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Spandau Ballet / To Cut A Long Story Short 12″ and new greatest hits set

Spandau Ballet / To Cut A Long Story Short 12" and hits set

40 year anniversary reissues

Spandau Ballet will reissue the original 12-inch of their debut single ‘To Cut A Long Story Short’, as well as a new greatest hits set, later this month.

The band’s first single was issued in 1980 and the 12-inch features the familiar extended mix on side A (known as ‘Mix 1’) and he much more elusive dub mix (know as ‘Mix 2/Version’) on side B. Both were created by producer Richard James Burgess.

This 12-inch is being reissued in its original die-cut sleeve on 180g vinyl. On the same day a new greatest hits (no groaning at the back) will be released. A three-CD set features hits on discs one and two and selected 12-inch mixes on the third disc. Despite being unreleased on CD, that ‘To Cut A Long Story Short’ dub mix isn’t included as part of this new set (no groaning at the back). This hits collection is also available on 2LP red vinyl (with a cut down 19 tracks).

Both CD and vinyl versions include a previously unreleased cover of Simon and Garfunkel‘s The Boxer, which was recorded in 1990 with Michael Kamen (no groaning at the back). We don’t know why this wasn’t released at the time (apparently a greatest hits was planned) but the band wouldn’t enter a studio again for 19 years, which seems an extreme reaction to an admittedly ‘interesting’ interpretation.

There were rumours of a five-disc Spandau box set coming, with a few product listings sneaking out onto far-flung online retailers, but we’ll have to wait and see if that ever emerges. In the meantime ‘To Cut A Long Story Short’ and ’40 Years – The Greatest Hits’ will be released on 27 November 2020.

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Spandau Ballet

To Cut A Long Story Short - 12-inch single with die-cut sleeve

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Spandau Ballet

40 Years The Greatest Hits - 3CD set

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Spandau Ballet

40 Years - The Greatest Hits - 2LP red vinyl

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To Cut A Long Story Short 12-inch single

To Cut A Long Story Short (Mix 1) 6.30
To Cut A Long Story Short (Version) (Mix 2) 3.56

40 Years – The Greatest Hits 3CD set

CD 1: Hits

  1. To Cut a Long Story Short
  2. The Freeze
  3. Musclebound
  4. Toys
  5. Glow
  6. Chant no. 1
  7. Paint Me Down
  8. Coffee Club
  9. She Loved Like Diamond
  10. Instinction
  11. Lifeline
  12. Communication
  13. Heaven is a Secret
  14. True
  15. Gold
  16. Pleasure
  17. Only When You Leave
  18. I’ll Fly for You

CD 2: Hits

  1. Highly Strung
  2. Revenge for Love
  3. Round & Round
  4. Fight For Ourselves
  5. Swept
  6. Cross The Line
  7. Through The Barricades
  8. How Many Lies?
  9. Raw
  10. Be Free With your Love
  11. Crashed Into Love
  12. Empty Spaces
  13. The Boxer
  14. Once More
  15. This Is The Love
  16. Soul Boys
  17. Steal

CD 3: 12-inch versions

  1. To Cut A Long Story Short
  2. The Freeze
  3. Glow
  4. Chant No 1
  5. Paint Me Down
  6. Lifeline
  7. Communication
  8. Gold
  9. Fight for Ourselves
  10. Cross The Line
  11. Raw

40 Years – The Greatest Hits 2LP red vinyl

Side A
1.     To Cut a Long Story Short
2.     The Freeze
3.     Musclebound
4.     Chant No. 1 (I Don’t Need This Pressure On)
5.     Instinction
6.     Lifeline

Side B
1.     Gold
2.     True
3.     Only When You Leave
4.     I’ll Fly for You

Side C
1.     Communication
2.     Highly Strung
3.     Round & Round
4.     Fight For Ourselves
5.     How Many Lies?

Side D
1.     Be Free With your Love
2.     The Boxer
3.     This Is The Love
4.     Through The Barricades

70 responses to Spandau Ballet / To Cut A Long Story Short 12″ and new greatest hits set

  1. Alessandro says:

    It’s out now. Any word about the mastering?
    Did they use the awful 2010 remasters or is it a brand new job, gentler to the ears?

