The probationary period continues and for the second consecutive week, we have a list packed with great new releases heading to stores today.
Reckoning (Deluxe Edition)
R.E.M. continues their re-issue campaign with this deluxe edition of their second album, Reckoning. They follow the pattern established with the re-issue of Murmur last fall by pairing the remastered album with a live show from the album's corresponding tour. With Murmur, we got a 1983 show from Toronto. For Reckoning, we get a 1984 show from Chicago that was recorded for broadcast. This Chicago set is notable because we get to hear early runs at songs that would later appear on Fables of the Reconstruction and Lifes Rich Pageant.
The live set is the main attraction here. For some fans, this is a chance to hear the band as they remember them from their earliest days. For others, this is a history lesson and a chance to trace the progression of these early days for the old IRS label to the superstardom that was to come. Some listeners will hate the remastering. It's probably a fair bet that if you hated the Murmur remaster, you'll hate the sound for Reckoning as well. I found the Murmur remaster a mixed bag. There are aspects of the music that were unmurked and clarified, but an awful lot of loudness and compression were added.
Some are a little disappointed that bonus tracks that have appeared on import versions of the album haven't been added to either Murmur or Reckoning. There's room to do it, so it's disappointing that they didn't but the vintage live show is attractive enough to make this a must have. Besides, I still haven't found my harborcoat and I can't go outside without it.
Pyromania (Deluxe Edition)
Adrenalize (Deluxe Edition)
With these twin releases, Def Leppard's three most commercially successful albums have been given the deluxe treatment (Hysteria got the expanded treatment in conjunction with its 25th anniversary). Hear me now, world: I'm excited about the Def Leppard deluxe sets and I'm not afraid to admit it.