Best 100 (Or So) Reissues Of 2016

Best 100 (Or So) Reissues Of 2016

  1. Pink Floyd — The Early Years 1965–1972/Cre/Ation

In essence, it’s a copyright dump: all the known unissued recordings and videos from Pink Floyd are gathered in one heavy brick. In execution, it’s a wonder, with all the rare music and film telling a deeper story than the official albums ever did. Part of the pleasure is hearing Pink Floyd stumble — they were a terrible blues band and didn’t take to improvisation easily — and that means their majesty seems earned: it wasn’t deliberate, it was a process of figuring out what the band did well. If you can afford it, the ridiculously expensive box is worth the money — the replicas of posters, ads and singles help bring the era to life — but the two disc sampler is stellar, telling the same story in condensed fashion…and that’s a tale that’s never been captured in a previous Floyd compilation.

2. Eggs Over Easy — Good N Cheap: The Eggs Over Easy Story

Eggs Over Easy are ground zero in pub rock — they’re the band Brinsley Schwarz wanted to be — but they’ve never had a proper reissue prior to this double-disc set from Yep Roc. All their studio albums — the first, Good N Cheap, came out in Japan on CD years ago — are here, along with singles and live recordings, plus their odd but enjoyable stab at new wave at the dawn of the ’80s. Maybe the band didn’t fare well in the studio — they’re just slightly stiff — but there’s humor and muscle in their music, which is why it still seems like a rollicking good time.

3. Wayfaring Strangers: Cosmic American Music

Numero’s country-rock volume of Wayfaring Strangers concentrates on the vagabonds who followed in the path of Gram Parsons, whether they realized it or not. It’s hazy, mellow music — the sound of a dusty sunset or perhaps sustained song pulls — and if the songs aren’t distinctive, the feel is: it’s the slow fade of hippie cowboys.

4. Kinked! Kinks Songs & Sessions 1964–1971

Ray Davies gave away a bunch of songs and the Kinks spent some time supporting singers in the studio, too. Add to this the occasional cover and you get Kinked! Kinks Songs & Sessions 1964–1971, a wildly entertaining collection of Kinks ephemera that shows how deeply the band’s roots extended in the ’60s. There are American garage rockers, British contemporaries, Peggy Lee singing “I Go To Sleep,” Herman’s Hermits turning “Dandy” into a hit. Some of it is stiff, some of it wild but the variety underscores just how much ground Ray Davies covered in his ’60s prime.

5. Bob Dylan — The 1966 Live Recordings/Real Royal Albert Hall

Sure, the big box winds up treading familiar ground — it’s 30 discs, most of which follow the same set list — but Dylan never sounds the same from gig to gig, which is enough to warrant a deep dive from the dedicated. For the rest, the Real Royal Albert Hall — the actual London gig, not the bootleg of the Manchester show that was erroneously labelled and issued 20 years ago — will suffice.

6. Van Morrison — It’s Too Late To Stop Now, Vol. 3–4

A bunch of outtakes from the concerts that comprised the classic 1974 live album prove ever bit as exciting and compelling as the original record. In a way, the additional 45 tracks — clocking in at 3:30 — show just how great Van Morrison was at the time, since there’s not a bad performance here.

7. NRBQ — High Noon: A 50-Year Retrospective

Maybe the sequencing is a bit tricksy — it’s not chronological, with each of its five discs following their own paths — but this box manages to distill all the weird, wonderful quirks of NRBQ, a band who were roots rock pioneers but never stodgy.

8. The Long Ryders — Final Wild Songs

A deep dive into the Long Ryders, maybe the first band who could be called “Americana.” Indebted to the Byrds in a way R.E.M. never were, the Long Ryders also loved Gram Parsons and Doug Sahm, two musicians who loved the past but never sought to re-create it. So it was with the Long Ryders: they jangled and were wistful but they also rocked hard, as evidenced by the live cuts on this four-CD set. All their studio recordings from 1983–1987 are also here and while the production can veer toward ’80s college rock, that brittleness is also invigorating: this is a band that was extending tradition, not preserving it in amber.

