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Rock - Released October 16, 2020 | Warner Records

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More than a quarter-century after Tom Petty's Wildflowers was first released, it can finally be heard the way the singer-songwriter intended. When he turned in 25 songs, hoping for a double album, Warner Bros. asked him to pare it down to one. But just three years past his death, his family and Heartbreakers bandmates Benmont Tench and Mike Campbell (technically a solo release, Wildflowers features most of the band) have restored the record to its original glory and added in a trove of home demos, alternate takes and live tracks—some 70 songs in all. Produced by Rick Rubin while Petty's decades-old marriage was crumbling and he was reportedly battling heroin addiction, the 1994 release remains one of the all-time great break-up records; heard all together, the extended LP (the All The Rest part is produced Petty's longtime engineer Ryan Ulyate) Petty is a deeper devastating beauty. "New" tracks like the Byrds-y "Leave Virginia Alone," tender "Something Could Happen" and psychedelic Beatles-meets-Wall of Sound "Somewhere Under Heaven" are a comfortable coda to classics such as "You Don't Know How It Feels" and "It's Good to Be King." Extra track "Hope You Never" is a gorgeous, direct complement to old favorite "Only a Broken Heart." As perfect as the original album has always played, it's hard to imagine not including the swaying After the Gold Rush-esque "Hung Up & Overdue" (with backing vocals by Beach Boy Carl Wilson) or sunny, jangling "California" (which also shows up in a demo version, with a telling extra verse: "Don’t forgive my past/ I forgive my enemy/ Don’t know if it lasts/ Gotta just wait and see"). Dig into the home recordings, and it's an even bigger mystery why the harmonica-inflected "There Goes Angela" and plaintive "There's a Break in the Rain (Have Love Will Travel)" weren't contenders over, say, the Celtic-flavored "Don't Fade on Me." Chalk part of that first-listen awe up to the intimacy of these solo demos, which also cast a new, revelatory light on the gently folksy title track and "You Don't Know How It Feels." Live non-album favorites "Girl on LSD" and "Drivin' Down to Georgia" are captured here, along with a blistering "Honey Bee" and lovely takes on "You Wreck Me" and "Crawling Back to You." Tench has recalled Petty calling Wildflowers "the best record we ever made." Now it's even better. © Shelly Ridenour/Qobuz
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Rock - Released November 8, 2019 | 4AD

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Though wildly misunderstood when first released (like most art that’s ahead of its time), Gene Clark's third solo album—his most focused and intricately-produced shot at musical immortality—is now revered as something of a lost masterpiece. Expectations were high for the former Byrd, who had signed a solo deal after he’d been the bright spot in the band’s abortive 1973 reunion. Clark seemed poised to write and record a blockbuster that could power his solo career; the studio was filled with choice players like Allman Brothers drummer Butch Trucks, percussionist Joe Lala, ex-Byrd Chris Hillman on mandolin, Steve Bruton, Jesse Ed Davis, Danny Kortchmar on guitars and Claudia Lennear on vocals. Instead, No Other busted its recording budget, disappointed its label and perplexed fans—an expensive commercial flop that hung over Clark’s career until his death at 46 in 1991. Remastered with a brighter, more multidimensional sound for its 45th anniversary reissue, the original eight tracks are supplemented by twenty extra takes from sessions that show the songs’ evolutions, including a slow, loopy version of Clark's earlier hit, "Train Leaves Here This Morning," co-written by Bernie Leadon and later recorded by The Eagles. Producer Thomas Jefferson Kaye (aka Tommy Kontos) grew close to Clark during the sessions and came to share his vision for the project. Their collaboration proved to be the doubled-edged sword at the heart of No Other, one that fashioned a mystical, multi-layered, intricately-arranged singer/songwriter album with forward looking psychedelic and R&B touches. The strongest tracks, the menacing synth-backed folk of "The Silver Raven" (written about his wife's shoes), the fragile melody of the seemingly anti-drug themed "From A Silver Phial" (which speaks of "a mind that sleeps inside tomorrow,") and the glorious title track, with its sinuous changes and low keyboard line doubling the vocal choruses, are among the best of Clark's short career. And his singing throughout is extremely moving. He clearly believed in this project. And yet the overdubbed production confounded many. Slow ballads and mid-tempo songs predominate, and as Chris Hillman points out in the liner notes, Clark refused to tour, do interviews or participate in any promotional efforts, essentially dooming an ambitious project to failure. Original label Asylum refused to employ any marketing muscle and the album was deleted from the label's catalog within two years. Genius or a colossal miscalculation? This confounding prism continues to turn. © Robert Baird / Qobuz
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Rock - Released September 27, 2019 | Rhino - Warner Records

