Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Can it Be That It Was All So Simple Then?

This is an under-praised excavation from Stones Throw Records... In 2008, they put out a nice repress of Arabian Prince's debut album, Situation Hot. That album was only released on cassette, and Stones Throw gave it the top quality double vinyl treatment in a nice gatefold cover, and they included one or two other vintage-era Arabian Prince songs from that era as bonus tracks. Granted, it wasn't really the first time these songs were getting released on vinyl - they'd all been put out on a series of 12"s back in the day - but it was still a first-class reissue.

Even better, though, they also included a bonus 7" with the album. It features two vintage, never-before-released tracks: "Simple Planet" and "Beatdabeat." I have mixed feelings about Arabian Prince's catalog as a whole, but I love his early Macola stuff, and that's what this is!

My excitement has to be tempered, however, by the fact that these are both instrumental tracks. That's a definite disappointment, and probably why I wasn't blogging about this the day it dropped. But, still, it's that great, O.G. Arabian Prince sound... "Simple Planet" even features some signature riffs from some of his early hits like "Situation Hot" pop up occasionally.

So, I'm letting you guys know about this now because, until recently, this was only available with purchase of the double LP, Innovative Life - The Anthology - 1984-1989. And I do definitely recommend that package... but if you already had all the original 12"s, the repress would be pretty redundant. But now, some online vendors (like are finally making this 7" available for purchase separately, so you can finally complete your Arabian Prince collection without re-buying his whole back catalog. Sweet as!

P.s. - Stones Throw has released one more Arabian Prince record... 2009's reissue of "Let's Hit the Beach." "Let's Hit the Beach" is one of the many fun tracks from Situation Hot/ Innovative Life (and it was originally released on 12" with "Take You Home Girl"). This reissue features a fun picture cover and two exclusive, contemporary remixes. If you were considering picking this one up, let me just tell you: those remixes suck! Stay away! It doesn't even include the original instrumental, though it does for both remixes. If you're a hardcore completist, go for it. But if you were eyeing those remixes, take my word for it and don't bother.

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