Vangelis – ‘The Collection’ compilation CD (Rhino, 2564658108, 2012)

So, farewell Vangelis – in a long life, we have been richly rewarded with his music for so long and the grace of how he went about his art. He may now be gone, but there remains so much of his music to explore and be thankful for now.

Vangelis - 'The Collection' compilation front slipcase design
^ Vangelis – ‘The Collection’ compilation front slipcase design

I feature this CD since – well, it is VersionCrazy after all and its always about the obscure details of versions and variations – so, why not… ‘The Collection‘ on the face of it is yet another compilation CD of the man’s work – and there is no shortage of them to choose from over the years. But I’ll focus on this one today as it is the one official outing on CD for a version of the opening titles theme for ‘Blade Runner’ that has remained strangely elusive from the multiple variations of the main soundtrack release over the years. Continue reading “Vangelis – ‘The Collection’ compilation CD (Rhino, 2564658108, 2012)”

XTC – ‘Ball and Chain’ UK 12″ EP (Virgin, VS 482-12, 1982)

The second single to be lifted from XTC’s 1982 mammoth opus, ‘English Settlement’. Despite being of equal merit, ‘Ball and Chain’ failed to repeat the success of the preceding ‘Senses Working Overtime’ single, much to my bemusement at the time, as this release came packed with XTC goodness in its EP form. As it turns out, the various tracks have a very rich version crazy history to delve into…

XTC 'Ball and Chain' UK 12" EP front cover
^ XTC ‘Ball and Chain’ UK 12″ EP front cover

No major changes to the A side, culled from the album, a solid piece of Colin Moulding’s craft – the remaining tracks on the EP were from the pen of Andy Partridge and included two new tracks in the shape of ‘Punch and Judy’ and ‘Heaven Is Paved With Broken Glass’ on the 7″, while the 12″ release squeezed in an additional dub mix of an ‘English Settlement’ album track (‘Down In The Cockpit’) suitably retitled as ‘Cockpit Dance Mixture’. Continue reading “XTC – ‘Ball and Chain’ UK 12″ EP (Virgin, VS 482-12, 1982)”

Nash The Slash – ‘Novel Romance’ UK 7″ (DinDisc, DIN33, 1981)

A non-album single from Nash The Slash’s brief period signed to the UK DinDisc label in 1981, this record brings together a few of my favourites for its one-off collaborative nature, namely Nash The Slash himself, Bill Nelson in the producers chair and Peter Saville on sleeve design work, under his ‘Dessin Controlee’ nom-de-plume.

Nash The Slash - 'Novel Romance' UK 7" front cover design
^ Nash The Slash – ‘Novel Romance’ UK 7″ front cover design

Continue reading “Nash The Slash – ‘Novel Romance’ UK 7″ (DinDisc, DIN33, 1981)”

Japan UK ‘Old Gold’ 3 Track 5″ CD Single (Old Gold, OG 6187, 1992)

After I had finally taken to the charms of the silver CD disc as a format, there was no stopping me, and that included re-issues of all kinds – even these rather generic, budget-price compilation series – not least because on occasions they were useful for tracking down hard to find versions (or even hitherto unreleased versions, in the case of another Japan CD-only compilation, ‘Souvenir From Japan’ and its exclusive mix of Life In Tokyo’ – another story…

Japan 'Old Gold' 3 Track 5" CD Single front cover design
^ Japan ‘Old Gold’ 3 Track 5″ CD Single front cover design

Continue reading “Japan UK ‘Old Gold’ 3 Track 5″ CD Single (Old Gold, OG 6187, 1992)”

Side by side: 1988 Japan 3” CD singles

These two small objects of desire were 1988 era 3” CD format singles from a range of releases by Virgin that ostensibly looked to mimic original vinyl releases from back in the day. But the devil is in the detail…

Side by side: 1988 Japan 3” CD singles - 'Gentlemen Take Polaroids' and Ghosts' front cover designs
^ Side by side: 1988 Japan 3” CD singles – ‘Gentlemen Take Polaroids’ and Ghosts’ front cover designs

First up was ‘Ghosts’ (Virgin, CDT 11, 1988) and it is the more interesting of the two releases by way of its inclusion on CD of the 3’55” single remix of ‘Ghosts’ as well as the 1981 live ‘version’ of ‘The Art Of Parties’ that was the B side of the original 1982 UK 7” and 12” singles. The live take is an interesting alternative as this was the tour that saw Steve Jansen play a Simmons electronic drum kit (as briefly mentioned on Steve’s excellent Sleepyard blog and on while the scorching lead guitar duties are from the wonderful David Rhodes on a short-lived stint as live guitarist with Japan on the 1981 ‘Visions of China’ tour, his distinctive tones more familiar from his work with Peter Gabriel, Talk Talk and Kate Bush amongst others. There is a third track this CD by way of ‘Visions Of China’ (in its familiar 3’38” album mix) – it bears no relation to the original ‘Ghosts’ single and seems an odd inclusion here. Continue reading “Side by side: 1988 Japan 3” CD singles”