Once upon a time, there was a music industry that existed where music fans had to actually buy records, cassettes or compact discs if they wanted to listen to their favorite music anytime they wanted. And whilst the bands & artists did not see much of the money generated from the purchases, they were often given the funds to record ambitious sounding music that the bands & artists had percolating in their talented little minds.
Thus, a quirky pop band like Jellyfish – formed around the nucleus of Andy Sturmer (drummer-vocalist) & Roger Manning Jr (keyboardist) – were able to exist (even for a relatively short time) to produce two heavenly pop albums that to this day, remain unsurpassed for their evocation of the best of thirty years of melodic & textured pop-rock. Bellybutton (1990) and Spilt Milk (1993) did not sell many units but for power-pop fans these albums represent the pinnacle of what the ‘genre’ (such as it was) is capable of.
Come 20th January 2015, Omnivore Recordings will release deluxe editions of these epochal albums that come with numerous bonus tracks and CD booklets with new interviews with the band and never seen before photographs. Naturally, the original tracks have been given a nice shiny new coat and the remastered tracks themselves are probably worth the price of admission.
Of course, it is worth noting that whilst a new generation of pop-rock fans have come of age in the last two decades, it is unlikely that this music will appeal to this demographic. In fact, one suspects that it is the diehards (those who were bitten by the Jellyfish bug in the 90s) who will most keen on the re-issues. For this group, the majority of which may have already discovered these bonus tracks (live, demos etc) on the Fan Club box set that Not Lame released years back, what extra value do these editions provide?
In the final analysis, I believe it is the ability to have this wonderful vital music in two handy packages once again, almost like a second shot at pop heaven…
More release information at the Omnivore website.