Anthony Phillips – Sides (Deluxe Reissue)

Esoteric Recording’s excellent series of deluxe reissues of founding Genesis guitarist Anthony Phillips’ back catalogue continues with Ant’s fourth solo album – 1979’s ‘Sides’. Review by Tim Darbyshire.

Hot on the heels of the reissue of ‘Wise After The Event’ comes ‘Sides’. Following the same clamshell boxed format as the other reissues, this set is a 4-disc deluxe edition of the album. Disc 1 contains a 2016 stereo remix of the album. Disc 2 contains the bonus material (as on the Voiceprint 2010 double cd re-release). Disc 3 contains a remastered version of the original stereo mix of the album. Disc 4 contains a 2016 5.1 surround sound mix of the album on DVD-A. The deluxe edition also includes a double-sided full colour poster and a 20-page booklet with photos and extensive liner notes including a new essay written by Jonathan Dann. The whole package is once again adorned by beautifully intricate artwork from Peter Cross.

Musically speaking, ‘Sides’ is a departure from the pastoral progressive style Ant had developed on ‘The Geese And The Ghost’ and ‘Wise After The Event’. Ant’s record label at the time asked for a more song based approach to appeal to a wider mainstream audience. Consequently, for me the album has less appeal than its predecessors. That said, there’s still plenty to enjoy on ‘Sides’ – ‘Magdalen’ and ‘Nightmare’ especially are more progressive sounding, whilst ‘I Want Your Love’ and “Lucy Will’ are lovely ballads.

As ever, Ant is supported by an impressive list of musicians on this album, notably Michael Giles, John G Perry, Dale Newman, Morris Pert, John Hackett and Mel Collins along with producer Rupert Hine.

The new stereo mix  (by Simon Heyworth and Andy Miles) sounds fresh and warm, as does the 5.1 surround mix.  Although not my favourite album by Ant, I did enjoy revisiting ‘Sides’ for the first time in many years. Next up in the series is ‘1984’, Ant’s predominantly keyboard based 1981 album which will be released by Esoteric on June 24th.

AP Sides 1AP Sides 2AP Sides 3AP Sides 4

Track Listing:

DISC ONE: CD:
SIDES NEW STEREO MIX
1. UM & AARGH
2. I WANT YOUR LOVE
3. LUCY WILL
4. SIDE DOOR
5. HOLY DEADLOCK
6. SOUVENIR
7. SISTERS OF REMINDUM
8. BLEAK HOUSE
9. MAGDALEN
10. NIGHTMARE

DISC TWO: CD:
SIDES DEMOS, OUT-TAKES AND EXTRAS
1. UM & AARGH (INSTRUMENTAL MIX)
2. I WANT YOUR LOVE (INSTRUMENTAL MIX)
3. SISTERS OF REMINDUM (ALTERNATIVE MIX)
4. LUCY WILL (ORIGINAL MIX)
5. MAGDALEN (INSTRUMENTAL MIX)
6. SIDE DOOR (ORIGINAL MIX)
7. UM & AARGH (7” SINGLE VERSION)
8. SOUVENIR (INSTRUMENTAL MIX)
9. BLEAK HOUSE (ALTERNATIVE MIX)
10. NIGHTMARE (ALTERNATIVE MIX)
11. CATCH YOU WHEN YOU FALL (INSTRUMENTAL MIX)
12. BEFORE THE NIGHT (DEMO)

DISC THREE: CD
SIDES THE ORIGINAL STEREO MIX RE-MASTERED
1. UM & AARGH
2. I WANT YOUR LOVE
3. LUCY WILL
4. SIDE DOOR
5. HOLY DEADLOCK
6. SOUVENIR
7. SISTERS OF REMINDUM
8. BLEAK HOUSE
9. MAGDALEN
10. NIGHTMARE

DISC FOUR: DVD
SIDES THE 2016 5.1 SURROUND SOUND MIX
1. UM & AARGH
2. I WANT YOUR LOVE
3. LUCY WILL
4. SIDE DOOR
5. HOLY DEADLOCK
6. SOUVENIR
7. SISTERS OF REMINDUM
8. BLEAK HOUSE
9. MAGDALEN
10. NIGHTMARE

 

 

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