In honor of Wrestlemania’s 1985 debut at Madison Square Garden, here is a playlist of tunes that have no relation to said event. However, they all came out in 1985, so…synergy!
Electronic, Electronic: The term “supergroup” gets thrown around a lot in the world of music, but what other term would be apropos for the teaming of Bernard Sumner of New Order, Johnny Marr of The Smiths, and Neil Tennant of Pet Shop Boys fame? Yep, that’s what we thought, too, so “supergroup” it is, then!
New this week in the Rhino Room at iTunes:
Sick of it All, Dragon Power: If you’ve been paying close attention to our past Digital Roundups, then you might’ve noticed that this live EP – originally released as a promotional item in Japan, oddly enough – was supposed to have hit our digital catalog some time back, but for reasons best known to folks well beyond this writer’s pay grade, it didn’t happen…until now. This unique release technically features nine tracks, but five of them are actually two-fers, although two of those two-fers are the same songs, just recorded in different locations. Y’see, the first four tracks were recorded in New York, the next two tracks were recorded in Nagoya, and the final three tracks were recorded in Osaka. Look, just trust us: if you’re a Sick of it All fan, you’ll want it all.
When folks think of Stephen Stills the work with his “supergroup,” Manassas, is left out of the conversation in favor of his more well known and commercially viable recordings (CSNY.)
Manassas is my favorite of Stills’ albums. As a whole this is where he peaked - where it all came together for him. Blues, jazz, latin grooves, folk, rock & roll and country all coexist within the album’s framework -- each with it’s own sub-category: “The Raven,” “The Wilderness,” “Consider,” and “Rock & Roll Is Here To Stay.” Keep in mind that when initially released in 1972, Manassas was a double album - meaning each side of the record had it’s own theme. Stephen Stills' wilderness realized.
If there’s any band that can rival The Grateful Dead when it comes to having diehard followers that are forever champing at the bit to hear live performances from their heroes, it’s got to be Yes. No matter what members may be in the lineup at any given time, there’s always a huge core audience that’s ready to turn up to their concerts and thrill to every last note. As such, if your first reaction when you heard about the new box set Progeny: Seven Shows from Seventy-Two was to think, “Geez, what band has the kind of fans who’d get excited about getting seven concerts from the same tour?” then we’re here to tell you that the answer is Yes.
In 1972, Yes was riding high on the success of Close to the Edge, and audiences were coming out in droves to see them reproduce that material in a live setting and, with any luck, they’d get to hear some of the band’s earlier material in the set, too. (They did.) Recently, the members of the band stumbled upon reel-to-reel recordings of seven complete concerts which took place only a short period of time before the shows that made up the live album known as Yessongs, and now that they’ve used the cutting-edge technology of 2015 to make them sound as pristine as possible, we here at Rhino are bringing the recordings to you.
There are some Miles Davis albums that are universally heralded as works of genius, and there are others that have earned decidedly divisive opinions over the years. Tutu definitely falls into the latter category, but for those who appreciate the more mainstream side of Miles, it’s always proven to be a solid listen, and if you’re in that camp – and if you enjoy spinning your jazz on your turntable – then stand by for spectacular news.
This week, we’ve released a deluxe edition of Tutu on 180-gram vinyl, and it’s a four-sided affair which latter-day Davis fans will adore. The first LP features the re-mastered version of the original album, while the second LP features five live performances from Davis’s appearance at France’s Nice Festival in 1986. Better yet, there are only two tracks that cross over between the two records – “Portia” and “Splatch” – and even they end up on separate sides of the second LP.
Believe it or not, this year marks the 30th anniversary of the Norwegian band a-ha taking on America and temporarily becoming one of the biggest bands on our shores as a result of their debut album, Hunting High and Low, which earned them a #1 hit on the Billboard Hot 100 with its first single, “Take on Me.”
Oh, right, and you might remember the song’s video, too, what with it being utterly iconic and all:
Given the number of morose lyrics that have featured in many of his songs over the years, both within his solo discography as well as in the Smiths’ back catalog, we couldn’t be happier than Morrissey has managed to stave off oblivion long enough to celebrate 56 years on “this unhappy planet, with all the carnivores and destructors on it.”
What, you don’t recognize the quote? Ah, how soon they forget…