Welcome to this week's Release Round-Up, featuring a selection of the new titles in stores this week!
The Beach Boys, Sail On Sailor: 1972 (Capitol/UMe)
6CD Super Deluxe: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. / Amazon Canada
2CD Highlights (Remastered Albums plus bonus tracks): Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. / Amazon Canada
5LP+7" Super Deluxe Vinyl Edition: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. / Amazon Canada
5LP+7" Super Deluxe Vinyl Edition (Limited Edition): Beach Boys Store
2LP+7" Remastered Albums Vinyl: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K. / Amazon Canada
2LP+7" Remastered Albums Vinyl (Limited Edition): Beach Boys Store
Sail On Sailor - 1972 continues the story of The Beach Boys where the 2021 box set Feel Flows: The Sunflower and Surf's Up Sessions 1969-1971 left off. Sail On Sailor will be available in a variety of formats including 6CD; 5LP+7" single (standard); 5LP+7" single (with lithographs); 2CD; 2LP+7" (standard); 2LP+7" (with Holland replica book); and digitally. The 6CD Super Deluxe box boasts newly-remastered versions of both albums recorded by The Beach Boys in 1972: Carl and the Passions - So Tough and Holland as well as the Mount Vernon and Fairway (A Fairytale) EP originally packaged with Holland. Additionally, the box premieres the band's storied concert at New York's Carnegie Hall recorded on Thanksgiving 1972 - the first time a concert from this era has been presented in full with the original setlist. The set is rounded out by various alternative mixes, a cappella vocals, backing tracks, more live cuts, and copious session material including never-before-heard songs (some never even bootlegged). The collection produced by the band's longtime archival team of Mark Linett and Alan Boyd features 105 songs in total, a whopping 80 of which are previously unreleased. The 5LP vinyl iterations include the remastered albums, live set, and one side of bonus tracks: 53 tracks, 30 of which are previously unreleased. Read more here, and watch this space for our in-depth Holiday Gift Guide Review!
Neil Young, Harvest: 50th Anniversary Edition (Reprise)
Harvest, Neil Young's most commercially successful album to date, is turning 50 - and the singer-songwriter is celebrating with new 3CD/2DVD and 2LP/7-inch/2DVD box sets. The boxes feature the original album on CD 1, with the second disc dedicated to a previously unreleased February 23, 1971 solo performance from the BBC's In Concert series featuring album cuts such as "Heart of Gold," "Old Man," "A Man Needs a Maid," and "Out on the Weekend," as well as "Journey Through the Past" and "Dance, Dance, Dance." The third CD, an EP, offers just three studio outtakes (one previously issued, one previously unreleased, and one debuting in a physical format). DVD 1 offers an unreleased, two-hour film shot by Young during the making of Harvest, while the second DVD presents video of the BBC show. The LP version of the box features all of the same content. The box set's hardbound book has new liner notes by photographer Joel Bernstein and previously unpublished photos. Read more here!
Vince Guaraldi, A Charlie Brown Christmas: Super Deluxe Edition (Fantasy/Craft)
Craft has the ultimate celebration of A Charlie Brown Christmas with this 4CD/1 Blu-ray deluxe edition of the classic album that features not only multiple mixes of the original LP - the original stereo mix alongside new stereo and Dolby Atmos mixes - but a whopping 60 unreleased alternate takes from five sessions. (Smaller deluxe editions on CD and 2LP pair the new stereo mix with 13 of the session highlights; new pressings of the original album will also be available, with a gold foil embossed jacket coming to stores everywhere and color and picture variations headed to different retailers.) It's the perfect seasonal complement to Craft's recent restoration of Guaraldi's music to It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown. Get more details here!
Slave's 1981 Cotillion album Show Time makes its standalone CD debut from Iconoclassic Records. Brimming with the band's trademark hard-hitting funk, Show Time yielded the hit singles "Snap Shot" and "Wait for Me." Iconoclassic has added two bonus tracks: the seven-inch single edit of "Wait for Me" and the extended 12-inch version of "Snap Shot." Everything has been newly remastered by Vic Anesini at Battery Studios. A 16-page booklet completes this definitive reissue; it features a new, 3,600-word essay by A. Scott Galloway drawing on interviews with key personnel including Floyd Miller, Steve Arrington, Charles Cedell Carter, keyboardist-percussionist Sam Carter, and string arranger-conductor Cengiz Yaltkaya.
Steve Arrington stepped out of the shadow of groundbreaking funk band Slave and his subsequent Steve Arrington's Hall of Fame for his 1985 solo debut on Atlantic Records, Dancin' in the Key of Life. Now, Iconoclassic Records is bringing this vivacious album melding dance rhythms and praise and worship lyrics to CD for the first time anywhere. Featuring the U.S. hit title track and U.K. top ten entry "Feel So Real," this expanded edition adds five bonus remixes and a comprehensive essay by A. Scott Galloway. Audio has been remastered from the original tapes. Read more about both the Slave and Steve Arrington releases here!
Janis Joplin met future Jefferson Airplane/Hot Tuna guitarist Jorma Kaukonen in 1962 in San Jose and the two would perform together at various gigs. Prior to a performance in North Beach, Kaukonen recorded one of the duo's rehearsals. These recordings of blues standards and Joplin originals became the stuff of legend and circulated on bootlegs for years. Now, with the cooperation of the Joplin estate and Kaukonen, Omnivore is releasing this recording for the first time in an authorized edition. Getting to hear Joplin before her time with Big Brother & the Holding Company and even just adding to her tragically small discography make this album a must. Omnivore is releasing this on CD and digital today following last week's vinyl release for Record Store Day's Black Friday event.
