Posts Tagged ‘Esoteric Recordings’

Mike McCartney (a.k.a. Mike McGear)’s 1974 album McGear was produced by his brother Paul McCartney who also wrote or co-wrote the majority of the tracks.  Linda McCartney, Denny Laine, Jimmy McCulloch, and Denny Seiwell also appear on McGear, which has been dubbed by some fans as a “lost Wings album.”  Now, McGear has now been newly remastered from the original master tapes in a compact but lavish box set and expanded with 21 bonus tracks, including 13 that have never been released, plus rare single edits that make their CD debut here.

The album featured a selection of tremendous songs such as ‘Rainbow Lady’, ‘Simply Love You’, ‘Givin’ Grease a Ride’ and ‘The Man Who Found God on the Moon’. McGear also featured an inspired cover of the Roxy Music song ‘Sea Breezes’, the evocative ‘The Casket’ and the hit single ‘Leave It’. Among those is the non-album single “Dance the Do” featuring the Bonzo’s Vivian Stanshall. The set also includes a DVD featuring interviews with Mike McCartney recorded at Liverpool’s Everyman Theatre and the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts, as well as the 1974 promotional film for “Leave It.”  A 32-page booklet and foldout poster are also included.  The LP reissue is just the original album.

Esoteric Recordings is pleased to announce the release of a newly re-mastered and expanded 3 disc clamshell box set edition of the album, “McGear” by MIKE McGEAR, featuring 2CDs and a DVD. Originally released in 1974, McGear was the second solo album by Mike McGear (McCartney) and was a more “serious” record than his work with the Liverpool satirical trio Scaffold, or his work with Roger McGough on the “McGough & McGear” album.

“McGear” was charming, eccentric and unique in equal measure and was one of the great unsung albums of its time. Now acclaimed, but unavailable on CD for over twenty years, this long awaited expanded three disc edition reissue of “McGear” has been compiled with the full involvement of Mike (McGear) McCartney.

Available today in the U.K. and next Friday in North America.

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One of the pioneers of Progressive Music – or Prog Rock as it’s more widely known – is a UK band from the early years of Rock’s infancy. Their name is Van der Graaf Generator. This band still works together with their last album, Do Not Disturb, released back in 2016. Overall, this influential band released thirteen albums from 1968 through 2016 (thus far).  Their first album, “The Aerosol Grey Machine”, welcomed the band to the public.

The album was originally intended as a solo album by the band’s lead singer and main songwriter, Peter Hammill. When the band signed with Charisma Records, a deal was worked out whereby The Aerosol Grey Machine would be released under the Van der Graaf Generator name, in return for Mercury Records releasing Hammill from his earlier contract with it.

The Aerosol Grey Machine. Originally issued in 1969, The Aerosol Grey Machine adequately sets the stage for the great Van der Graaf Generator classics to follow. This 50th Anniversary Edition of this debut will feature new remastering and the addition of rare and previously unreleased bonus tracks to round out the  planned 2CD reissue.

For this reissue, eight extra tracks that include two previously unreleased 1967 demos, two single issues, and four BBC Sessions live performance tracks from a November 1968 session. A booklet with photos, notes, credits, an essay, and a new Pete Hammill interview.  Also included will be a replica Pete Hammill-designed poster from 1968.

A 180g-weight vinyl LP is also planned for reissue that will include the new remaster of the classic debut. It will come with a packed in 7″ vinyl single of the rare and withdrawn “People You Were Going To” with a B-side of “Firebrand”. The LP will be presented in a classic gateway sleeve with the UK artwork that was unissued.

Esoteric Recordings proudly announcing the release of a new re-mastered 50th Anniversary Limited Edition boxed set of the classic debut album ‘Aerosol Grey Machine’ – available for order now, and to be released April 26th via Esoteric Recordings.
Features the re-mastered album, an additional CD of rare & previously unreleased tracks, demos & BBC sessions, a facsimile 180g vinyl LP of ‘The Aerosol Grey Machine’ (cut at Abbey Road Studios), housed in the impossibly rare unreleased British gatefold sleeve design, a 7-inch single of the very rare withdrawn release ‘People You Were Going To’ b/w ‘Firebrand’, a lavish book with an essay by Sid Smith & exclusive interview with Peter Hammill, and a replica 1968 poster designed by Peter Hammill.

