Earlier this week, The Replacements re-issued their first four releases in Deluxe Edition form with re-mastered tracks, bonus material, and info-packed booklets: their debut Sorry Ma, Forgot to Take Out the Trash, the EP Stink, Hootenanny, and Let It Be. And I’ll be giving away the whole four CD set on The Afternoon Show today. This is your last chance to win!
And big time thanks to all of our winners so far, and to everyone’s who tried to win. I’ve been having a great time this week re-living my Minneapolis days, and my memories of this great band. Again, I highly urge you to check out these re-issues. Hardcore fans (like myself) are going to love them for the bonus tracks and great liner notes, but newcomers will love them, because it’s a great change to check out this legendary band’s history, in re-mastered sound.
So, really, what can I say about Let It Be that hasn’t already been said? It was a huge critical success, and it’s generally regarded as one of the best albums of the decade. Heck, Colin Meloy of The Decemberists even wrote a 33 1/3 Series volume on it.
Sure, there are throwbacks to the earlier punk days with “Tommy Gets His Tonsils Out,” “Gary’s Got A Boner,” and their Kiss cover “Black Diamond.” But there’s also the unexpected piano ballad “Androgynous,” the jangle-pop of “I Will Dare,” and the poignant, passionate “Unsatisfied,” a track that many have declared their own personal anthem.
I wish I could’ve found some footage of the band performing these tracks from 1984, but I did find a cool acoustic performance of “Androgynous” from Holland, 1991. Sadly, Bob Stinson had already been “dismissed” (replaced by Slim Dunlap) and Chris Mars had called it quits by this point too. But it’s one of those songs that was rarely played live, so it’s great to see Paul re-inventing it for the stage.
The Deluxe Edition of Let It Be has six bonus tracks, five of them previously unreleased, including Westerberg’s solo home demo for “Answering Machine” and an alternate version of “Sixteen Blue.” The disc also includes’ covers of the Grass Roots’ “Temptation Eyes” and T. Rex’s “20th Century Boy.”
Fun fact: Peter Buck of R.E.M. was originally planning on producing the album, but at the time the band met him in Athens, Georgia, they didn’t have enough material. Buck did provide a guitar solo for the track “I Will Dare,” and provided some ideas during the pre-production stages.