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Rewinding 2021 | Box Sets & Reissues

Almost everthing old was new again — and here's the best of what was on offer.

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I read somewhere that oldies make up nearly two-thirds of all online steaming. I’m not quite there yet. But I did spend a fair chunk of time in 2021 checking out the scads of excellent box sets, deluxe editions and expanded reissues that came my way. Here are the ones that got most of my attention:

 


TINNITIST’S PICK

Edgar Jones
The Way It Is: 25 Years Of Solo Adventures

THE EDITED PRESS RELEASE: The Way It Is: 25 Years Of Solo Adventures is the first-ever collection of solo works by Edgar Jones, leader of Liverpool cult heroes The Stairs. On this three-CD retrospective, the versatile Jones mixes jazz, R&B, soul, blues, rock and ska into his musical gumbo.

It features rarities by Jones’ garage bands The Isrites and The Big Kids — including songs which were previously released on a CD limited to just 50 copies. The Big Kids included drummer Sean Payne, bassist Russ Pritchard (who later formed The Zutons), and guitarist Howie Payne (who started The Stands). It also Includes tracks from the Mercury Prize-nominated albums Soothing Music For Stray Cats (2005) and The Masked Marauder (2008) as well as Gettin’ A Little Help… From “The Joneses” (2007), The Edgar Jones Free Peace Thing (2011), Sense Of Harmony (2012), Morphic Fields (2013) and The Song Of Day And Night (2017).

Soothing Music For Stray Cats was an innovative blend of jazz, soul, R&B and rock ’n’ roll recorded on an eight-track cassette portastudio donated to Jones by legendary former Smiths guitarist Johnny Marr. Noel Gallagher said of the album: “It bent my head, man. It’s probably one of the best records I have ever heard…” His heavy blues rock project The Edgar Jones Free Peace Thing were hand-picked by Noel Gallagher to support Oasis on their 2009 European tour. Jones has also played bass for Paul Weller, Johnny Marr, St. Etienne And The La’s.

The collection was compiled and annotated by Edgar Jones and Lois Wilson. The booklet features their notes alongside rare photos and gig flyers.”


HONOURABLE MENTIONS

The Band | Cahoots 50th Anniversary Edition
The Band | Stage Fright 50th Anniversary Edition
Be-Bop Deluxe | Drastic Plastic Deluxe Edition
Be Bop Deluxe | Live! In The Air Age Deluxe Edition
The Bootheels | 1988: The Original Demos
Nick Cave & The Bad Seeds | B-Sides & Rarities Part II
Elvis Costello & The Attractions | Spanish Model
David Crosby | If I Could Only Remember My Name 50th Anniversary Edition
Crosby, Stills, Nash & Young | Déjà Vu 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition
The Doors | L.A. Woman 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition
Bob Dylan | Springtime In New York: The Bootleg Series, Vol. 16 (1980-1985)
Rory Gallagher | Rory Gallagher 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition
Goat | Headsoup
Grateful Dead
| Grateful Dead (Skull & Roses) 50th Anniversary Deluxe Edition
Grateful Dead | Listen To The River: St. Louis ’71 ’72 ’73
Iggy And The Stooges | Born In A Trailer: The Session & Rehearsal Tapes ´72-´73
Kiss | Destroyer 45th Anniversary Super Deluxe Anniversary Edition
Metallica | The Black Album 30th Anniversary Edition / The Metallica Blacklist
Mudhoney | Every Good Boy Deserves Fudge 30th Anniversary Deluxe Edition
Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers | Angel Dream (Songs from the Motion Picture She’s the One)
The Pretenders | The Pretenders + The Pretenders II Deluxe Editions
Prince
| Welcome 2 America
The Replacements
| Sorry Ma, Forgot To Take Out The Trash 40th Anniversary Deluxe Edition
The Rolling Stones | Tattoo You 40th Anniversary Edition
The Rubinoos | The CBS Tapes
Joe Strummer | Assembly
The Tragically Hip | Saskadelphia
Various Artists | The Best Of Doris Wishman
The Who | The Who Sell Out Super Deluxe Edition
Frank Zappa | 200 Motels 50th Anniversary Edition


