The Cars’ Legendary Catalog Revs Up With New Reissues
Reunion tours often bring product rehash, er, “upgrades.” In the case of newly announced Cars reissues, the enhancements are very much welcomed and happily, there's plenty of choice bonus material for collectors to enjoy.
It's surprising that Rhino or the band's former label Elektra didn't tackle the expansion of the Cars catalog long before now. In fact, the new reissues come from across the seas, courtesy of Edsel Records. A release date has not been set for these new editions as of yet.
Collected as double disc sets, each containing two albums, the expanded editions don't quite collect every possible rarity from the known material that is out there – 'Tonight She Comes' and the remix of 'I'm Not The One,' the “new” tracks on the band's 1985 greatest hits album are very noticeably missing, for example.
But never mind the omissions, the extra inclusions that are here have plenty to write home about. All of the previously unreleased material included on the 1995 'Just What I Needed' anthology is included, plus some tantalizing material that is newly unearthed.
The best of the bunch is the band's debut performance on 'Rock Goes To College' from 1979, featuring two encore performances that were never aired. Collected as bonus material for 'The Cars' and 'Candy-O,' the bonus video material is appended as a third disc, which also includes performances from 'The Old Grey Whistle Test.'
While those early albums are well represented with a large amount of demos and related rarities, it's surprising that others, like 1984's mega-successful 'Heartbeat City,' which easily could have had its own disc of bonus material (the live show recorded in Houston from that era would have been great), feature only a couple of added tracks.
Still, as a whole, these newly revised editions of the band's albums are a nice addition to an already potent body of work. The Cars' influence as a group continues to be felt in today's music scene - folk singer Kris Delmhorst recently put her own spin on an album's worth of Cars material.