Welcome to this week’s Release Round-Up filled with deluxe reissues on vinyl and CD, box sets, new releases from veteran artists, and more!
Michael Jackson, Off the Wall (Epic/Legacy)
The King of Pop’s 1979 Epic solo debut Off the Wall is revived for 2016 with an additional DVD or BD of Spike Lee’s acclaimed new documentary about the making of the album, Michael Jackson’s Journey from Motown to Off the Wall. No additional audio tracks are included, and the mix is the “MJ-approved” version with alterations from the original vinyl pressing (i.e. the handclaps in “Rock with You,” etc.). The new Off the Wall is packaged in a slipcased, oversized digipak, restores the original album artwork and features a booklet with new liner notes.
Phil Collins’ 1982 album featuring his hit revival of The Supremes’ “You Can’t Hurry Love” is expanded with a bonus disc of 11 tracks including demos, rehearsals and live performances. Read more here! The original album is also reissued today on 180-gram vinyl!
Phil Collins’ 1996 effort yielded a U.K. Top 10 hit with its title track; now, it’s back in a Deluxe Edition with a 10-track bonus disc featuring demos and live tracks. You’ll find the full tracklisting and more here! The original album is also reissued today on 180-gram vinyl!
This compact box set brings together Todd Rundgren’s 11 Bearsville albums (including the live Back to the Bars) on 13 CDs, spanning the period between 1970’s Runt and 1982’s The Ever Popular Tortured Artist Effect. All are housed in mini-LP jackets with original artwork and original tracklistings only.
With this 4-LP vinyl box set, the late David Bowie’s original BBC radio sessions from 1968-1972 arrive on vinyl for the first time. The 39-track set comes in a lift-off lid box and features a full-color 20 page booklet. This vinyl version features the Bowie/Mick Ronson duo performance of “Oh! You Pretty Things” from the Sounds of the 70s Bob Harris session, broadcast in September 1971, which was previously exclusive to the Japanese release of the CD. Another special bonus is the world premiere release of “The Supermen,” from the Sounds of the 70s Andy Ferris session, broadcast in March 1970, and performed by Bowie’s shortlived band The Hype. Parlophone also releases individual vinyl LPs today of Space Oddity, The Man Who Sold the World, Hunky Dory, Ziggy Stardust, Aladdin Sane and Pin Ups today.
Various Artists, George Fest: A Night to Celebrate the Music of George Harrison (Hot/Vagrant)
George Fest: A Night To Celebrate The Music Of George Harrison arrives on 2-CD/BD, 2-CD/DVD, vinyl and DD configurations. This concert salute was filmed on September 28, 2014 (the day after what would have been Harrison’s 73rd birthday) at Los Angeles’ Fonda Theatre. Produced by Dhani Harrison and David Zonshine, George Fest features an eclectic line-up including Brian Wilson (“My Sweet Lord”), Norah Jones (“Something”), and Ann Wilson (“Beware of Darkness”) as well as Dhani himself (“Let It Down”). Weird Al Yankovic, The Flaming Lips’ Wayne Coyne and The Killers’ Brandon Flowers are part of an all-star Wilburys tribute on “Handle with Care.” 27 tracks, total.
West Side Story / My Fair Lady / Fiddler on the Roof: Original Broadway Cast Recordings (Analog Spark)
Analog Spark has lovingly restored three classic Broadway titles to their original vinyl format – and transferred West Side Story directly from the three-track masters to two LPs for the recording’s most impressive sonic presentation yet! Read our full review of all three titles here!
The new 2-disc Essential Stephen Sondheim gathers 29 tracks penned by the renowned composer-lyricist spanning the period from West Side Story through Passion. The compilation features material under the Sony umbrella (Columbia, RCA) from various original cast recordings, soundtracks and concert presentations. Read the full tracklisting and more information here!
The Importance, Sean O’Mahony’s musical version of Oscar Wilde’s The Importance of Being Earnest, premiered in London in 1984; following its run there, it was revised for a 1986 Petersborough production as Borne in a Handbag. Members of the Petersborough production reconvened in the studio for a recording of O’Mahony’s score but it remained unreleased; finally, in 2006, the recording featuring those cast members and other West End-caliber vocalists was completed. Now, Stage Door Records premieres on CD the recording of The Importance, starring Nigel Williams, Jill Martin and Susan Jane Tanner.
Herbie Hancock’s Thrust – the great jazz keyboardist’s funky follow-up to the smash Head Hunters – is reissued in its original 4.0 quadraphonic mix on SACD by Audio Fidelity. The 2.0 stereo layer is playable on all CD players.
The 1973 Atlantic Records debut of jazz drummer Billy Cobham, Spectrum, arrives on 4.0 quadraphonic SACD. The fusion classic is also playable in standard 2.0 stereo on all CD players.
Pop maestro Emmit Rhodes (The Merry-Go-Round, The Palace Guard) returns with his first solo album since 1973, and he’s brought an all-star indie rock cast with him: producer Chris Price and guest musicians Roger Joseph Manning Jr, Jason Falkner, Aimee Mann, Susanna Hoffs, Jon Brion, Nels Cline & Pat Sansone from Wilco, Bleu, Probyn Gregory & Nelson Bragg from the Brian Wilson Band, and more! Available on CD and vinyl (with digital download). Watch for our full review later today!
Various Artists, Burt Bacharach: A Life in Song (Eagle Rock)
Burt Bacharach joins a host of artists including Justin Hayward, Joss Stone, Rebecca Ferguson and Alfie Boe in this concert tribute filmed last year at London’s Royal Festival Hall and aired on the BBC. In between performances of Bacharach hits and rarities (including “In Between the Heartaches” and “If I Could Go Back”), Michael Grade interviews the legendary composer about his craft. Available on Blu-ray and DVD.
Willie Nelson returns to Stardust territory with this all-new, 11-song salute to the legendary team of George and Ira Gershwin. Willie tackles “I Got Rhythm,” “They All Laughed” and other favorites by the Broadway pair, and is joined by Cyndi Lauper and Sheryl Crow for duets on “Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off” and “Embraceable You,” respectively. Available on CD, DD and vinyl.
Bonnie Raitt follows up her Grammy-winning 2012 Slipstream with this new set, her twentieth studio album. Features “Shakin’ Shakin’ Shakes”, “You’ve Changed My Mind”, and “The Ones We Couldn’t Be.” Available on CD, DD, and vinyl.