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Tag: Reissues (1-10 of 22)

Cyndi Lauper's 'She's So Unusual': An everlasting, once in a lifetime album

On the new deluxe 30th anniversary edition of Cyndi Lauper’s debut, the everlastingly saucy supersmash She’s So Unusual, you can hear the “Work in Progress Rough Mix” of “Time After Time,” in which Lauper sings the song the way people have now for years, across the globe: by mumble-humming nonsense syllables until hitting the chorus. Of course, she probably hadn’t finalized (or memorized) the lyrics yet. We just can’t resist picking up that hard-wired melody, even when we need words scrolling across a karaoke screen to nail them.

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Mad Season's Barrett Martin on the new reissue of the grunge classic 'Above'

Back in 1995 when grunge was arguably at its height, a Seattle supergroup dropped its first — and what would turn out to be their only — album.

Though it consisted of 75 percent scene luminaries (Alice in Chains vocalist Layne Staley, Pearl Jam guitarist Mike McCready, and Screaming Trees drummer Barrett Martin), Mad Season were actually more of a next-generation blues band.

That album, Above, went gold on the back of the single “River of Deceit,” and was vital to the development of the four musicians in the group (bassist John Baker Saunders rounded out the lineup), all of whom had struggled with substance abuse but managed to clean themselves up. “There was a spiritual elevation that we all felt when we played together,” Martin tells EW. “Part of that was because we were all sober at the time. There was a real heightened awareness in that band. Everything seemed to awaken within us when we played together.”

The group only played a handful of shows, and though they began work on their second album in 1996, Above was Mad Season’s only album. (Saunders passed away in 1999; Staley passed in 2002.) But a handful of recordings from those second sessions have made it onto Above: Deluxe Edition, the new multi-disc package celebrating one of the great all-star acts of the alt-rock ’90s. In addition to a handful of previously unreleased bonus tracks, with vocals provided by Mark Lanegan in place of the late Staley, there is also a live recording of a legendary live performance in Seattle from 1995, as well as a DVD featuring video footage of that show plus a handful of other thrilling live moments.

Martin, who worked with McCready and original Above producer Brett Eliason on the reissue (and also wrote the extensive liner notes), talked to EW about the band’s origins, its legacy, and its unusual chemistry.

Entertainment Weekly: How did Mad Season first come together in 1994?
Barrett Martin: Mike called me and said he wanted to do a side project with this bass player that he had met when he was in rehab, and I said absolutely. READ FULL STORY

Revisiting Smashing Pumpkins' 'Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness'

Mellon-Collie-and-the-Infinite-Sadness.jpg

When I was in the eighth grade, I spent the entirety of my holiday break working on an assignment for my English class. The assignment was open-ended, so I decided to tackle the one thing I had always wanted to do: Write up my top ten albums of the year list, along with my picks for the five worst. (It’s a format that has become pretty familiar.) It was my first — half-hearted, completely blind — attempt to elevate the thing I loved into something that really meant something.

The list itself has been lost to history (it was put together on a Smith-Corona word processor that only possessed enough memory to keep track of the document you were currently working on), but there are a handful of aspects about it I do remember very clearly. It definitely had an introduction that attempted to sum up the musical zeitgeist of 1995, which was mostly a rant against Hootie & the Blowfish, whose music I hated (still do, really).

I know I included Pearl Jam’s Vitalogy on the list even though it came out at the end of 1994, and the write-up for it was mostly an argument for its inclusion, as though anybody cared about the fake rules I had set upon myself and then immediately broke (I think I had to make the same argument for Bush’s Sixteen Stone, though I can’t remember if I included it on the list or just spent time obsessively defending it in other reviews). Collective Soul’s self-titled second album was in the top five, and I also know that Garbage’s self-titled debut was way up there. My really “edgy” pick was Flaming Lips’ Clouds Taste Metallic, which I discovered via the one-two punch of the BMG Music Service and Batman Forever.