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Thirty years later, Paul Westerberg and the rest of The Replacements are having another shot at getting their sixth album right on Don’t Tell A Soul Redux. The revamp is part of a new box set, Dead Man's Pop, which also contains a live show and other rare goodies, including additional tracks from a session with Tom Waits and earlier, scrapped tracks recorded at Bearsville Studios. For the Redux mix, Matt Wallace, who originally co-produced Don't Tell a Soul along with the band, used a mix recorded during the 1988 Paisley Park sessions as source material. As might be expected, the polarizing late-'80s gloss is gone, replaced by a clearer, lively sonic approach with plenty of nuance: Acoustic guitars are more prominent throughout, and individual parts within songs (a blazing guitar line here, a crashing piano part there) are evident. This clarity also revealed that Don't Tell a Soul continued to build on Pleased To Meet Me's diversity; songs encompass a whimsical soul-pop shuffle ("Asking Me Lies"), an R.E.M.-esque anthem ("Darlin' One" and its towering, droning guitars) and swaggering Americana ("We'll Inherit the Earth"). In perhaps the boldest move of all, Don't Tell a Soul's tracklisting is completely shuffled around on the new version, with only leadoff track "Talent Show" and "We'll Inherit the Earth" in slot three maintaining their original positions. This sequencing tweak is brilliant, as the album now boasts a poignant emotional arc that starts with anxiety over band and career matters and ends with piercing personal confessions. © Annie Zaleski / Qobuz
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Hip-Hop/Rap - Released September 13, 2019 | Luaka Bop

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Pop/Rock - Released September 13, 2019 | Numero Group

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Rock - Released June 7, 2019 | Columbia - Legacy

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In 2002, Dylan dedicated volume 5 of his Bootleg Series to his famous Rolling Thunder Revue, his legendary tour from Autumn 1975/Spring 1976, which until then had only been featured on the album Hard Rain. A 57-concert adventure that followed the release of one of his best albums, Blood On the Tracks, on which he collaborated with his ex Joan Baez, Roger McGuinn, Joni Mitchell, Ramblin' Jack Elliott, Kinky Friedman, Bob Neuwirth, T-Bone Burnett, David Bowie’s guitarist Mick Ronson and violinist Scarlet Rivera. It was an exceptional tour, partly because of how unconventional it was in the writer’s career. The songs of Dylan (who was 34 and in an emotionally chaotic time in his life) found an original style, blending folk tradition (the spirit of Woody Guthrie prevails throughout), an informal “friendly” atmosphere, and a modern spirit thanks in part to Ronson’s glam guitar. Moreover, the Zim transformed his several-month tour into a rock circus where the prevailing real fake artistic chaos took on the form of supreme art. With The Rolling Thunder Revue: The 1975 Live Recordings, Dylan fans are going to pass out in ecstasy: 148 titles (including over 100 unpublished tracks!) over 14 albums, for over 10.5 hours of music! This genuine treasure trove, reserved for his most hard-core fans, features the five complete concerts recorded during the tour, as well as rehearsals at the SIR studios in New York, and at the Seacrest Motel in Falmouth. On top of this, a bonus album compiles other rare performances from this Rolling Thunder Revue. You need to take the time to fully immerse yourself into this lengthy but fascinating historical document: a slice of life and of the creativity that explores the Dylan in all his complexity. His relationship with tradition. His way of existing in his time. His relationship to writing as well as to those around him. A proper goldmine, released concurrently with Rolling Thunder Revue: A Bob Dylan Story by Martin Scorsese, a fascinating documentary produced by Netflix and directed by Martin Scorsese about this pivotal tour in rock history. © Marc Zisman/Qobuz
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Ambient - Released February 15, 2019 | Light In The Attic

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Rock - Released November 2, 2018 | Columbia - Legacy

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Rock - Released December 1, 2017 | Rhino - Warner Records

