The Second Disc

Expanded and Remastered Music News

Archive for May 19th, 2010

Out of “Exile,” Out of Curiosity

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Dear readers of The Second Disc: I wonder, for those of you who’ve purchased the new reissue of Exile on Main St., what you ended up purchasing. Given my, er, “unique” perspective in retail, I’ve seen what looks like an unusual trend in the purchasing of this big new reissue and I wonder if the same trends are reflected among you.

Take a look at the poll after the jump and please cast your vote. I’m excited to see what everyone has to say! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Mike Duquette

May 19, 2010 at 11:18

Reissue Theory: The Smiths, “Meat is Murder”

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“Re-issue ! Re-package ! Re-package !
Re-evaluate the songs
Double-pack with a photograph
Extra track (and a tacky badge)”

– “Paint a Vulgar Picture,” The Smiths

Sometimes one wonders why a band as listenable, influential and obsessed over as The Smiths doesn’t get much in the way of back catalogue treatment. Outside of a few compilations (most recently 2008’s The Sound of The Smiths) and a box set of reproduced singles, that’s been more or less it; the albums haven’t been repressed since Sire/Warner Bros. acquired the band’s repertoire in the early 1990s. Granted, given lyrics like those above, maybe it’s not so surprising.

But why not? There’s a lot to discover from those few studio albums. Earlier this year, fans campaigned on Facebook to get “How Soon is Now?” – easily one of the band’s most memorable tunes – to the top of the U.K. charts in honor of the 25th anniversary of sophomore LP Meat is Murder. It didn’t work, but it might have gotten people thinking about the band – and that record was as good a place as any to start.

The “hits,” so to speak, aren’t as copious on Meat is Murder; aside from “How Soon is Now?” (which was only included on the U.S. version of the album) and “That Joke Isn’t Funny Anymore,” that was really the extent of it. But Meat is Murder succeeds as an album, perhaps even better than The Smiths’ self-titled debut, thanks to a cleaner production (credited solely to the band) and the continual gelling of the Morrissey-Johnny Marr songwriting partnership. Hard-driving tunes like “Barbarism Begins at Home” and “Nowhere Fast” exemplify this step up greatly.

The months leading to Meat is Murder also saw the release of some non-LP singles that stand among The Smiths’ greatest records. The one-two punch of “Heaven Knows I’m Miserable Now” and “William, It Was Really Nothing” (and their respective B-sides – single-only track “Girl Afraid” from “Heaven” and both “How Soon is Now?” and “Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want” on the “William” single) indicate the beginnings of a creative streak paralleled by few bands of the era.

Thanks to the fastidious research of author Simon Goddard and his biblical tome The Smiths: Songs That Saved Your Life, we know there’s a bit of vault content that would enhance any theoretical reissue of Meat is Murder. Let’s start the day off right with a Reissue Theory look at this, one of the best rock albums of the 1980s, after the jump. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Mike Duquette

May 19, 2010 at 10:59

Posted in Features, Reissues, The Smiths

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Legacy Announces Oasis’ “Time Flies”

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As previously reported, Oasis are releasing Time Flies…1994-2009, a lengthy compilation of their singles, on June 15. Legacy Recordings, which is handling the distribution of the set, issued a release detailing all the iterations of the set that can be purchased.

The set exists in three forms. The standard double-disc set will include 26 of the band’s U.K. singles plus U.S. hit “Champagne Supernova” (the U.K. edition will include all the proper singles, including “Sunday Morning Call” in place of “Supernova”). A four-disc edition will exist as an import, with the U.K. version of the set, a DVD of 38 promo videos and a bonus disc of the band’s final concert in 2009. Finally, the set will be released as a five-LP set with the U.K. track list intact.

Pre-order the sets here (standard), here (deluxe) or here (deluxe vinyl) and reacquaint yourself with the track lists after the jump. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Mike Duquette

May 19, 2010 at 00:36

Posted in Compilations, News, Oasis