Above (Deluxe Edition)
Mad Season was a Seattle-based super group featuring Layne Staley of Alice in Chains, Mike McCready of Pearl Jam and members of Screaming Trees and the Lamont Cranston Band that put out one album in 1995. Here though you get just about everything that ever will be available from the band; included is the original Above album appended with five bonus tracks including a take on John Lennon's "I Don't Want to Be a Soldier" and several recently-completed cuts from Mad Season's never finished second album where singer Mark Lanegan takes the place of the late Staley. The three-disc set also includes a live performance of most of the original album and a DVD featuring cuts from the album performed at various venues.
These two albums from early '70s band Dust, combined on one CD here, represent the band's entire output. Hard Attack features lots of Nuggets-style tunes like "Pull Away/So Many Times" and "Walk in the Soft Rain" interspersed with mellow Pink Floyd-ish cuts like "Thusly Spoken" while Dust loads up on blues boogie numbers like "Stone Woman" and Cream-recalling tunes "Love Me Hard" and "From a Dry Camel." Adventurous listening for sure, made all the more curious by the fact that the trio was composed of drummer Marc Bell who went on to play with the Ramones as Marky Ramone, now famed session bassist Kenny Aaronson (Bob Dylan, Sammy Hagar, Joan Jett) and singer/guitarist Richie Wise, who went on to produce the first two KISS albums.
The Grand Illusion/Pieces of Eight: Live
Like most classic rock bands that are still at least occasionally working, Styx no longer features the same line-up that they had during their heyday. Fans though will love these powerful live readings of two of the group's most beloved releases played in order in their entirety, between them featuring big hits "The Grand Illusion," "Fooling Yourself (The Angry Young Man)," "Come Sail Away," "Miss America," "Sing for the Day," "Blue Collar Man (Long Nights)" and "Renegade," all played in arrangements true to the original recordings but with a little more punch.