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As promised, Esoteric Recordings have announced the release of a new re-mastered four disc deluxe expanded boxed set limited edition (comprising 3 CDs and a DVD) of the legendary 1975 album ‘FUTURAMA’!
Features the original album remastered from the original studio tapes, and an additional 36 bonus tracks drawn from a stunning new 5.1 surround sound & stereo mixes by award winning engineer Stephen W Tayler, out-takes, BBC Radio In Concert & John Peel Sessions, rare promo videos, a lavishly illustrated 68-page book with an essay of recollections by Bill Nelson, a facsimile Record Store poster for FUTURAMA, replica track sheets, and postcards.

Also available as a 2CD Edition. Released April 26th!

This November, Esoteric Recordings will reissue a four-disc box set edition of English prog rock group Be-Bop Deluxe‘s 1976 album Sunburst Finish

3CD+DVD box set • Remastered • Unreleased tracks • 5.1 mix
It was the band’s third album and featured the line-up of Bill Nelson (vocals, guitars, keyboards), Charlie Tumahai (bass, vocals), Andy Clark (keyboards) and Simon Fox (drums).

The first CD in this four-disc box delivers a newly remastered version of the original stereo mix, along with a bonus cut of the seven-inch version of  ‘Ships in the Night’, which was the band’s one and only top 30 hit in the UK. The second disc offers a brand new 2018 stereo remix of the album along with six previously unreleased bonus cuts, while the third and final CD brings together BBC Radio One radio sessions – ‘In Concert’ and John Peel (both from early 1976).

The DVD (region free, NTSC) includes a new 5. 1 surround sound mix by engineer Stephen W. Tayler and offers the new stereo mix and remastered original mix in hi-res. Some video content closes this disc: an appearance on BBC TV’s The Old Grey Whistle Test and a previously unreleased 1976 Harvest Records promotional video for ‘Ships in the Night’.

As can be seen by the image above, the presentation looks good; the set includes a 68-page book with unseen photos and an essay of recollections by Bill Nelson. You also get a replica tour programme, postcards and poster.

The Sunburst Finish box set is released on 16th November 2018. A 2CD edition features the first two CDs from the four-disc box set.

Sunburst Finish, the 1976 album from art rock quartet Be-Bop Deluxe, falls into this valley set between the major musical movements in the band’s native England. Prog rock and proto-metal were on the wane with the rising signs of punk and post-punk about to dominate the cultural conversation. Like the lyric of the album’s hit single “Ships In The Night,” it felt like a square peg stuck in a cultural landscape of round holes. Heard today, it feels like the perfect record for that time period. Singer/guitarist Bill Nelson adhered to a musical complexity that resulted in multi-tiered tunes like “Sleep That Burns,” which moves from ambling rock to cocktail jazz to full on bombast in a mere five minutes, and the searing rock of “Blazing Apostles” and the ether-drunk psychedelia of “Crying To The Sky.” this album has been fresh on the mind of longtime fans of Be-Bop Deluxe and new listeners thanks to a recent deluxe reissue of the album released by Cherry Red Records that marries a re-mastered version of the original recording with a new stereo mix, a batch of bonus tracks and radio sessions from the time. It’s a lovely package that does justice to an oft-overlooked album (at least here in the U.S.).

Here’s our unboxing video demonstration of the stunning new deluxe reissues of Sunburst Finish, in both the 3CD/1DVD limited edition and the 2CD formats!, couldn’t agree more with Bill, who says it looks “absolutely top notch” and is “a really fantastic package that does the album proud”.

Esoteric Recordings and Cherry Red Records are proud to announce the release of an official limited edition deluxe boxed set of Yes founder Chris Squire’s legendary 1975 solo album “FISH OUT OF WATER” on 27th April 2018.

