The Second Disc

Expanded and Remastered Music News

Archive for May 29th, 2012

Baby Elephant Walking: Henry Mancini’s “Charade,” “Hatari!” Soundtracks Premiere on CD

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Around these parts, we know that good things do come to those who wait.  The old adage has been proven again, yet it might this time be amended to great things do come to those who wait.  For the Intrada label has just announced the first-time-ever release of Henry Mancini’s original score tracks for Charade (1963) and Hatari! (1962). Why is this such a big deal?  Most of Mancini’s original film scores from his prime period have never seen the light of day; instead the prolific recording artist, composer and conductor opted to re-record his music for heavily truncated album presentations on his home label of RCA.  The re-recordings have become the only way to acquire many of Mancini’s most beloved themes, but however fantastic those albums are (and they are!), they were also heavily re-arranged for a record-buying audience in a “pop” style.  Consequently, Mancini’s gifts as a dramatic composer have often been overlooked.  I lamented in July 2010, “Soundtrack buffs still await the release of many of Mancini’s most famous scores as actually heard in the films, such as The Pink Panther or Charade, but record company contracts make such releases unlikely.”  Well, Intrada has teamed with Sony Music (the successor to RCA Victor, the company which owns the soundtrack rights to these films and released the re-recordings), Universal Pictures (Charade) and Paramount Pictures (Hatari!) to make these long-coveted soundtracks finally available.

Hit the jump to explore both releases, including track listings and order links! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

May 29, 2012 at 13:32

Dedicated Follower of Kinksdom: BBC Sessions Box Coming For The Kinks [UPDATED 5/29 WITH TRACK LISTING]

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Another Kinks-size box is on the way.

Following the recent, well-received series of deluxe album reissues and the limited-edition Kinks in Mono box set, Universal U.K. and Sanctuary Records have announced the latest project celebrating the quintessentially English rockers.  Due on August 13, the 5-CD/1-DVD box set The Kinks at the BBC isn’t the first survey of the band’s BBC live recordings, but it’s by far the most comprehensive.  It has been compiled from all of the existing recordings made by The Kinks still residing in the British Broadcasting Corporation’s archives, and includes “a raft of sessions and live recordings from throughout the band’s career including the rare concert and unheard session recordings,” according to the label.  In addition to the five CDs’ worth of audio tracks, a DVD will present live appearances from programs including Top of the Pops and The Old Grey Whistle Test.  And no fear!  If this is too much Kinks for you, a 2-CD “Best Of” distillation will also be offered.

Sanctuary first packaged the Kinks’ BBC recordings in 2001 as BBC Sessions 1964-1977 (06076 84504-2).  This 35-track compilation, remastered by Andy Pearce and Ray Davies himself, included many of the band’s most iconic songs like “You Really Got Me,” “All Day and All of the Night” and “Waterloo Sunset.”  As the group’s early recordings were supplemented with seasoned session players, the live recordings often had a raw dimension that the more polished studio cuts lacked.  The Kinks’ association with the BBC was a long one, and especially in the early days, covers were played alongside originals.  As “You Really Got Me” was climbing to number one, the band recorded its first BBC session on September 7th, 1964 at London’s Playhouse Theatre.  The Kinks’ last BBC performance to date took place just over thirty years later, on October 8, 1994.  A total of 24 visits were made by the band to the media giant’s studios.

Hit the jump for details! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

May 29, 2012 at 11:35

Review: The Critters, “Younger Girl: The Complete Kapp and Musicor Recordings”

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In those heady, pre-American Idol days, the route to success had many paths.  For New Jersey’s Critters, the path was local, with the band making a name for itself in the tree-lined suburbs of Westfield, Scotch Plains and Princeton, gigging at high schools, colleges, and Knights of Columbus halls.  Though they were proficient at covering the days’ hits, The Critters also boasted some formidable songwriters at a time when recording one’s own songs was becoming  de rigeur.  Before long, The Critters were opening gigs for The Ronettes, The Shangri-Las, and Jay and the Americans, and had a contract with Musicor Records, home of Gene Pitney and The Platters.  Though the tenure at Musicor was short, The Critters made enough noise to be signed by Artie Ripp to Kama-Sutra Productions, and solidified their reputation with two 1966 hits, “Younger Girl” and “Mr. Dieingly Sad.”  Those two singles aren’t the whole story, though.

Now Sounds first anthologized the band in 2011.  Awake in a Dream: The Project 3 Recordings collected the band’s 1968-1969 recordings for Enoch Light’s Project 3 label.  With its latest release, Now Sounds turns the clock back to The Critters’ brief heyday, before personnel changes and questions of musical direction altered the band’s sound irrevocably.  The new Younger Girl: The Complete Kapp and Musicor Recordings (CRNOW 33, 2012) upgrades and improves Taragon’s 1994 CD The Anthology: The Complete Kapp Recordings, by adding six tracks and a customarily excellent design and presentation from reissue producer Steve Stanley.  Alan Brownstein has remastered from the original mono master tapes.

Whereas the Project 3 recordings are more in a soft-psych vein, the Critters’ earlier recordings are an amalgam of the pop styles they’d honed to perfection on the touring circuit.  Hit the jump for more! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

May 29, 2012 at 09:58

Release Round-Up, Week of May 29

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Amen Corner, Round Amen Corner: The Complete Deram Recordings (RPM)

The complete Deram output of Andy Fairweather-Low’s soulful group Amen Corner is collected by RPM Records, including the 1968 album that gives this reissue its title!

The Critters, Younger Girl: The Complete Kapp and Musicor Recordings (Now Sounds)

The first album from New Jersey’s Critters (“Younger Girl,” “Mr. Dieingly Sad”) is reissued along with a plethora of rare singles and bonus songs!

Everything But the Girl, Eden…Plus / Idlewild, Plus… / Baby The Stars Shine Bright…Plus / Love Not Money…Plus (Edsel)

Edsel unveils beautifully-designed reissues of the first four albums from the sophisticated British pop duo!  Each 2-CD set is housed in a hardcover digi-book and bolsters the original album with rare songs and performances that no fan will want to miss.

Mick Fleetwood’s Zoo, I’m Not Me / Jerry Reed, The Unbelievable Guitar and Voice of Jerry Reed / Nashville Underground (Real Gone Music)

Real Gone Music offers the CD debut of  a rare outing from Mick Fleetwood plus two albums on one CD from Nashville’s legendary “guitar man,” Jerry Reed!

Small Faces, Small Faces (Decca) / In the Beginning (Decca/Universal)

The 1966 and 1967 Decca albums from Steve Marriott, Ronnie Lane, Kenney Jones and Ian McLagan arrive in eagerly-awaited 2-CD expanded editions!

The Supremes, The Supremes at the Copa (Motown/Hip-o Select)

Detroit’s legendary ladies take New York’s swank Copacabana by storm in this 1965 set, now expanded to 2 CDs and jam-packed with unreleased material!

Various Artists, Playlist titles (Legacy Recordings)

Sony’s Legacy Recordings offers a variety of budget-priced Playlist compilations from a diverse array of artists including Harry Belafonte, Jim Brickman, Johnny Cash and June Carter Cash, Ciara, Alice Cooper, Rodney Crowell, Raheem DeVaughn, Dr. Hook and the Medicine Show, The Fugees, Heather Headley, Kenny Loggins, Prong, Pete Seeger and Tonex!

Written by Joe Marchese

May 29, 2012 at 08:45