THE REST OF THE LIST

The Beach Boys | Feel Flows: The Sunflower & Surf’s Up Sessions 1969–1971
The Beatles | Let It Be Super Deluxe Edition
Maggie Bell | Queen of the Night (Remastered)
Black Crowes | Shake Your Money Maker 30th Anniversary
Dan Boadi & African Internationals | Money Is The Root Of Evil
Bob | You Can Stop That for a Start
The Bobby Lees | Beauty Pageant Redux
Bo Ningen | Bo Ningen: Rebuilt
David Bowie | Brilliant Adventure (1992–2001)
David Bowie | The Width Of A Circle
Robert Calvert | The Last Starfighter
Dead Dirty Dinosaurs | Too Many Questions: The Abbey Road Masters
Deaf School | Parigi My Dear
Matthew Dear | Preacher’s Sigh & Potion: Lost Album
The Dials | And Another Thing … B-sides And Asides
Disco Zombies | South London Stinks
Dominic Sonic | Cold Tears
Gord Downie | Coke Machine Glow: Songwriters Cabal
Drumbo | City Of Refuge Reissue
Expressions | Big Crown Vaults Vol. 1
Jad & David Fair | Halloween Songs + 26 Monster Songs For Children
Fang | American Nightmare
Fleur De Lys | Circles: The Ultimate Fleur De Lys
Fraternity | Seasons Of Change: The Complete Recordings 1970-1974
Joe Grushecky | American Babylon 25th Anniversary Deluxe Edition
George Harrison | All Things Must Pass 50th Anniversary Super Deluxe Edition
Hutch | Turn It Around Deluxe Edition
Hypnosonics | Drums Were Beating: Fort Apache 1996 + Someone Stole My Shoes: Beyond The Q Division Sessions
Kursaal Flyers | Little Does She Know: Complete Recordings
Fela Kuti | Live! With Ginger Baker 50th Anniversary Edition
John Lennon | John Lennon / Plastic Ono Band: The Ultimate Collection
Little Richard | Southern Child
Macrocosmica | God Bless Macrocosmica
Bob Marley & The Wailers | The Capitol Sessions ’73
The Mars Volta
| Landscape Tantrums (Unfinished Original Recordings Of De-Loused In The Comatorium)
Mudhoney | Real Low Vibe The Reprise Recordings 1992-1998
Nirvana | Nevermind 30th Anniversary Super Deluxe Edition
Nutley Brass | Ramones Songbook As Played By The Nutley Brass
Oh-OK | The Complete Reissue
The Outta Place | Prehistoric Recordings
Personality Crisis | Creatures For Awhile Vinyl Reissue
Portugal. The Man | Oregon City Sessions
Elvis Presley | Elvis: Back In Nashville
Radiohead | Kid A Mnesia
R.E.M. | New Adventures In Hi-Fi 25th Anniversary Edition
Sex Pistols | 76/77
Sinking Ships 1980 | The Cinema Clock and Other Stories….
Slimey Things | Quantum Reality TV Reissue
Stereolab | Electrically Possessed (Switched On Volume 4)
Stone Temple Pilots | Tiny Music… Songs From The Vatican Gift Shop Super Deluxe Edition
Super Furry Animals | Rings Around The World 20th Anniversary Deluxe Edition
Swedish Magazines | I Wish Life Could Be: Best of 2004-2011
Deniz Tek | Take It To The Vertical
The Tragically Hip | Road Apples 30th Anniversary Edition
Urdog | Long Shadows 2003–2006
U2 | Achtung Baby 30th Anniversary Edition
Various Artists | Alligator Records: 50 Years Of Genuine Houserockin’ Music
Various Artists | Back Up: Mexican Techno Pop 1980​-​1989
Various Artists | Brown Acid: The Twelfth Trip
Various Artists | Brown Acid: The Thirteenth Trip
Various Artists | Color de Trópico: Compiled By El Dragón Criollo y El Palmas
Various Artists | Lost Innocence | Garpax 1960s Punk & Psych
Various Artists | Halcyon Days: 60s Mod, R&B, Brit Soul & Freakbeat Nuggets
Various Artists | Living On The Hill: A Danish Underground Trip 1967-1974
Various Artists | Sacred Soul of North Carolina
Various Artists | Two Synths A Guitar (And) A Drum Machine: Post Punk Dance Vol. 1
The Velvet Underground | The Velvet Underground: A Documentary Film By Todd Haynes – Music From the Motion Picture Soundtrack
The Vibrators | The Demos 1976-1978
James White And The Blacks | Melt Yourself Down