September is turning out to be a quite a month for reissues of significance to the Pantry boy – and, I would wager, a fair few other folk.
Domino (and Bar/None in the US) do the honours in re-presenting the Feelies, with both The good earth and the 1980 debut LP for Stiff Crazy rhythms now back in circulation. I know and love every twitch and twang of the latter, having bought the vinyl for peanuts on a visit to Sidmouth in what I recall was a shop that majored in goods other than records. I’m not sure about other retailers, but buy the CDs direct from Domino and you get codes for bonus downloads.
Although you could argue that vinyl scratches and crackles only add extra detail and percussive effect to the Crazy rhythms experience, it’s great to hear the album in all its virgin glory; for the Feelies it ‘was the culmination of four years of fantasizing about how they were going to record those songs’. They executed the dream so meticulously that, as well as being a fantastic journey, the LP has a high count of fabulous pop moments. After patiently crafted build-ups, the points at which both ‘Loveless love’ and ‘Forces at work’ take off are top ten contenders in that hotly disputed category.
Meanwhile Cherry Red offer what appears on first sight to be a slightly puzzling expanded edition of Hurrah!’s Tell God I’m here, adding a second disc of earlier singles and later cuts from subsequent LP The beautiful – which is itself reissued in October – but not the B sides of singles drawn from the Tell God album itself.
Those still searching for the Holy Grail of perfect guitar pop may find themselves more excited by the appearance of download editions of The sound of Philadelphia (collecting pre-Tell God singles and demos) and Way ahead, the live LP originally issued by Esurient more or less in protest at the version of Hurrah! presented on Tell god I’m here. Read up on the full-ish story of those recordings over at Backed with, complete in the comments with testimony from fans and the thoughts of the Very Reverend Paul Handyside.