The Complete Roxy Music - Bonus Tracks - Wed 1st Aug

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Roxy Music

The Complete Studio Collection 1972-1982

The Bonus Tracks

On 16th June 1972 Roxy Music released their eponymous debut album to a music world that had been teased with some low key shows, John Peel sessions and some high profile press coverage. Between then and 13th September 1982 the band would release worldwide 8 studio albums containing; 72 songs and 2 instrumentals.

At the same time they released a set of hit singles with 3 of the A-sides being non album tracks. The format of the day, the7” vinyl would also include another 6 instrumentals as B-sides. 10 of those singles would have a different version from their respective albums and 3 tracks having extended versions for 12” singles. The flip side of the singles would also include an exclusive live track, 2 re-recorded Roxy Music songs as well as 2 new songs and a re-mix of 3 of the album tracks. A greatest hits LP released during this period would also contain different mix of one of the singles and an edited version of one of the album tracks. This box set is designed to include all of these releases gathered together for the first time. There are several of these bonus tracks only ever been previously available on vinyl up until now.

Roxy Music’s eponymous debut album was released without any single to promote the record. It was felt the album would be helped with the release of a single. Instead of the traditional route of releasing one of the songs on the album the band recorded an entirely new song,  Virginia Plain a month after the release of the album. This single was backed with another previously unreleased track, the Andy Mackay composition, The Numberer.    This box set includes the original stereo version of The Numberer released on CD for the first time. The debut album’s success soared with this release climbing the singles chart helped with an appearance on the prime UK music show Top Of The Pops.

This formula was repeated for the second Roxy Music album with the release of a non-album single Pyjamarama to promote ‘For Your Pleasure’ only this time, the single was released ahead of the album. The 7” vinyl was backed by another Andy Mackay composition with the non-album B-side The Pride And The Pain.    A change of record company from Island to Polydor  in 1977 saw the release of the compilation album ‘Roxy Music Greatest Hits’ and this included an alternative version of Pyjamarama  with the sax break having less treatments and the opening guitar chords having less sustain and the closing guitar refrain was edited differently.

Most European countries, USA and Japan also released Do The Strand as a single to promote the second album.  The USA version cut the album version down from 4:00 to 3:19 by editing out 20 bars of the instrumental section. This version is included here as a bonus track and is now available on CD for the first time.

The third Roxy Music album ‘Stranded’ was preceded by the single ‘Street Life’ which would be the first single to be included on a Roxy Music album. The B-side saw for the first time a Phil Manzanera composition with the instrumental ‘Hula Kula’

Roxy Music’s  fourth album ‘Country Life’ had the single ‘All I Want Is You’ released ahead of the album and was coupled with the Paul Thompson  composition Your Application’s Failed. 

The American market were treated to the album’s opening track The Thrill Of It All as a single. The album version was deemed too long for radio play and was edited to 3:20 by cutting the intro to bring Ferry’s main vocal in 15 seconds earlier. The first chorus and the next 3 verses where cut out as well as the final 3 verses to create a more radio friendly version of what was originally over 6 minutes on the album version. The Greatest Hits released in 1977 had another edit of The Thrill Of It All cut to 4:20 by cutting out the first chorus and the next 3 verses. Both these versions are now available here on CD for the first time.

The band’s fifth and final album for Island records ‘Siren’ released in 1975 had the lead single Love Is The Drug released in advance of the album. The B-side was another non-album instrumental ‘Sultanesque’ this time composed by Bryan Ferry. The USA single version of Love Is The Drug faded out early to create a 3 minute version for radio. This version appears here on CD for the first time.

For the first time Roxy Music release a second single from an album, Both Ends Burning. The original intro was cut by 8 bars to bring the first verse in 15 seconds earlier making it more radio friendly. The closing guitar solo was brought in 8 bars earlier under Ferry’s second chorus instead of the 3rd chorus as heard on the album version. The B-side to Both Ends Burning was a live version of For Your Pleasure recorded 2 months earlier on the Siren tour at Wembley Empire Pool. Although this is not strictly a ‘studio recording’ it is essential as part of this collection as it appeared on a 7” vinyl single and this version as well as the A-side have never been available on CD until this release.

