Michael Jackson, Xscape (Epic)
Where was this three years ago? This collection of eight outtakes, augmented with tasteful future-retro production by Timbaland, Stargate, L.A. Reid and others, is possibly the best project to escape the MJ vaults yet. For the discerning fan, Epic’s done you a solid, offering a deluxe package with the same songs in their untouched demo form. It’s really something.
One of ELP’s defining albums is now available in an imported deluxe multi-disc box featuring original and new stereo remixes of the album, an alternate assembly from rare and unreleased outtakes and DVDs featuring documentary footage and a 5.1 mix of the album.
Before A Charlie Brown Christmas, this was Vince Guaraldi’s first album devoted to Charles M. Schultz’s lovable comic strip hero – the score to a never-aired documentary. It’s been remastered and expanded for its 50th anniversary, and a full story is forthcoming!
Porter Wagoner & Dolly Parton, Just Between You and Me: The Complete Recordings 1967-1976 (Bear Family)
A brilliant six-disc box set chronicling the dozen-plus RCA Victor albums created by this immortal country duo, not to mention more than a dozen rare and unreleased tracks. (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)
The Beat, The Complete Studio Recordings (Edsel)
Edsel’s no stranger to The (English) Beat’s catalogue, but this smart new box keeps it to the essentials: all three original studio LPs, plus a disc of essential B-sides and remixes. (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)
Elaine Paige, The Ultimate Collection (Warner Music UK)
A brilliant career-spanning compilation from the U.K. musical theatre star, available in standard and deluxe editions with some choice rarities to boot.
Ned Doheny, Separate Oceans (Numero Group)
A cult favorite on the edges of the California rock sound of the ’70s, Ned Doheny is celebrated with a new compilation combining some previously released tracks for Columbia and Asylum with ten unreleased demos – three of which feature the talents of Don Henley and Glenn Frey of the Eagles.
The Sound, Jeopardy/From the Lion’s Mouth/All Fall Down…Plus (Edsel)
A criminally underrated British post-punk band gets their due on a new set from Edsel collating the band’s first three albums, all expanded, with a DVD of BBC performances. (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)
Fifty years after the DC5 took part in the British Invasion, this documentary features new testimonials from famous fans and contemporaries plus great, rarely-seen archival footage.
Original Television Soundtrack Recording, Androcles and the Lion (Masterworks Broadway)
The RCA Victor soundtrack recording of composer/lyricist Richard Rodgers’ 1967 television musical Androcles and the Lion – starring Ed Ames, Noel Coward, John Cullum, Inga Swenson and Norman Wisdom – is receiving its first-ever reissue in any format exclusively from Masterworks in a limited quantity of MOD CD-Rs as well as digital download.
Dave Van Ronk, Live in Monterey 1998 (Omnivore)