Doing a 180: Jethro Tull, Hawkwind, Duran Duran, and Morrissey

Tuesday, February 23, 2016
Doing a 180: Jethro Tull, Hawkwind, Duran Duran, and Morrissey

Rhino has made it a point to reissue classic albums on 180-gram vinyl on a regular basis. These are the latest to get that treatment. You're welcome.

Jethro Tull, Living in the Past (1972): This 2-LP compilation may share its title with a single released by the band in 1969, but it covers a wide variety of material from Tull's career up through 1972, and, if you feel that you can trust, it's “seminal and essential to any Tull collection, and the only compilation by the group that is a must-own.” The song titles may not all ring a bell, but the music is top-notch from start to finish.

Hawkwind, Space Ritual (1973): If we're going to be completely accurate, the full title of this 2-LP concert album is The Space Ritual Alive in Liverpool and London, but that's such a mouthful that it's generally only called Space Ritual. The majority of the material contained within this set is from Hawkwind's Doremi Fasol Latido album, which is as it should be, given that it's what they were touring behind at the time, but it's generally considered to be the definitive live document of the band during this era of their career. Plus, Lemmy's in the lineup!

Duran Duran, Duran Duran (1981): If you came of age in the '80s, then it's highly probable that you'd consider Duran Duran's self-titled debut to be a must-own for its opening track alone, and the fact that “Girls on Film” is followed by “Planet Earth” likely doubles its chances of earning that status. “Careless Memories” and “My Own Way” may also stir fond '80s memories, but there's an additional selling point for fans: this reissue is a 2-LP set, with the second LP featuring the Night Version of “Planet Earth,” the Extended Night Version of “Girls on Film,” and the Night Mixes of both songs.

Morrissey, Bona Drag (1990): Although the title of this compilation is a slang phrase which means “nice outfit,” it also serves as a reminder of what a drag it was to be a Morrissey fan in America in 1989 and 1990, the years when he was releasing a new non-album single every few months in the UK, spending their hard-earned funds on import copies in order to hear their hero's latest A-sides and B-sides as quickly as possible. After making such a financial investment, you can only imagine the frustration those fans felt when Morrissey decided to compile all of these singles, but there was at least the minor consolation that not every B-side was deemed worthy of inclusion, thereby making the purchase of the individual singles a necessity after all. (Whew!) This 2-LP reissue features the original 14 tracks, among them “Suedehead,” “Everyday Is Like Sunday,” “Last of the Famous International Playboys,” “Interesting Drug,” “Ouija Board, Ouija Board,” “November Spawned a Monster,” and “Piccadilly Palare” - along with the additional six-pack of bonus tracks included on the 2010 re-release.