2020 marks 50 years since CURVED AIR came into existence and, working toward the jubilee, the band not only opened their archives for an extensive reissue programme (not available for review on these pages) but also demonstrated – on a series of releases such as "Tapestry Of Propositions" – that their penchant for sonic experiment is still burning. Yet September 6th will see the issue of two items that should show the ensemble in a slightly different light.
One is an on-stage recording documenting their 45th anniversary concert recorded in September 2015 in London when the current line-up was graced by the presence of former members Darryl Way and Ian Eyre, and when they played the entire “Air Conditioning” album. The other a family album sort of thing, presenting rare cuts from the mothership alongside pieces from the artists’ solo and collaborative endeavors and stray numbers like “Soon” from the recent tribute to YES, where nine songs haven’t previously seen the light of day.
Doing more of the same yet always in a new way can’t warrant unwavering relevance, but that’s how Lee “Scratch” Perry has been rolling for decades. If one needs proof, there’s “Rootz Reggae Dub”: an album the veteran started about two years ago and finished right in time for 2019’s Record Store Day – issues only as a 2LP set, it became one of the vinyl bestsellers in April. The demand for it was strong enough to guarantee a more accessible release, so the new songs will be out on CD as well as download and streaming versions on September 13th. Featuring the venerable Larry McDonald on percussion, the SPEAK EASY players plus Dames Brown and THE GROOVEMATIST on backing vocals, there’s going to be a lot to enjoy; see the video below to judge for yourselves.
Eagerly awaited for months, if not for a year after the release of “Heavy Horses”(detailed here, not made available for review), the 40th Anniversary reissue of JETHRO TULL‘s “Stormwatch” marks the end of an era in many a fan’s mind. The band’s last release of the ’70s, it would see most of the players – save for Ian Anderson and Martin Barre – bid farewell to the ensemble that finished with both prog and folk rock excursions on this record which returns in all its glory as “Force 10 Edition” on October 11th.
As usual, presented in a book-like form, it will contain four CDs and two audio-only DVDs comprising Steven Wilson‘s remixes of the album and recordings made in the same period – some of them previously unreleased, as is a 1980 concert which will span two discs. Undoubtedly, a must-have item.
It’s been 20 years since THE HOLLIES warbler and heartthrob Allan Clarke turned his back on music and, save for a couple of appearances alongside former colleagues, kept silent, but this silence is broken now that there’s going to be a new album out on September 20th. Composed with GarageBand, the record – titled “Resurgence” – will feature one of the aforementioned colleagues, Graham Nash, on backing vocals, with more yet-to-be-announced surprises in store. While the first single off it is “Journey Of Regret” – the album’s opener (watch below) – of special interest would be, of course, “Long Cool Woman’s Back In Town”: a sequel to Clarke’s immortal “Long Cool Woman In A Black Dress” from 1972.
September 26th will mark the 50th anniversary release of THE BEATLES‘ final album – in terms of recording, rather than release, of course – and looks like a new edition of “Abbey Road” is to see the release on this day. There was a tweet from Giles Martin, who worked on the classic’s remixes, and comments from Ringo Starr, who joined Paul McCartney on Los Angeles stage to deliver a couple of songs yesterday, and now there’s a breakdown of what’s coming up, although the details are suggested to be non-final, because the second disc is supposed to have alternative versions of the LP tracks in proper order. They have enough veracity about it, still, to pay attention to the rumors.
There should be a usual variety of formats – 2CD, single CD, 3LP, single LP – but of special interest is a super deluxe edition. In it, housed in a 12″ x 12″ box, will be 3 CDs – where two contain demos and outtakes – and Blu-ray, with Dolby Atmos, 5.1 surround sound and hi-res stereo mixes of the entire album, plus a book. All of this may be presented at the Abbey Road Studios on August 23rd, with both surviving Beatles in attendance.