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Wild Swans’ “Coldest Winter” Heats Up on Occultation Recordings

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The Coldest Winter for a Hundred YearsBritish postpunk band The Wild Swans, led by singer/songwriter/keyboardist Paul Simpson, have recently reissued their most recent album with a raft of bonus material.

The haunting work of Simpson first came to prominence in the late ’70s as member of the short-lived A Shallow Madness, which featured two future frontmen from the same genre: Julian Cope of The Teardrop Explodes and Ian McCulloch of Echo & The Bunnymen. His Wild Swans project has existed in three phases: once from 1980 to 1982, where the band issued one single, “The Revolutionary Spirit” (one of the final releases on Liverpool label Zoo Records) and were championed by John Peel; once again from 1988 to 1990, where they released two albums for Sire/Reprise; and finally from 2007 on, when Simpson recruited a new group of musicians to revive the group he once described as “a beautiful, holy, sexy, disturbing, dreamy nightmare about breaking into heaven to have sex with the angels.”

Signing to U.K. indie Occultation Recordings, The Wild Swans issued several singles before a 2011 LP, The Coldest Winter for a Hundred Years, came to light. The new record found the band on tour once again, in Europe and The Philippines, where the band has had a cult following for years.

This new version of Coldest Winter pairs the original album with a bonus disc of non-LP and single material as well as two previously unreleased tracks. It’s available in two formats: a standard, double-vinyl release and a deluxe package that adds the material on CD plus a collectible poster, postcard, badge and special lyric insert, all in specially-printed outer packaging. (Occultation has informed us that a third, super-deluxe format with even more goodies has actually sold out.) If this one sounds like the set for you or that special post-punk fan in your life, head to Occultation’s website and place an order. (A photo gallery is here.) After the jump, you’ll find a full track list and a preview of one of the new songs, “Maybe It’s You.”

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Written by Mike Duquette

November 8, 2013 at 14:04

News Round-Up: Live CSNY, XTC on Vinyl, Teardrop Expands

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  • An article from The Columbian of Clark County, Washington is making the rounds for noting that a box set is being prepped chronicling the 1974 tour of Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young. Planned to enter stores around the holiday season, the set is said to comprise three CDs and a DVD, culled from eight of the best stops on the tour. The 1974 tour saw CSNY performing after a four-year hiatus; the outdoor-arena shows (among the first of their kind) often stretched to three hours of electric and acoustic performances.
  • A hat tip to the top cats at Slicing Up Eyeballs for this story and the next: XTC’s 1986 LP Skylarking is getting a new reissue on double vinyl. The package corrects a bizarre error present on all the previous pressings of the album: for some reason, the sound polarity on all pressings had been reversed (meaning, to quote the original post, “sound waves that should be pushing out from your speakers are actually pulling them back and projecting from the rear”). A CD reissue has not been announced, nor has a final track list been issued (note that original U.K. pressings did not include the single “Dear God,” although the 2001 remaster appended the song to the end of the disc).
  • Finally, The Teardrop Explodes – Julian Cope’s early-’80s post-punk outfit – are expanding their first LP, 1980’s Kilimanjaro, to a three-disc set due out July 12 in the U.K. from Universal. It includes a disc of B-sides and non-LP tracks and another disc of live BBC sessions. You can read the track list after the jump.

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Written by Mike Duquette

July 1, 2010 at 10:57