9. Elvis Presley — 60th Anniversary/Way Down In The Jungle Room

The anniversary set is hefty, weighing in at 60 discs — almost all replicas of the original RCA LPs, including the cut-rate Camden compilations that started popping up at the tail end of the ’60s. This means it has almost everything Elvis Presley commercially released but it also shows that LPs may not be the best way to appreciate his artistry: with a few exceptions, like the immortal From Elvis From Memphis, they were assembled according to the marketplace only. That is made plain by Way Down In The Jungle Room, a double-disc archival release that concentrates on latter-day sessions at Graceland, all of which sound better in the context of the sessions than they do on the original albums.

10. Big Star — Complete Third

The mess that is Big Star’s third album — which, in fact, may have never been intended as a Big Star album — makes sense on this triple-disc box set, which contains all the known recordings and is assembled in a way where its chaos seems purposeful.

11. Grateful Dead — Red Rocks 1978

The Dead sound pretty keyed up in this 1978 set but that’s the fun of it: this summer set at Red Rocks is hyper-charged boogie, the Dead riding through a dead spot by piling on the substances and racing to the finish line.

12. The Rolling Stones — The Rolling Stones in Mono

Here’s an open secret: the Rolling Stones never had distinct mono mixes, not in the way the Beatles did. This means this box set isn’t quite the revelation of 2009’s Beatles In Mono box but it’s still something: clean, direct and punchy, and the music remains daring and muscular.

13. Eddy Arnold — Each Road I Take the 1970 Lee Hazlewood & Chet Atkins Sessions

Eddy Arnold tries on corduroy suits and paisley ties, seeing if they’re his thing. Such post-hippie fashions look good on him but they’re not a natural fit yet it’s hard not to love the period charms of these dawn of the ’70s recordings.

14. David Bowie — Who Can I Be Now? (1974–1976)

The Gouster is the bait here, an early draft of Young Americans that’s more interesting in theory than in practice. The same can’t be said of the box in general. It does wind up coming up short in revelations — almost all the rarities have shown up elsewhere — but the packaging is gorgeous and there’s so much wonderful music here, plus the live material, both David Live and the bonus concert for Station To Station, seem stronger than ever.

15. Fleetwood Mac — Mirage [Deluxe]

The demos are genuinely interesting, but the album itself sounds better than ever: a world-class band who has been through the ringer and has decided to do nothing more than record a set of songs.

16. The Beatles — Live At Hollywood Bowl

Very few recordings of the Beatles in front of a live audience exist, which is why Live At The Hollywood Bowl is such a valuable document. Plus, the music is just terrific: muscular and nervy, the sound of a band who still love playing onstage togehter.

17. Meters — A Message From The Meters: The Complete Josie Singles

Two discs of the original 45s from the best funk band of their time.

18. The Move — The Move/Shazam/Looking On/Something Else

Cherry Red’s reissue series uncovers some unheard Move, which is enough for fans like me who are anxious for anything rare. But the real deal is this: the Move are a quintessential cult band who deserve exposure and they sound brilliant on this reissue series that stops short of Message From The Country.

19. Lou Reed — The RCA/Arista Masters

Another hefty box, where the production is gorgeous but the music is the message. Lou Reed wasn’t perfect in the ’70s and ’80s but the imperfections are where the depth lies. Lou made bad production decisions, he could be lazy, but his music wound up embodying his time while also transcending it, a nifty trick that this box showcases.

20. Johnny Paycheck — Take This Job and Shove It: The Definitive Collection

A double-disc that’s the best collection of Johnny Paycheck’s ’70s peak ever assembled.

21. Hank Ballard — Unwind Yourself

Not the hits, funkier ’60s recordings that have rarely been circulated. Some stumbles but the best is astonishing.

22. Bobby Darin — Another Song On My Mind: The Motown Years

Bobby Darin was part huckster, part innovator, so his association with Motown made some sense: it put him on the vanguard he desired, even if he couldn’t really run with the crowd. The music here is very much of its time and that’s its charm: it’s a period piece but also an MOR artist attempting to stretch his limits.

23. Mickey Gilley — The Definitive Hits Collection

A two-disc set that’s the best collection of the hardcore country artist’s peak ever assembled.

24. Ween — God Ween Satan Live

Back in 2001, Ween celebrated the reissue of God Ween Satan by playing the entire album live. On record, it’s a weird, nervy thing. On stage, it rages, a testament to how Ween grew muscle in the decade after their official debut.

25. Erroll Garner — Ready Take One

Unreleased Erroll Garner recordings from the late ’60s and early ’70s present the elegant pianist in a surprisingly funky mood.