Purple Pyramid offers this new 3-CD set from the Todd Rundgren archives. Lost Masters and Demos collects Rundgren's originally conceived "Fungo Bat" version of the band's Nazz Nazz album on two discs alongside one disc of alternate mixes and versions from 1967-1968, all taken from original acetates. A full color booklet with new liner notes is included. Also available on 4 LPs.
Cat Stevens, Catch Bull at Four: 50th Anniversary Edition (A&M/Island/UMe)
Cat Stevens, today known as Yusuf, marked the 50th anniversary of his first three Island/A&M albums (1970's Mona Bone Jakon and Tea for the Tillerman, and 1971's Teaser and the Firecat) with a variety of releases including expansive super deluxe box sets. For 1972's Catch Bull at Four, the troubadour is taking a distinctly slimmed-down approach with CD, LP, and digital reissues, newly remastered from the original tapes but with no additional material. The 50th anniversary editions of Catch Bull at Four have been remastered at 96/24 from the original stereo production tapes by Mazen Murad. The LP has been pressed on 180-gram vinyl (black for standard retailers; orange for CatStevens.com, uDiscoverMusic.com, and Sound of Vinyl) and housed in a gatefold jacket with restored original artwork. The CD version includes a 16-page booklet with photos and memorabilia as well as lyrics. Read more here.
Humble Pie, The A&M CD/Vinyl Box Set (A&M/UMe)
The A&M CD/Vinyl Box Set (1970-1975) includes newly remastered versions of seven classic Humble Pie albums originally released on Herb Alpert and Jerry Moss' venerable label: Humble Pie (1970), Performance: Rockin' the Fillmore (1971), Rock On (1971), Smokin' (1972), Eat It (1973), Thunderbox (1974), and Street Rats (1975). Also included in the box set is a bonus disc of B-sides and rarities (including five previously unreleased tracks) and a book featuring liner notes, rare photos, and other memorabilia images.
This new 4CD set marks the 25th anniversary of Robbie Williams' solo debut album, Life Thru a Lens. The first two discs present the original album plus bonus tracks and B-sides. Disc 3 premieres previously unreleased demos, rehearsal recordings, and rare remixes while Disc 4 offers the first audio release of the complete Live in Your Living Room concert, recorded at the Forum in London on June 3, 1998.
Various Artists, The Essential Stephen Sondheim (Masterworks Broadway) (Barnes and Noble)
This one is from last week, but we couldn't miss out on including it. One year after his passing, Masterworks celebrates the life and legacy of Stephen Sondheim with a new, updated vinyl version of The Essential Stephen Sondheim. The 2-LP release, available exclusively at Barnes and Noble, differs substantially from the 2016 double-CD, 29-song version, not least because it's shorter (at 24 songs). Drawn entirely from the Columbia/Sony catalogue (which rules out selections from the original cast recordings of A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Forum, Follies, and Passion), this iteration features tracks from Anyone Can Whistle (the title song sung by Lee Remick), Pacific Overtures ("Someone in a Tree" from James Dybas, Mako, Gedde Watanabe, and Mark Hsu Syers), Sweeney Todd ("Johanna"), Merrily We Roll Along (the rollicking, brassy Overture), Sunday in the Park with George (Victor Garber's "Finishing the Hat"), and Into the Woods (Joanna Gleason and Chip Zien's "It Takes Two") not on the CD version. Purists will note that the Broadway cast tracks from West Side Story have been dropped while two songs from the original movie remain; Dean Jones' stirring Broadway recording of "Being Alive" from Company has been replaced by recent Company revival star Patti LuPone's fiery take from Sondheim: A Celebration at Carnegie Hall. The new Essential is housed in a handsome gatefold which features numerous recording session photos from throughout Sondheim's career. Full credits (but no liner notes) are included. While this compilation is at times neither fish nor fowl - Peabo Bryson and Nancy Wilson's beautiful jazz vocal take on Passion's "Loving You" is the only "cover" version included - it's nonetheless a classy tribute to the musical theatre master.
Ahmad Jamal, Emerald City Nights (Anagram)
Anagram releases two 2-CD sets from pianist Ahmad Jamal recorded over various dates at Seattle's Penthouse jazz club. Both sets include booklets with liner notes, previously unpublished photos, and copious interviews. The first volume has Jamal bringing his fleet touch to Rodgers and Hart ("Johnny One Note"), the Gershwins ("But Not for Me"), and the pop charts (Tony Velona's "Lollipops and Roses") while the second set offers three songs from Anthony Newley and Leslie Bricusse's The Roar of the Greasepaint - The Smell of the Crowd plus more R&H ("I Didn't Know What Time It Was"), the Jamal original "Concern," and more.
Following a sold-out run at Boston's Colonial Theatre, the biographical A Beautiful Noise: The Neil Diamond Musical is now playing at Broadway's Broadhurst Theatre. The cast recording produced by the legendary Bob Gaudio preserves the performances of Will Swenson and Mark Jacoby as Neil in two different stages of his life, supported by a blazing cast including Robyn Hurder as Neil's second wife Marcia Murphey. The show (featuring a book by Anthony McCarten, screenwriter of Bohemian Rhapsody and the upcoming I Wanna Dance with Somebody) and album boast all of Diamond's big hits including "Sweet Caroline," "Cracklin' Rosie," "Solitary Man," and "Brother Love's Traveling Salvation Show."