Top 10 Reissues of the Decade

Reissues are a difficult breed, on one hand they seek to garner a new audience, on another they have to pay heed to what fans are looking for. The best reissues not only remind you why you liked the band in the first place, but help in keeping that love alive. If you're new to the band, they give you a quintessential album long out of print, remastered with some bonus materials to help you understand the time period. We're talking about the best reissues of the last decade, the ones that really brought us back or exposed us to something entirely new. There have been a lot of important reissues and remasters in the last decade, what were some of yours?

10. The Feelies - Crazy Rhythms / The Good Earth

Don't ask why these two albums went out of print in the first place, because we simply just can't understand. Either way, we're happy they've returned. The discs get a remaster as well as some live tracks and demo versions, but the real gem is simply the fact these can be purchased again.

9. Dennis Wilson - Pacific Ocean Blue (30th Anniversary Edition)

So Dennis Wilson might have a weird past, but that doesn't keep Pacific Ocean Blue from being an excellent album. Long out of print before the 2008 reissue, Blue marked the first attempt by a Beach Boy to break away and record his own album. The second disc also contains the never before released and ill-fated second album Bambu.

8. The Fall - Hex Enduction Hour

Yeah okay, this record sounds like the Fall, which happens to sound like a lot of other Fall records, the difference here is that this is arguably the best Fall record. It's brilliant, energetic, stupid and amazing. Sure the bonus disc doesn't include much more than a few live tracks and a couple of Peel sessions (not particularly hard to come by), but the importance wasn't the bonus material, but rather the fact that Hex Enduction Hour was finally available again.

7. The Beatles - Box Set (Remastered)

These remasters were a long time coming and the stereo/mono masters are well done. Our only real contempt for this set is the fact it took so long to happen and added little to the whole experience. It would have been nice to mix and match the stereo and mono versions but it was nice to see all these albums come together and get updated for this century.

6. Gang of Four - Entertainment

Back in ye olden times youngsters had to hunt for Gang of Four records in used record shops and online catalogs. When Rhino reissued their catalog in 2005 it gave the adoring public one more reason to hate on those new-fangled bands like The Rapture and Hot Hot Heat.

5. Neu! - Neu!

Those of us desperate to expand our krautrock album catalog were given a welcome treat in 2001, when Neu! finally remastered and reissued their catalog. Long sought after the bands only available works came in the form of poorly bootlegged CDs or overpriced records. Thankfully, the band realized this was hurting them more than helping and reissued them quickly.

4. DJ Shadow - Endtroducing.... (Deluxe Edition)

DJ Shadow completely changed what the word DJ meant in 1996 when Endtroducing.... was originally released. It captured the hearts and souls of reviewers and critics across genres, and introduced the very idea of cut and paste sampling to the masses. In 2005, the Deluxe Edition was introduced, packed with live shows and remixes as well as track-by-track written commentary by DJ Shadow.

3. Kraftwerk - The Catalogue

Most people don't believe us when we tell them the Kraftwerk catalogue had never been remastered before The Catalogue came out. Those same people refuse to believe that The Catalogue has also been ready for release since 2004, but delayed until 2009. All that said this is the most comprehensive set of Kraftwerk's music, included several releases new to the States. It's also the best sounding, and considering Kraftwerk is a band that prides itself on the music alone, that's not a small feat. Now then, if we could just get the bands first three albums reissued we'll be all set for the next decade.

2. Jawbox - For Your Own Special Sweetheart

Jawbox's story is the story of the '90s. Indie band gets big, signs to a major label, doesn't sell records, gets dropped, album goes out of print. Along with Jawbreaker, who also saw a reissue this decade, Jawbox's excellent and once difficult to find For Your Own Special Sweetheart finally saw the light of day after nearly fifteen years of being out of print. The reissue sports a remaster and three bonus tracks as well.

1. This Heat - Out of Cold Storage

There was a time when we found ourselves scouring every single record store, from Kansas City to New York hunting for records by the band This Heat. The records were pushing the $100 boundary on eBay when you could find them, and the band, for all its influence and innovation, seemed as though it would disappear into obscurity. In 2006 ReR Megacorp remastered and reissued all the bands work, culminated in this box set which includes six discs (including a live John Peel session) and a 48 page book of interviews and photographs. It's no secret that This Heat is still a secret even after this healthy reissue, but for those of us that spent days hunting for these records, it was a welcome and sought after release.

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Thorin Klosowski
Contact: Thorin Klosowski