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama - The Qobuz Ideal Discography - Best New Reissue
After a magical first work of fairly rough alternative country (A.M.) that was conceived at the time of the turbulent separation of his group Uncle Tupelo, Jeff Tweedy took his time to release a second album with Wilco. Already, the work was ambitious as it was a double album. Blending all their musical similarities, this was an album that from the moment it was released in October 1996 led quite a few journalists to write that Tweedy had signed his own Exile On Main Street. Much like the Rolling Stones’ masterpiece, eclecticism is the crucial ingredient to this mix of basic rock’n’roll, bluegrass, country rock, psychedelia, folk and soul. With loose guitars, pedal steel, brass and unlimited instrumentals, Wilco weaves here an impressive web between the Rolling Stones from their golden age, The Replacements, The Beatles and Big Star from the album Third. Alternating between ballads and electronic soundstorms, Tweedy demonstrates above all else that with a timeless and classical base, he is taking the lead with his grandiose songs and the stunning architecture of his compositions… This remastered Deluxe Edition offers, as well as the original album, fifteen unpublished bonus tracks notably including alternative versions of I Got You and Say You Miss Me alongside a live recording from 12th November 1996 in Troubadour, Los Angeles and a session for the radio station Santa Monica KCRW taken the next day. © MZ/Qobuz
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Pop - Released October 20, 2017 | Sony Music CG

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Soul - Released October 20, 2017 | Numero Group

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Rock - Released September 8, 2017 | Reprise

Hi-Res Distinctions 4F de Télérama - Best New Reissue
A great expert in unearthing and displaying his own buried treasures, Neil Young has always had a pretty unique relationship with recordings of his own music. The Loner records sessions by the shovelful, and sometimes decides to shove the result in the basement, sometimes to publish it. It depends, and his choices can be puzzling. His XXL discography looks like a rollercoaster, with incredible summits, but also some steep declines... This Hitchhiker who appeared in Summer 2017 in fact brought together songs from an acoustic session on 11 August 1976 and which figure, by and large, on the albums he brought out in the five years previous: Pocahontas (on Rust Never Sleeps in 1979, including some overdubs), Powderfinger (also on Rust Never Sleeps, recorded live with Crazy Horse), Captain Kennedy (on Hawks & Doves in 1980), Ride My Llama (again, on Rust Never Sleeps, a solo live performance), Hitchhiker (on Le Noise en 2010, on electric guitar), Campaigner (on Decade in 1977, missing a verse), Human Highway (on Comes A Time in 1978, recorded as a group) and The Old Country Waltz (on American Stars 'n Bars in 1977, with Crazy Horse). There are also two completely new numbers: Hawaii and Give Me Strength… If all that sounds a little warmed-over or for fans only, the beauty of the versions offered up on this striking compilation renders the result unmissable. These compositions are of the highest calibre. But the performances are truly inspired. A pure marvel. © MZ/Qobuz
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Punk / New Wave - Released July 21, 2017 | Rhino - Warner Records

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The years go by and the legacy left by the Ramones still puts down more and more roots in the great history of the pop music of the twentieth century. The false brothers from Queens have actually never taken their dirty and used Converse elsewhere than down the beaten path of a certain rock’n’roll tradition going from surf music to girl groups. With stupidity as philosophy, teenage insouciance as credo, supersonic guitars as weapons of mass destruction, their albums—binary in their form, really enjoyable in their content—give birth to hymns of bubble-gum pop on amphetamines that are a lot more serious than they seem. Just like this Leave Home, their second studio album released in January 1977, only nine months after their first one! A good thumb in the nose of the rock scene, with, in the role of the icing on the cake, classics like I Remember and, above all, Pinhead, from which comes their famous battle cry: Gabba Gabba Hey! In 80 titles splits on 3 CDs, this generous deluxe remastered edition celebrates the fortieth birthday of this masterpiece that couldn’t have been more influential, overloaded with demos, B sides, remixes and live titles recorded in 1977 at the CBGB, the New-York punk mecca. In short, our verdict is in: gabba gabba hey! © MZ
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Funk - Released June 23, 2017 | Warner Records

