The Second Disc

Expanded and Remastered Music News

Archive for January 21st, 2014

Play A Song For Me: Bob Dylan’s 30th Anniversary Concert Is Expanded On CD and DVD/BD

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Bob Dylan - 30th ConcertSince its opening on February 11, 1968, Madison Square Garden at Manhattan’s Pennsylvania Station has hosted some of the most memorable events in music history, from The Concert For Bangla Desh in 1971 to The Concert for New York City in 2001.  For sheer star wattage, one of the most notable of MSG’s many special events was the 1992 evening remembered simply as “Bobfest.”  It was a night for friends, contemporaries and younger artists to pay tribute to an American great for whom a first-name basis was sufficient. Bob Dylan – The 30th Anniversary Concert Celebration, with appearances from Stevie Wonder, Johnny Cash, Lou Reed, Eric Clapton, and Traveling Wilburys Tom Petty, George Harrison and Bob Dylan himself, was preserved on compact disc, VHS and laserdisc.  Now, on March 4, the program will be reissued on CD (a 2-CD set) as well as on DVD and Blu-ray.

The October 16, 1992 concert marked the 30th anniversary of Dylan’s first Columbia Records album, which had been released on March 19, 1962.  There was no shortage of luminaries in attendance, and befitting the number of artists in all styles of music who have covered Dylan’s catalogue, no shortage of genre-bending.  Soul stars (The O’Jays, Stevie Wonder) shared the bill with country legends (Willie Nelson, Kris Kristofferson, Johnny Cash, June Carter Cash, Rosanne Cash), folk heroes (Richie Havens) and rockers (Lou Reed, Ronnie Wood, Johnny Winter, Chrissie Hynde, John Mellencamp, Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers, Neil Young).  A number of the artists had close associations with Dylan, including The Band (sans Robbie Robertson), The Byrds’ Roger McGuinn, and of course, George Harrison, who made his first U.S. concert appearance in 18 years.  Dylan took the stage for a four-song finale set including all-star performances of “My Back Pages” with McGuinn, Harrison, Petty, Young and Clapton, and “Knockin’ on Heaven’s Door” with the full ensemble.  Naturally, the house band was A-list all the way, with three members of Booker T. & The M.G.’s joined by musical director G.E. Smith (once lead guitarist of Dylan’s band) on guitar and veterans Jim Keltner and Anton Fig on drums.

After the jump: what extras will you find on these expanded reissues?  Plus: the complete track listing and pre-order links! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

January 21, 2014 at 13:59

Welcome (Back) to The Black Parade: My Chemical Romance Announce Greatest Hits Album

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My Chem May Death Never  Stop YouAlt-rock darlings My Chemical Romance may have broken up in a surprise move last spring, but the band’s getting a fitting postscript with a new compilation to be released almost a year after the split.

May Death Never Stop You: The Greatest Hits 2001-2013 chronicles the entire discography of the New Jersey rockers. Led by singer-songwriter Gerard Way and anchored by his brother Mikey on bass, lead guitarist Ray Toro and rhythm guitarist Frank Iero (drummers Matt Pelissier and Bob Bryar were full-time percussionists from 2001-2004 and 2004-2010, respectively), MCR deftly combined the theatrical, verbose, heart-on-sleeve tendencies of the burgeoning “emo” punk scene (which the band were quick to distance themselves from) with some of the best soaring rock hooks of the past decade. Their sophomore album, 2004’s Three Cheers for Sweet Revenge, was their first on a major label (Reprise Records), earning them platinum status and wider recognition. Their long-honed live act got them on the 2005 installment of the Warped Tour, where they blossomed further.

