Way back in the fall of 2013, our very own Mike Duquette reported on the release of Mike + the Mechanics’ The Singles 1985-2014, a two-disc compendium for the band founded by Genesis’ Mike Rutherford. He teased, “This set has been pushed back to January 20, 2014…to better coincide with some more Mike + The Mechanics events in the coming year, including a U.K. tour in the winter of 2014, a forthcoming memoir from Rutherford and a planned reissue of Living Years for its 25th anniversary.” Well, that year-old anniversary reissue of Living Years is finally receiving a U.S. pressing to coincide with a new tour.
Featuring guitarist/bassist Rutherford, vocalists Paul Carrack and Paul Young, keyboardist Adrian Lee and drummer Peter Van Hooke, Living Years marked an impressive sophomore release for the band. It was, of course, bolstered by the strength of the U.S. No. 1/U.K. No. 2 title track written by Rutherford and B.A. Robertson. No less than Burt Bacharach hailed the track as featuring “one of the finest lyrics of the last ten years,” and the song picked up the prestigious Ivor Novello Award in the United Kingdom. Paul Carrack sang lead vocals on the song, one of his six leads on the album. Bandmate Paul Young (not to be confused with the solo singer of “Everytime You Go Away”) handled the other four tracks’ leads. The album’s two other singles, “Nobody’s Perfect” and “Seeing is Believing,” reached No. 63 and No. 62, respectively, on the Billboard Hot 100.
The original Mechanics line-up remained intact for one more album, 1991’s Word of Mouth. By 1995’s Beggar on a Beach of Gold, Lee had departed the band, though he played on the album as a session musician. That album would also be Van Hooke’s farewell. 1999’s self-titled Mike + the Mechanics, also known as M6, was the last of the group’s records to feature Paul Young, who died the following year. Carrack and Rutherford soldiered on for 2004’s Rewired, but Rutherford alone put together a new line-up of Mechanics for 2011’s The Road. Click the jump to keep reading!
The upcoming Deluxe Edition features the original album on Disc One. The second disc kicks off with the new version of the title track that features the South African Isango Choir and the band's current vocalist Andrew Roachford. The bonus disc also includes eleven songs from the band’s 1989 U.K. tour in support of the original album – though, ironically, a live version of “The Living Years” isn’t among them!
For the North American tour which kicks off next month in Alexandria, Virginia, Rutherford will lead the current incarnation of the group including vocalist Andrew Roachford and Tim Howar, keyboardist Luke Juby, guitarist/bassist Anthony Drennan, and drummer Gary Wallis. The 18-date tour will conclude on March 21 in Chicago and then travel to Europe for another series of concerts.
Rhino’s 2-CD Deluxe Edition of Mike + the Mechanics’ Living Years is due on February 10 and can be pre-ordered below!
Mike + the Mechanics, Living Years: Deluxe Edition (Atlantic CD 81923, 1988 – reissued Atlantic/Rhino, 2015) (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)
- Nobody's Perfect
- The Living Years
- Seeing Is Believing
- Nobody Knows
- Poor Boy Down
- Black & Blue
- Beautiful Day
- Why Me?
- The Living Years 2014
- Seeing Is Believing (Live)
- Don't (Live)
- Black & Blue (Live)
- Silent Running (Live)
- Par Avion (Live)
- Take The Reins (Live)
- Nobody's Perfect (Live)
- A Call To Arms (Live)
- Beautiful Day (Live)
- Hanging By A Thread (Live)
Todd Richards says
Really thrilled to see this album reissued, and the band back in action in the states. Looking fwd to the shows in Pittsburgh and CLE. Wish the first album would also get the anniv treatment (30 Years in 2015) note that although the core band was there on album 1- two other singers were on the album for "Par Avion" and "You Are The One". A reissue could include the terrific 12" mix of "All I Need Is A Miracle", and live recordings from the band ("Silent Running", "...Miracle" etc ) recorded by King Biscuit Flower Hour. Lets also not forget A Closer Look VHS that has never been on DVD including period interviews with the band, and all (if not most) the videos through The Living Years.
Sent from my iTodd. I have big hands so please excuse the typos 🙂
In a recent interview, Mike said that the live tracks were recorded in Philadelphia and Boston.
(You can find the interview here: http://www.genesis-news.com/c-Interview-Mike-Rutherford-in-conversation-RKive-Sum-of-The-Parts-Mechanics-touring-s581.html )
Rich D. says
Is this any different from the Euro version that came out last year ?
Joe Marchese says
Hey Rich, Content-wise, it appears to be identical.
Rich D. says
Joe - thanks for the info !!
Philip Cohen says
Now, if Mike & the Mechanics, who have been without a U.S.A. label for a few years, could find a U.S.A. licensee for several of their studio albums which have only been available as imports, such as "M6" & their latest album "The Road". In the U.S.A., only avid fans (like me) who have had these discs sent from the UK know that Mike & Mechanics still exist. "Genesis" are now history. It's long overdue for the American record industry to fully support Mike Rutherford's present-day musical efforts. Mike is doing his part, by scheduling an American tour.