the full 12″ B-side of “Rubber Ring” and “Asleep,” segued as one track, springs to mind – and there are no previously unreleased outtakes), if you’re a collector, you’ll want to put this one on your shelf. It’s not cheap (at £249.99, or just about $410 in the States), but for the superfan, it’s hard not to say “reissue! repackage! repackage!” to this one.
A domestic release has not been set, but you can order The Smiths – Complete at Rhino U.K. right now, with an expected shipping date around September 26 (for the CD edition) and October 4 (for the vinyl and super deluxe set).