We’re less than two weeks into a new year and a new decade, but 2010 is already shaping up to be a great year for back catalogue enthusiasts. What follows is a round-up of the best and brightest reissues already slated for the new year.
An obligatory note on release dates: they’re as always set to change. I base my reports on the excellent work at Pause & Play, the best resource for any music release dates you might be looking for.
Hit the jump for some news on catalog titles by Elvis Costello, Duran Duran, The Cure, John Mellencamp and more!
Elvis Costello and The Attractions, Live at Hollywood High (Hip-O, January 12)
As I’ve said before, getting into Elvis Costello is a bit of a head-scratcher: the majority of his albums were reissued on Rhino between 2001 and 2006, and then Universal’s Hip-O started distributing reissued (but mostly unexpanded) versions of some of those records literally months after the Rhino campaign stopped. But while you’re trying to sort through which version of This Year’s Model you should pick up, Hip-O’s “Costello Show” series of rare live recordings is a no-brainer. This 1978 show has been released in parts before – a three-song EP was included with pressings of Armed Forces in 1979, and the 2002 Rhino reissue of that album added six more tracks from the same show – but the Hip-O disc presents the 20-song set in its entirety. Whether you’ve bought all these albums before or you’ve never touched a single one, this one’s looking like a must-buy.
Whitney Houston, Whitney Houston: 25th Anniversary Edition (Arista/Legacy, January 26)
If I Look to You, Houston’s comeback album from last summer, didn’t do it for you, you can always look to this expansion of her explosive debut, which had such blockbuster hits as “How Will I Know,” “The Greatest Love of All” and “Saving All My Love for You.” This set adds five bonus tracks (including a few vinyl-only dance mixes) and a DVD of music videos, TV performances and new interviews with Houston and her famed mentor Clive Davis.
Santana, Supernatural: Legacy Edition (Arista/Legacy, February 16)
Hard to believe it’s been a decade since audiences couldn’t get away from “Smooth,” Santana’s huge comeback single with vocal assistance from Matchbox Twenty frontman Rob Thomas. Now, sort of 10 years later (this had been on the calendar back in the summer and fall, but it fell back to the winter – Grammy season, I guess), Supernatural is paired with a second disc of unreleased collaborations and a remix here and there.
Was (Not Was), Pick of the Litter 1980-2010 (Micro Werks, February 23)
Easily one of the weirdest bands to come out of the 1980s, Was (Not Was) were a pair of musicians/producers (including Don Was, who produced tracks for The B-52’s and Bonnie Raitt) who put together a bunch of funky, comedic records through the 1980s and early 1990s (often chock full of left-field guests like Leonard Cohen or Mel Torme). Their biggest hits, “Walk the Dinosaur” and “Spy in the House of Love,” were late-’80s pop staples, and their latest compilation (their first since releasing 2008’s Boo!, their first new record since 1990) has got all the hits plus a few hard-to-find remix and a rehearsal track, amusingly titled “”Hello Operator. . .I Mean Dad. . .I Can’t Even Remember Who I Am.”
David Bowie, David Bowie: Deluxe Edition (Deram/UMe, March 2)
Recently, a letter written by Bowie to his first American fan was discovered. It’s easily as fascinating a look at the man who would be Ziggy Stardust as this record is. See, as many are aware, last year’s reissue of Space Oddity wasn’t the true first chapter in Bowie’s history; it’s this record, far more music hall than glam. The material has been released before (namely in The Deram Anthology in 1997) but UMe will offer it as one of its Deluxe Editions, featuring the original stereo and mono mixes of the record and a disc of rare mixes, B-sides and BBC recordings.
The Bee Gees, Mythology (Rhino, March 9)
Although it was planned for this past holiday season, Bee Gees fans will be able to get their hands on this in a few months. It’s a four-disc set commemorating the 50th anniversary of the group, featuring a disc devoted to Barry, Robin, Maurice and Andy (with the surviving Gibbs and their families selecting the tracks). A few unreleased cuts and a bounty of liner notes by luminaries from George Martin to Elton John are going to be in this set as well.