26. Jim Ford — Allergic To Love

The latest collection of unreleased Jim Ford recordings focuses on his ’80s — a decade where he didn’t release a single record. God knows why he decided to follow the blueprint of the time, but his attempt to fashion his pioneering pub rock to Miami Vice aesthetics don’t diminish his songs. Plus, the low-rent synth sound has its appeal and the album art is a spectacular re-creation of crappy mid-’80s LPs.

27. Boppin by the Bayou — Baby Dolls & Drive Ins/Bluesin by the Bayou: I’m not Jiving/Swamp Pop By The Bayou: Troubles, Tears & Trains

Ace continues its By The Bayou series, their trawl through rare and unheard Gulf Coast blues, R&B and rock & roll. My favorite is Baby Dolls & Drive Ins, which is filled with ridiculous teenage boogie and exploitation singles but every volume is a gas.

28. The Turtles — All the Singles/The Complete Albums

All the Turtles albums saw a reissue as an affordable box but the singles are where this AM pop band is at: they were adventurous and that range can be heard on the As and Bs on the Omnivore reissue.

29. Buck Owens — The Complete Capitol Singles 1957–1966/Don Rich — Guitar Pickin Man

At one point, it was hard to find Buck Owens’ original recordings but now the market is almost flooded with reissues. Nevertheless, this Omnivore double-disc is one of the best sets yet, capturing the Buckaroos at their prime by reissuing the mono mixes of both sides of their original singles. The accompanying Don Rich set which gathers recordings from Buckaroos LPs isn’t quite as good but its matter-of-fact virtuosity winds up highlighting his impeccable skills.

30. Ray Charles — Atlantic Studio Albums In Mono

Ray Charles peak in sterling mono — available on vinyl, and digital download, a tactic I find vaguely irritating since I still believe there is worth in CD reissues, but the music and presentation is stellar.

31. R.E.M. — Out of Time

The highlight to this 25th anniversary reissue is a second disc that reveals REM’s songwriting process. More than most groups they were a collective, and this proves this to be true: it’s great to hear Stipe fumbling through “Texarkana” before turning it over to Mike Mills.

32. Eighteen Wheelers! Twisted Tales From The Truckstop

I’m a sucker for truck driving country but this release from Trailer Park Records/vinylwastelands.com — one of several similar bizarro comps from this new label — is masterfully assembled, filled with strong songs that still flirt with novelties.

33. Mose Alison — I’m Not Talking: The Song Stylings Of Mose Alison 1957–1971

Developed before Allison’s death, this Ace collection of his peak captures his insouciant charm.

34. Brook Benton — Rainy Night in Georgia: the Complete Reprise Singles

Brook Benton rode the line between mainstream and R&B, and his navigation can be heard here.

35. Classical Gassers

Delightful collection of ’60s AM pop singles rooted in classical pieces, including James Darren’s “Goodbye Cruel World,” B Bumble & the Stingers’ Nut Rocker” and the Toys’ “A Lover’s Concerto.”

36. Led Zeppelin — The Complete BBC Sessions

An expansion of an older set that features an extra disc of live material. Not necessary if you have the original set but fun all the same, and the rough audio of the unreleased sessions is excusable considering how good the performances are.

37. Let It Be: Black America Sings Lennon, McCartney

Soul singers dig into the Beatles songbook and show how resilient and malleable it is.

38. Arthur Big Boy Crudup — A Music Man Like Nobody Ever Saw

Huge Bear Family box that shows that despite his reputation, the blues singer relied on more than one chord. One of the great things about this box is its progression: Crudup follows the time without losing sight of himself.

39. George Jones — The Tour De Force: 1972–1980

Two discs featuring five of the best LPs George recorded with Billy Sherrill for Epic.

40. Barbara Mandrell — This Time I Almost Made It: The Lost Columbia Masters

Barbara Mandrell adhered to the mainstream so these unheard recordings aren’t a shock but they do show how consistent the singer was.

41. Jody Reynolds — The Complete Demon & Titan Masters

“Endless Sleep” is the classic but Jody Reynolds had several other sides that were as sexy and alluring.

42. Milk N Cookies — Milk N Cookies

Another reissue of the proto-punk/power pop band, this time bolstered with demos and outtakes that show just how good this band was.

43. Oasis — Be Here Now [deluxe]

The overblown 1997 album is blown out with a reissue whose demos shows that there were good songs hidden underneath the coke bloat. The B-sides are good, too.

