Gord Downie's 'Coke Machine Glow' to be Reissued for 20th Anniversary - Rolling Stone
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Gord Downie’s ‘Coke Machine Glow’ Gets Expanded 20th-Anniversary Reissue

Late Tragically Hip frontman’s revisited first solo project includes 12 unreleased demos

Gord Downie’s first solo album, Coke Machine Glow, will be reissued on August 27th via Arts & Crafts to mark its 20th anniversary, and it’s available for preorder. The original album dropped in 2001, in between the Tragically Hip’s 2000 record Music @ Work and 2002’s In Violet Light.

Titled Coke Machine Glow: Songwriters’ Cabal, the triple album includes the original two-disc set alongside 12 unreleased demos, alternate versions, and outtakes. The songs were selected by the late singer’s friend Josh Finlayson, his brother Patrick Downie and Arts & Crafts’ Jonathan Shedletzky.

“The one concrete idea we had going into the recording was that Gord would sing these songs quietly, as they had been written. The recording room was large (50’X25′) with high ceilings,” Finlayson said in a statement of the original sessions at Toronto’s The Gas Station studio, which turned out to be the studio’s last at that location before they were evicted. “The musicians were spread throughout this room facing the center where Gord was sitting. Don Kerr (drums) and Kevin Hearn (piano) were only available for the first day of recording which was also our set up day.

“By late afternoon we were ready to start and their time constraints led to the decision that we were going to make a live off-the-floor record using an 8-track machine. In hindsight, this was a fortuitous decision as it created a structure that forced us to work within certain parameters. All the songs ended up being cut live, including Gord’s vocals.”

The 28-song set features the previously unreleased “I Stand Before the Songwriters’ Cabal” featuring Downie’s music and spoken word by Rob Baker, which comes from Downie’s companion book of poetry to the original album.

It also includes two versions of “Contact,” alternate takes of “Vancouver Divorce” and “Lofty Pines,” and home recordings of “SF Song,” “Trick Rider,” and “Chancellor.”

Coke Machine Glow Audiobook, which features readings of his poetry from family, friends, and band members, will be included with the CD and physical music edition releases. It will also be available separately from audiobook retailers via Penguin Random House.

The three-LP vinyl will be housed in an embossed triple-gatefold package, limited to 2000 hand-numbered copies for its one-time pressing. It will also be available as a three-CD set.

Gord Downie’s Coke Machine Glow: Songwriters’ Cabal Tracklist

Coke Machine Glow
1. “Starpainters”
2. “Vancouver Divorce”
3. “SF Song”
4. “Trick Rider”
5. “Canada Geese”
6. “Chancellor”
7. “The Never-Ending Present”
8. “Nothing but Heartache in Your Social Life”
9. “Blackflies”
10. “Lofty Pines”
11. “Boy Bruised by Butterfly Chase”
12. “Mystery”
13. “Elaborate”
14. “Yer Possessed”
15. “Every Irrelevance”
16. “Insomniacs of the World, Good Night”

Songwriters’ Cabal
1. “Vancouver Divorce” – Alternate Take
2. “Trick Rider” – Demo
3. “SF Song” – Demo
4. “Contact” – Demo
5. “Down Down Down” – Demo
6. “Putting Down” – Demo
7. “Chancellor” – Demo
8. “The Never–Ending Present” – Demo
9. “I Stand Before the Songwriters’ Cabal” – Outtake
10. “Contact” – Outtake
11. “Mystery” – Alternate Take
12. “Lofty Pines” – Alternate Take

In This Article: Gord Downie, The Tragically Hip


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