The rest of the band’s discography is amusingly esoteric: The Black Parade (2006) was a rock opera about a dying man’s final moments that saw the band have its biggest single (the Top 10 hit “Welcome to the Black Parade”) and stretch their creative muscles even further, touring in character and creating a mythology around the characters they wrote about. Follow-up Danger Days: The True Lives of The Fabulous Killjoys (2010) spun a similar conceptual arc, this time about a post-apocalyptic rebellion against corporate control. A collection of pre-Danger Days material, cut with producer Brendan O’Brien, was released as a singles set in 2012 and 2013 under the title Conventional Weapons, just before the band’s sudden split.

But May Death Never Stop You features a small amount of unheard material to keep fans happy. In addition to an unreleased song, “Fake Your Death,” the package will also include three of the first My Chem tracks, recorded in then-drummer Pelissier’s attic. (Final versions of all of these tracks surfaced on the band’s debut, I Brought You My Bullets, You Brought Me Your Love, in 2002.) An deluxe edition includes and 11-track DVD featuring the band’s complete music videos, with some unreleased content as well.

The set is available in multiple formats on March 25. Hit the jump for full specs!

Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Mike Duquette

January 21, 2014 at 11:49

Headed For The Future: Neil Diamond’s Back Catalogue Moves to Capitol Records

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The Feel of Neil DiamondHell yeah, he didBillboard reports that Grammy Award winner and Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Neil Diamond has departed Columbia Records after a forty-plus-year association, and has brought his back catalogue to Capitol Records, now part of the Universal Music Group.  The surprise move comes just a few months following the release of Diamond’s Classic Christmas Album, the latest in a string of recent archival projects from Diamond, Columbia and Legacy Recordings including the Grammy-nominated The Bang Years: 1966-1968 and The Very Best of Neil Diamond.

This announcement means that, for the first time, the entirety of the iconic singer-songwriter’s catalogue is now under one roof.  Following some one-off singles including one on Columbia (1963’s “At Night” b/w “Clown Town”), Diamond began his career as a solo artist in earnest at Bert Berns’ Bang label.  At the New York independent label from 1966 to 1968, Diamond charted hits including “Solitary Man,” “Cherry, Cherry” and “Girl, You’ll Be a Woman Soon,” but creative differences with founder Berns – most notably over the song “Shilo” – led the artist to seek greener pastures.  He signed with MCA Records’ Uni label, and between 1968 and 1972 met with even greater success thanks to songs like “Sweet Caroline,” “Holly Holy,” “I Am…I Said,” “Brother Love’s Traveling Salvation Show” and two No. 1 hits, “Cracklin’ Rosie” and “Song Sung Blue.”  A Hot August Night at Los Angeles’ Greek Theatre also yielded one of the most incendiary live albums in the rock canon (recently reissued by Universal’s Geffen label).

But Columbia Records came calling with an offer Diamond couldn’t refuse, reportedly guaranteeing him a million dollar advance per LP in a multi-year, multi-album deal.  His initial Columbia release, 1973’s Jonathan Livingston Seagull, was the soundtrack to Hall Bartlett’s adaptation of Richard Bach’s novella of the same title.  Diamond’s Grammy- and Golden Globe-winning soundtrack hit No. 2 on the pop albums chart and is said to have earned more than the film itself!  Diamond’s winning streak continued as he collaborated with producers including The Band’s Robbie Robertson and The Four Seasons’ Bob Gaudio.  Capitol Records released the original soundtrack album to Diamond’s remake of The Jazz Singer in 1980, which yielded three Top 10 pop singles (“America,” “Hello Again,” “Love on the Rocks”).  Diamond returned immediately after, though, to Columbia, and eventually Columbia even reissued The Jazz Singer on CD.  (When Columbia acquired Bang Records, Diamond acquired his Bang-era masters from the label.)

