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Edsel Reissues Robert Palmer’s Island Discography for Every Kinda People

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Robert PalmerOne of the most truly odd omissions in catalogue history, the lack of expanded reissues for Robert Palmer’s iconic Island Records catalogue will finally be rectified by Edsel in August.

Palmer’s nine albums for the Island label will be collected onto four two-disc sets, all remastered and featuring a large swath of bonus material. (The albums are grouped in twos, with the exception of a set collating Secrets (1979), Clues (1980) and Maybe It’s Live (1982).)

Taken together, they represent one of the most original British rock and soul voices of the ’70s and ’80s, from the confident blue-eyed soul of his early albums, featuring backing performances by Little Feat and The Meters, to the synthpop-influenced tracks of Clues (aided in part by Gary Numan) and, finally, the MTV-shined Riptide, featuring most of his bandmates in The Power Station (Duran Duran guitarist Andy Taylor and CHIC’s rhythm section, bassist/producer Bernard Edwards and drummer Tony Thompson).

It’s also a discography that’s practically begged for some sort of expanded editions in the modern CD age. (Island remastered the catalogue in the early 2000s, before Palmer’s passing, and Culture Factory recently took to giving several of his discs the vinyl replica treatment on CD.) Still, one has to wonder if Universal knows just what they have on their hands; though Edsel’s work can be at times brilliant, it seems strange that an artist of this caliber would be licensed to a third-party and rather casually lumped together as two-fers. (Very little of these albums, as grouped together, make much thematic sense; a similar situation was at play when Edsel reissued Palmer’s latter-day works for EMI in the same manner.)

All the same, it is nice to see Palmer’s material from this time period get the expanded treatment it deserves, and with a considerable handful of bonus material – some 25 bonus tracks in all, seven of them previously unreleased and the rest largely new to CD.

After the jump, you’ll find pre-order links and track lists for these four sets, which will be available in the U.K. on August 26.

Sneakin’ Sally Through The Alley / Pressure Drop (Edsel (U.K.), 2013)

Disc 1: Sneakin’ Sally Through The Alley (released as Island ILPS 9294, 1974) and bonus tracks

  1. Sailing Shoes
  2. Hey Julia
  3. Sneakin’ Sally Through the Alley
  4. Get Outside
  5. Blackmail
  6. How Much Fun
  7. From a Whisper to a Scream
  8. Through It All There’s You
  9. Sneakin’ Sally Through the Alley (Single Mix) (single A-side – Island IS 006, 1974)
  10. Epidemic (single B-side – Island IS 006, 1974)
  11. Blackmail (Alternate) (from Culture Factory CD 3700477820275 (FR), 2013)
  12. Get Outside (Alternate) (from Culture Factory CD 3700477820275 (FR), 2013)

Disc 2: Pressure Drop (released as Island ILPS 9372, 1975) and bonus tracks

  1. Give Me An Inch
  2. Work to Make It Work
  3. Back In My Arms
  4. River Boat
  5. Pressure Drop
  6. Here with You Tonight
  7. Trouble
  8. Fine Time
  9. Which of Us Is the Fool
  10. Willin’ (Demo) *
  11. Hope We Never Wake (Demo) *

Some People Can Do What They Like / Double Fun (Edsel (U.K.), 2013)

Disc 1: Some People Can Do What They Like (released as Island ILPS 9420, 1976)

  1. One Last Look
  2. Keep in Touch
  3. Man Smart (Woman Smarter)
  4. Spanish Moon
  5. Have Mercy
  6. Gotta Get a Grip on You, Pt. II
  7. What Can You Bring Me
  8. Hard Head
  9. Off the Bone
  10. Some People Can Do What They Like

Disc 2: Double Fun (released as Island ILPS 9476, 1978)

  1. Every Kinda People
  2. Best of Both Worlds
  3. Come Over
  4. Where Can It Go?
  5. Night People
  6. Love Can Run Faster
  7. You Overwhelm Me
  8. You Really Got Me
  9. You’re Gonna Get What’s Coming