The number one spot was controversial. My friend Zack got wind of what I was doing, and he started lobbying hard for me to name Rancid’s …And Out Come The Wolves the top long-player of the year, as though it would have actually had any kind of impact on anybody. Remember, this wasn’t even for a school paper or anything—this was going to be seen by me, my English teacher, and maybe my mom if she was curious enough. READ FULL STORY

The Beach Boys to reunite with Brian Wilson for 50th anniversary tour and album

The Beach Boys offically announced today that they are reuniting with founding member and chief songwriter Brian Wilson for a 50th-anniversary tour and album.

The 50-date international tour will kick off in April with a headlining performance at the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival, and the reunited lineup has already recorded several songs for the new album, including a new version of their 1968 hit, “Do It Again.”

The album will be released next year by Capitol and is being produced by Brian Wilson. Capitol/EMI also plans to commemorate the Beach Boys’ half century-long career by releasing a new hits collection and career-spanning box set. READ FULL STORY

Nirvana celebrate 20 years of 'Nevermind': Read the extended roundtable interview and backstory -- booze! corn dogs! transvestite karaoke! -- here!

In the early ’90s, Aqua Net-fueled hair metal and disposable pop songs gripped the marketplace. Then came three shaggy dudes whose blistering mix of radio-ready hits and caustic deep cuts blew the dawning decade wide open.

Now, with the arrival of a deluxe box set celebrating 20 years of Nevermind, the full story of Nirvana’s seminal album can finally be told: During a round­table with EW in Los Angeles, Dave Grohl, 42, Krist Novoselic, 46, and producer Butch Vig, 56, recall creating a soon-to-be classic with their late friend and collaborator Kurt Cobain—and all the booze, corn dogs, turtles, and transvestite karaoke singers that came along for the ride.

April 1990: Cobain, Novoselic, and then-drummer Chad Channing visit Smart Studios in Madison, Wisconsin, to record with producer Butch Vig.

Krist Novoselic
We were going to tour with Tad, and we said, “Why don’t we go to Madison, Wisconsin,” because we were kicking around these songs. So we drove out there straight from Washington State to Wisconsin in two days.

Butch Vig
They were with Sub Pop then, and they came out ostensibly to do a new album for Sub Pop. We tracked maybe seven songs in five days.

Novoselic
We had heard of Butch. He was doing a lot of Touch & Go bands. And Tad recorded there too, so they sent us good references.

Vig
it was a little tough because Kurt kept blowing his voice out. And during the middle of the recording, they did a show at a local club in Madison and he blew his voice out even worse. I think the last two days he couldn’t sing at all. I expected they were going to come back. I didn’t hear anything, and all of a sudden I started getting these calls from people saying, “Hey man, I love these Nirvana tracks.” They had gone home and dubbed a cassette I gave them, and they made a hundred copies and gave them out to their friends. They bootlegged themselves, essentially.

Novoselic
That was how Geffen got a copy. I think [Sonic Youth members and Geffen signees] Kim [Gordon] and Thurston [Moore] had a copy, and they gave it to [Geffen A&R executive] Gary Gersh

September 1990: Cobain and Novoselic fire Channing and replace him with former Scream drummer Dave Grohl. While working out the growing batch of new songs, the band signs with Geffen Records. READ FULL STORY

Lady Gaga hatches 'Country Road' version of 'Born This Way': Listen to it here!

Hard to believe it was only six weeks ago that Lady Gaga gave birth to “Born This Way.” And that we were all hung up on its similarity to Madonna’s “Express Yourself.”

But six straight weeks atop Billboard’s Hot 100 later, “Born This Way” is the fastest-selling hit of Gaga’s career. Clearly, it was the right track, baby. Now she’s getting her twang on with a “Country Road” version of her megahit.

Want to hear the lyric “Don’t be a drag, just be a queen” set to an electric guitar and harmonica? Well, look no further:

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Mariah Carey, Weezer, and N.E.R.D. albums all hit stores today

mariah-carey-christmas-IIEven with a newborn on the way, Mariah Carey is pressing on.  Sixteen years after making one of the most popular holiday albums ever, Carey returns with a sequel to Merry Christmas, Merry Christmas II You, re-recording several tunes from the original and introducing a few more. Fresh off of Halloween, the record is timed perfectly. As we make plans for turkey day, we know Christmas bells will be ringing in no time.

