It’s been a busy few years for XTC‘s 1986 album Skylarking wth the vinyl reissue back in 2010, the ‘corrected polarity’ CD of 2014, this year’s boxed deluxe vinyl version and now – thanks to the discovery of the multi-tracks – a double-disc 30th anniversary definitive edition which delivers a Steven Wilson 5.1 surround mix on blu-ray audio, along with a wealth of other bonus material.
This new edition eschews the pubes (not a phrase I’ll write too often) and restores the original sleeve (“it was agreed that more people recognised this as the sleeve now” Andy Partridge replied on twitter, when quizzed about it) and offers a new stereo mix of the album on CD
If you’ve bought any of the previous XTC CD+blu-ray reissues, you’ll know how good they are and what to expect… The blu-ray here offers the 5.1 mix, the new stereo mix in 24bit/96kHz, four additional songs from the album sessions in stereo and 5.1, the very original (uncorrected polarity) album mix in hi-res stereo, along with the same for the corrected polarity version, instrumental mixes, a complete alternate album in demo form (following producer Todd Rundgren’s original suggested running order), numerous demo and work tape sessions showing the evolution of the album and the promo films for Dear God and Grass! All that for less than £20 – amazing, as usual.
This definitive edition (for once the title lives up to the content) comes with an expanded booklet featuring sleeve-notes by Andy Partridge, Colin Moulding & Dave Gregory and will be released on 14 October 2016.
Skylarking 30th Anniversary Definitive Edition
1. Summer’s Cauldron
3. The Meeting Place
4. That’s Really Super, Supergirl
5. Ballet for a Rainy Day
6. 1000 Umbrellas
7. Season Cycle
8. Earn Enough for Us
9. Big Day
10. Another Satellite
11. Mermaid Smiled
12. The Man Who Sailed Around His Soul
13. Dear God
15. Sacrificial Bonfire
17. Let’s Make a Den
18. The Troubles
19. Little Lighthouse
• A 5.1 Surround mix in 24bit/96khz mixed from the original multi-track tapes available in LPCM and DTS HD MA.
• The new stereo album mix in 24bit/96khz LPCM audio.
• Four additional songs from the album sessions in stereo and 5.1 mixed by Steven Wilson.
• The original (uncorrected polarity) stereo album mix in hi-res stereo, plus 1 non-album track.
• The original (corrected polarity) stereo album mix in hi-res stereo.
• Instrumental versions (mixed by Steven Wilson) of all new mixes in 24bit/96khz LPCM audio.
• A complete alternate album in demo form (as per Todd Rundgren’s original suggested running order).
• Numerous additional demo and work tape sessions showing the evolution of the album and associated recordings.
• Promo films for Dear God and Grass.