Richard Hell to Deliver Destiny Street Repaired
The original album, out of print for five years, features some of his most essential songs including "The Kid With the Replaceable Head," "Time" and "Downtown at Dawn." Incredibly, Destiny Street Repaired features rescued rhythm tracks from the 1982 sessions along with brand new vocals by Richard and extraordinary new lead guitar parts from three legendary players: Marc Ribot, Bill Frisell and original Voidoid Ivan Julian.
Destiny Street Repaired has been a project nearly thirty years in the making, a challenging, but ultimately thrilling rescue of what should have been the great second Richard Hell and the Voidoids album. "Destiny Street Repaired better represents the intentions of the original 1982 sessions than does the 'Destiny Street' that was released that year," according to Richard.
Though it produced some of his best known songs, Richard Hell was dispirited by the ultimate recording of 1982's Destiny Street. "At the time of the original recording I was so debilitated by despair and drug-need that I was useless. The record ended up being a high-pitched sludge of guitar noise. It was a shame because the songs were clean, simple, and well-constructed, but those values were sabotaged by the inappropriate arrangements and production," says Richard.
For years in the nineties and early 21st century the album was being distributed illegally. In 2004 Richard brought legal action and was able to regain ownership of the album, whereupon he deliberately let it go out of print. In 2006, after finding a two-track tape of the original rhythm tracks, Richard seized the opportunity to create the record he believed Destiny Street could be. Says Hell, "I couldn't resist trying to use them to fill and patch up the sinking feeling that the thought of the record had always produced in me." Using those original rhythm tracks as the foundation, Hell recorded fresh, new vocals, did some editing, gathered new musicians of the highest caliber for the lead guitars, and re-mixed all the elements to produce Destiny Street Repaired. The updated version is an amazing story and a startling achievement. It manages to surpass the original in almost every way.
Though he has but two studio albums with the Voidoids and one with Dim Stars, Richard Hell's body of work has been pored over, discussed and re-released endlessly in the last thirty years. His reputation and influence have only grown in spite of the paucity of his recordings (In 1984, he left music to focus on writing). Certainly many fans and critics will approach this unlikely new version of an old album with caution or cynicism. In fact, Richard approached the project with similar caution and self-awareness. The result of such care for details is new vocals and guitar lines that express the same manic delirium and spontaneity that made the original Voidoids so electrifying. Destiny Street Repaired is simply the superior representation of this album of great songs. Richard says, "It's pretty unbelievable to be able to fix an old mistake, and turn its nasty consequences into pleasure instead."
Destiny Street Repaired will be available on two formats: trade CD; and limited-edition deluxe vinyl/CD/poster . The trade CD will feature the ten tracks, now fully repaired, from the 1982 version, in a digipak with a fascinating eight page booklet inserted. The deluxe vinyl version will feature the ten repaired tracks, and an 18" x 24" color poster featuring a Roberta Bayley photo from the session that produced the cover to the original album on one side, and art by enfant terrible Josh Smith that incorporates Richard's liner notes on the other. Inserted in the deluxe version gatefold will be a CD that includes the ten repaired tracks plus two bonus tracks that were recorded as studio demos in 1979: "Smitten" (never before released anywhere) and "Funhunt" (previously released only in a live version on long out-of-print small-scale distributions). In addition, every limited deluxe vinyl copy will be numbered (one to one-thousand) and signed by Richard Hell. The cover art for Destiny Street Repaired is a modification by renowned Scottish artist, Jim Lambie, of the original album art. Both the digipak cd and the deluxe vinyl/CD/poster will be available exclusively at online music retailer, Insound.com and, later, at richardhell.com.
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