Weezer also released a two-CD deluxe reissue of their 1996 second album, PinkertonRivers Cuomo once considered the album a “hugely painful mistake.” But now he and Weezer fans alike know it to be a classic. And we agree. N.E.R.D.‘s new album, Nothing, is out today as well. Title aside, know that this trippy album has plenty to offer. Check out the review we gave it here. Pharrell Williams, Chad Hugo, and Shae Haley’s new set delivers more cuts for rocking festivals and introspective cuts to reflect with.

Those are this week’s big releases. What records will you be buying this week? Let us know.

Follow the Music Mix on Twitter: @EWMusicMix


Weezer's 'Pinkerton' reissue: Read the 2001 EW story where Rivers Cuomo called the now-classic album a 'hugely painful mistake'

weezer_pinkertonToday a two-CD deluxe reissue of Weezer‘s 1996 second album, Pinkerton, hit stores. That’s good news: it’s one of the great albums of the 1990s, an alt-rock masterpiece that embeds almost unbearably raw emotion inside singalong tunes that still sound thrilling 14 years later. At the time, however, it was a big flop, with most fans and critics recoiling at its unpolished sound and over-share lyrics. In recent interviews, Cuomo seems proud of the album, but at the time its critical and commercial rejection was a huge blow. EW talked to him when the band’s third album came out in 2001, and the singer essentially disowned Pinkerton as a “hideous record.” “It was such a hugely painful mistake that happened in front of hundreds of thousands of people and continues to happen on a grander and grander scale and just won’t go away,” he told us. “It’s like getting really drunk at a party and spilling your guts in front of everyone and feeling incredibly great and cathartic about it, and then waking up the next morning and realizing what a complete fool you made of yourself.”

In the story, Cuomo also talked about the dark, scary period after Pinkerton when he retreated from the outside world and the band nearly fell apart. Read an excerpt after the jump, or check out the whole story here. READ FULL STORY

John Lennon solo box set giveaway: Enter now to win!

john-lennon-setJohn Lennon‘s entire solo catalog was just reissued to mark what would have been his 70th birthday. Want to check out the remastered sound and handsome packaging without reaching for your wallet? You just might be in luck. The Music Mix is giving away a whole bunch of the new Lennon reissues today: Three Signature box sets (featuring all of his remastered solo albums), 10 copies of Power to the People (a new greatest hits CD), and 10 copies of the new Double Fantasy Stripped Down 2-CD (featuring the original 1980 album and a new alternate mix).

The CDs are courtesy of EMI, and are available while supplies last on a first-come, first-served basis. The first three qualifying entrants will get the box set, and the next 10 will get both CDs. Want to win? Here’s how to enter:

1. Go to our Facebook page.

2. Click “Like” at the top of the page.

3. Find the post on our Wall announcing the giveaway, click Comment, and tell us what your favorite John Lennon solo tune is, and why. (Note: Commenting on this post won’t enter you in the giveaway; see the official rules after the jump.)

4. If you’re a winner, we’ll contact you via Facebook message to request your mailing address.

Get clicking: The giveaway starts NOW! READ FULL STORY

John Lennon's solo years: A major reissue campaign marks what would have been the Beatle's 70th birthday

John-LennonImage Credit: Globe PhotosJohn Lennon‘s 70th birthday this Oct. 9 ought to have been a chance to absorb whatever new sounds he was making as he entered old age. Since that is sadly impossible, why not honor his memory by listening again to the eight albums he recorded under his own name? A handsome if pricey new 11-CD box set presents all eight in freshly remastered form, plus another disc of slipshod demos and one more of non-album singles. (Also available is a separate new four-disc set that groups 72 songs thematically, as well as yet another one-disc hits compilation.) The reissues are also sold individually — or maybe you’d prefer to dig out the perfectly serviceable ­remasters that each album already received over the past 10 years. But however you choose to consume it, the time has never been better to rediscover the unpredictable, challenging music Lennon recorded in his 30s. READ FULL STORY

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