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|Amazing Grace: The Complete Recordings
Lowest new price: $18.74
Aretha's awe-inspiring (and Grammy-winning) 1972 gospel album ascended to #7 on the pop album charts and featured legendary performances of How I Got Over; You've Got a Friend , and her charting rendition of Wholy Holy . This 2-CD set presents, for the first time, the entire unedited performance-at 27 tracks, it's nearly double the length of the original release!
This Rhino re-release of Amazing Grace is at least as much a work of love as of marketing. The sound is beefier and clearer, but most importantly, the two-day church sessions are included. So, there's much more church (specifically, Reverend James Cleveland's marvelous orating) on the record, as well as contemporaryisms such as a cool organ rendition of George Harrison's "My Sweet Lord." Originally released as a double LP in 1972, Amazing Grace cracked the Billboard Top 10 on its release, making it one of the best selling gospel records of all time. Grace was recorded in a large Baptist church with an ultraenthusiastic audience in the pews, a full, funky band, and the Southern California Community Choir under the direction of Franklin's mentor, Cleveland. Her voice is melismatic and intensely emotional, yet pure and controlled, as if she is channeling the Holy Ghost. Franklin's father, the brilliant preacher Reverend C.L. Franklin, makes a brief, proud appearance, remarking, "She has never left the church!" Other highlights include the beautiful "Wholy Holy," an 11-minute, heart-stopping "Amazing Grace," and Inez Andrews's stirring "Mary, Don't You Weep." Way more than a return-to-the-roots record, this set is an inspired gospel-soul workout that arguably showcases Franklin's strongest singing ever. --Mike McGonigal
|Abba Gold: Greatest Hits
Lowest new price: $15.44
Lowest used price: $1.13
Sweden's biggest musical export! Included are a full 19 digitally remastered hits, most notably Dancing Queen; Take a Chance on Me; The Winner Takes It All; Waterloo; Fernando , and The Name of the Game . 76 minutes of AM bliss.
Anyone looking for the key to Abba's enduring appeal should look no further than "Voulez Vous" and "Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight)" for their answer. There was an innocence to the Swedish quartet, even when they were singing about one-night stands and the invitations to them. Gold establishes that the band, while appreciated as campy, were actually multifaceted in their execution. "S.O.S." has a raw urgency in its chorus, and "Does Your Mother Know" draws its energy from classic '50s rock & roll. Likewise, you don't have to be Priscilla to swoon over "Mamma Mia" or "Dancing Queen." And when it comes to drama, those soaring vocals on "The Winner Takes It All" turn the song into a bitter anthem of every relationship that has ever fallen apart. The much-covered "Lay All Your Love on Me" is practically epic. --Steve Gdula
- Record Label: Polar Music International AB
- Catalog#: 517 007-2
- Year Of Release: 1992
|The Very Best Of Cher
Lowest new price: $8.99
Lowest used price: $1.54
The first-ever career-spanning Cher compilation, sampling 21 of her biggest hits.
Covers almost four decades, from the Sonny & Cher era and beyond the 1999 global hit "Believe."
Also features "If I Could Turn Back Time," "Just Like Jesse James," "I Got You Babe," and 18 more favorites.
THE VERY BEST OF CHER presents more than 70 minutes of star-powered music on one essential disc.
Given a five-decade career that's been one long series of critical write-offs and subsequent comeback triumphs, it's tempting to argue that the natural elements are actually earth, wind, fire, water--and Cher. Anchored by her 1998 international mega-success "Believe" (the song that made Cher the oldest woman to score a chart topper) and its equally club-savvy contemporary collaborations with producers Mark Taylor and Brian Rawlings, "Song for the Lonely" and "A Different Kind of Love Song," this 21-track anthology is indeed the first to contain all her No. 1 hits, stretching back to her epochal 1965 duet with Sonny Bono on the faux-Dylan "I Got You Babe." And if it shortchanges her Phil Spector-rooted origins and a true perspective on her '60s and '70s career (though kitsch classic chart toppers "Dark Lady," "Half-Breed," and "Gypsies, Tramps and Thieves" are all here) to focus on her string of '80s and '90s pop successes in service of writers like Diane Warren ("If I Could Turn Back Time") and Desmond Child ("Just Like Jesse James"), it's good to remember that, according to the pop soothsayers, none of them were even supposed to happen, let alone make her an icon for a whole new generation. It's a tribute to sheer, fashion-defying willpower--and as unlikely an argument for the notion of "the singer, not the song" as one is likely to find. --Jerry McCulley
Lowest new price: $7.98
Lowest used price: $1.06
This CD collects all 17 of Michael's #1 hits plus the new song "One More Chance."
