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Archive for August 28th, 2013

Madness to Reissue “Take It or Leave It” on DVD

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Madness Take It or Leave ItMadness may be all in the mind, but in October it’ll be on your TV screens thanks to a new reissue of the band’s film, Take It or Leave It, coming from Salvo Music in October.

Directed by Stiff Records founder Dave Robinson and released in 1981, Take It or Leave It is a docudrama about the beloved British ska group, combining staged vignettes with live footage and other fun stuff. Released in conjunction with the band’s third album, 7, the film features various studio and live versions of songs from the band’s discography up to that point, including “One Step Beyond,” “Baggy Trousers” and many more. (One song, “Sunshine Voice,” remains unreleased on any album.)

Salvo’s new reissue of Take It or Leave It features, for the first time, a soundtrack CD. Alas, “Sunshine Voice” isn’t included, in favor of a simple compilation of released songs from the film (including two non-Madness tracks). The new DVD does, however, retain a 2002 commentary on the film recorded by Robinson with Madness guitarist Chris Foreman. (A bit of bad news for collectors outside of the U.K., though: Amazon lists the DVD as PAL formatted only.)

In any case, it’s due out on October 7; pre-order links and a track list for the soundtrack are after the jump.

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Written by Mike Duquette

August 28, 2013 at 16:14

Posted in DVD, Madness, News, Reissues

Review: Bob Dylan, “The Bootleg Series Vol. 10: Another Self Portrait”

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Dylan Bootleg 10Who is Bob Dylan?

Today, he might identify himself as “a song and dance man,” a noble profession if there ever was one.  But for decades, the man born Robert Zimmerman has been much, much more.  Resistant though he might have been to the tag of “spokesman of a generation,” said generation could have done much worse.  To describe Dylan’s role in the 1960s is certainly to paint with broad brushstrokes.  But it can be said with some measure of truth that Dylan liberated popular music from the dominance of conventional love songs, challenged notions of what a singing voice should sound like, and popularized the singer-songwriter before the term even existed.  He also gave voice in those early years to characters – real and imagined, living and dead – who couldn’t speak for themselves, frequently championing those who were oppressed, wronged, or simply downtrodden.  So when Dylan announced an album called Self Portrait, it seemed possible that the songwriter who brought to life sweet Marie, Queen Jane, Maggie (of farm fame), Quinn the Eskimo, Mr. Tambourine Man, and the man who carried on his shoulder a Siamese cat might be looking inward.

Instead, when Self Portrait arrived on June 8, 1970, listeners found him warbling Rodgers and Hart (“Blue Moon”), Gordon Lightfoot (“Early Morning Rain”) and most bizarrely, Simon and Garfunkel – as both Paul and Artie (“The Boxer”)!  The sprawling double-LP set mixed these frankly strange pop covers with live tracks, old folk songs and new, seemingly tossed-off originals.  It was also unexplainably awash in overdubs of the kind not usually associated with Dylan – right down to cooing female backing vocals.  But now, the curtains can be drawn to reveal what Self Portrait might have been.  The Bootleg Series Vol. 10: Another Self Portrait (1969-1971) offers a glimpse into the man’s musical muse during that crucial time period via outtakes, alternate takes and non-overdubbed versions of songs recorded primarily for Self Portrait and its follow-up New Morning, with a handful of other detours including 1967’s The Basement Tapes sessions and 1969’s Nashville SkylineAnother Self Portrait is available in both a standard 2-CD version, and a 4-CD box also containing a remastered edition of the original Self Portrait and Dylan and The Band’s complete August 31, 1969 concert at the Isle of Wight.  Over the course of these 35 songs traversing country, blues, folk, pop and rock, the period comes into focus with newfound clarity and vibrancy.  The frequently stark arrangements afford a glimpse into a musical soul all but hidden on the original Self Portrait.

There’s plenty more on Bob after the jump! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

August 28, 2013 at 10:26

Posted in Bob Dylan, Box Sets, Compilations, News, Reviews

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Midnight Special: Sweet “Rocky Horror” Reissues on Tap

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Rocky Horror BoxA toast! A famed box set of music from The Rocky Horror Show is coming back into print, as well as a new reissue of the original film soundtrack on CD and vinyl, 40 years after the show first Time Warped into the hearts of fans.

There comes a time in many music and theatre enthusiasts’ lives when they encounter The Rocky Horror Show, Richard O’Brien’s raucous cult musical, which first premiered in London’s West End in the summer of 1973. More than 35 years after it was adapted into The Rocky Horror Picture Show, the legacy not only survives but thrives thanks to consistent live revivals and midnight screenings of said film, heavy on costumes, camaraderie and audience participation. The enduring musical legacy of Rocky Horror includes some killer pop-rock tunes written for stage and screen (“Dammit Janet,” “Sweet Transvestite” and the unforgettable “The Time Warp”) – all ably performed by killer casts (famous members including Meat Loaf, “Little” Nell Campbell and, of course, Tim Curry as the cross-dressing Dr. Frank N. Furter).

In the early CD era, Rhino Records (prior to its acquisition by Warner Music Group) did a pretty stellar job of preserving that musical legacy, releasing a four-disc box set for the film’s 15th anniversary in 1990. This box included two Rocky Horror albums released by Ode Records – the original 1975 film soundtrack and a cast album from the show’s run at Los Angeles’ Roxy Theatre in 1974 – and two compilations of curiosities related to the show, from solo singles by Little Nell and Curry and tracks from O’Brien’s follow-up project Shock Treatment to selections from a number of international cast albums. On September 2, that box set will be reissued by Salvo, featuring the same four discs and a 24-page booklet of liner notes and photos – all packaged in a five-panel digipak with slipcase.

Rocky Horror Picture ShowBut the party doesn’t stop there! The original film’s soundtrack is slated for a reissue on CD (in a digipak) and vinyl (at least one source reports this to be a red vinyl pressing) on October 8. The exact distributor is undetermined; Amazon lists “Ode Sounds & Visuals” as the label, as Ode founder Lou Adler still retains the soundtrack’s rights. (Most of Ode’s catalogue is licensed and distributed through Sony Music’s Legacy Recordings arm.) But the original album repertoire is intact, down to the two extra bonus tracks first released on CD in 1989.

You can pre-order the TRHPS reissue on Amazon (CD and LP), and find the full track list and pre-order links for the Salvo box after the jump!

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Written by Mike Duquette

August 28, 2013 at 10:05