Welcome to this week’s Release Round-Up!
Ladies and Gentlemen…The Bangles!, first released digitally in 2014, features all of the band’s pre-Columbia studio material, plus four unreleased demos, two live tracks and other odds and ends! It arrives in stores from Omnivore just before Susanna Hoffs, Vicki Peterson and Debbi Peterson hit the road again! Read more here!
The classic 1968 album from Laura Nyro featuring “Stoned Soul Picnic,” “Sweet Blindness” and “Eli’s Comin'” comes to hybrid SACD (playable on all CD players) from Audio Fidelity, with the original stereo mix newly remastered by Steve Hoffman in high-resolution stereo and standard CD formats, and the rare 4.0 quad surround mix in high resolution. Get the full details here!
This week sees the CD release of the two final Marvin Gaye box sets. 1966-1970 includes some of Marvin’s most underrated LPs from the classic Motown era including Moods of Marvin Gaye, Take Two (with Kim Weston), United (with Tammi Terrell), In the Groove, You’re All I Need (with Tammi), M.P.G., Easy (with Tammi) and That’s the Way Love Is. The compact clamshell box has each album in a mini-sleeve jacket replicating the original release, and the discs all reflect original album sequences only (no bonus material). With most of these titles long out-of-print on CD, this set is an affordable way to fill in the gaps in your MPG collection!
The third volume of the series begins with the landmark What’s Going On and ends with In Our Lifetime, bringing Gaye’s Motown tenure to a close. Other titles in this volume include Trouble Man, Let’s Get It On, Diana and Marvin (with Miss Ross), I Want You, and Here, My Dear. Note that each one of these titles has been reissued on CD in the past with generous helpings of bonus material and more, but this box makes a great way to pick up the albums as they were originally issued in an inexpensive, no-frills format.
A new album kicks off a trio of releases this week from Neil Young. He teams with Lukas and Micah Nelson’s band Promise of the Real for a new quasi-live album. Earth features live performances of songs from 2015 drawing on Young’s albums including The Monsanto Years, Ragged Glory, and After the Gold Rush. The live tracks feature musical overdubs, as well as “sounds of the earth” (car horns, insect noises, and sounds from bears, birds, crickets, bees, horses, cows, frogs, etc.). Suffice to say Earth is a live album unlike any other. Available on CD and LP.
Neil Young premieres the restored “Director’s Cut” of his 1982 film Human Highway, starring Young, Dennis Hopper, Devo, Sally Kirkland, Russ Tamblyn and Neil’s co-director Dean Stockwell, on DVD and BD. Audio is presented in 5.1 and stereo mixes.
The film Rust Never Sleeps, chronicling Neil Young and Crazy Horse’s 1978 tour and directed by Young himself, arrives on DVD and BD restored from the original negative and in 5.1 surround and stereo sound.
Legacy is celebrating the 25th anniversary of axeman Steve Vai’s Passion and Warfare with this 2-CD edition of the album. It includes the first-ever release of Vai’s Modern Primitive recordings. Originally recorded by Vai after his debut album in 1984, Modern Primitive sat on the shelf until now. He’s completed the album for release here! A vinyl edition of Passion and Warfare will follow in August from Friday Music with four bonus tracks.
Coinciding with the release this week of Barbara Cook’s autobiography, Stage Door Records has the first CD reissue of the legendary singer’s first, and most unusual, solo album. Released on the small Urania label in November 1958, Songs Of Perfect Propriety features Cook performing a song cycle of Dorothy Parker poems and verses set to music by opera and chamber music composer Seymour Barab. The young Cook brought her lustrous voice to these incisive art songs which can now be heard anew. Stage Door’s reissue, housed in a mini-LP paper sleeve, is limited to 500 copies.
Stage Door has the first-time CD reissue of the 1969 London Cast Recording of Two Cities. Producer Jerry Wayne teamed with his son Jeff Wayne (War of the Worlds) to write this stage musical adaptation of Dickens’ A Tale of Two Cities starring Edward Woodward (The Equalizer), Kevin Colson (Cabaret), Leon Greene (A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum) and Nicolette Roeg. The album has been generously expanded by Stage Door with ten rare demo recordings.
Henry Mancini, Silver Streak: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (Stereo Edition) (Intrada) (Amazon U.S.)
It’s a Henry Mancini bonanza this week with three titles now available! Intrada first premiered his delightful score to the Gene Wilder/Richard Pryor action comedy in 2002. At that time, damaged master elements prevented much of the CD from being presented in stereo. In fact, many highlights, including the main and end titles, could only be issued in mono from Mancini’s personal tape. Now, Intrada and ace restoration expert Chris Malone can present the vintage score in stereo…complete with main and end titles!
Henry Mancini, W.C. Fields and Me: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (Quartet Records) (Screen Archives)
W.C. Fields and Me was the first of four collaborations between Mancini and director Arthur Hiller (their next was Silver Streak, above). For the biopic starring Rod Steiger, Valerie Perrine and John Cassidy, MCA Records issued a soundtrack album featuring music and dialogue. That album is reissued here from the pristine original elements housed at Universal Music.
Henry Mancini, The Great Waldo Pepper: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack (Quartet Records) (Screen Archives)
From the same period comes Maestro Mancini’s score to this 1975 adventure starring Robert Redford, Margot Kidder and Susan Sarandon. Rags, marches and silent-movie-esque piano cues all feature in this melodic and eclectic score as preserved on its original MCA soundtrack album. The LP is reissued in optimum sound from the original masters stored at UMe!