44. Jack Ashford — Just Productions

Ashford could navigate the soft soul sounds of the 70s and that’s the appeal of this set: it’s a period piece in the best way.

45. South Texas Rhythm N Soul Revue

Rock & roll, soul and R&B from the back half of the ’60s — written, recorded and made for the Gulf Coast and its sense of time and space remains appealing, with the warm groove of the recordings ultimately eclipsing the perfectly fine song.

46. Roy Acuff — The King of Country Music: The Complete Foundation Recordings 1936–1951

Bear Family box containing all of Acuff’s masters between 1936 and 1951. It’s not sequenced for everyday listening but its nine CDs and DVD trace how Acuff was intrumental in turning hillbilly music into a commercial powerhouse. a slog but it’s also edifying

47. Otis Redding — Complete Dictionary Of Soul/Complete Whiskey A Go Go

Two sides of a coin: the Dictionary of Soul contains stereo and mono mixes, capturing Redding’s concentration in the studio while the Whiskey a Go Go set harnesses his onstage power.

47. Hillbillies In Hell

Light In The Attic’s collection of country oddities from the 50s and 60s focuses on independent pressings devoted to dope and the devil.

48. California Soul: Funk and Soul from the Golden State 1967–1976

Clearing house of West Coast sides from the twilight days of classic soul and the dawn of funk

49. Things Gonna Get Better: Street Funk

Ace collection that shines a spotlight on the protest soul, fusion and funk of the ’70s, rounding up songs about the aftermath of civil rights, Watergate and every other social upheaval of the time.

50. Jerry Lee Lewis — I-40 Country/Odd Man In

BGO pairs two strong mid-’70s throwaways from the Killer, both sounding better now because of their casualness

51. Dan Penn — Close To Me: More FAME Recordings

Noting here was released when it was written and recorded in the ’60s but the fact that these were shelved shows just how deep Dan Penn’s skills as as a soul songwriter and performer.

52. Magnificent: 62 Classics From The Cramps’ Insane Collection/61 Classics from the Cramps Crazy Collection

If you loved the Cramps, you loved their idiosyncratic taste. These two double-disc collections are filled with greasy oddities from the ’50s and ’60s that may add up to the Cramps but hold their own as the sound of teenage rebellion at the peak of rock & roll.

53. Rockin’ the Groove/Groovin’ the Blues

Groove was an RCA subsidiary of the late ’50s, designed to ride the R&B train. They never had hits, but they recorded a lot of good music that first got reissued in the 80s but didn’t see a digital release until Bear Family revived the imprint this year. Lots of good jump blues and hopping R&B.

54. Kilburn & The Highroads — Handsome

No other band ever sounded like Kilburn & The Highroads. Splitting the difference between British musichall and American soul & funk, the Kilburns were incredibly weird, as evidenced by this expansion of their lone LP. Handsome is strange enough but on the live selections that comprise the second disc, the Kilburns are even weirder: “Billy Bentley” loses its buttoned-up pastiche and gets looser and funkier, the raging “Rough Kids” turns into a boogie. Through it all, Ian Dury is a marvel: he commands attention with his performance and his words always surprise.

55. The Doors — London Fog

The earliest known recordings of the Doors show just how inept a blues band they were — and that’s the appeal. Their incompetence makes the warped beauty of “Strange Days’ shine but the fun of this album is hearing the band stumble through “Rock Me Baby” and “Lucille,” unaware of how to make basic changes work to their favor.

56. Stevie Nicks — Bella Donna/The Wild Heart

Stevie Nicks’ first two albums get significant expansions from Rhino and all the demos and live cuts show how Stevie Nicks was the powerhouse within Fleetwood Mac in the early 80s. The albums are pretty good, too.

57. Action Time Vision: A Story Of Independent Punk

Absorbing four-disc box chronicling the indie punk scene in the UK in the late ’70s. Ground zero is Stiff’s release of the Damned’s “New Rose,” and while several bands here — most of them not household names — adhere to that three-chord rage, this also shows how weird things got so quickly in Britain after punk broke the mould. A great box.

58. Cannonball Adderley Quintet — Music, You All

An amazing navigation of the crossroads that join soul, funk, fusion, rock, hard bop and everything in between. Music that remains surprising 40 years after its 1976 release.

59. The Feelies — Only Life

The Feelies’s 1988 comeback retains its out of phase beauty.