Recorded in the late Spring and Summer of 1975 whilst Yes was on hiatus as members recorded their respective solo albums, Fish Out Of Water was a breath-taking work, and equal in standard to any Yes album in terms of sheer invention and creativity. The album sessions were a collaboration between Chris Squire and his friend Andrew Pryce Jackman, a gifted arranger who had been a member of The Syn, Squire’s pre-Yes group. The sessions saw contributions from former Yes drummer Bill Bruford, Yes keyboard player Patrick Moraz and noted King Crimson musician Mel Collins and Jimmy Hastings. Released in November 1975, Fish Out Of Water was a Top 30 chart hit in the UK and made the US Billboard Top 75 album chart, going on to sell nearly 500,000 copies worldwide.

The highlight of this limited edition deluxe boxed set is a stunning new 5.1 Surround Sound mix (exclusive to this set on an NTSC / Region Free DVD), along with a new stereo mix, from the original multi-track master tapes by Jakko Jakszyk and a new re-master of the original 1975 mix by Paschal Byrne.  Fish Out Of Water also includes four bonus tracks of the single edits of ‘Lucky Seven’ and ‘Silently Falling’, along with both sides of the 1981 single by CHRIS SQUIRE and ALAN WHITE; ‘Run With the Fox’ and Return of the Fox (appearing on CD for the first time).

The boxed set also includes a replica 180 gram gatefold LP with poster of Fish Out Of Water (mastered and cut from the original tapes at Abbey Road studios), along with two seven inch singles of ‘Lucky Seven’ b/w ‘Silently Falling’ and ‘Run With the Fox’ b/w ‘Return of the Fox’, both in picture sleeves. To complete the content is a visual DVD (NTSC / Region Free) featuring the 1975 Fish Out Of Water promotional film featuring the songs Hold Out Your Hand and ‘You By My Side’, along with a 2006 interview with Chris Squire conducted by Jon Kirkman and a 2006 audio commentary by Chris Squire. Finally, the set also contains a 36-page book with an essay by Sid Smith featuring exclusive interviews with Bill Bruford, Patrick Moraz, Gregg Jackman and Jakko Jakszyk.

Always justly proud of his first solo album, it was Chris Squire’s long held wish that a 5.1 Surround mix would be undertaken of the work someday. This Esoteric Recordings edition finally brings this to fruition and is a fitting tribute to the artistry of Chris and his collaborator on the recordings, Andrew Pryce Jackman.

Alongside this deluxe edition, there will also be a new 2 CD edition of Fish Out Of Water which features the new Stereo mix, the new re-mastered original stereo mix and four bonus tracks.

The boxed set and 2 CD edition can be pre-ordered directly from Cherry Red Records website store:

 

Esoteric Recordings are pleased to be kick starting the new year with brand new reissues of two classic CURVED AIR  albums: Air Conditioning and Air Cut. Beautifully packaged, both classic albums have been given the Esoteric Recordings reissue treatment: AIR CONDITIONING has been newly remastered from the original tapes, and expanded with 11 bonus tracks drawn from previously unreleased studio out-takes and BBC sessions, while the new definitive CD edition of AIR CUT has been remastered from the original tapes for the first time ever! Both boast illustrated booklets with new essays & interviews.

Up first is a new expanded and re-mastered 2 CD edition of Curved Air’s classic 1970 album “Air Conditioning”. This new edition of “Air Conditioning” also includes an illustrated booklet with a new essay by Malcolm Dome featuring an exclusive interviews with band members.

And secondly we have a new official re-mastered edition of Curved Air’s classic album “Air Cut”. Originally released on the Warner Bros. label. This new edition of “Air Cut” has been re-mastered from the recently located original master tapes for the very first time (with previous CD editions being taken from vinyl transfers).

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A 3CD clamshell box set of TODD RUNDGREN’S LEGENDARY PERFORMANCES at the ROXY THEATER IN WEST HOLLYWOOD IN MAY 1978 Includes the entire concert from 23rd MAY 1978 with guests STEVIE NICKS, DARYL HALL & JOHN OATES, RICK DERRINGER, SPENCER DAVIS & KASIM SULTON

Esoteric Recordings is pleased to announce the latest release in the Todd Rundgren Archive series, “ALL SIDES OF THE ROXY 1978”. In May 1978 Todd Rundgren performed a series of concerts at The Roxy Theater in West Hollywood, California with a band comprising members of The Hello People (Bobby Sedita, Larry Tasse, Greg Geddes & Norman Smart) along with keyboard player Moogy Klingman, bassist John Seigler and drummer John “Willie” Wilcox.

