Speciale Natale: un box è per sempre.

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Dalla tradizione romana antica ai giorni nostri. La strenna = “Dono che si fa a parenti, amici, conoscenti, o che una ditta fa a clienti o a dipendenti, in occasione di festività annuali”. Ecco ci siamo. Il box, o anche volgarmente chiamato “cofanetto”, è il regalo che tutti, fra parenti, amici e conoscenti vorrebbero avere almeno una volta nella vita natalizia (ne siamo strasicuri!). Il mercimonio che fa rima con collezionismo (spiccio) inizia la sua folle corsa. Da fine ottobre al giorno 25 dicembre è il periodo d’arrivo delle renne con le ceste cariche zeppe di ogni tipo di “scatola preziosa”. Tra le centinaia e centinaia (e non esageriamo) di uscite di questo genere, ci siamo messi a testa bassa per selezionarne 25 (appunto). Una lista non esaustiva che potrà esservi d’aiuto per un veloce orientamento nel tentacolare mondo del regalo originale (…!…). Lo shopping che fa bene alla salute.

1. The AFGHAN WHIGS – ‘Gentlemen (Gentlemen At 21)’ (Mute) – Triplo vinile che racchiude un pezzo di storia datato 1993. Le cose preziose sono “original Debonair single b-sides, including ‘Mr. Superlove’ and a cover of the southern blue-eyed soul classic ‘Dark End of the Street’ along with three songs recorded live for KTCL in Denver, previously issued on the What Jail Is Like EP. The set comes packaged with a faithful reproduction of the original sleeve art and its striking front cover image…”.

2. ÁSGEIR – ‘In The Silence’ (One Little Indian) – Per l’artista di Reykjavík Triplo CD con 25 bonus tracks (su 35 brani). Versione islandese dell’album + “B-sides, live cuts, remixes and rarities including a Nirvana cover”.

3. BJORK – ‘Biophilia Live’ (One Little Indian) – Doppio CD + DVD che racconta il docufilm multidimensionale dell’esperienza live dell’ottavo album della signora della terra dei ghiacci. “The DVD also features extra content filmed during Biophilia’s residency at Japans Miraikan Museum and has the options of stereo and 5:1 surround sound”.

4. BLONDIE – ‘Blondie’ (Universal) – Sontuosa scatola a 6 vinili a racchiudere l’opera della band americana nei sei album realizzati dal 1976 al 1982. “With the exact reproductions of original artwork to retain authenticity, each LP is pressed to 180 gram heavyweight audiophile vinyl and is contained in a rigid slipcase box”.

5. David BOWIE – ‘Nothing Has Changed’ (Parlophone) – Già entrata nella Top 10 UK, la raccolta nella deluxe edition (3 CD) si fa comprare per le 59 tracce (a volare dal 1964 al 2014) tra cui spicca la nuova folle/sontuosa ‘Sue (or In A Season Of Crime)’. “… features the previously unreleased ‘Let Me Sleep Beside You’ from the ‘TOY’ sessions, the download only ‘Your Turn To Drive’ making its debut on CD and the stunning 2001 re-recording of the 1971 outtake ‘Shadow Man’”.

6. CAPTAIN BEEFHEART – ‘Sun Zoom Spark: 1970 to 1972’ (Rhino) – 4CD = 51 brani. I tre album classici indicati dalla datazione del titolo + “14 previously-unissued outtakes, including alternate versions of ‘Alice in Blunderland’ and ‘Circumstances’ an early mix of ‘Nowadays a Woman’s Gotta Hit a Man’ and a variety of other heretofore-unreleased tracks taken from the sessions for The Spotlight Kid and Clear Spot”.

7. Leonard COHEN – Live In Dublin (Sony) – 3CD + DVD per la prima release live in alta definizione del maestro canadese. Concerto del 12 settembre 2013 con “three hours of music and magic includes an 11-song first set, a 10-song second set and an 8-song encore.  Also features bonus live tracks recorded in Canada in 2013”.

8. DAFT PUNK – ‘Box Alive 2007/Alive 1997’ (PLG UK) – Ristampe dei due live album confezionati in un box che comprende nella versione deluxe: “‘Alive 2007’ (double white vinyl collector 180GR ) – A white vinyl collector 180GR (B side etche) (Human After All/Together /One More Time/Music Sounds Better With You) – ‘Alive 1997’ vinyl money 180GR – A book of 52 pages (photos taken during the 2007 tour) – the replica Pass VIP – a download card (‘ALIVE 2007’ + ‘ALIVE 1997’ + live video ‘Harder Better Faster Stronger’)”.

9. DEPECHE MODE – ‘Live In Berlin’ (Columbia) – 2CD + 2DVD + 1 Blu Ray. Operazione totale per i concerti berlinesi del 25 e 27 novembre 2013.

10. FANTOMAS – ‘Wunderkammer’ (Ipecac) – Box vinilico da urlo con “the band’s four studio albums on five LP’s plus a cassette of their original demo recordings”.

11. FRANKIE GOES TO HOLLYWOOD – ‘Inside The Pleasurdome’ (Salvo) – A celebrare i 30 anni di uno degli album di maggior successo della storia del pop. Edizione limitata in 2mila copie. “A 2014 vinyl edition of the original album pressed on 180g audiophile vinyl and packaged in a unique die-cut sleeve designed to frame one of three accompanying prints by original Pleasuredome sleeve artist, Lo Cole. A set of three 10″ singles compiling previously unreleased mixes of Relax, Two Tribes, The Power of Love and various album tracks.  A 48-page hardback book celebrating the artwork of Welcome To The Pleasuredome, with contributions from Paul Morley and photographers John Stoddart and Peter Ashworth. A DVD compiling the classic Pleasuredome videos by Godley & Crème, David Mallett and Bernard Rose and 5.1 surround sound audio mixes of the singles and album tracks. A 13-track, 90-minute cassette anthology of Relax remixes; and a frame-by-frame flipbook of a rare Frankie animated film. A download card to access hi res flac files of the audio content”.