1982’s E.T.-inspired “Heartlight” (co-written with Burt Bacharach and Carole Bayer Sager) was Diamond’s final Top 5 pop hit, but the singer remained a concert draw and recorded albums of both original material and themed covers (Christmas songs, Brill Building pop, country favorites, movie songs).  In fact, he’s released Top 10 albums in every decade since the 1970s and has sold over 128 million albums to date.  There’s more on Neil after the jump! Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Joe Marchese

January 21, 2014 at 10:30

Posted in Neil Diamond, News, Reissues

Release Round-Up: Week of January 21

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The Beatles - U.S. Albums BoxThe Beatles, The U.S. Albums (Apple/Capitol/UMe)

The centerpiece product of The Fab Four’s 50th anniversary celebration (thus far, anyway) is a 13-disc box featuring the original, unique American releases on Capitol/United Artists from 1964 to 1970 (including six titles from that first year alone). All but the spoken-word documentary album The Beatles’ Story will be available individually, and all but that and 1970’s stereo-only Hey Jude compilation will be available in mono and stereo on the same disc.

The U.S. Albums: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Meet The Beatles!: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
The Beatles’ Second AlbumAmazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
A Hard Day’s Night: Original Motion Picture Soundtrack: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Something NewAmazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Beatles ’65Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
The Early BeatlesAmazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Beatles VI: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Help! Original Motion Picture SoundtrackAmazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Rubber SoulAmazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Yesterday and TodayAmazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Revolver: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Hey JudeAmazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.

Del Amitri TwistedDel Amitri, Waking Hours Change Everything Twisted: Deluxe Editions (Mercury/UMC)

Best known in the U.S. for peppy rock radio hit “Roll to Me,” the recently-reunited Glasgow rockers’ first three alternative-friendly albums for A&M are being expanded as double-disc sets with heaps of non-LP B-sides.

Waking HoursAmazon U.K. / Amazon U.S.
Change Everything: Amazon U.K. / Amazon U.S.
TwistedAmazon U.K. / Amazon U.S.

Mike + The Mechanics The Singles 1986-2014Mike + The Mechanics, The Singles 1985-2014 The Living Years: Deluxe Edition (UMC)

To time with Mike Rutherford’s new memoir, the Genesis guitarist/bassist’s famed side-project (with vocals from Paul Carrack and Sad Café’s Paul Young) is first anthologized with a career-spanning double-disc hits and rarities set, and then an expansion of 1988’s The Living Years (whose title track was the band’s biggest worldwide hit), featuring a new version of the track with vocalist Andrew Roachford and a disc’s worth of live recordings from 1989.

The Singles 1985-2014Amazon U.K. / Amazon U.S.
The Living YearsAmazon U.K. / Amazon U.S.

Off the GroundPaul McCartney, Off the Ground (MPL/Hear Music)

Sir Paul’s 1993 album gets a no-frills new remaster. (Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.)

CharoCharo and The Salsoul Orchestra, Cuchi-Cuchi: Expanded Edition / Loleatta Holloway, Queen of the Night: Expanded Edition (Big Break)

Two more expanded albums from the Salsoul label on BBR – one from label queen Loleatta Holloway and the debut album from the famed singer-comedienne.

Charo: Amazon U.K. / Amazon U.S.
Loleatta Holloway: Amazon U.K. / Amazon U.S.

Major HarrisMajor Harris, How Do You Take Your Love / Margie Joseph. Knockout: Expanded Edition (Funky Town Grooves)

FTG puts the first and only RCA album by ex-Delfonic/”Love Won’t Let Me Wait” singer Major Harris on CD for the first time, while expanding a 1983 album by Harris’ onetime labelmate Margie Joseph.

Major Harris: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.
Margie Joseph: Amazon U.S. / Amazon U.K.

Simon and Garfunkel - PlaylistVarious Artists, Playlist: The Very Best Of (Legacy)

The latest wave in Legacy’s low-price hits series includes some converted greatest hits titles (Simon & Garfunkel’s Greatest Hits, Journey’s Greatest Hits LiveCloser: The Best of Sarah McLachlan) but also some new titles – chiefly some newly-curated compilations from Dean Martin, Ronnie Spector, Jermaine Jackson and Ray Parker, Jr. (All Amazon U.S. and U.K. links can be found in the link above!)