Public Enemy's 'Nation of Millions' and 'Black Planet' Get Reissues - Rolling Stone
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Public Enemy Dig Into Vaults for Lavish Reissues

The group’s ‘It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back’ and ‘Fear of a Black Planet’ will come out in multi-disc editions next month

Public Enemy in 1988Public Enemy in 1988

Public Enemy in 1988. The group will reissue deluxe versions of 'It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back' and 'Fear of a Black Planet' next month.

Michael Ochs Archives/Getty Images

As part of pioneering rap label Def Jam’s 30th anniversary celebrations, the label has planned reissues of Public Enemy‘s 1988 breakthrough album It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back and their 1990 follow-up LP, Fear of a Black Planet, as multidisc deluxe reissues. Each reissue contains the album as it originally came out alongside a disc’s worth of bonus tracks, comprising hard-to-find tracks and B-sides, as well as liner notes by the Roots’ Questlove and Wax Poetics editor-in-chief Andre Torres.

The first bonus disc for Nation of Millions includes different mixes for “Bring the Noise,” an instrumental version of “Rebel Without a Pause” and the horn-saturated soundtrack version of “Fight the Power,” as it appeared in Spike Lee’s 1989 movie Do the Right Thing. Another disc included in the Nation of Millions deluxe edition contains the group’s previously out-of-print 1989 video release Fight the Power…Live as a bonus DVD, featuring the videos for “Fight the Power” (directed by Spike Lee), “Black Steel in the Hour of Chaos,” “Night of the Living Baseheads” and live performances.

“It completely upended the way records are made,” Questlove wrote in his Nation of Millions essay. “It challenged the concept of reinvention in recorded music.”

The bonus disc for Fear of a Black Planet features remixes of “Brothers Gonna Work It Out” and “Can’t Do Nuttin’ for Ya Man,” as well as various instrumentals and additional mixes of “Fight the Power,” a version of which closed out the original record. The mixes on the bonus track include the soundtrack version of the song, the “Powersax” mix, which plays up Branford Marsalis’ contributions to the track and the dialog-heavy “Flavor Flav Meets Spike Lee” version, in which the hype man and director have a conversation.

“We needed an anthem,” Spike Lee told Rolling Stone earlier this year about the inclusion of “Fight the Power” in his movie. “When I wrote the script for Do the Right Thing, every time when the Radio Raheem character showed up, he had music blasting. I wanted Public Enemy.”

Fear of a Black Planet will also get a vinyl reissue that sports a “fade to black” 3D cover that turns black to reveal the group’s cross-hairs logo when moved in the light.

Both reissues will come out on November 25th.

It Takes a Nation of Millions to Hold Us Back Deluxe Edition Track List:

Disc One (The Album)

1. “Countdown to Armageddon”
2. “Bring the Noise”
3. “Don’t Believe the Hype”
4. “Cold Lampin’ With Flavor”
5. “Terminator X to the Edge of Panic”
6. “Mind Terrorist”
7. “Louder Than a Bomb”
8. “Caught, Can We Get a Witness?”
9. “Show ‘Em Whatcha Got”
10. “She Watch Channel Zero?!”
11. “Night of the Living Baseheads”
12. “Black Steel In the Hour of Chaos”
13. “Security of the First World”
14. “Rebel Without a Pause”
15. “Prophets of Rage”
16. “Party for Your Right to Fight”

Disc Two (Bonus Tracks)

1. “Bring the Noise (No Noise Version)”
2. “Bring the Noise (No Noise Instrumental)”
3. “Bring the Noise (No Noise à Cappella)”
4. “Rebel Without a Pause (Instrumental)”
5. “Night of the Living Baseheads (Anti-High Blood Pressure Encounter Mix)”
6. “Night of the Living Baseheads (Terminator X Meets DST And Chuck Chill Out Instrumental Mix)”
7. “Terminator X to the Edge of Panic (No Need to Panic Radio Version)”
8. “The Edge of Panic”
9. “The Rhythm, the Rebel (À Capella)”
10. “Prophets of Rage (Power Version)”
11. “Caught, Can We Get a Witness? (Pre Black Steel Ballistic Felony Dub)”
12. “B-Side Wins Again (Original Version)”
13. “Black Steel in the Hour of Chaos (Instrumental)”
14. “Fight the Power (Soundtrack Version)”

Disc 3 (Fight the Power…Live DVD)

1. “Countdown to Armageddon”
2. “Public Enemy Number One”
3. “Miuzi Weighs a Ton”
4. “Night of the Living Baseheads (Live)”
5. “Fight the Power”
6. “Bring the Noise”
7. “Don’t Believe the Hype”
8. “Black Steel in the Hour of Chaos”
9. “Rebel Without a Pause”
10. “Terminator X to the Edge of Panic”
11. “Night of the Living Baseheads” (Video)
12. “Prophets of Rage”

Fear of a Black Planet Deluxe Edition Track List:

Disc One (The Album)

1. “Contract on the World Love Jam”
2. “Brothers Gonna Work It Out”
3. “911 Is a Joke”
4. “Incident At 66.6 FM”
5. “Welcome to the Terrordome”
6. “Meet the G That Killed Me”
7. “Pollywanacraka”
8. “Anti-Ni***r Machine”
9. “Burn Hollywood Burn” (featuring Ice Cube)
10. “Power to the People”
11. “Who Stole the Soul?”
12. “Fear of a Black Planet”
13. “Revolutionary Generation”
14. “Can’t Do Nuttin’ for Ya, Man!”
15. “Reggie Jax”
16. “Leave This Off Your Fu*kin Charts”
17. “B Side Wins Again”
18. “War At 33 1/3”
19. “Final Count of the Collision Between Us And the Damned”
20. “Fight the Power”

Disc Two (Bonus Tracks)

1. “Brothers Gonna Work It Out (Remix)”
2. “Brothers Gonna Work It Out (Dub)”
3. “Flavor Flav”
4. “Terrorbeat”
5. Welcome to the Terrordome (Terrormental)”
6. “Can’t Do Nuttin’ for Ya Man (Full Rub Mix)”
7. “Can’t Do Nuttin’ for Ya Man (U.K. 12″ Powermix)”
8. “Can’t Do Nuttin’ for Ya Man (Dub Mixx)”
9. “Burn Hollywood Burn (Extended Censored Fried to the Radio Version)”
10. “Anti-Nigger Machine (Uncensored Extended)”
11. “911 Is a Joke (Instrumental)”
12. “Power to the People (Instrumental)”
13. “Revolutionary Generation (Instrumental)”
14. “War at 33 1/3 (Instrumental)”
15. “Fight the Power (Soundtrack Version)”
16. “Fight the Power (Powersax)”
17. “Fight the Power (Flavor Flav Meets Spike Lee)”
18. “The Enemy Assault Vehicle Mixx (Medley)”

In This Article: Public Enemy


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