    • Auntie Sabrina says:

      Short answer is I don’t know. There are only production dates in the 12 page booklet with no remastering details/dates. Intinction is the wrong mix, sounds like the album version. Sainsburys have this in their 2 CDs for £15 deal.

  2. Vince Sander says:

    Possibly the worst album artwork I’ve ever seen. It makes it almost impossible to buy.

  3. Groan says:

    I just don’t think they’re a band whose music has aged that well or who have ever merited any sort of genuine or ironic re-evaluation. They became instantly uncool after the second album. They really only had three good singles: the first, Paint me down and Chant No 1.

  4. Martin Farnworth says:

    No Boxer 12 inch vinyl with extended and dub mixes?

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      Haha. The very thought of them releasing that as a physical single…

    • Jonathon says:

      My first memory of Spandau as a group was seeing Musclebound for the first time on Top of the pops and really liking it, and then not really taking much notice of them until Gold layer hit the charts ( I didnt l like True at the time, but that’s since changed). I do remember seeing Spandau back in their hey day and they were a top band Live with a pretty big following. I thought Duran, Police and Culture Club were bigger groups especially internationally, but Spandau held their own for a time and made some great albums along the way. It’s a shame things turned out the way they did with the split and bad feeling and everything, but they gave us some great tracks along the way. I’m not too fussed about the 12 inch mixes as I think their best stuff is tightly honed 7 inch singles with no filler or padding. I guess if this is their umpteenth “Best Of” someone out there must keep buying them to keep the cash flow going. Generally, I buy a mix of vinyl and CD these days depending on what it the most interesting in terms of content and what I can afford at the time. When this comes out I will probably buy it, unless my pocket is sucked dry again by some new Bowie release.

  5. Anthony says:

    They have more than 20 compilations under their belt, from the budget to the deluxe, and most of which contain all this material already! They released a 2CD just 5 years ago (The Story – The Very Best Of) which is disc 1 and 2 of this 3CD set, basically. The 12″ mixes are all commonplace on CD, too. Even the sleeve is a rehash of their original greatest hits – the one The Boxer was recorded for, which came out in 1991. OK, it’s a different pose, but the actual same photo was used for the FREE greatest hits CD that came with the Mail On Sunday in 2011.

    The Story came out along with a film release (Soul Boys Of The Western World) and an ITV1 special, plus three new songs, all released as singles in advance, to promote it. What are they doing for this one? Nothing it seems. The bigger box set package looked slightly more interesting (a few oddities – only a few!) but if it’s cancelled, its cancelled.

    Chant No. 1 and Gold got some decent pop / club remixes from D-Bop, Oakenfold, Basto and Sun (?) throughout the last two decades but they never released them beyond promos. They also had fan club flexi discs (just silliness, but rare and forgotten) and the mixes / live tracks on their 1988-89 12” / CD singles should be remastered and compiled. There’s even an edited version of True they never seem to include anywhere, and the USA 7″ remix of Lifeline, both on the 1991 True CD single re-release – issued to promote that original best of (in place of The Boxer which was nixed). Also a few USA dubs/mixes… if they wanted to do something more interesting, for a box of actual rarities, they could.

    The album reissues were rather decent, despite the actual remastering, and I was very surprised they did Through The Barricades in 2017, after such a huge gap. At this point, I’d rather they just remastered and expanded the Heart Like A Sky album, the only one not given a deluxe makeover to date, and left it at that.

  6. Buck says:

    Yes to the single, no to the album. I’ll stick with the Gold album. I wish the record companies would follow the lead of Depeche Mode and re-release all the 12″ singles on vinyl. I would be more interested in Spandau then.

  7. Patrick says:

    Great band but finding it hard not to groan at the back. A decent intro for someone who doesn’t have any of their stuff I guess. Best deep dive compilation they did was the ‘Reformation’ set from 2003. I’d like to see the debut released again. Much the same situation as the reissue of debut Duran from around the same time (2010?) I never bought those as reviews about loud remastering were unanimously negative.

  8. Shawn C. says:

    I had ordered this on vinyl – then realized I’d just purchased the “Gold” set on vinyl in the past few years – cancelled the order. I have to agree that their really isn’t a need for another Spandau “best of.” I would be interested in a boxset, though, depending on what was on it.

  9. Stephen dC says:

    As a 53 year old Duranie, I always felt [and still do] that they always felt they were not as big or good as Duran Duran and this is who they aspired to.

    I saw Tony Hadley in concert once and although he has a great voice, his massacre of Save A Prayer has never left me.

    Although Duran Duran are not angels in the SDE world, they aren’t constantly reheating the souffle – as someone quite famous once said.

    And that’s my totally biased view.

    • Dr Volume says:

      I don’t think Spandau aspired to be Duran, rather they both wanted to be Roxy Music meets Chic meets Bowie. Duran got much nearer that (particulsrly Chic) and are by far the better band. Spandau were a really good band and Gary is a fine songwriter but they veered off into pure schmaltz like ‘Thru the Barricades’ and certainly didn’t have a ‘Rio’ in them. They’re stuck firmly in the 80s whereas Duran at least made an effort to join the 21st century. This set would be more attractive it it were priced similar to the Human League and Thin Lizzy supermarket comps…but terrible artwork and some slim pickings on disc 2. Agree with others a tasty reissue of the first 2 LPs and 12″mixes etc would be welcome.

      • Vince Sander says:

        I think your Roxy, Bowie, Chic comparison is pretty accurate, but Duran Duran seem most similar to the band Japan to me. There are moments when the look and sound is nearly identical.

    • John MC cann says:

      Gary Kemp really wanted to be like Japan,that’s why they made diamond!,
      He admits that in his autobiography,
      I do agree as musicians Duran where better ,in fact Trevor horn refused to produce the true album unless John keeble was replaced,and Martin was just handed a bass because of his looks,on the song true he doesn’t actually play,bass I believe is on the keys,having said that when you listen to the Duran song Rio and the saxophone solo comes in , listen to the bass playing in the background for the duration of sax solo it absolutely amazing,,,is that really John Taylor! ,,,Bernard I think!

      • Andy Nutt says:

        Replace John Keeble….never heard this before, never mentioned in print

        • John MC cann says:

          You could read Gary Kemp’s autobiography,,I know this much,from Soho to spandau!,but probably quicker just to Google a beginner’s guide to Trevor horn,scroll down to you get to instinction,,job done!

          • Jason says:

            Horn wanted John Keeble replaced with a drum machine. I think that says everything. Keebler was a fine drummer, with a great human touch.

      • Liam says:

        Bernard Edwards wasn’t part of Duran’s world when the reorder Rio. It wouldn’t be until The Power Station that they were properly working together. The amazing bass on Rio is indeed Mr Taylor’s.

        • John MC cann says:

          Well that’s great news,! The boy could really play couldn’t he?,
          Martin Kemp says in his book that he and John where kindred spirits ,both of them weren’t the greatest of musicians,( they spent time in Los Angeles together making a film if my memory serves me well),also I remember guy Pratt being a wee bit dismissive of John’s playing, in a video I seen of guy on u tube,but as you say Liam it is Taylor playing,so top notch playing in my book!

  10. Albert says:

    This release stating that Spandau have done 40 years is like the ’50th’ anniversary episode of Doctor Who in 2013 (which, by the way, was pure Moffat drivel). Doctor Who was off air from 1990 to 2004, Just like Spandau were inactive from 1990 to 2008. No groaning at the back is absolutely right, Paul.

    • Shawn C. says:

      Have to disagree, that’s not really how anniversaries work. Doctor Who, for example, debuted in 1963 so 2013 was most certainly the 50th anniversary – how is that “drivel?” Spandau Ballet formed in 1979. It’s simple math – not all that complicated – don’t really see what relevance whether they were were inactive/off air has anything to do with it. There are releases celebrating the anniversaries of debuts for artists who have been dead for 30 years – is that drivel also?

      • Paul Sinclair says:

        Not entirely convinced. You can celebrate a debut album or beginnings of a band with ’40th anniversary’ of that album. But if you are putting out an anthology or hits collection under the banner ’40 years’ then you are suggesting 40 years OF the artist. And if you’ve been inactive for 30 of them, then I do think it’s a little bit cheeky.

  11. MichaelM says:

    I still have my original “To Cut A Long Story Short” 12″ (fabulous record), which still plays very well, so I don’t need to buy it again. Or the Greatest Hits for that matter.

  12. Tony H. says:

    Greatest pop band of the 80s.’True”pop Art.

  13. Mark S says:

    Great! Just picked up Gold double vinyl from 2018 for £15.99 so I’m happy about this release…..!!!