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This draped in light rerelease of Purple Rain is an opportunity to take a beautiful trip back in time… For Prince, the 1999 advent coincides with several disputes with his entourage. The pinnacle is reached when the guitarist Dez Dickerson leaves, soon replaced by Wendy Melvoin. The star goes back to work and mulls over a project even crazier than a double album: a quasi-autobiographical movie! With their head on the chopping block, his managers are tasked with finding a film without delay. Warner’s movie division is rather lukewarm and wants warranties. Prince and his ever growing family (The Revolution, The Time, Vanity 6) perform regularly at the First Avenue club and spend the rest of their time locked away in a gigantic warehouse rehearsing and taking drama and dance classes to prepare for the movie. Prince even transferred his own studio in this warehouse to record the soundtrack of his crazy project. He also sets up a mobile studio in front of the First Avenue, where he makes live recordings of other songs. In the end, Warner Studios pay up for what will probably be one of the worst movies they’ve produced so far, a dud that will however give an exuberant and awesome soundtrack: Purple Rain reaches the top of the R&B and Pop charts. Let's Go Crazy, When Doves Cry, Take Me With U, Purple Rain and I Would Die 4 U are all Princely hits that will dominate the airwaves in 1984 and 1985. His decadent funk rock and his frilled-shirted pimp style seduce the entire planet. Once again, the musician manages to mix his different foibles like a new Sly Stone. Containing pop melodies reminding of the Beatles and Hendrixian guitars with a funk groove rhythm, Purple Rain offers above all a complete revamping of these fundamentals of music… This Purple Rain Deluxe – Expanded Edition includes the remastered original album (the remastering was made in Paisley Park in 2015 with the original master tapes, and Prince supervised the whole process a few months before his passing), as well as eleven new titles, but also all the edit versions of the singles and their B sides. Taken from Prince’s numerous unreleased archives, the new tracks are true gems, like the 1983 instrumental version of Father’s Song. Some of them, like the studio version of Electric Intercourse, never even got out of Paisley Park before! Those gems have been mastered by Bernie Grundman, who worked on the original album. © MD/Qobuz
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Africa - Released May 19, 2017 | Strut

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Jazz - Released May 5, 2017 | Luaka Bop

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The title of this record is evidenced by the very first notes of opening track "Om Rama." A chorus of chanters armed with hand claps and tambourines light into a Hindu Bhajan, accompanied by Alice Coltrane's whirling Wurlitzer organ as she lays down brooding bass notes with one hand, moves her feet across those pedals with authority, and plays glissandi synth with the other hand -- immediate ecstasy. Then John Panduranga Henderson -- who sang with Ray Charles -- delivers a moaning, gospelized solo as Coltrane vamps on his blues. This isn't common Hare Krishna chanting, folks. This music is compiled from four privately pressed cassettes (Turiya Sings [1982]; Divine Songs [1987]; Infinite Chants [1992], and Glorious Chants [1995]) that Coltrane distributed to members of the Sai Antaram Ashram (which she founded) between 1982 and 1995. Some were recorded in professional studios; all were engineered by Baker Bigsby -- who oversaw the tape transfers here from the masters -- and represent a startling chapter in her musical legacy. The music exists in the space where "ecstatic" meets "heavy." Coltrane, known to her followers as Turiyasangitananda ("the Transcendental Lord’s highest song of bliss"), brought all of her musical history to bear in these pieces, from her beginnings playing piano in the churches of Detroit and the hard bop she played there to Paris and New York, to the vanguard, which she embraced with openness and helped to redefine with a softer, more spacious approach. The most amazing aspect of this music is what few have heard before: Coltrane's very deep and physical singing voice; her lead vocals are featured on most of the album, and it's another instrument she commands (though she wouldn't see it that way). On "Om Shanti," she accompanies herself on organ using breath control in an airy, devoted chant. On "Rama Rama," sarod, tablas, and her Oberheim synth add blissful dimensions to her quietly passionate singing. "Keshavas Murahara" commences with strings (her chart), Oberheim, and droning organ; her voice emerges as if from smoke, slowly intoning the prayer, dirge-like, but jazz informs her phrasing as the synth winds around her voice. The first half of "Journey in Satchidananda" features only her organ and Oberheim. It's droning, bluesy, and heavy -- nearly Gothic. When the Ashram Singers come in and Joshua Spiegelman adds a flute, some light enters. Tamil singer Sairam Iyer solos in his own language, opening the heart of the chant and bringing it home. Harp makes its presence felt on "Er Ra," where Coltrane's playing moves across Eastern and Western modes as her singing emerges in sweet, blues-inflected lines. Luaka Bop did everything right for The Ecstatic Music of Alice Coltrane Turyirasangitananda, from getting full participation from her family to create an amazing package with a great long essay by Ashley Khan, to reminiscences, to excellent sound. This is not just ecstatic music, but cosmic soul music. If you buy one archival recording this year, let this be it. © Thom Jurek /TiVo
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Alternative & Indie - Released February 25, 1997 | Kill Rock Stars

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The history of rock loves fallen angels and geniuses with tragic stories. In this dark no man's land, Kurt Cobain and Jeff Buckley were joined by Elliott Smith. Only a few albums were needed for the Nebraska songwriter to reveal his sensitive voice, his exquisitely refined melodies and his intense lyrics, which offered up an elegant alternative to the dominating grunge of the ‘90s. Either/Or was his third album, released in February 1997, on which Nick Drake's ghost from Pink Moon is almost audible. But Elliott Smith also remained sensitive to pop melodies, the kind produced by The Beatles, The Kinks, The Zombies and Big Star, a sound that he stripped back to reach complete purity. Following Roman Candle (1994) and Elliott Smith (1995), he further amplified his vocal harmonies and showed that he was fully in control of his art despite the demons (of addiction and depression) that were eating away at him. Impressed by the musician's calibre, the filmmaker Gus Van Sant integrated the songs Between the Bars, Angeles and Say Yes into the soundtrack of his film Good Will Hunting. When you consider this, it’s hardly surprising that some refer to Elliott Smith as the "voice of a generation". © Marc Zisman/Qobuz

Africa - Released October 28, 2016 | Numero Group

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Classical - Released September 30, 2016 | ECM New Series

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Early in his career, Steve Reich released three groundbreaking albums on ECM Records that established his relationship with this forward-looking label and solidified his reputation as a major American composer. With the recording of Music for 18 Musicians in 1978, Reich received widespread praise from both listeners and critics, and its success led to the subsequent release in 1981 of Octet; Music for a Large Ensemble; Violin Phase, which expanded Reich's catalog of pattern-based instrumental works, and Tehillim in 1982, which revealed his interest in his Jewish heritage and his new emphasis on vocal music. This limited-edition package presents these essential albums on three CDs with the original album art reproduced on cardboard sleeves. This is a must-have set that will bring back fond memories for owners of the original vinyl records. Considering the drawback of having to change sides in the middle of Music for 18 Musicians, many old-timers know that having that cherished performance on CD is a dream come true. Of course, these works have entered the repertoire of many contemporary music ensembles, and several outstanding recordings have been made since these albums first appeared. But this is an important piece of history that collectors and fans of minimalism should snap up immediately. © Blair Sanderson /TiVo
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Rock - Released September 23, 2016 | Rhino - Warner Records

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Completing the trilogy begun by Rumours (1977) and Tusk (1979), Fleetwood Mac recorded Mirage between 1981 and 1982 at the famous Château d'Hérouville. The acoustics of the venue have been compared to Abbey Road studios and the likes of Bowie, Iggy Pop, Cat Stevens and a bunch of others have all passed through. After a hiatus where they followed their own personal ambitions, the quintet returned to the studio. In the meantime, Stevie Nicks, Mick Fleetwood and Lindsey Buckingham had set off on their solo careers. And Nicks' Bella Donna, released a year earlier, produced by Tom Petty and Jimmy Iovine, was at the top of the charts, selling 8 million copies. Enough to overshadow this Mirage... However, there was no way she was leaving Fleetwood Mac. The beautiful girl whose voice had been roughened by dope signed off on two songs: Gypsy, a nostalgic ballad which she dedicated to her friend Robyn Snider Anderson, and Straight Back. Christine McVie composed Hold Me, Love in Store, one of the hits on the opus, as well as Wish You Were Here and Only Over You. In fact, it was Buckingham, in the same vein as Tusk, who wrote most of the songs.Less experimental than Tusk but less obvious than Rumours in its melodic writing, Mirage closes Fleetwood Mac's golden period. Dominating the work, McVie's kitschy synthesizers print an antiquated eighties sound onto the intros of Can't Go Back and Oh Diane, giving the work a flaky pop varnish. It was not until Tango In The Night, five years later, that the FM sound was back. Within this Deluxe version, we find a live performance at the Los Angeles Forum in 1982 where we hear Buckingham's bluesy guitars, unpublished versions, B-sides and a cover of Fats Domino's Blue Monday. © Charlotte Saintoin/Qobuz