Rolling Stones & UMG Soak the Fans



14 post-1971 albums
set for remastering and reissuing.


By Fred Mills



When it comes to parting their fans from their wallets, the
Rolling Stones are right up there with KISS, pantheon speaking. The latest move
from the Glimmer Twins & Co. is no exception, as it’s one guaranteed to
drag greying Stones fans out of the woodwork and down to, uh, Best Buy.


According to a report today at, Universal
Music Group (UMG) is launching a Stones reissue campaign starting May 4 and
continuing in June and July to offer so-called remastered editions of the group’s
post-1971 output, commencing with Sticky
and Goats Head Soup and
running up through A Bigger Bang. The
reissues will arrive in three installments:


May 5:

‘Sticky Fingers’
‘Goats Head Soup’
‘It’s Only Rock ‘N’ Roll’
‘Black And Blue’

June 8:

‘Some Girls’
‘Emotional Rescue’
‘Tattoo You’

July 14:

‘Dirty Work’
‘Steel Wheels’
‘Voodoo Lounge’
‘Bridges To Babylon’
‘A Bigger Bang’



In a statement, Max Hole of UMG International commented, “The
Rolling Stones redefined music. By making these iconic albums available again –
and retaining the essence of the original track listings and sleeve design – we
believe that music fans will rediscover just why they are the world’s greatest
rock & roll band.” (Last year the Stones struck a worldwide deal with
UMG, which will also be issuing the material digitally.)



There will also be a collector’s box made available for fans
who want to put all 14 records under one cover, and a deluxe version of Exile On Main Street is in the pipeline
as well (this despite the fact that there’s already been a “deluxe” CD reissue
of Exile). The question that’s
probably on some people’s minds is, in regards to at least half of those
albums, “Why bother?” But when you’re talking Rolling Stones, all bets tend to
be off no matter how crummy the music under consideration may be.


In 2002 the ABKCO label reissued all of the group’s 1963-70
albums, each sporting superb remastered sound on hybrid CDs and sporting deluxe
fold-out digipak designs, so here’s hoping this new installment in the group’s
back catalog can hit that high water mark. Here’s also hoping that once this
round of reissue activity is done, it’s done for good. We don’t need another
Elvis Costello or David Bowie scenario whereby the artist jumps labels every
few years and takes the catalog with him in order to put it out there one more time.


Back to the Stones, though, really, how many of you honestly
think you need any Stones album after, say, Goats
Head Soup
(which itself marked the beginning of the decline)?





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