Island Records (UK) will release new Tom Jones with Spirit In The Room planned on May 21. In addition to the standard CD release, there will also be a Limited Edition set with bonus tracks included.
Parlophone Records will release Valtari from Sigur Rós with a planned date of May 28 for CD and LP.
Major League Productions will release a Live set featuring Climax Blues Band called World Tour 1976 on May 7.
Music On Vinyl will re-release Various Positions (1984) by Leonard Cohen on vinyl LP, planning its release for April 30.
Paul Buchanan (Blue Nile) will release new music with Mid Air, scheduled for May 21. The album is slated for CD, 180g vinyl LP (1000 copies) with MP3 download rights, DD (MP3/FLAC/Apple Lossless), and a Limited Edition 2CD Box with 10 extra tracks. The box will offer a 20-page booklet with photos, lyrics, and packed in a 7″ box. From Newsroom Records UK. You can download a free track (for the cost of an email address) from the album at his website.
Esoteric Records UK will release a newly remastered edition of Le Parc (1985) by Tangerine Dream on April 30. The new reissue will feature a new booklet with a new essay.
Decca Records UK will release the new Melody Gardot album, The Absence, which is planned for the UK market on May 28.
Harmless Records UK will release a Limited Edition, 10-disc Box celebrating the 40th Anniversary of music from the vaults of Philadelphia International. This newly remastered, expansive Various Artists Box: Philadelphia International – 40th Anniversary, is set for UK release on May 14.
Roadrunner Records UK will release Storm Corrosion, the self-titled collaborative debut from Steven Wilson (Porcupine Tree), and Mikael Åkerfeldt (Opeth). Storm Corrosion is slated for May 7.
EMI UK is planning the release of a 3CD Box collection for Can called The Lost Tapes on June 18.
Polydor Records will release Magic Hour by Scissor Sisters on May 28.
Sanctuary Records UK will release a 3CD Box of a classic Small Faces title, Ogden’s Nut Gone Flake in a Deluxe Edition (With the expected release of two previous titles in the US, I think that it’s safe to assume that this title will be released there as well). This set is scheduled for May 7. It will contain alternate versions and outtakes and pack in a cool booklet with lots of goodies for the fan. Ian MacLagan and Kenney Jones oversaw the remastering of this great album. From The Beginning will be released in a Deluxe Edition on the same date in a 2CD set.
Warner Brothers UK will release What We Saw From The Cheap Seats by Regina Spektor with a planned date of May 28.
DGM Records will release The Wine Of Silence by Robert Fripp/Andrew Keeling/David Singleton in a performance orchestrated by The Metropole Orkest, conducted by Jan Stulen. The Wine of Silence is pegged for an April 30 release date.
The Vinyl Countdown (UK) will release Hot ‘N’ Nasty – Rockin’ The Winterland featuring the great Humble Pie on a vinyl 2LP edition planned for May 7.
Island Records UK will release a 2CD Deluxe Edition of Rendezvous (1977), and Like An Old Fashioned Waltz (1974) by the talented but tragic Sandy Denny. They are scheduled for May 21.
In Our Heads by Hot Chip is slated for release on June 19.
EMI UK will release a 4CD Box, The EMI Years (1985-1988) featuring the music of Saxon. It is scheduled for June 4.
The Enemy will release their next album, Streets In The Sky, on May 21 via Cooking Vinyl Records.
7ts Records (UK) plan the reissue of Aggro-Phobia (1976), and Your Mama Won’t Like Me (1975) from Suzi Quatro in remastered sets that include extra tracks. Both albums are planned for May 14.
Esoteric Records UK plan the reissue of All Together Now (1972) by Argent. The newly remastered album will contain a new booklet (with new essay), and a bonus track. This album yielded “Hold Your Head Up”. In addition, Esoteric Records will reissue Heart To Heart (1979) from the always great Pete Bardens (Camel). Both remastered reissues are scheduled for April 30.
Nettwerk Records plan to release New Wild Everywhere by Great Lake Swimmers on May 28.
Fiction Records will release Souvenir by The Kaiser Chiefs on June 4.
Cocteau Discs UK will reissue the 1995 classic by Bill Nelson (Be Bop Deluxe), Practically Wired (Or How I Became Guitar Boy), on April 30.
Warner Brothers UK plan a 2CD, 21-track, Deluxe Edition of Electric Warrior by T. Rex planned for April 23.
I’ve been listening to the recently released Live Dates II featuring Wishbone Ash. It’s been quite a while since this title has been available in its complete state. In fact, the full set was available only in the UK and as a limited edition, after which, it became a truncated issue (don’t know why). In the States, it was called Hot Ash and contained only eight tracks from the UK limited edition release, which contained twelve.
