What can we say? Here's the best-selling album of all time-including the Top 10s Beat It; Billie Jean; The Girl Is Mine (with Paul McCartney); Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'; Human Nature; Thriller , and P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing) -plus (CD only) unreleased songs, demos, interviews and more! Where Off the Wall was pretty much straight good times, Thriller introduced dread into Michael Jackson's solo work. By 1995's HIStory, this element curdled into overwhelming self-regard and out-of-touchness, but here it's bracing. While Thriller offers its share of cute ("The Girl Is Mine," a duet with Paul McCartney that was the album's first single; "P.Y.T."), the most memorable cuts remain "Billie Jean," "Beat It," and "Wanna Be Startin' Somethin'," all of which meld musical imagination and worried-mind lyrics. There's also the title track, which takes a cue from Parliament's concept pieces in employing Vincent Price to warn that nonfunky forces will "terrorize y'all's neighborhood." Thriller, of course, continues to battle with the Eagles' first greatest-hits package for the title of biggest-selling U.S. long-player ever. Bonus material on this edition includes "Someone in the Dark," from Jackson's E.T. children's album, and a Quincy Jones interview in which the producer cites "My Sharona" as the inspiration for "Beat It"--and, even better, the real-life Billie Jean's claim that Michael was "the father of one of her twins." --Rickey Wright
Manufacturer: Lindseystomp Music
2014 release from the violinist, dancer, performance artist, and composer. Shatter Me follows on the heels of her self-titled debut album, which has sold over 300,000 albums and over 1.1 million singles. Stirling has also toured in the U.S. and Europe, selling out the majority of shows...
Special edition 40th anniversary 180-gram vinyl LP. 2014 import reissue. Take a chance on ABBA's greatest hits on vinyl. Knowing me knowing you, you won't be disappointed. Each hit is certified gold and is as catchy as pop music can get. This limited edition double album is pressed on 180-gram audiophile vinyl. Celebrating 40 years since their break-through hit in 1974, ABBA sounds just as good as ever back on an actual record. Hits include "Dancing Queen," "Fernando," "Waterloo," "Take A Chance On Me", "Thank You For The Music" and many others. The album also includes a voucher to download an MP3 version of the album, which will take their music into the 21st century!
Sweden's biggest musical export! Included are a full 19 digitally remastered hits, most notably Dancing Queen; Take a Chance on Me; The Winner Takes It All; Waterloo; Fernando , and The Name of the Game . 76 minutes of AM bliss. Anyone looking for the key to Abba's enduring appeal should look no further than "Voulez Vous" and "Gimme! Gimme! Gimme! (A Man After Midnight)" for their answer. There was an innocence to the Swedish quartet, even when they were singing about one-night stands and the invitations to them. Gold establishes that the band, while appreciated as campy, were actually multifaceted in their execution. "S.O.S." has a raw urgency in its chorus, and "Does Your Mother Know" draws its energy from classic '50s rock & roll. Likewise, you don't have to be Priscilla to swoon over "Mamma Mia" or "Dancing Queen." And when it comes to drama, those soaring vocals on "The Winner Takes It All" turn the song into a bitter anthem of every relationship that has ever fallen apart. The much-covered "Lay All Your Love on Me" is practically epic. --Steve Gdula
Manufacturer: Rhino/Warner Bros.