60. Velvet Crush — Pre-Teen Symphonies

Matthew Sweet became the alt-rock power-pop hero but Velvet Crush made music that was every bit as good. Pre-Teen Symphonies showcases the demos for 1994’s Teenage Symphonies to God and the raggedness winds up offering a testament for the group’s strengths as a band: they seem rock & roll, not precious.

61. The Knoxville Sessions 1929–1930

A big Bear Family box documenting the aftershocks of the big bang of the Bristol Sessions. Don’t listen to it straight through: appreciate the sides on their own terms, and then get context through the expert liner notes.

62. Bruce Springsteen — Chapter & Verse

Forget anything that happens after Bruce gets signed: the gems are from the early years, when he was a garage rocker trying to finagle his way into arenas

63. Porter Wagoner — The Essential Porter Wagoner

The first deep dive into Porter Wagoner’s solo chart hits is overdue.

64. Arthur Q Smith — The Trouble With The Truth

In some quarters of Nashville, Arthur Q Smith is more a legend than a man and this Bear Family collection gathers up his best songs. Some are heard as demos, some as covers, every one illustrating what an exceptional writer Smith was: fleet funny and heartfelt, always aware of a clever phrase but never succumbing to coyness.

65. John Coltrane — In Mono

An excellent box set of mono mixes of Coltrane’s peerless Atlantic albums.

66. Terry Allen — Lubbock (On Everything)

Terry Allen exists out of time and that’s his appeal. Juarez also saw a reissue this year but Lubbock (On Everything) bests it: it’s a mean, angry work that’s also sweet.

67. The Isley Brothers — Groove With You Live

A live album from the dawn of the 80s might not show the Isleys at their peak but that’s also its charm: they’re a working band who refuses to quit, and the dedication to win over an audience in the confined settings of Bearsville Studios is charming.

68. New Breed Workin

A stellar collection of grooving blues and hard R&B from the early ‘60s.

69. Josh White — At Midnight

Maybe the best album of Josh White’s career, all due to its relaxed, jazzy feel.

70. Dave Hamilton’s Detroit Soul, Vol. 2

Smooth and sultry R&B from the back end of the 60s. The sounds matters: the songs are fine but it’s the feel that makes this alluring.

71. Out Of Left Field: Soul Meets Country

For their second volume of soul meeting country, Ace flips the table and features country vocalists singing soul songs. It’s as revelatory as the reverse, illustrating that the distance between country and soul isn’t far.

72. Jack White — Acoustic Recordings 1998–2016

Jack White yearns to be placed in the pantheon but this collection of oddities and album tracks wind up emphasizing his clever construction and ability to straddle several different American styles.

73. Chartbusters USA Special Country Edition/Golden Age Of AmericanPopular Music: More Country Hits

Two excellent collections from Ace that spotlight country crossovers from the ’50s and ‘60s

74. Modernism

Ace collection that serves as a sequel to a 2015 release. Both are united by the confluence of Northern R&B and Mod, so this grooves — a collection powered by rhythm and feel, not song.

75. The Kinks — Everybody’s In Showbiz [deluxe]

The original double-LP was half studio, half live. The expansion adds a full disc of live material, all of it on par with the original 1972 set.

76. Link Wray — Early Recordings/Good Rockin’ Tonight

Ace reissue of ’70s Chiswick reissues of dirty, sleazy mid-’60s sides from the greasy guitarist.

77. The Ramones — The Ramones [40th Anniversary]

Expanded to three discs, the 40th Anniversary doesn’t necessarily have any huge revelations — most of the major unheard material showed up on other reissues — but hearing the band blow through identical live sets with no loss of energy is invigorating and the mono mix contains longer count-ins. The album is better without them but it’s fun to hear all the same.

78. Wes Montgomery — One Night In Indy

A 1959 set where the guitarist sits in with the Eddie Higgins Trio is plenty alluring: cool, relaxed and sophisticated.

79. The Murmaids — A Few Of The Things We Love

Dismissed as a one-hit wonder, the Murmaids are a great Californian concoction, a group championed by Mike Post and served to the public by Kim Fowley. Never as smooth as the former or sleazy as the latter, their middle ground was still intoxicating, as evidenced by this collection of complete recordings from Ace.

80. Another Splash of Colour

Ballooning a 1982 comp to three CDs, Another Splash Of Colour focuses on the bright blast of early 80s neo psychedelia.

