A companion to the same label's masterful reissue of John Cale's Paris 1919, The Frozen Borderline remasters the two albums that Nico recorded (with Cale in attendance) for Elektra and Reprise in 1968 and 1970, adding a heap of bonus tracks and the kind of deluxe packaging that fans – accustomed to the cheapness of other Nico repackagings – have previously only dreamed about. Spread across two discs, one per original LP, the two albums sound spectacular. Neither was exactly a production tour de force, their instrumentation dominated, of course, by harmonium, and the handful of flourishes that Cale layered on.
Weighing in at 15 CDs, The Studio Albums 1969-1983 is a hefty box set but, at $85, it is relatively affordable considering that it contains everything Alice Cooper – both the band and the man – recorded at Straight and Warner. Whatever bonus material attached to CD reissues over the years has been stripped away – nothing from the 2001 deluxe edition of Billion Dollar Babies, then – and there are no new remasters of the albums, but this set isn't bare bones. The mini-LP replicas contain a few inserts carried over from the vinyl and, more importantly, those early Straight Records are present, which is good because they were out of print for a while. Not everything here is great – he did have a rough patch in the late '70s and early '80s – but it's all interesting, and it's especially nice to be able to get the entire catalog so easily and cheaply.
The set kicks off with the 1969 live album Concerto For Group and Orchestra and also includes In Rock (1970), Fireball (1971), Machine Head (1972), Made In Japan (1972), Who Do We Think We Are (1973), Burn (1974), Stormbringer (1974), Come Taste The Band (1975) and Made In Europe (1976)
This set collects the seven studio albums from 1984′s Red Roses For Me to Pogue Mahone from 1996 and adds a previously unreleased live album The Pogues with Joe Strummer Live In London (recorded in December 1991). There have been Pogues reissues before of course, notably in 2004 when the albums were re-released on CD with bonus tracks. Rhino also issued an Original Album Series collection in 2009 that brought together the five Shane MacGowan albums in the usual card slipcase packaging. So while in some ways 30 Years treads familiar ground, there is still much to recommend it. First off the band were involved in the project, and were keen to have their say. The decision to revert back to ‘just’ the albums and lose the 2004 bonus tracks was theirs, for instance. Another example of the band’s input was the cover design of the box. The literary types amongst you might notice that the typesetting and design is ‘inspired by’ an edition of James Joyce’s landmark work Ulysses.
The superb 2016 six-disc John Coltrane box set The Atlantic Years: In Mono brings together most of the legendary jazz musician's Atlantic albums into one package, restored to their original mono sound. Beginning in 1959, Coltrane's Atlantic years were a transformative time for the saxophonist, during which he furthered his modal explorations and began incorporating aspects of the avant-garde, a vital combination that he would later bring to its pinnacle on his 1965 Impulse! classic, A Love Supreme. Included here are the landmark albums Giant Steps (1960), Bags & Trane (1959) with vibraphonist Milt Jackson, Olé Coltrane (1961) featuring trumpeter Freddie Hubbard, Plays the Blues (1960), and Coltrane's collaboration with maverick pocket trumpeter Don Cherry, The Avant-Garde (1966). Also included is a 32-page book featuring photos by Lee Friedlander and liner notes by writer Ashley Kahn.
Emmylou Harris was a little-known singer and songwriter playing the folk circuit in Washington, D.C., when she was discovered by Gram Parsons, who invited her to sing on his solo albums and revealed to the world she had a voice of striking beauty and the talent to use it wisely. After Parsons' death, Harris embarked on a solo career that saw her creating a series of outstanding albums that combined the sound and style of classic country music with a progressive feel that made her one of the best respected artists of her generation. This specially priced box set includes Harris' first five albums for Reprise Records in full, featuring some of her most compelling studio recordings. Included in this set are 1975's Pieces of the Sky, 1975's Elite Hotel, 1977's Luxury Liner, 1978's Quarter Moon in a Ten Cent Town, and 1979's Blue Kentucky Girl.