This is the "greatest hits" album we've been waiting for: all of Prince's biggest hits packed onto one disc. Arguably the most influential artist of the '80s, Prince is one of the very few musicians of this or any other era to find a massive and intensely loyal audience while still being praised by critics and musical contemporaries alike for his bold experimentalism and prodigious instrumental skills. His brash, high-NRG mix of pop, rock, funk, and psychedelia picked up where Sly Stone left off, and the result was music that was revolutionary in its sonic experimentation and provocative fashion. This collection brings together the absolute best of Prince's Warner Bros. recordings - perhaps the most important recordings since the '70s - on one hit-jammed disc. Taken literally, this album's title is sure to cause endless arguments. Nothing from Dirty Mind, not a trace of the early anthem "Controversy," no "Erotic City"--no non-LP cuts at all, save some edited single versions--and a cold shoulder to the criminally out-of-print Gold Experience. Damn. As a compendium of 17 key A-sides from 1979 to 1992, however, The Very Best of Prince is (ahem) a quick-'n'-dirty review of the days when the Artist was, in the estimation of R.E.M. guitarist Peter Buck, one of the weirdest musicians in the Top 10. Blessed with both creative cunning and the wish to reach every listener possible, Prince revitalized rock and soul modes from the sex-crazed ("Little Red Corvette") to the cryptically spiritual ("Purple Rain"). Often he blurred lines between attitudes as surely as he did musical ones; the New Testament image of "Thieves in the Temple" became in his hands a complaint about a stolen girlfriend. Though a fine party artifact, this disc is still likely to prove too scanty even for many casual Prince fans. --Rickey Wright
In her own unique way, Gwen Stefani has managed to shift our culture since coming onto the scene as the lead singer of No Doubt. With years of defining style and 30 million in record sales under her belt, she will again turn heads with this debut record that is as fresh as it is retro and as progressive as it is feel-good familiar. With this project, she has enlisted some of the biggest names in music (Dr. Dre, Eve, The Neptunes, Andre 3000, Nellee Hooper, Dallas Austin, Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis, Linda Perry and Tony Kanal) to create a genre bending masterpiece that is guaranteed to be one of the most talked about records of this year and beyond. On No Doubt's great Rock Steady, Gwen Stefani was a "girl that hangs with the boys... just sippin' on chamomile." Three years and a KROQ-nerd Talk Talk cover later, she presents a solo debut that wants it all--Vivienne Westwood and John Galliano, backseat love and lifetime devotion, '70s pop throwbacks and hip-hop beats as well as Clash adoration (she continues to be managed by the firm of Rebel Waltz, named for a mournful Sandinista! cut). Among the standout tracks are the stomping, Neptunes-driven "Hollaback Girl," the tongue-in-cheek Eve/Dr. Dre collaboration "Rich Girl," and the girl-power manifesto "What You Waiting For?"; another tune, "The Real Thing," nods toward role-model Madonna's "Holiday." Though it can't match Rock Steady's inexorable track-by-track flow, Love, Angel, Music, Baby is such state-of-the-art pop that the description almost feels like damning it with faint praise. --Rickey Wright
It s one of the lost classics of the 60s, a psychedelic masterpiece drenched in colour and inspired by life, love, poverty, rebellion, and, of course, jumpers, coke, sweet mary jane . The album is Cold Fact, and what s more intriguing is that its maker a shadowy figure known as Rodriguez was, for many years, lost too. A decade ago, he was rediscovered working on a Detroit building site, unaware that his defining album had become not only a cult classic, but for the people of South Africa, a beacon of revolution. Sixto Diaz Rodriguez was born in 1942 to Mexican immigrant parents in Detroit, Michigan. He recorded Cold Fact his debut album in 1969, and released it in March 1970. It s crushingly good stuff, filled with tales of bad drugs, lost love, and itchy-footed songs about life in late 60s inner-city America. Gun sales are soaring/Housewives find life boring/Divorce the only answer/Smoking causes cancer, says the Dylan-esque Establishment Blues. But the album sank without trace, thanks, in part, to some of Rodriguez s more idiosyncratic behavior, like performing at an industry showcase with his back to the audience throughout. As his music career became a memory, Rodriguez s legend was growing on the other side of the world. In South Africa and, to a lesser extent, Rhodesia, Australia and New Zealand, Cold Fact had become a major word of mouth success, particularly among young people in the South African armed forces, who identified with its counter-cultural bent. But Rodriguez was an enigma not even the label knew where to find him and his demise became the subject of debate and conjecture. Some rumors said he d died of a heroin overdose or burned to death on stage. But the tide began to turn in 1996, when journalist Craig Bartholemew set out to get to the bottom of the mystery. After many dead ends, he found Rodriguez alive, well, free and perfectly sane in Detroit, ending years of speculation. Rodriguez himself had no idea about his fame in South Africa (the album had gone multi-platinum, Rodriguez has r...