After the ‘Siren’ album and tour the band took a 3 year hiatus to work on various solo projects. They came back together in 1979 with the single ‘Trash’. The B-side featured Trash 2 a re-recorded version of the song with a completely different arrangement at a slower pace and in a lower key.

The second single from the ‘Manifesto’ album Dance Away was re-mixed for the 7” single. Some guitar was added to the intro and a chorus was added after the second verse. The original version referred to as the ‘Ballad’ version appeared on the first vinyl pressings and also the picture disc.  An extended version of Dance Away was mixed by Bob Clearmountain and released on a 12” single in Canada lengthening the track to 6:39.

The band re-recorded a 3rd track from ‘Manifesto’ with 2 new versions being re-mixed by Bob Clearmountain.  The original version, referred to as the Rock Version was available on the original pressing and Picture Disc issue of the album. The new 7” version of Angel Eyes was recorded as a disco version and included harp by Fiona Hibbert. The 12” extended version doubled the length of the track and was aimed at the dance floors of the late 70’s – early ‘80s.

Roxy’s first single of the 80’s ‘Over You’ contained a re-recorded version of the title track from the previous album Manifesto.  An alternative version of this re-make was released on an earlier compilation in 1995 but this box set contains the original version used as the B-side to ‘Over You’ and is now available on CD for the first time.

The second single from the ‘Flesh + Blood’ album had the augmented title Oh Yeah (on the radio). The single version had a fade out shortening the track from the album version. This version is available here on CD for the first time. The B-side to this single was a non-album synthesizer instrumental South Downs composed and performed by Bryan Ferry

Like the previous single the 3rd single from ‘Flesh + Blood’ had a longer title than the album with ‘The Same Old Scene’. The B-side to the single included for the first time a previously unreleased song with the Ferry/Manzanera composition, Lover

In December 1980 Roxy Music took part in a live show in Germany just over a week after John Lennon died. The band performed their own version of his song Jealous Guy as a tribute. The success of this performance inspired the band to record the track as a single which became the band’s first number one single reaching the top spot of the UK charts on 10th March 1981. The non-album single was backed by a new song To Turn You On.  A re-mixed version of this song adding a beat box prior to and through the intro ended up on the ‘Avalon’ album the following year. This 1981 B-side version appears on CD here for the first time.

The final Roxy Music album ‘Avalon’ released in 1982 spawned 3 hit singles with each single having a different version from the album versions. The first single More Than This was released in advance of the album. The single version is the same as the album version in terms of arrangement but has some additional sound effects and different guitar processing. This version has never been available on CD until now.

The version used on the A-side of the second  single, Avalon had an additional female vocal added in the middle 8 at the “dancing, dancing” section. This single mix appears here on CD for the first time. The B-side also contained a previously unreleased song Always Unknowing, recorded during the Avalon album sessions.

The final Roxy Music record released during the life of the band was the single Take A Chance With Me. Ferry’s vocal entry on the album version was over a minute and a half and therefore deemed too long for a single release. The intro for the 7” vinyl was edited to bring Bryan’s vocal in 50 seconds earlier and the final chorus repeated the last line “won’t you take a chance with me” This version has never been available on CD until now.

The USA single edit of Take A Chance With Me cut the track down even more with only a 2 bar intro before the lead vocal comes in after just 5 seconds. This version has never been available on CD until now.

The Main Thing  (Re-mix) was once considered as the third single from the Avalon album. An edited version of the track re-arranged the song to last the same length as the album version but edited to bring the vocal entry 20 seconds earlier to suit radio play. This version was used as the B-side on the Take A Chance With Me 7” single.

The Main Thing (Dance Mix)  is an extended version  to almost 8 minutes and was available on the flip side of the Tale A Chance With Me 12” single.  This effectively was the last record the band released during the life of Roxy Music as a recording band.

10 Years, 77 songs, 8 instrumentals, 20 alternative mixes and a live track,  compiled from their 8 studio albums and singles bringing the complete Roxy Music together  in one box set.

“This is Roxy Music”………………….the Complete Roxy Music.

John O’Brien

March 2012

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