The highlight of this residency was a concert on the 23rd May 1978 which was the largest concert simulcast on American FM radio at that time with an estimated audience of over ten million listeners. Hosted by the legendary DJ Wolfman Jack (himself the inspiration for a song on Rundgren’s “Something Anything” album), Todd tore through a wonderful set that included material from both his solo albums (including the recently released “Hermit of Mink Hollow”) and his work with Utopia. He was joined on stage by such illustrious company as Daryl Hall & John Oates, Stevie Nicks, Spencer Davis, Rick Derringer and Kasim Sulton (of Utopia).

This three disc clamshell boxed set includes the entire set from the 23rd May concert over two discs, along with a third disc comprising other soundboard recordings made by Todd during his residence of shows at The Roxy. This release also features an illustrated booklet and is a welcome addition to Esoteric Recordings’ Todd Rundgren Archive series.

Newly re-mastered, this anthology features all of Spirit’s recordings for the Ode and Epic labels between 1968 and 1972 and notably includes the entire mono mix of the band’s self-titled debut album (appearing on CD for the first time), the complete soundtrack to the film The Model Shop, along with original 1968 stereo mix of The Family That Plays Together, associated out-takes, singles and alternate mixes undertaken in 1991 for the Time Circle compilation. It Shall Be also includes an illustrated booklet with essay by Malcolm Dome featuring archive interviews with Randy California and Ed Cassidy.

Esoteric Recordings are pleased to announce the release of a new 5CD remastered clamshell box set by the legendary American band SPIRIT. Formed in Los Angeles in 1967 from the remnants of The Red Roosters, SPIRIT was one of the great bands to emerge on the US West Coast in the Psychedelic era. Featuring the talents of 16 year old guitarist Randy California (who had played guitar with Jimi Hendrix in New York the previous year), his step-father drummer Ed Cassidy along with Jay Ferguson (vocals, percussion), John Locke (keyboards) and Mark Andes (bass), Spirit signed to producer Lou Adler’s newly established Ode Records label in late 1967. Their self-titled debut album appeared some months later and demonstrated the breadth and diversity of the band covering psychedelic, rock and jazz influences and featuring such legendary cuts as Fresh Garbage, Uncle Jack, Topanga Windows, Mechanical World , Elijah and Taurus (the subject of a court case decades later when it was alleged Led Zeppelin had taken the musical structure of the piece as a basis for Stairway to Heaven). The band’s follow-up album, The Family That Plays Together, spawned the hit single I’ve Got a Line on You and was one of their finest works thanks to material such as It Shall Be, Aren’t You Glad, Silky Sam and Darlin’ If. Leading up to the recording of 1969’s Clear album Spirit recorded the soundtrack to Jaques Demy’s film The Model Shop. In 1970 Spirit recorded the classic The Twelve Dreams of Doctor Sardonicus for Epic Records, from which the single Animal Zoo was taken and included excellent material such as Nature’s Way, Mr Skin, Space Child, Morning Will Come and Soldier. Sadly the original line- up of Spirit fell apart some months later leaving just Ed Cassidy and John Locke to assemble a new incarnation of Spirit for 1972’s Feedback, which saw brothers Al and John Staehely join the band on bass and drums respectively. Spirit went on hiatus soon after, although California and Cassidy would continue to tour and record as Spirit on and off until California’s untimely death in 1997.

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The first 2 of our 4 The Move titles are released now “Move” and “Shazam” both deluxe versions come with tons of unreleased, BBC extras material etc and have lovely packaging courtesy of Phil Smee. (who is a massive fan too) . There are also vanilla remastered versions available too.

Esoteric Recordings have done an amazing job on these reissues of the first two albums of The Move – lovely looking and sounding packages with stacks of quality bonus material. Reissues of the year so far? The Move occupy a funny place in rock history. With a string of inventive and relentlessly tuneful singles to their credit (not to mention consistently entertaining albums) they’re the sort of band that should be mentioned in the same breath as the Kinks and the Who, but ask your average punter under forty to name one of their songs and you’re unlikely to get anywhere  Add to that the Jeff Lynne connection, and you’ve got an instant recipe for footnote status.