  14. Blakey says:

    No True, Only When You Leave and Round and Round 12’mixes?

    The 8 minute Chant No.1 should be reissued on 12 vinyl.
    And that version of The Boxer absolutely stinks.

    • Neil says:

      There are no 12 inch mixes of True or Round and Round.

      • Albert says:

        Both True and Round and Round are on the 12’mixes album from 1986. And both are listed as the ’12’ version’. The 12′ version of Round and Round is a few seconds longer than the Parade version (12′ at 5.35 and album version at 5.30). While the 12′ of True is actually shorter than the original album version (6.08 and 6.30).

  15. Leper Messiah says:

    They should have released Glow on 12”. Shame.

  16. Andrea says:

    “No groaning at the back” alert! C’mon how many times you can repackage the same tracks, how many “best of” you issue of the same band?!? You can make it cheap, you can add a little obscure track or remix or demo and even one or two “new tracks”, but it’s really pointless for a music fan. It may attract few casual buyers, if price is attractive and even become a Christmas gift option, but when “best of” compilations are more than the actual number of original records published (Human League, FGTH, , Heaven 17…) It’s not a good sign. And keep milking consumers instead of investing in proper archives researches, unreleased concerts or enhanced remastering it’s really a sign of the times….

    • SimonP says:

      I have issues with the 40 years bit, too. The band called it a day between 1990 and 2009 and their last release was 2015. I make that about 16 year’s worth of material contained within that greatest hits package at most. They haven’t released a proper album since 1989. That is not a band with a 40 year career to look back on in my flimsy paperback.

      • Paul Sinclair says:

        Good point. After 1990 they are simply ‘looking back’ on other releases that were in themselves ‘looking back’…

    • Guy says:

      It’s not really aimed at SDE enthusiasts at only £12.99 for a 3cd package! More expensive than the Human League etc 3cd packs but Spandau Ballet are a bigger name. It’s out ready for the Christmas market and it’s aimed at casual listeners who didn’t pick up the last compilation a few years ago. If they did get one a few years ago they’re unlikely to buy this one.

      If a repackaged Greatest Hits every few years from a band sells, as they do, then the manufacturers have succeeded. That’s their job. Rampant consumerism at its best (worst)! I’m sure they’ve done their research and concluded that an SDE for the Spandaus doesn’t have the demand to justify making it.

      I’m a casual Spandau fan with a couple of early scratched early LPs of theirs, I’m not interested in an SDE of them, or paying £25 for the 2LP red vinyl or the 12″, but the 3cd will do fine for me and I don’t feel milked.

    • mino gagliardi says:

      Abba are doing that every year and thye still sell…

  17. Musicfan says:

    I’ve always wished there had been a 12″ version of Trevor Horn’s remix of “Instinction.” Would have been great to have had one on this set.

  18. Donnie Biscuits says:

    Back in the day I bought everything they did, all the 12#s (including this one original) poster bags, shaped picture discs, five bloody pictures discs for one single, imports too. True was the slow start of the end of real creativity but I held on through, Parade and Barricades but that was enough. I still feel that the first 2 albums were truly, brilliantly different; True obviously was the big one but that success was not good for them. It’s shame how they are now, and Diamond gets totally over looked.

  19. bob says:

    They couldn’t find a better pic than that one for the album cover? That exact same picture was used for the greatest hits set given away free with the Daily Mail years ago.
    Tony Hadley hates their version of The Boxer and never wanted it released.

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      Revenge is a dish best served cold… :)

    • Albert says:

      They should have used the picture from the same photo session the cover comes from, when a couple of them are giving the v-sign to the camera. It would be more apt.

      I agree with Tony. Their Boxer is bloody awwful.

  20. Steven Roberts says:

    I do like me some Spandau Ballet, but that cover of The Boxer….what WERE they thinking?

  21. Gary Tilford says:

    I really only like the first two albums and I already have a great copy of the 12″ single so its no to both from me. I really hope they do something for the 40th anniversary of Journeys To Glory because it badly needs a new remaster after the dire 2010 “remaster”. Well i can hope can’t i?

