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More info: Mari Wilson's website

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This March, Heaven 17 are to release Another Big Idea (1996-2015), nine-CD and 4LP vinyl box sets that follow the band’s work from when they regrouped and returned from a six-year hiatus in 1996 with the album Bigger Than America.

The nine-disc CD version of Another Big Idea features the albums Bigger Than America (1996) and Before After (released 2005 – the last album to feature Ian Craig Marsh). There’s also the 1998 remix album Retox/ Detox where various then-contemporaries took the band’s earlier hits down the rave-up, 2008’s Naked As Advertised: Versions 08 where they offered acoustic/ stripped back versions of their and The Human League’s catalogue, and 1999’s How Live Is – taken from their first live appearance. The box also hoovers up covers of songs by U2 (‘With or Without You’), Prince (‘Sign O’ The Times’) and Madonna (‘Holiday’) which the band had recorded for various tribute albums.

More intriguing is the previously unreleased Space Age Space Music. An instrumental album recorded in 1998, where they’d planned to get various singers to write their own lyrics to the tunes, but never got around to fully realising it.

9CD exclusive edition of Another Big Idea (1996-2008) with signed print (click image to enlarge)

In total, there are 48 bonus tracks and remixes, and like last year’s Play to Win set, Another Big Idea comes packaged as a large format (12″ x 12″) book. This contains 28-pages of photos, new notes and interviews with the band.

There is also a 4LP coloured  vinyl version of Another Big Idea (1996-2008) which brings together the three studio albums – Bigger Than America (opaque blue vinyl), Before After (white vinyl) and Naked As Advertised (transparent green) – and How Live Is (process blue vinyl).

For the 9CD set only, there is an Amazon Exclusive edition (available only in the UK), limited to 500 units and which comes with a signed print.

Another Big Idea is released by Edsel/Demon Records on 20 March 2020.

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Universal Music will reissue Simple Minds‘ 1989 album Street Fighting Years in March across various formats, including a four-CD super deluxe edition box set.

The four-CD box is packaged like the previous Simple Minds super deluxe sets and comes with a hardcover book with photos and interviews with the band and Trevor Horn and a Simple Minds poster. It offers a remastered version of the original album on the first disc (by Andrew Walter), a selection of 15 edits, B-sides and remixes on disc two and then two CDs featuring a previously unissued live concert from L’Arena in Verona, Italy (recorded on 15 September 1989). Sadly, there are no demos and or a surround sound mix of the album as part of this offering.

There’s also a two-CD deluxe with the first two discs from the box and a 2LP vinyl edition (the original was a single LP) which is notable for including When Spirits Rise, which was a CD and cassette bonus track back in the day.

Street Fighting Years will be released on 6 March 2020 via Universal Music.


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