12. JANE AND SERGE – ‘1973’ (Blue Wrasse) – Triplo dischetto ottico per la coppia delle coppie. “Two albums – Di Doo Dah and Vu De L’exterieur, both from 1973 along with the 51 minutes documentary ‘Serge Gainsbourg Serie A Bout Portrait’, along with a deluxe booklet”.

13. KING CRIMSON – ‘The Elements Tour Box 2014’ (DGM/PANEGYRIC) – 2CD (29 tracce) in edizione limitata con “24 page tour booklet and two CDs containing extracts, elements from studio recordings, alternate takes, live tracks, rehearsals and finished recordings from 1969 – 2014 much of it previously unreleased on CD”.

14. MANIC STREET PREACHERS – ‘The Holy Bible 20’ (Sony) – Altro anniversario celebre questa volta spalmato in 5 CD. “The limited edition 12” x 12” box contains the original album on 180gm heavyweight vinyl plus 4 CDs and a 40 page book. The CD’s contain the remastered full album, the remastered US version, b-sides, mixes, live versions and a previously unreleased version of ‘Revol’. There is also a live CD of the band’s last performances with guitarist Richey Edwards from the Astoria, December 1994. It is rounded up with a few acoustic tracks from the album from a recent BBC Radio 4 Mastertapes session the band recorded at Maida Vale in September 2014″.

15. MOD REVIVAL – ‘Millions Like Us – The Story Of The Mod Revival 1977-1989’ (Cherry Red) – Un monolite da 100 tracce che per la prima volta storicizza il “fenomeno” dalla fine degli anni ’70 a tutti gli anni ’80.

16. MOTORPSYCHO – ‘Demon Box’ (Rune Grammofon) – 4 CD + DVD. “So this is actually the first ever CD release of the full ‘Demon Box’ album. The two EPs that followed the album, plus ‘Home Of The Brave’, a live recording previously available on a long deleted compilation. Various outtakes, live recordings and other rarities, mostly unreleased until now. A previously uncirculated, one-camera video documentation of the full gig at the Vera venue in Groningen, The Netherlands, September 19, 1993”.

17. PIXIES – ‘Doolittle 25: B-Sides, Peel Sessions, Demos Plus Original Album’ (4AD) – Triplo CD per 50 tracce ed un contenuto ben descritto già nel titolo.

18. RADIO BIRDMAN – ‘CD Box Set’ (Citadel Records) – Tre album, ‘Radios Appear’ (nelle versioni Trafalgar e Sire) + ‘Living Eyes’ più un’infinità di materiale descritto direttamente dalla label.

19. R.E.M. – ‘7IN-83-88’ (Capitol/I.R.S.) – I singoli pubblicati dalla I.R.S. Records tra il 1983 e il 1988. “11 seven-inch singles with two 45s making their U.S. vinyl seven-inch debuts. All the singles will feature sleeve art that replicates the originals”.

20. The SMASHING PUMPKINS – ‘Adore’ (UMC) – Per chi non ha dimenticato la bellezza di un album che usciva 15 anni fa. “Super Deluxe 6CD/1DVD set that features 107 tracks including rarities, demos and outtakes along with a complete 1998 live show video from Atlanta’s Fox Theater. Adore will also be available as a single CD and a double-LP”.

21. SOUNDGARDEN – ‘Echo Of Miles: Scattered Tracks Across The Path’ (UMe) – 50 pezzi d’oro che comprendono “26 years of rarities that have appeared as B-sides, album bonus tracks, EPs, soundtracks, compilations and live recordings, a must for any fan of the band”.

22. ULVER – ‘Trolsk Sortmetall 1993-97’ (Century Media) – Quintuplo CD a racchiudere i primi tre album e il leggendario demo ‘Vargnatt’. E poi “104-page booklet with unpublished photos, comments by the band, liner notes by Jon ‘Metalion’ Kristiansen, Michael Moynihan, Mark Pilkington as well as the original Norwegian lyrics and their English translations. Completely remastered sound”.

23. VELVET UNDERGROUND – ‘The Velvet Underground’ (Polydor) – “65-track, six-CD package is housed in a case-bound book and features several different mixes including the remastered stereo mix by MGM house engineer Luis Pastor ‘Val’ Valentin, a set of 1969 recordings, many of which were previously unreleased, from the Record Plant in New York City that were supposed to be the band’s fourth album, several of which ended up on Loaded and Reed’s first two solo releases, and unreleased live recordings from The Matrix in 1969”.

24. WILCO – ‘Alpha Mike Foxtrot: Rare Tracks 1994 – 2014’ (Nonesuch) – “Four-disc/digital box set of rare studio and live recordings collected from the band’s extensive audio archives”.

25. John ZORN – ‘The Song Project Vinyl Singles Edition’ (Tzadik) – “In celebration of his 60th Birthday, Zorn asked his most acclaimed vocal collaborators to write lyrics to select compositions from his vast musical catalog. Including music originally written for Naked City, Masada, The Dreamers, a variety of film soundtracks and more. Each piece is presented in song format with an all-star band of Zorn regulars, and features the voices of Mike Patton, Jesse Harris, and Sofia Rei. Presented in a special limited edition box set of six vinyl 45- rpm singles in a beautiful box set with a 32-page book filled with photos, lyrics and more, this is a collector’s dream of one of Zorn’s most popular and lyrical projects”.

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