Whether you’re hunting for an affordable copy of that elusive 12″ or in need of an access point to a particular musical period or genre, reissues and retrospectives are invaluable to the discerning music nerd. Luckily, the reissue game has never been stronger, although the plethora of obscure and sought-after music reappearing on the shelves is likely to leave a serious dent in your wallet.
To save you a bit of digging time we’re going to be compiling a list of our favourite reissues and retrospectives each month. Here’s the first instalment…
Pineapples (feat. Douglas Roop) – Come On Closer [La Discoteca]
Shopping for Italo reissues can be a minefield. So many seemingly legit releases turn out to be poorly manufactured bootlegs and the Discogs comment sections are testament to the glut of substandard knock-offs floating about on the web. Thankfully, there are labels like La Discoteca that put out official, fully remastered reissues on a regular basis. Next up is ‘Pinapples’, a Roberto Ferrante classic from ’83, championed by selectors worldwide for over three decades. But while the main version has its charms, it’s the ‘Dub Mix’ that we really love. Ditching most of the vocals, Ferrante manages to retain the pop sensibility while giving those infectious bass and synth lines room to breathe.
Various Arists – Cease & Desist: DIY! (Cult classics from the Post-Punk era 1978 – 82) [Optimo Music]
The journey to get it out has been a right ordeal, but Optimo have finally released this long-awaited compilation. Butting heads with Sony over the a supposed infringement of the copyrighted Now That’s What I Call Music! title caused a little more than a headache (apparently it cost JD Twitch “several thousand pounds” to replace record sleeves they’d already printed). Now the dust has finally settled, at least we can enjoy the fruits of their labour. Signing up sixteen 7″ singles from the more obscure corners of the post-punk canon, Twitch himself has provided detailed sleeve notes to provide a little insight into a forgotten period in Western music when genre and convention were cast aside.
Davina – Don’t You Want It [Underground Resistance]
First released on their Happy Records offshoot, Underground Resistance have repackaged this uplifting slab of Detroit garage/house crossover on more than one occasion. With Davina Bussey on the vocals and ‘Mad’ Mike Banks on the production, ‘Don’t You Want It’ was always destined to be a classic. It’s hardly surprising that people are still looking to own a copy twenty-three years on since the original release.
Hits From The Manctalo Diskoteque LP2 [Red Laser Records]
Curated by Red Laser boss Il Bosco, it’s one of the most substantial releases to date to come from the Mancunian Italo connoisseurs. Remastered, updated and geared for modern ears, dancefloor oddities like Flemming Dalum’s propulsive Amnesie remix and the stripped-back dub of Danny Keith’s ‘Keep On Music’ are two of the many highlights on this double vinyl release. We’ve never had the pleasure of attending a Red Laser party, but apparently this compilation paints a pretty decent picture.
Ron Hardy #23 [R.D.Y.]
Ron Hardy never (officially) made any music, but if there was ever a way to pay homage to the house music pioneer in a physical record, this probably would be it. A series made up of tracks Ron supposedly played during the famed sets at Chicago’s Music Box, R.D.Y. is still going strong on the twenty-third offering. Cosmic disco from forgotten Belgian outfit Starflight stands out as the choice cut on this 12″, although the François Kevorkian-mixed ‘Dance Sucker’ is certainly worth a mention.