These two new reissues from Esoteric Recordings provide further proof of just how unjust this situation is. What we have here are packed, deluxe editions of the band’s first two albums.  There have been plenty reissues of this material already, often haphazardly and carelessly assembled. Likely this is another reason for the Move’s legacy being somewhat lesser than it should be, but these two releases are lovingly curated gems that treat the source material and the fans with the respect that they deserve.

Each is available in a single disc ‘vanilla’ edition, containing the original albums with contemporary a & b sides as bonus tracks, or densely packed, nugget-laden deluxe editions which are a true collector’s dreams.

The self titled debut and its surrounding singles (“Night of Fear” and “Flowers in the Rain” etc.) are concise psychedelic pop gems that marry Beatlesque melodies and arrangements with often unhinged source material ala Syd Barrett. Just the ticket for those who find the Beatles too straight and wish that Syd was a little more tuneful, although you’re speaking to the wrong person if you’re looking for an impartial critic of either of those acts here. Recorded over the space of 14 months it’s no wonder that it feels almost like a hits collection. Three cover versions (of tunes originally by Eddie Cochran, James F. Hanley and Moby Grape) illustrate the band’s diverse influences, but it’s Roy Wood’s own compositions that really take this to the next level. Hugely catchy, with clever, often baroque arrangements (which demonstrate just how important Wood’s contribution to ELO would be in the future), these are classic examples of the two and a half minute pop song, peppered with just the right amount of psychedelia and English whimsy. And that thunderous bass really sets them apart from the pack.

There’s also a brace of pre-psychedelic tracks from 1966 when the band were a straight beat act, which are fascinating listens in their own right, while also demonstrating just how much the band’s distinctive sound developed over the following year.

“Shazam” is a totally different beast, but still obviously the work of the same band. And it’s every bit as good as its predecessor too.

Moving on from the short-form pop songs found on the Move (excepting the lovely “Beautiful Daughter”), this is the Move as a heavy proto-prog band, a shoe that fits surprisingly well. All of the things that made the first album so appealing are still evident here – the distinctive harmonies, the huge bass (now played by Trevor Burton) – but there’s less reliance on the studio, and more of a focus on band interplay, which is uniformly impressive. There are some pretty heavy moments here (the surprisingly bluesy “Don’t Make My Baby Blue”), but it never gets clumsy or heavy-handed, and there are reprieves peppered throughout in the form of exquisitely harmonised choruses, not to mention the classical middle section of “Cherry Blossom Clinic Revisited”. Wood only has one new original to offer, but the covers are so well assimilated you’d swear he’d written them too if the source material wasn’t so familiar.

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The bonus tracks on the single disc edition show that Wood still had some classic single-worthy material in him too, including their sole UK number one, the Beatlesque “Blackberry Way” and the appealingly jaunty “Curly”. Also addended to the multi-disc version are a treasure trove of BBC recordings in very fine fidelity, which again demonstrate the Move’s mastery of a multitude of styles, as well as their ability to tackle some pretty intimidating source material and not lose their own sense of identity. Great things abound here, but the highlights for this listener are surprising stabs at popular murder ballad “Long Black Veil” and the Nazz’s “Open My Eyes”, as well as a great take on Dusty Springfield’s “Goin’ Back”, which flexes it’s muscles and makes the Byrds version sound like a bit of a pipsqueak .

It’s refreshing to see two such accomplished albums expanded so comprehensively, yet still in a fashion that accentuates their excellence, rather than diluting it down with unnecessary mixes and material best left on the cutting room floor. If these aren’t the best expanded editions released this year, I’ll be very surprised. I can’t wait to check out Esoteric’s treatment of the rest of the band’s catalogue now.

The second pair of Esoteric Recordings “The Move” reissues are released on 27th May, this will be “Looking on” and the full album version of Something Else from the Move . “Looking on” is a double and is only available as double deluxe version . Full track listings can be found on the Esoteric or Cherry Red Website . Hope you will be enjoying the new issues of Move and Shazam.