Secrets / Clues / Maybe It’s Live (Edsel (U.K.), 2013)

Disc 1: Secrets (released as Island ILPS 9544, 1979), bonus track and Clues (released as Island ILPS 9595, 1980)

  1. Bad Case of Loving You (Doctor, Doctor)
  2. Too Good to Be True
  3. Can We Still Be Friends
  4. In Walks Love Again
  5. Mean Old World
  6. Love Stop
  7. Jealous
  8. Under Suspicion
  9. Woman You’re Wonderful
  10. What’s It Take?
  11. Remember to Remember
  12. Bad Case of Loving You (Doctor, Doctor) (Remix) (possibly from Addictions Volume 1 – Island 842 301-2, 1989)
  13. Looking for Clues
  14. Sulky Girl
  15. Johnny and Mary
  16. What Do You Care
  17. I Dream of Wires
  18. Woke Up Laughing
  19. Not a Second Time
  20. Found You Now

Disc 2: Clues-era bonus tracks and Maybe It’s Live (released as Island ILPS 9665, 1982)

  1. Good Care of You (B-side to “Looking for Clues” – Island WIP 6651, 1980)
  2. Johnny and Mary (Alternate) *
  3. What Do You Care (Alternate Mix) *
  4. Sneakin’ Sally Through the Alley (Live)
  5. What’s It Take? (Live)
  6. Best of Both Worlds (Live)
  7. Every Kinda People (Live)
  8. Bad Case of Loving You (Doctor, Doctor) (Live)
  9. Some Guys Have All the Luck
  10. Style Kills
  11. Si Chatouilleux
  12. Maybe It’s You
  13. What Do You Care (Live)

Pride / Riptide (Edsel (U.K.), 2013)

Disc 1: Pride (released as Island ILPS 9720, 1983) and bonus tracks

  1. Pride
  2. Deadline
  3. Want You More
  4. Dance for Me
  5. You Are in My System
  6. It’s Not Difficult
  7. Say You Will
  8. You Can Have It (Take My Heart)
  9. What You Waiting For
  10. The Silver Gun
  11. You Are in My System (12″ Version) (12″ A-side – Island 12 IS 104, 1983)
  12. Ain’t It Funky (Si Chatouilleux) (Extended Version) *
  13. Pride (12″ Version) (12″ A-side – Island 12 WIP 6833, 1982)
  14. Parade of the Obliterators (12″ B-side – Island 12 WIP 6833, 1982)
  15. You Can Have It (Take My Heart) (12″ Version) (12″ A-side – Island 12 IS 121, 1983)
  16. You Are in My System (Instrumental Mix) *
  17. Deadline (12″ Version) (12″ B-side – Island 12 IS 104, 1983)

Disc 2: Riptide (released as Island ILPS 9801, 1985) and bonus tracks

  1. Riptide
  2. Hyperactive
  3. Addicted to Love
  4. Trick Bag
  5. Get It Through Your Heart
  6. I Didn’t Mean to Turn You On
  7. Flesh Wound
  8. Discipline of Love
  9. Riptide (Reprise)
  10. Discipline of Love (12″ Version) (12″ A-side – Island 12 IS 242, 1986)
  11. Riptide/Get It Through Your Heart (Medley) (promo single A-side – Island PR 980, 1985)
  12. Sweet Lies (from Sweet Lies: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack – Island 90855, 1988)
  13. Let’s Fall in Love Tonight (B-side to “Addicted to Love” – Island 7-99570 (U.S.), 1986)
  14. I Didn’t Mean to Turn You On (12″ Version) (12″ A-side – Island 12 IS 283, 1986)
  15. No, Not Much (Live on The Tube) (from “Riptide” double 7″ – Island ISD 256, 1985)
  16. Trick Bag (Live on The Tube) (from “Riptide” double 7″ – Island ISD 256, 1985)
  17. Les Planches *

