Because I tend toward archival material – expanded and/or overlooked reissues, previously unreleased live and studio collections – a good bit of those kind of releases find their way to my desk. I won’t bother you with another vote in favor of the Beatles’ Revolver box; suffice to say that it’s wonderful. Instead, here are my five favorite reissue/archival titles of 2022, leaning in the direction of music that – unlike, say, “Tomorrow Never Knows” – you might not have heard. And you should!
Hotlinks for each will take you to more in-depth treatment of those releases.
The Krayolas – Happy Go Lucky – This Texas-based band draws influences from both powerpop (think of the Records) as well as more homegrown sounds (think of Doug Sahm). How could you go wrong with that? You couldn’t.
Love Tractor – Themes from Venus – This band was a fixture of the weekly music calednar in Atlanta when I was in college. And this record completely escaped my notice when it first came out. Thank goodness for this new reissue.
Scott McCarl – Play On – McCarl was a member of late-period Raspberries; that group folded before the full extent of his creative contributions could take hold. Happily, there’s this to remedy that omission.
The Orion Experience – Cosmicandy – influenced by a giddy grab-bag of artists who rarely get mentioned in the same breath, The Orion Experience makes it all work. An uptempo thrill ride.
Junior Wells – Blues Legend – Blues comps can be an iffy proposition, and (truth be told) this label doesn’t have the most stellar record when it comes to thoughtful repackaging of legacy artist’ work. But this is a notable and highly commendable exception.