Like the Beatles and Elvis Presley, Michael Jackson is one of the handful of artists that can release an album of their number one singles. Number Ones includes his solo chart toppers in the UK and abroad from the period beginning with his Off the Wall album right up to the new song "One More Chance", a collaboration with R Kelly. The remaining 17 songs on the album are all classics drawn from the disco-soul Off the Wall, the funky Thriller, the good Bad, the safe Dangerous, the semi-best-of History and the weak Invincible. Regardless of whether the bulk of Number Ones has appeared on other greatest hits albums, this is still an incredible selection of Michael Jackson's best music. --Georgina Collins
|The Very Best of Prince
Lowest new price: $9.33
Lowest used price: $1.65
This is the "greatest hits" album we've been waiting for: all of Prince's biggest hits packed onto one disc. Arguably the most influential artist of the '80s, Prince is one of the very few musicians of this or any other era to find a massive and intensely loyal audience while still being praised by critics and musical contemporaries alike for his bold experimentalism and prodigious instrumental skills. His brash, high-NRG mix of pop, rock, funk, and psychedelia picked up where Sly Stone left off, and the result was music that was revolutionary in its sonic experimentation and provocative fashion. This collection brings together the absolute best of Prince's Warner Bros. recordings - perhaps the most important recordings since the '70s - on one hit-jammed disc.
Taken literally, this album's title is sure to cause endless arguments. Nothing from Dirty Mind, not a trace of the early anthem "Controversy," no "Erotic City"--no non-LP cuts at all, save some edited single versions--and a cold shoulder to the criminally out-of-print Gold Experience. Damn. As a compendium of 17 key A-sides from 1979 to 1992, however, The Very Best of Prince is (ahem) a quick-'n'-dirty review of the days when the Artist was, in the estimation of R.E.M. guitarist Peter Buck, one of the weirdest musicians in the Top 10. Blessed with both creative cunning and the wish to reach every listener possible, Prince revitalized rock and soul modes from the sex-crazed ("Little Red Corvette") to the cryptically spiritual ("Purple Rain"). Often he blurred lines between attitudes as surely as he did musical ones; the New Testament image of "Thieves in the Temple" became in his hands a complaint about a stolen girlfriend. Though a fine party artifact, this disc is still likely to prove too scanty even for many casual Prince fans. --Rickey Wright
|The Essential Michael Jackson
Lowest new price: $11.00
Lowest used price: $5.18
Brand: Epic Legacy
The Essential Michael Jackson, a 2-disc greatest hits set compiling songs from as early as 1969's I Want You Back with the Jackson 5 to 2001's Invincible release You Rock My World. Sony. 2005.
|O Brother, Where Art Thou?
Lowest new price: $3.86
Lowest used price: $0.62
Bluegrass became pop music for a while when the soundtrack to this 2000 Coen Brothers film became one of the 10 top-selling soundtracks ever. Here's the complete T-Bone Burnett-produced soundtrack plus a CD with 14 more tracks, 12 of which are unissued re
The best soundtracks are like movies for the ears, and O Brother, Where Art Thou? joins the likes of Saturday Night Fever and The Harder They Come as cinematic pinnacles of song. The music from the Coen brothers' Depression-era film taps into the source from which the purest strains of country, blues, bluegrass, folk, and gospel music flow. Producer T Bone Burnett enlists the voices of Alison Krauss, Gillian Welch, Emmylou Harris, Ralph Stanley, and kindred spirits for performances of traditional material, in arrangements that are either a cappella or feature bare-bones accompaniment. Highlights range from the aching purity of Krauss's "Down to the River to Pray" to the plainspoken faith of the Whites' "Keep on the Sunny Side" to Stanley's chillingly plaintive "O Death." The album's spiritual centerpiece finds Krauss, Welch, and Harris harmonizing on "Didn't Leave Nobody but the Baby," a gospel lullaby that sounds like a chorus of Appalachian angels. --Don McLeese
- Roots music CD
Lowest new price: $19.22
Brand: XL Recordings
