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What’s the World? James Offer Up New Rarities Box

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Manchester’s James have been going strong for nearly 30 years, amassing some 19 Top 40 singles in their native England. It’s kind of a surprise, then, that the recently-announced The Gathering Sound is only their first box set. But it sure is a good one.

The set chronicles James’ discography, from their earliest recordings in 1982 to last year’s EPs The Night Before and The Morning After, across three CDs, one DVD, a vinyl record and a USB stick. The three CDs feature a program of studio rarities, most of which are entirely unreleased or haven’t seen the light of day on compact disc, a set of live tracks and those aforementioned EPs collected on one disc. The 12″ vinyl features four unreleased demos, while the DVD contains the first release of the band’s 1991 Come Home Live video in the disc format.

To top it all off, an 8 GB, J-shaped USB drive contains all of the band’s studio albums, from 1986’s Stutter to 2008’s Hey Ma, as well as a small helping of non-LP material (the band’s non-LP singles later released on 1990’s Gold Mother and four tracks from greatest-hits compilations) – all in hi-res FLAC files or 320 kpbs MP3s. The drive also includes 24 of the band’s promotional music videos. (Completists take note: the bonus tracks from the band’s remastered editions of their 1990s albums are not present here. However, all tracks from Gold Mother, including the single tracks from the 1991 repressing, are present.)

Everything is encased in a 12″ x 12″ box with a 44-page liner notes booklet, badges and replicas of backstage passes. Additionally, the first 500 pre-orders get a special signed art print; all pre-orders will receive three exclusive demos as digital downloads. The Gathering Storm can be ordered here (expected to arrive October 17); the full track breakdown is after the jump. (Due credit to Slicing Up Eyeballs, who reported this while this author was on vacation!) Read the rest of this entry »

Written by Mike Duquette

August 25, 2011 at 13:02