If you’re someone with a diehard R.E.M. fan in your life, then you’ve probably already heard ad nauseum about how awesome our six-DVD REMTV set is, and even though we’re obviously partial, we’d still be hard pressed to argue with you, because we really do think that it turned out great. Still, it’s such a substantial set that we can also appreciate why some folks would say, “I like R.E.M., but not this much,” and we could really, really appreciate why even more of you complained about the complete uncoolness of closing out the set with a new feature-length documentary, R.E.M. by MTV, that was instantly acclaimed and yet unavailable independently of the set.
Ladies and gentlemen, your complaints have been heard, and your prayers have been answered: as of today, R.E.M. by MTV is available for purchase all by itself…and, better yet, it’s available not only on DVD but, for the first time, on Blu-ray as well.
Last year, Rhino was fortunate enough to be able to pay tribute to the late Robin Gibb with the posthumous release of his final album, 50 St.Catherine’s Drive, a 17-track collection of material which featured – among other songs – “Sydney,” the last song Robin recorded in his lifetime. Now, we’re proud to continue reminding music fans of the underrated solo career of the Bee Gees singer with the release of Saved by the Bell: The Collected Works of Robin Gibb 1968-1970.
If a three-year span doesn’t seem like it would result in a tremendous amount of material, then we’re happy to assure you that your concerns are misplaced. This three-disc, 63-track set kicks off with Gibb’s debut solo album, Robin’s Reign, which has been expanded from its original 11 songs to include an additional nine tracks that feature a mixture of mono versions and previously-unissued tracks. From there, fans will be ecstatic to find 20 tracks from Gibb’s Sing Slowly Sisters sessions, which produced the ultimately-unreleased album of the same name. Yes, we know that some of you may have managed to obtain a copy of this effort through, uh, somewhat illicit means, shall we say? But trust us: whatever you may have heard doesn’t sound nearly as good as this does. Lastly, the third disc is entitled Robin’s Rarities, and the title may make its contents self-explanatory, rest assured that we’ll be including the full track listing to this set below, so that you know each and every inclusion among the disc’s 23 tracks, plus what’s on the other two discs, too.
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.