Towards the end of 2013 Jungle burst onto the scene with their first two singles: “The Heat” and “Platoon.” Appearing out of nowhere and propelled by feverish word of mouth online and IRL, Jungle would transform over the next few years from an anonymous production duo to a kaleidoscopic, personality-filled seven piece live band built around the core duo of Josh Lloyd-Watson and Tom McFarland, whose debut album (2014’s self-titled Jungle) was one of the year’s defining debut records; one that would end up nominated for the UK’s Mercury Music Prize and go on to sell over half a million copies. Jungle have now returned with their forthcoming second album FOR EVER which was recorded in London and Los Angeles; Josh and Tom describe it as “a post-apocalyptic radio station playing break up songs.” If Jungle’s first album was their imaginary soundtrack to the places they had never been, their new record captures the landscapes they had so often dreamed of. To write and record the new album, J and T swapped Shepherds Bush for the Hollywood Hills. Their romanticization of The California Dream clashed with the reality of living it—although the experience led them back home to London to finish the album, the journey itself ultimately defining the music it produced. Including singles “Happy Man” and “House In LA,” Jungles’ FOR EVER is due out this September. SELLING POINTS Headline touring this fall and in early 2018 Extensive major festival dates this summer and fall 120,000 equivalent album units in the US, 50M streams Full commercial Alt and AAA radio in full swing for first single “Happy Man” Three more band-directed music videos to come pre-release Massive marketing and editorial support confirmed from all digital retailers Global release week events for fans Late night TV in Sept right around release
|The Definitive Collection [2 CD]
Lowest new price: $13.20
Lowest used price: $6.58
This collection digs deeper than previous hits collections to take you across 37 key cuts by these Euro-Pop kings/queens. That's the 2-CD version; the DVD has every video they shot plus a previously unseen Dancing Queen performance at the Royal Swedish Opera. Hits on both releases: Dancing Queen; Take a Chance on Me; Waterloo; The Winner Takes It All; The Name of the Game; Fernando; SOS; I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do, I Do; Knowing Me, Knowing You; Does Your Mother Know; When All Is Said and Done; Mamma Mia; Chiquitita , and more!
Is there anything that simply screams the 1970s' most indelible pop cultural clichés--the sunny romanticism, perfect vocal hooks, feathered hair, stacked heels, and flared sateen britches--more than the Swedish pop phenomenon Abba? And while many a pundit snootily dismissed them during their prime as some sort of prefabricated aberration, their worldwide popularity peaked somewhere just south of Beatlesmania. Indeed, Abba's music was as finely tooled and crafted as anything to come from a Volvo or IKEA factory--if occasionally more economically potent. This double-disc, 37-track anthology comes neatly on the heels of Mama Mia!, the smash, if unlikely, Broadway show based on the band's hits, and documents every single released by the band's Polar label in their home country as well as key tracks released internationally.
This is the canon from whence the term "Europop" sprang. With a continental sense of vocal neoclassicism, informed by just the right ethnic clichés (and oft wed to the era's insistent 4/4 disco beat) to make songs like "Mama Mia," "Fernando," "Chiquitita," and "Voulez-Vous" work on a global scale, the writing team of Björn Ulvaeus and Benny Andersson and their respective partners in music and life, Agnetha Faltskog and Frida Lyngstad, developed the seamless, wall-of-sound productions contained herein. The Definitive Collection features a rare single remix of "Ring, Ring" and a 1979 promo-only extended mix of "Voulez-Vous" as bonus tracks, as well as a concise, illustrated history of the band and each track. --Jerry McCulley
- Record Label: Polar
- Catalog#: 549 974-2
- Country Of Release: EU
- Year Of Release: 2001
Lowest new price: $8.76
Lowest used price: $12.76
'The legendary Aphex Twin returns bringing the heat once more! One of the most spectacular and critically lauded artists in the world, the Collapse EP is one surely not to be missed!!! For nearly three decades Aphex Twin has reigned as The God of Electronic Music. His tunes have packed dancefloors, soundtracked late night sessions and highlighted festivals around the globe. The emotional crescendos he manages to sculpt from his melodies take the listener on a roller coaster of feelings. Also known as Richard D. James, the Duke of Rave has built a career on frollicking visuals and beastly bangers, but this doesn t mean the man cannot trade in a whole plethora of emotions, Avril 14th is a sumptuous celestial patchwork of sadness and euphoria, whilst Come to Daddy is without doubt the most petrifying song in the universe. The Collapse EP falls between these, affirming him as the very best electronic wizard in the game! The Collapse EP is a juicy bag of delights. Extending the flamboyant paths that Aphex Twin has consistently managed to forge through his dizzying career. From the utterly exhilarating T69 collapse to the complete and utterly bonkers, instantaneous and life affirming abundance10edit[2 R8's, FZ20m & a 909] featuring vertigo inducing high hats and sauntering arrangements with some brain scrambling noise thrown in for good measure!
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