The Jimi Hendrix Experience remasters (Experience Hendrix/Legacy, March 9)
Almost nothing is known about these except they’re going to be CD/DVD versions of the three JHE studio albums (Are You Experienced, Axis: Bold as Love and Electric Ladyland) and a reissue of the compilation Smash Hits. Bonus tracks? Who knows for sure. This is far from the first time these have been reissued (MCA most recently had the rights to Hendrix’s catalogue), but hopefully it’ll be a fresh new chapter, for the fans’ sakes.
The Cure, Disintegration: Deluxe Edition (Rhino, March 16)
Considered the greatest album ever by no less an authority than South Park‘s Eric Cartman (you’ll remember key tracks like “Pictures of You” and “Lovesong,” later covered by 311), this landmark record is commemorated in Rhino’s usual Cure deluxe-edition fashion, with a bonus disc of demos and other rarities; however, there’s another treat here too: a third bonus disc holding an expanded version of Entreat, the band’s rare and much-bootlegged live album from Wembley Arena.
Elvis Presley, On Stage: Legacy Edition (RCA/Legacy, March 23)
To continue the celebration of what would have been the King’s 75th birthday (a new box set, Elvis 75: Good Rockin’ Tonight, was just released this past week), Legacy gathers up expansions of two Elvis live records. There’s On Stage, a live-covers record armed with four bonus tracks, and the second disc is Elvis in Person at the Continental Hotel), released a year earlier as half of a double LP, From Memphis to Vegas/From Vegas to Memphis. (There’s six bonus cuts on this one.)
Duran Duran, Duran Duran: Collector’s Edition/Seven and the Ragged Tiger: Collector’s Edition (EMI, March TBA)
After EMI’s stunning Rio reissue last fall, the label announced plans to add more deluxe titles to store shelves for Duranies. Both records will be packaged with bonus discs featuring B-sides, remixes, demos and live cuts (many of which are rare or unreleased, especially in the case of the first record’s live BBC session tapes); additionally, limited-edition sets will be fitted with bonus DVDs of the classic MTV clips and other fun stuff (this is where Ragged Tiger shines, including an ultra-rare concert special, As the Lights Go Down). There will be digital support for each as well, with a BBC concert from 1981 and a digital audio version of As the Lights Go Down for sale on iTunes and Amazon. Now, if only there was a release date!
Big Audio Dynamite, This is Big Audio Dynamite: Legacy Edition (Epic/Legacy, April 27)
This long-in-development reissue – the first record by the Mick Jones-led punk-dance group, not long after The Clash dissolved – boasts the full album with another disc of 12″ mixes, including five that have never been released before.
Iggy and The Stooges, Raw Power: The Masters Edition (Columbia/Legacy, April 27)
Rest easy: this set looks nothing like the last time they reissued the record. (That would be the horrific 1997 reissue which subbed in a new, way-too-loud mix by Iggy Pop instead of David Bowie’s original.) Instead, it’s the original mix coupled with a 1973 concert in Atlanta, the soundboard master of which Pop recently found – the perfect way to commemorate the group’s impending induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Arcadia, So Red the Rose: Collector’s Edition (EMI, April TBA)
Initially scheduled for next month but reshuffled for chronological purposes, this is the oddest duck in the Duran Duran catalogue: a 1985 side-project record (mostly composed by Simon Le Bon and Nick Rhodes with a little help from Roger Taylor) that was the New Wave-y ying to The Power Station’s rock-and-roll yang (surely you remember the Robert Palmer-led other side project of Duran’s?). Like the Duran remasters, So Red the Rose will feature all the B-sides and remixes released on 7″ and 12″ singles (including the rare “Say the Word,” a soundtrack-only single that went nowhere). It will also come in a limited edition set with the So Red the Rose video album, never before released on DVD.
Bruce Springsteen, Darkness on the Edge of Town Box Set (Columbia/Legacy, TBA)
Very little details have been confirmed for the set – Bruce told Rolling Stone that work on the set was about “93 percent done” – but if the fantastic Born to Run box is any indication, it’ll combine the original record with live footage and newly created documentaries. If so, expect fans to go wild – the tour is said to be one of his strongest with The E Street Band.
John Mellencamp, On the Rural Route 7609 (Island, TBA)
Not much is known about this long-in-gestation box set, but it should offer an awesome look at Mellencamp’s consistent career through demos, outtakes, live versions and other tracks that make box sets worth picking up.
And, as always, more titles are sure to be announced. In fact, if you know of any, shoot me an e-mail at email@example.com and I will gladly post it up on the site.