Written by Mike Duquette

August 1, 2013 at 12:37

7 Responses

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  1. I am glad that Edsel is doing the Palmer reissues. I recently purchased one of the Culture Factory’s vinyl replica CDs (Blue Oyster Cult’s “Agents of Fortune”). The remaster is excellent, except for some audio dropouts on the beginning of “(Don’t Fear) The Reaper,” but the CD comes with no liner notes or bonus tracks. Edsel’s remasters are excellent. I have their Todd Rundgren, Doobie Brothers, and Foghat remasters, and they are fantastic. I don’t have a problem with the twofers, because the CDs are in chronological order and usually the albums are on separate CDs. The only time I have a problem with twofers is when they put two albums together that are not in chronological order. Otherwise, the twofer is a great way to get more music for less money. I am so happy that Edsel obtained the rights to the WEA label. Not we will see long neglected albums get the proper reissues.

    John DeLaurentis

    August 1, 2013 at 14:06

    • When you moderate my post, please correct “Not” to “Now” in my last sentence.

      John DeLaurentis

      August 1, 2013 at 14:09

  2. Oh yes! And with that elusive 12″ mix of “Didn’t Mean to Turn You On”! Mighty fine.

    Eric

    August 1, 2013 at 15:05

  3. Do you know if these are the original album mixes, or Robert’s ongoing remixed/revised versions. I so miss the original percussion in “Every Kinda People” but most of what is in the market has the replacement synth drums he added along the way

    Woody

    August 1, 2013 at 17:45

  4. In regards to the Culture Factory releases: I’ve purchased several of them, including one of the Palmer’s, and they have all universally had horrid (and that adjective is not used lightly) loudness compression applied to them. Look at the Amazon reviews, and you’ll see similar references. I won’t be buying any more of those.

    In regards to “Every Kinda People”: I think you’re referring to the re-recorded version he did for one of the “Addictions” CD’s. The original CD, and several of the “best of’s” out there have the originally-recorded version. Also, the Japanese released a box set in 2007 that had the first RP albums remastered in mini-sleeves, which I also own, and had that track in it’s original version.

    I will be interested to see how the Edsel mastering stacks up against the Japan box. Edsel, unlike BGO or a few other specialty reissue labels, is hit-or-miss on their remastering.

    Bob

    August 5, 2013 at 20:50

    • I’ll take Edsel or BGO over Culture Factory ANY day of the week. I’ve rarely been let down by BGO, and while Edsel is decidedly more hit-and-miss, IMO, I trust them infinitely more than Culture Factory. A friend brought over one of the Palmers when it first came out–it was “Clues,” if I recall–and while I’m no snob when it comes to the use of compression, this was sooooooooo bad, I couldn’t listen to it for more than a few minutes–and even that was too much. I heard two Blue Oyster Cult ones recently as well, and those were awful too. The only remasters I recall hearing recently that sounded as bad or maybe even worse were the 2-CD Church deluxe editions from years ago done by EMI. My friend didn’t think the Palmer was that bad, but he and I have never exactly seen eye to eye on issues of sound quality. You couldn’t pay me to buy a Culture Factory release after what I’ve heard and read about them.

      I’ll wait for some reviews before I decide whether or not to buy one or more of the Island-era Edsels. If I do take the plunge, it’ll probably be “Sally”/”Pressure Drop” first.

      Chief Brody

      August 6, 2013 at 12:02

  5. Just got finished comparing “Sneaking Sally Through the Alley” Edsel version to the original Island CD, and though not overwhelmed, I do tend to slightly favor the Edsel. The remaster is clearly louder (as is the norm these days), but not egregiously so, but definitely has more presence and detail on my system. Some may prefer the more “linear” (read: smoother) sound of the original, but the Edsel lets you peer deeper into the recording–and without being overly fatiguing. At least that’s what my ears tell me. I’m not completely bowled over by Edsel’s mastering on this one title, but nor am I horrified by it either. It could definitely be a LOT worse. We’ll see how the other albums fare.

    Chief Brody

    September 7, 2013 at 17:06


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