Top 10... - December 23, 2016

The best vinyl reissues of 2016
by James
James
by James hmv London, Bio "Like the legend of the Phoenix, I've just eaten a whole packet of chocolate HobNobs..." Editor, hmv.com

The best vinyl reissues of 2016

If you've recently found yourself getting into vinyl for the first time, you might be in one of two camps; those who enjoy digging the crates in charity shops and scouring eBay for hard-to-find gems and bargains, or those who find all of that a bit too much hassle.

Being in the latter camp is fine, of course, but what if the albums you're looking for had long since disappeared from the shelves by the time you purchased your shiny new turntable?

With the surge in vinyl sales over the last few years showing no sign of slowing, demand for older albums on vinyl is on the rise and, up until recently, that's been good news if you're offloading your collection, but not so much if you're on the hunt for records that are already out of print.

Well, help is at hand. Artists and record labels alike have begun to respond to the rising demand in recent months and while vinyl reissues are hardly anything new, they are becoming more common and several artists have taken the decision this year to reissue their entire back catalogues on wax.

Below we've rounded up 10 of the most exciting reissues that have either been recently made available or are due to arrive in the coming weeks. Some of these involve entire catalogues, others are just a select few that have become hard to get your hands on, but all of them are well worth checking out...

 

Chemical Brothers

Along with Daft Punk and The Prodigy, Chemical Brothers helped transform dance music from a fringe genre exclusively enjoyed in nightclubs into a mainstream phenomenon that works just as well at festivals as it does on the dancefloor. The duo are now re-releasing six of their brilliant albums that had been unavailable on vinyl for several years and, as of November 18, you'll be able to get your hands on repressed versions of Exit Planet Dust, Dig Your Own Hole, Come With Us, Further, We Are The Night and Push The Button. Each is available on 2xLP 180g vinyl, each with its own unique colour. You can find the full catalogue here.

 

Depeche Mode

Back in August this year the synth-pop pioneers began a reissue programme to re-release their entire back catalogue on vinyl, starting with Speak & Spell, Some Great Reward, Delta Machine, Construction Time Again and A Broken Frame. In October, they added Black Celebration, Violator, Songs of Faith and Devotion and the highly sought-after 101: Live. More are coming next year, including Music for the Masses, which is due to drop on February 10. In the meantime you can find all the albums reissued so far right here.

 

Beck

If you've been into Beck's music ever since you heard 'Loser' from his debut album Mellow Gold for the first time, you might be a lucky owner of one of the original vinyl LPs from his early career, but this was at a time when CD and cassette were still the dominant formats and vinyl pressings were pretty limited. For the rest of us, picking one up second-hand can be expensive, so this year Beck is another who has helpfully decided on a programme of reissues, beginning with Odelay, Sea Change and Guero, which arrived in October. More are on the way, including Mellow Gold, Mutations, Midnite Vultures, The Information and Modern Guilt. There are no release dates for the latter batch at the time of writing, but for now you can find all the available vinyl reissues from his catalogue here.

 

Pink Floyd

Pink Floyd have been on a bit of a vinyl crusade this year, starting with the announcement back in May that they would be repressing all of their albums on the format for the first time in 20 years, all on heavyweight 180g black vinyl. The first batch arrived in June and included The Piper at the Gates of Dawn, A Saucerful of Secrets and Ummagumma, as well as the band's soundtrack for Barbet Schroeder's 1969 film More. The Wall and The Division Bell followed in August, then in September these were followed by Atom Heart Mother, Meddle and Obscured By Clouds, the latter based on the second soundtrack for Schroeder, this time for his 1972 film La Vallée. The rest followed in November and, as if that wasn't enough, they also issued a box set of their early work featuring, amongst other things, five faithfully reproduced 7” non-album singles, including 'Arnold Layne' and 'See Emily Play'. If you're on the hunt for Christmas presents for the Floyd fan in the family, you're spoilt for choice. You can find all of them here.

 

Paul Weller

The man they call 'The Modfather' had already enjoyed success with both The Jam and The Style Council before launching an equally successful career as a solo artist, releasing several critically acclaimed albums and proving, if any proof were needed, that he had retained his talents as a great songwriter. While albums like Stanley Road have been widely available on vinyl over the years, pressings of his first two solo albums – the eponymous Paul Weller and the critically-acclaimed Wild Wood – have been harder to come by since both received limited vinyl runs the first time around. However, both were re-released on vinyl in November this year, so now you can add these to your collection too.

 

Radiohead

Back in May this year the Oxford five-piece became another artist to join the list of those re-releasing their entire catalogues on wax, thanks to the fact that their record label XL purchased their pre-In Rainbows back catalogue from Parlophone, who released the band's first six albums. All of them were repressed and released just a week after their latest LP, A Moon Shaped Pool, arrived on the shelves earlier this year, meaning you can now get your hands a freshly pressed copy of any one of Pablo Honey, The Bends, OK Computer, Kid A or Amnesiac, as well as a their 2001 live album I Might Be Wrong and the newer albums including Hail to the Thief, The King of Limbs and In Rainbows. You can find all of them in our online store.

 

Prince

Now, before the more cynical among you call 'cash-in' on the series of Prince reissues gradually emerging on vinyl since the untimely demise of The Purple One earlier this year, let us just point out that these were already in the pipeline before his death. With such a huge back catalogue though, this time the reissues are coming gradually, so while there a new pressings of his self-titled debut and its follow-up For You, you'll have to wait a little longer for the rest. But they're coming...

 

Blink-182

These days Blink-182 are down to just two original members since guitarist Tom DeLonge has left the band to spend more of his time addressing the important issue of UFOs. Meanwhile, the other two have been getting nostalgic and last year they decided to re-release the band's catalogue on cassette, which is great if you're the kind of person who likes spending hours manually unscrambling spools of tape with a pencil every time your ageing Walkman gets a bit peckish. Perhaps realising that there aren't enough hours in the day for most people, this year they also began reissuing their whole catalogue on vinyl, including highlights such as Take Off Your Pants and Jacket and their 1999 masterpiece Enema of the State. More are coming next year, but you can find the ones released so far right here.

 

Genesis

When Phil Collins announced earlier this year that he is to 'un-retire' from music, as he put it, reactions to the news were....well, mixed. But if you're one of those who met the news with a cry of joy rather than a howl of anguish then there's even more good news for you, since his old band Genesis are also embarking on a programme of vinyl reissues, the first of which arrived in September. The first wave includes the albums from the Peter Gabriel era, namely Nursery Cryme, Foxtrot, Selling England by the Pound and The Lamb Lies Down on Broadway. More followed in September, meaning you can now get new vinyl versions of every album from 1970s Trespass to 1997's Calling All Stations. If you're a fan, or if you have any prog rock fans in the family who you're still struggling with Christmas present ideas for, you might want to check out the albums released so far in our online store.

 

Weezer

Over the years Rivers Cuomo and his band have released some properly great albums – even if giving them titles has never really been their thing – so the news that their full back catalogue was being given the vinyl reissue treatment was met with excitement by fans, who can now buy new vinyl versions of everything from 1994's Weezer to 2016's Weezer, as well as all the other albums named Weezer and the ones they actually though of titles for, like Maladroit, Pinketon and Hurley. You can find all of them here.

 

For everything that matters in the world of vinyl at hmv.com, keep an eye on our #LoveVinyl hub.

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