  22. Ken says:

    Has literally everything you could ever want from this band so is very good value.Should not knock good value collections like this that offer a lot of music for a decent price.Even if you dislike the band it is silly to moan about good value like this.If a collection just like this was offered from a band you did like you would snap it up in an instant!So not liking the band is not really a good reason to run-down this offering,

  23. What? The Kemps? Worry? says:

    the box set is due out 12/02/21 – 5CD+DVD+Vinyl (retail 125 euro)

    https://www.recordshopx.com/artist/spandau_ballet/40_years_the_greatest_hits/#692159

    • Paul Sinclair says:

      Yeah but word on the street is that the box isn’t coming out now.

    • JPD says:

      As a huge Spandau Ballet fan new formats and collectibles are always welcome. Looking forward to hearing The Boxer in full but I really cannot wait to have the box set in my hands. Unreleased demos on vinyl including Toys, live recording from Ahoy and unreleased documentary is something to be super excited about. It’s such a shame we probably will not get the pleasure of seeing them live. The 2014 Royal Albert Hall screening/performance and the 2015 concerts were incredible

  24. Paul says:

    The band’s sleeve designs from 1980 to 1983 were some of the best out there – what happened?

  25. Soren says:

    Great to see the 12inch single culture is still alive

  26. Kauwgompie says:

    I saw a tracklisting somewhere for that 5 disc box set. That had an extra disc of remixes. If that indeed gets released, I’m game. Hard pass on the greatest hits. I do want the “Boxer” track. Love Michael Kamen. That Cherry Pop box set is great, even though he always gets pissed on here.

    • seikotsi says:

      I agree with you on Nick Kamen. Especially yhe album ‘move until we fly’ is amazing and gets better and better townds the end. Agony and Ecstacy and Move until we Fly in particular. He’s one of the most underrated singers of the 80s and 90s.

      I used to like Spandau ballet, but done with it really.

      • Neil Kelly says:

        seikotsi Michael Kamen (Producer). Has nothing to do with Nick Kamen (Singer)

        • Seikotsi says:

          haha sorry – completely misread that :)

          • Kauwgompie says:

            Oops, where’s my head. Michael Kamen is not Nick Kamen. Not to be confused with Chester Kamen, Nick’s brother, who is the English session guitarist whose work has included performing with Paul McCartney, Bryan Ferry, Bob Geldof, Madonna, Duran Duran, Robbie Williams, Roger Waters, David Gilmour, Seal, Massive Attack, Kirsty McColl, Belouis Some and Gabrielle.
            Still a little pissed though that Paul never did an unboxing video of the Nick Kamen’s box set.

  27. Andreas says:

    Are there any previouly unreleased 12-inch versions or were they all on the 2CD editions?

    Thanks.

    • Michael says:

      Yes, kinda, Be Free With Your Love Extended and Dub by Justin Strauss are unreleased digitally and are listed in the 5CD version link earlier. Otherwise I believe everything is available on worldwide CDs if search hard enough.

      I dont know what to say about The Boxer except that wouldnt have been a hit in 1990 (or any other year)!!

  28. Yani P says:

    They should reform as Taylor Burton..

  29. Gary Hunter says:

    No 12 Inch mixes from “Parade”, that seems a very odd omission, especially when you consider they have include the dire “Fight For Ourselves”!

  30. Rigsby says:

    The remaster of Journeys to Glory remains the most unpleasant sounding CD in my collection – I really hope they aren’t using that mastering for this comp. Those first two albums are seriously underrated – particularly Diamond – would love to see those 2CD editions get sonically sorted and reissued. No chance of that I guess but oh good…another compilation instead…

    • Gary Hunter says:

      Agree with yoiu about the remastering of “Journeys To Glory”, terrible, wasn’t the last greatest hits released in 2014 badly remastered too??

      It would be nice to know if this set has been newly mastered.

      • Alessandro says:

        Listening to the set on Spotify, and “To Cut a Long Story Short” sounds horrible.
        I suspect they used the 2010 mastering. Does anyone own the CD set? Is it that bad?

  31. Craig Hedges says:

    There will be groaning at the back…..

    Have they made up….again?

    • John Archbell says:

      No.. but why should that get in the way of the 40th anniversary? They don’t need to be sat around a table, drinking coffee and chomping on digestives, exchanging pleasantries to produce a career retrospective.

    • Matthew says:

      Every time you said no groaning, Paul, I groaned—and laughed. Thanks for yet another informative and witty post. (I might even buy the red vinyl just for the groan of it.)

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