81. Delfonics — 40 Classic Soul Sides

A great deep dive into the Delfonics, containing all their hits from 1968–1972 plus a lot more.

82. Game Theory — Big Shot Chronicles/Lolita Nation

Omnivore continues their trawl through the Scott Miller catalog by expanding Game Theory’s two densest albums. They both require time but if anybody says “Guys. It’s time for some game theory,” this should be your response.

83. BB King — Here’s One You Didn’t Know About

Alternate takes from BB King’s RPM sides from the late ’50s and ’60s, which emphasize his clean lines and his energy.

84. Tyla Gang — Pool Hall Punks: Complete Recordings 1976–1978

All of the rampaging pub-rockers studio albums are here, along with BBC sessions.

85. Randy Newman — Songbook

Adding a new disc’s worth of covers, Randy Newman expands his straight-ahead solo re-workings of his catalog with this box.

86. The Rolling Stones — Totally Stripped

At the time, 1995’s Stripped seemed like a way to ride the unplugged trends. Twenty years later, it’s a treat to hear the band play with each other in a an intimate setting.

87. Paul Butterfield Blues Band — Got a Mind to Give Up Living

Official release of a much-bootlegged 1966 set shows the Paul Butterfield Blues Band in prime form.

88. One Track Mind! More Motown Guys

A second collection of rare, mostly unreleased, Motown from the ’60s walks the line between crate-digging and pure fun: it pushes toward the Northern Soul side but the Funk Brothers and the songwriters mean this is something more than pure sound.

89. Saint Etienne Present Songs for the Carnegie Deli

Bob Stanley and Pete Wiggs offer up their dream NYC soundtrack by relying on uptown soul and girl groups.

90. Love Hit Me! Decca Beat Girls 1962–1970

The sound of Swinging London as filtered through the Decca label. Lulu, Marianne Faithfull and Twinkle are here — the latter’s “Golden Lights” was covered by the Smiths — are the draws but my discovery was Sandra Barry & The Boys’ “Really Gonna Shake,” a frenzied tongue-in-cheek raver.

91. Clarence Carter — This Is Clarence Carter/The Dynamic

Clarence Carter’s first two albums for Atlantic on an excellent two-fer that has the benefit of another five bonus tracks from the soulman at his prime.

92. Mainstream Modern Soul 1969–1976

Mainstream isn’t a commercial distinction — it’s the name of the New York label from Bob Shad ran in the ’70s. Lots of fun smooth funk, harmony groups and proto-disco

93. Ferlin Husky — Gonna Shake This Shack Tonight With Guests Simon Crum & Terry Preston

This volume in Bear Family’s Gonna Shake This Shack Tonight series concentrates on Ferlin Husky’s novelty alter-egos Simon Crum & Terry Preston. Silly but rocks harder than you might expect.

94. Archie Bell & The Drells — Let’s Groove

Exhaustive but entertaining triple-disc chronicle of the band’s journey from soul to disco.

95. The Arock Serock Sylvia Soul Story Continued

Long-awaited second volume for Ace’s ARock/Serock/Sylvia series spotlights the golden age of the Brill Building.

96. Grapefruit — Yesterday’s Sunshine

The complete recordings of flowery Beatles wannabes who had a good sense of style and songcraft.

97. White Zombie — It Came From NYC

Spectacular research and packaging elevates a historical footnote to a possible sidenote: White Zombie was a curiosity, a noise band obsessed with kitsch, that started to coalesce just before they signed to a major. They stumbled more often than the soared, but that’s the appeal.

98. Tammy Wynette — I Still Believe In Fairy Tales/Til I Can Make It On My Own

Two-fer containing two mid-’70s albums from the queen of country. Neither are great but the missteps are as interesting as the hits.

99. Ray Stevens — The Monument Singles

Not great, but fascinating: saccharine and weird attempts to craft pop and country hits, culminating with his first novelty hit, “The Streak”

100. Paul McCartney — Pure McCartney

It’s best in its four-disc incarnation, which still has puzzling omissions — no Flowers In The Dirt at all — but this still is the compilation that conveys the richness and weirdness of McCartney’s solo work.

101. The Bangles — Ladies & Gentlemen…The Bangles!

It came out in 2014 but this collection of early recordings got a wider release this year, offering a reminder of what a great power-pop band they were in their earliest days

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