Top 5 Reissues
This year was a big year for re-issues, although, what year is this not the case, particularly in recent years. With re-issues, one can get a real mixed bag. Sometimes the record in question might have a plethora of bonus tracks that can include b-sides, demos, or live tracks in varying degrees of quality and value to the listener. Other times the record might have been out of print forever and to get these types of recordings, you risked being monetarily raped on eBay or some other auction site or record store or any place that you might find such a gem. Then there is the most unwelcome re-issue type; the kind where maybe the sound was remixed but other than that there is nothing else worth owning it for in the first place. This is dedicated to some of the most worthwhile albums and EPs that were released in 2007.
First up would be the three Joy Division re-issues. Yes, they are still available normally; and yes, you could even get the vinyl LP's of them for fairly reasonable prices - save the Hessian box of Still. Hell, they released their incomplete discography box set, Heart and Soul, only six or so years ago, though many live tracks from Still were omitted as well as several tracks from the Warsaw demo and unreleased album. These latest re-issues have separate liner notes from the box set - I am a sucker for liner notes - as well as the omitted live tracks from Still, the live at the Factory set included on Unknown Pleasures, and a live set from ULU included on Closer. Well worth having - I struggle with buying them even though I own them all already - but if you do not own any of these records?get off your ass.
Next up, I think that I would place the two Botch re-issues. American Nervoso is the less admired but equally important album from this pioneering outfit, while We Are the Romans is without a doubt an important and arguably landmark album in the metal and hardcore communities. The re-issues for these records are chock full of extra material to listen to when the spirit moves you. My one beef with the new versions of these two records is the lack of extensive liner notes; I am a nerd for liner notes so the exclusion of said types of text is annoying to me.
Napalm Death's Scum holds a very special place in my heart, but it always was a bit painful to listen to as it never really sounded all that good (at the time and with the money available it was a landmark). This re-issue gives Scum the aural face lift that it may have needed. The lack of liner notes is really damn annoying as anyone who has read Choosing Death knows that there is a wealth of great information and anecdotes to be heard regarding this era of Napalm Death; however, the existence of Choosing Death might be the reason for their exclusion. The DVD that is included with Scum is neat, but I only really watched it once. Still it is neat to see at least that one time.
I would be completely remiss if I did not include Sonic Youth's Daydream Nation re-issue. This double disc extravaganza has the original album and tons of live tracks to boot. There is also a sufficient amount of liner notes for reading which is another big plus. This is another one of those records that if you do not own it, you are seriously slacking.
Coalesce's There is Nothing New Under the Sun redux is a great re-issue as well. Not only does it include the original album, but also it includes re-workings of some the rougher moments of the original in addition to other rarities that were vinyl only or just damn hard to find.
Honorable Mention: The re-issue of Indian Summer's live discography is a godsend because it was so difficult to get. It not only included the long out of print Blue Universe but adds other tracks to give listeners a bit of a taste of what the band was like when they played live. Now if they would release their recorded discography on LP, I would be a happy man.