The Clash are to release a new box set featuring remastered versions of the iconic punk band’s first five albums, ‘The Clash’ (1977), ‘Give ‘Em Enough Rope’ (1978), ‘London Calling’ (1979), ‘Sandinista!’ (1980) and ‘Combat Rock’ (1982).
As well as the five albums, remastered from the original tapes by the band’s Mick Jones, later producer for The Libertines, the set also includes three CDs of rarities, demos and singles plus a DVD featuring previously unreleased footage and a new edition of the band’s Armagideon Time fanzine. The set will be presented in a box designed to look like a vintage boombox – an all-in-one portable music system popular in the 1980s. The project is art directed by Clash bassist Paul Simonon.
Mick Jones said: “Remastering’s a really amazing thing. That was the musical point of it all, because there’s so much there that you wouldn’t have heard before. It was like discovering stuff, because the advances in mastering are so immense since the last time [the Clash back catalogue] was remastered in the ’90s… We had to bake the tapes beforehand – the oxide on them is where the music is, so if you don’t put them in the oven and bake them, that all falls off, because they’re so old.”
As well as the box set, the band are also to release a 33-track, 2CD compilation titled ‘The Clash Hits Back’. The tracklisting for the album is inspired by the band’s performance at what is now O2 Academy Brixton in July 1982. The box set and the CD compilation will both be released on September 9.
Back in January, The Clash were revealed to be an unlikely influence on boyband One Direction, whose single ‘Live While We Were Young’ was accused of ripping off The Clash’s ‘Should I Stay Or Should I Go?’. One Direction member Harry Styles seemingly admitted to BBC Newsbeat that the similarity between the two songs was intentional. He said, “It was kind of on purpose though. It’s a great riff, so…”