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MUSIC 2020: TOP 5 reissues

And here's the next installment of my look back on music in 2020! After the TOP 7 cancelled live shows, stream recommendations and favorite downloads, and my TOP 7 EPs plus TOP 6 live albums this was supposed to be the post about all the rest of categories before I get to the big one, the studio albums.

But then I saw that I had neither purchased enough singles nor splits or whatever to justify a respective list. Last category standing was my favorite cassettes. But realizing that most of those tapes would eventually be mentioned among my favorite albums anyway, I ditched that too.

So now there are only my favorite re-releases left. Good for you I guess, because it's less shit to read, right?

TOP 5 reissues 2020:

  1. LAIBACH - Laibach

    Of course. What else did you expect here? Alongside the long awaited revisited versions of their early 1980s' Slovenian classics and a live record, which both are previously unreleased elements of it, the core of the monumental "Laibach Revisited" 5 LP box is this ultimate remaster of their 1985 debut album, which includes several bonus (and thus a total of twenty) tracks. Presented in a sound which can rival any production of the following decades, "Laibach" remains an industrial music essential and a feral, demonic, historic, yet still burning relevant experience.
    Yet since this remaster is exclusively available in this quite pricy package, anyone who's only interested in the debut might rightfully consider sticking to the thirteen tracks of the last re-release from 1999 though.

  2. WINTER - Into Darkness / Eternal Frost

    With its weird yet certainly somehow effective production choices and a bleakness unknown to metal at the time of its first release in 1990, Winter's "Into Darkness" has become a cult classic especially among fans of mean doom death ever since. Even though I think there would have been enough space for lyrics in the booklet, Svart Records' two LP release, which also contains the "Eternal Frost" demo, does this cold, harsh and slooow masterpiece justice. Definitely one of the metal albums I listened to the most this year.


    Denovali Records has done a whole series of reissues (and will probably continue to do so in 2021) of the Dutch doomjazz collective The Kilimanjaro Darkjazz Ensemble and its darker, more improvisational alter ego The Mount Fuji Doomjazz Corporation. Six double albums so far, yet I must admit I haven't listened to them all yet, as the two latest ones ("Here Be Dragons" and "Anthropomorphic") are due to delivery in January. Since these coloured vinyl variants all look and sound great so far, I'm just leaving it at my recent personal favorite from each alias in this list.
    Clearly my number one among those is "Succubus". With its dark seductive trombones and guitars is the ultimate soundtrack to a film noire in slow motion. If you ever get asked what doomjazz is, this work from 2009 might be one of the best possible answers.

  4. THE KILIMANJARO DARKJAZZ ENSEMBLE - I Foresee The Dark Ahead, If I Stay

    Technically not a "real" album, but rather a compilation of previous work plus some unreleased extras "I Foresee The Dark Ahead, If I Stay" is a surprisingly cohesive listening experience while showcasing the full stylistic spectrum of the Ensemble. Between light swing and elegiac winds of doom, from electronic ambient to Jason Köhnen's heavily distorted bass this is a potentially worthwhile release for anyone with interest in smooth jazz fusion, neoclassical music, post and psychedelic rock and droning experimentalism.

  5. WANG WEN - 0.7

    My favorite Chinese post rock band has put out a new album this year, which I have admittedly only given little attention so far, because it hasn't been released in physical form yet. And Wang Wen always have these beautiful vinyl packages! Just look at this new edition of "0.7", originally released in 2012, with its gorgeous art booklet - and above all listen to how the fantastic compositions of this amazing album combine epic post rock with strings, prog, jazz and many other elements! I just love this group.

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