Now in its sixth year, Record Store Day continues to celebrate independent record stores by offering up a wide assortment of incredible releases for one day only. The latest, set for April 20th, is jam-packed with goodies: artists from Mumford & Sons to David Bowie and MGMT are offering up limited-edition treats. Check out some of our favorites below.
Astralwerks, Music in 20/20 box set
Since first releasing Amorphous Androgynous' Tales of Ephidrina in 1993, New York indie label Astralwerks has championed some of the electronic scene's most influential albums. To celebrate 20 years in the game, they're dropping a box set full of goodies, including rare cuts on flexi-vinyl from artists including Kraftwerk, Hot Chip, Air and the Kooks.
David Bowie, "The Stars (Are Out Tonight)/"Where Are We Now?" seven-inch (copies available: 5000)
Thought the Thin White Duke was done offering up new audible treats? Think again: Bowie is releasing a double-sided seven-inch featuring "The Stars (Are Out Tonight)" and "Where Are We Now?," both from his stunning new album, The Next Day. And that's not all: he's also releasing his 1965! EP on vinyl, as well as a "Drive-In Saturday" picture disc.
Elliott Smith, Either/Or Alternate Cuts seven-inch (copies available: 3500)
Shortly before his heavy drinking and drug use began to draw concern from his close friends, the late Elliott Smith released his brilliant third album, Either/Or. The 1997 LP is now revisited on a limited-edition vinyl containing four alternate versions of select tracks.
Grateful Dead, Rare Cuts & Oddities 1966 12-inch double vinyl (copies available: 5000)
Originally recorded in 1966, first released in 2005 and now finding their way onto vinyl, these early studio recordings and live covers find the Dead raw and unencumbered by fame. Check out early takes on eventual live staples including "Good Lovin'," "Not Fade Away" and "Big Railroad Blues."
MGMT, "Alien Days" cassette single (copies available: 2000)
"Alien Days", a bouncy new cut rumored to be included on MGMT's forthcoming new album, has been popping up recently in the synth-pop duo's live sets. Record Store Day will be fans’ first opportunity to hear the song in its recorded form. In typically oddball fashion, the new track arrives on the practically obsolete cassette format, but includes a coupon to download a digital version.
Mumford & Sons, Live at Bull Moose EP, CD and 10-inch vinyl (copies available: CD – 6000, vinyl – 4000)
Those clamoring for more from the Mumfords following their Grammy-winning second effort are in luck: the U.K. folksters are dropping a new four-track EP featuring rowdy live takes on tracks including "I Will Wait" and "Awake My Soul," recorded earlier this year in Maine.
Notorious B.I.G., Ready to Die 12-inch double vinyl (copies available: 2850)
Record Store Day was made for releases like this: Notorious B.I.G.'s legendary debut album has been pressed onto white vinyl, and the double LP includes the "Big Poppa" B-side "Who Shot Ya?" and rarely before-seen cover art of the late emcee.
Pulp, "After You" 12-inch (copies available: 1600)
Last December, Pulp shared a re-recorded version of a previously unreleased 2000-era demo, "After You," later revealing it was produced by LCD Soundsystem’s James Murphy. Now a Soulwax remix and dub version of the disco-flavored cut appear on 12-inch vinyl.
R.E.M., Live in Greensboro EP, CD (copies available: 5000)
R.E.M. will reissue its major-label debut Green in a deluxe 25th anniversary two-CD set this May, along with the full live set from the band’s monumental 1989 North Carolina gig on their Green World Tour. Now you can preview the live set on a five-song EP released exclusively for Record Store Day.
The xx, Jamie xx Edits 12-inch single (copies available: 1600)
Production guru Jamie xx, the sonic mastermind of U.K. minimalists the xx, offers up a double-sided 12-inch remix disc, including alternate takes on the band's Coexist cut "Sunset" and bonus track "Reconsider."
Soundgarden, King Animal Demos, 10-inch (copies available: ?)
Appearing for the first time together, six demos from Soundgarden’s recent comeback album, King Animal, will be pressed onto 10-inch pink vinyl. The grunge gods' limited-edition release also comes with a free digital download card.
Tegan and Sara, Closer Remixed 12-inch (copies available: 3600)
Indie-pop sister duo Tegan and Sara called upon a slew of DJs, including Sultan and Ned Shepard, to remix the standout single "Closer" from their recently released album Heartthrob. Ten remixes of the track all appear on this 12-inch Record Store Day release.
Below, Paul Humphreys and Andy McCluskey of Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark reveal a limited edition boxed set they'll have available for Record Store Day: