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Archive for March 17th, 2011

This Was the Sea: Waterboys to Release Vintage Demos

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Here’s another something we can share that Slicing Up Eyeballs expertly bought to our attention: a collection of demos from Scottish rock group The Waterboys.

Considered the early forbearers of the “Big Music” sound – a style that would become synonymous with the band’s first three albums and would describe other bands like Big Country, The Alarm and Simple Minds – The Waterboys, led by Mike Scott, achieved some of their greatest success with This is the Sea in 1985. Bolstered by the popular single “The Whole of the Moon” (which would peak at No. 3 in 1991 in the U.K.), This is the Sea marks the apex of the “Big Music” era, before Scott began to pursue more folk-oriented styles and dissolve the band in the 1990s (and reuniting them in 2000).

While This is the Sea was expanded with a bonus disc of B-sides and outtakes in 2004, In a Special Place provides more material from the era that’s never appeared in any format: 15 demos from the sessions, including early versions of “Don’t Bang the Drum,” “The Whole of the Moon,” “Old England” and the title track. It’s pretty neat to see this come out on a major label outside of being packed in with another reissue of the record. And it’ll be out on April 15.

As always, pre-order links and track listings are after the jump. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Mike Duquette

March 17, 2011 at 15:24

Goldsmith, Horner and “Crusoe” Coming from FSM

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As previously reported, Film Score Monthly’s two newest titles are the premiere releases of three great scores: an underrated sci-fi epic and two TV-movies with music from legendary film composers.

Robinson Crusoe on Mars (1964) is exactly what it sounds like: the Daniel Defoe classic on the surface of Mars. Paul Mantee is the marooned astronaut and Victor Lundin is “Friday,” the Martian slave laborer who escapes and befriends him. (Also appearing as Mantee’s doomed co-pilot was a pre-Batman Adam West!) The lively, tonal score was composed by Nathan Van Cleave, known for writing more music for The Twilight Zone than any other composer (12 episodes). It’s presented complete, newly remixed from the original three-track, 2″ masters and is limited to 3,000 copies.

Also in the FSM mix are Americana-filled scores to TV-movies The Homecoming: A Christmas Story (1971) and Rascals and Robbers: The Further Adventures of Tom Sawyer and Huck Finn (1982), each respectively scored by Jerry Goldsmith and James Horner. The former film was notable for introducing small-screen audiences to The Waltons – a series followed for nine years beginning in 1972 – while Rascals and Robbers has a place in Horner’s history as not only one of his earliest works, but the last thing before his career took a sudden upswing. Days after finishing that score, he began work on what many consider to be one of his finest musical efforts, Star Trek II: The Wrath of Khan. This two-for-one set is also limited to 3,000 copies, and is presented from the original mono and stereo masters, respectively, stored in the CBS Inc. Film and Television Collection at UCLA Performing Arts Special Collections.

Order pages and track lists are, as always, after the jump!

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Written by Mike Duquette

March 17, 2011 at 11:57

Posted in News, Reissues, Soundtracks

In Case You Missed It: Barclay James Harvest Revisited “Once Again”

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Some four decades ago, Barclay James Harvest delivered one of their first great albums, and a towering achievement in the prog-rock genre. This past winter, EMI reissued the record in a manner quite befitting of its classic status.
Once Again was the band’s second album for Harvest Records, put out three years into their tenure with EMI. With notable tracks like “Song for Dying,” “Galadriel” and “Mocking Bird” (the latter of which remains one of the band’s most iconic songs), and the backing of a full orchestra under the guidance of Robert John Godfrey, Once Again earned a place in the hearts of prog enthusiasts everywhere, named by Q as one of the 40 best albums of the genre. (And a bonus fun fact: the final track on the album, “Lady Loves,” features jaw harp work courtesy of Alan Parsons!)
The album was remastered and expanded in 2002, adding two previously unreleased bonus tracks as well as some alternate mixes as heard on the original quadrophonic pressing of the album. This new edition further expands on both ends of that original bonus content. The CD features the original LP as originally remastered in 2002, the two bonus tracks from the last expansion and five more unreleased versions of tracks on the album, including several unedited and unorchestrated versions. The package adds a DVD that recreates the original LP in both its original stereo mix, a new surround mix in DTS 96/24 or Dolby Digital and that vintage quadrophonic mix.
All in all, it’s one heck of a package, and it’s yours to order here. Thanks to Jason for tipping us off on this one! The full track rundown is after the jump. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Mike Duquette

March 17, 2011 at 10:53

Back Into Battle with The Art of Noise

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It’s with great pleasure to find out that The Art of Noise’s debut effort, Into Battle with The Art of Noise (1983), will be reissued as part of ZTT/Salvo’s ongoing Element Series in April. And hardcore Art of Noise fans have a lot to be excited about this new release.

The Art of Noise. Those four words signify a bizarre advent in ’80s pop music – perhaps the ultimate marriage of music and technology (a staple of almost all popular art released that decade), a template upon which much of modern dance music would base itself. It also gave birth to one of the most consciously weird record labels in all of England: Zang Tuum Tumb, a trendsetter in the field of futuristic dance-pop thanks to acts like Frankie Goes to Hollywood, Propaganda, 808 State and Seal.

The original Art of Noise – producer Gary Langan, programmer J.J. Jeczalik, arranger Anne Dudley, producer Trevor Horn and writer Paul Morley – came together not long after making massive strides with production work on ABC’s The Lexicon of Love (with the smash single “The Look of Love“) and the newly-reinvigorated prog band Yes, whose Horn-produced “Owner of a Lonely Heart” was a major hit. Working from scraps of material conceived for Yes’ 90125 and others, many programmed into the then-new Fairlight CMI sampling synthesizer, the quintet developed a nine-track EP, Into Battle with The Art of Noise, which became a critical hit on both sides of the Atlantic (in the U.S., the emerging breakdance scene embraced the jittery, percussive nature of the music; lead single “Beat Box” topped Billboard‘s dance charts).

Horn and Morley would ultimately leave the band after their first full-length album, Who’s Afraid of The Art of Noise? (1984), but those sessions yielded a major hit single in “Close (To the Edit),” a U.K. Top 10 hit and, to quote ZTT’s own release, “a hit record that would take them from behind the locked doors of their studio to the Top of the Pops studio, around the world, and make them a sonic reference point for a generation,” all of which is true. But what few know is Who’s Afraid began as an entirely different record, a more progressive, experimental effort called Worship. For the Element Edition of Into Battle, the Worship sessions are finally freed from the vaults, adding no less than 18 unreleased tracks to this new reissue. While some of the track titles are familiar (namely “Close (To the Edit)”), these tracks are a landmark for Art of Noise fanatics.

The set will be released in the U.K. on April 4. Pre-order it from Amazon here and check out the track list after the jump. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Mike Duquette

March 17, 2011 at 10:01