That album got me to pull out all of my Wishbone Ash albums, and listen to each one of them, most of which I love. I have my favorites. If you’re a Wishbone Ash fan, you have yours as well.
Wishbone Ash was one of those bands that had a large following, but never broke wide open. They certainly were good enough for it. They constantly reworked their sound from album to album in an effort to find the audience they coveted. I’m pleased I was a fan from the beginning.
Since we’re here, let’s have us a poll for their “best” album. I’m not too sure how may people will select one, but what the hell. I’ve been surprised by greater things so an underattended Wishbone Ash poll won;t break my spirit. HOWEVER…if you haven’t heard them or heard OF them, now is an awesome time to investigate. Having released their first album, the self-titled Wishbone Ash debut in 1970, the band has gone through several personnel changes and have released many albums.
I miss the Mark I band the most.
My favorite Ash album? Wishbone Four. Why? Because this album has everything in it. Wishbone Ash never had such a varied album prior to it, nor after it.
Currently, there are two iterations of Wishbone Ash in existence, the Andy Powell led Wishbone Ash, and the Martin Turner formed Martin Turner’s Wishbone Ash (MTWA). Most importantly, the band left behind some excellent music.
Hoping for a BIG turn-out.
On June 5, Patti Smith will break her creative silence with a new album, Banga. Banga is an enticing and long-awaited 12-track effort that will have long-time Patti Smith fans in anticipation of what new music she adds to her enduring legacy. Being slated for release on Columbia Records, Banga will feature Lenny Kaye, Tony Shanahan, and Jay Dee Daugherty. In addition, the band welcomes Tom Verlaine (Television) as a featured guest.
The lead-off track, “April Fool” is currently out. Having heard it I have to say that I’m refreshingly intrigued by the sound of the song. It’s a song with a more Pop feel yet with classic Smith undercurrents running through it especially with the guitars heard near the end. “April Fool” doesn’t take long at all to become entrenched in your mind, where it replays constantly. It is classic, even with its light-hearted lyrical fare from the girl who stormed our hearts’ walls with Horses way back in the ’70s.
I wasn’t endeared by Twelve, her last album filled with notable covers. But I’m ready for her re-entrance now. It’s been eight long years.
Welcome back, Patti. I’m already in line for this album.
“Come, be my April Fool…Come, we’ll break all the rules”
3. April Fool
4. This is the Girl
7. Tarkovsky (The Second Stop is Jupiter)
11. Constantine’s Dream
12. After the Gold Rush
A band that never gets real mention in too many quarters is the UK gem, The Climax Blues Band (early known as The Climax Chicago Blues Band, with a brilliant first album). I remember first hearing them on FM radio (WXRT – Chicago), and falling in love with them immediately. After Rich Man (1972), they released their FM Live (1973) album. I have to say that there were not too many nights that I didn’t close my night out with FM Live.
With the release of Sense Of Direction (1974), I was sure that this band would become great beyond great. There was not a bad song on the album. It was clear that the band was actually finding its true unique voice. The name given could not be any truer. Sense of Direction started with “Amerita”, a track with brilliant jazz/blues infusion. (Underrated) Pete Haycock’s guitars were extraordinary, mesmerizing me day and night. “Losin’ The Humbles”, with its slide guitars, pushed all of the right buttons. “Nogales”, the incredible, guitar-rich “Reaching Out” soul and funk, the bluesy “Right Now”, were anchors to a perfect album.
Sense of Direction performed well on the charts for the band leading into their Stamp Album (1975), and Gold Plated, which generated the hit everyone remembers, “Couldn’t Get It Right”, as well as “I Love You” from their Flying The Flag (1980) (yes, you know both of these songs) album. For me, while I enjoy the songs, they are a departure from their earlier experimental fusions.
As a result, their Sense of Direction still stands as their definitive album. While this may be an arguable point (and I would love to hear them), Sense of Direction is an album I effortless return to time and time again, years and decades later. It’s still as fresh as the days I used to lull myself to sleep listening to it.
If you haven’t heard Sense of Direction, or, for that matter, anything by Climax Blues Band, now is a great time to remedy that oversight. I suspect that you’ll be pleasantly surprised, especially if you have never heard of the band (even thought you may remember the hits mentioned above). Personally, I recommend back tracking from Sense of Direction for the best results. Others may recommend a forward movement. Either way, I doubt you’ll be disappointed.
(I have to say that I really dig the US cover (seen above) over the UK cover (seen below) of Sense of Direction.)