Our next three Essentials Records of the month — which you’ll receive if you sign up for VMP Essentials in July, August and September 2021 — take you from prog rock to jazz-folk to hip-hop, and from the comatorium to 36 chambers. Read below to find out more:
July: The Mars Volta’s De-Loused in the Comatorium
Our first-ever prog rock album for Essentials, we’re featuring the seminal debut album from The Mars Volta, De-Loused in the Comatorium. VMP’s 2LP edition is pressed on Gold & Black Marble vinyl at GZ, remastered by Chris von Rautenkranz and Florian Siller at Soundgarden Mastering, with a poster and an art print of a De-Loused-era photo by Robin Laananen. Our version has “reversed” album art — the initial release of the record uses cover art featuring a golden head, against the band’s wishes, which is corrected here.
“De-Loused at the Comatorium has been one of our ‘white whale’ records — meaning it is an album that our member base has been consistently asking us to run for years and that has been quite difficult to pin down,” said VMP Head of A&R Alex Berenson. “We are proud to have worked closely alongside the artist and label to make this deluxe pressing a reality and are excited to deliver this amazing version of a long-awaited Record of the Month.”
Sign up now to receive De-Loused.
August: Beverly Glenn-Copeland’s Beverly Glenn-Copeland
In August, VMP Essentials will feature Beverly Glenn-Copeland’s self-titled album, a melding of jazz and folk through the lens of Glenn-Copeland’s classical upbringing. VMP’s 1LP edition is pressed on exclusive “Windows of Rain” Galaxy vinyl, remastered by Guy Davie at Electric Mastering, with an art print by Valerie Nichol and Listening Notes from Sasha Geffen.
In the accompanying notes, Geffen, author of Glitter Up the Dark: How Pop Music Broke the Binary, wrote:
“From his earliest folk excursions to the experiments in digital synthesis on which he’d eventually make his name, Beverly Glenn-Copeland worked for most of his life in obscurity, chasing what excited him, transcribing songs that he felt drifted to him on what he’s dubbed the ‘Universal Broadcasting System.’ This is the name he uses to describe the mysterious germination of ideas, which come, sometimes, as if from thin air. His music has taken many forms, and it has always bled outside the lines of genre, to which he’s held a lifelong ambivalence. What’s the use of putting music in a box if it’s too alive, too motile to stay there? Glenn-Copeland cross-pollinated disparate genres long before cross-pollination became standard practice for blockbuster pop and niche experiments alike.
“Beverly Glenn-Copeland, his 1971 sophomore album, marks a point where the young composer began to branch off from the classical tradition, to seek out what pleased him and integrate it into his own work. ‘At a very young age, I found that I liked just about all the music I ever heard,’ he said. ‘I was finally letting myself explore music from around the world more.’ The imprint from his years spent as a Lieder singer had started to leave him: ‘That tradition was starting to disappear from my body,’ he said. In its place flowed North American folk and jazz, and music from Asia and Africa. These newer influences made an electric combination. They also made the work largely unclassifiable in the era of record stores’ neatly delineated sections.”
Beverly Glenn-Copeland will be available for sign-ups starting July 27.
September: Wu-Tang Clan’s Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers)
In September, VMP Essentials will feature the first-ever 2LP release of Wu-Tang Clan’s landmark debut. Enter the Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) was a massive critical and commercial success, widely considered to be one of the greatest hip-hop albums of all time. VMP’s 2LP version is pressed on exclusive Gold Galaxy vinyl at GZ from lacquers cut by Barry Grint at Alchemy Mastering at AIR, with an exclusive art print by Winiconder & Associates and Listening Notes written by Jaelani Turner-Williams.
“A 2LP version of Wu-Tang Clan’s 36 Chambers has been a bucket list project for us for years: It’s something every rap fan has been asking for on Discogs for years at this point, as the original vinyl versions altered the track list forever to make it fit on 1LP,” said VMP Country & Classics Director Andrew Winistorfer. “Getting to present this on vinyl in 2LP format for the first time is an incredible honor for us. This is one of the most important and essential rap albums ever released, and we’re excited for our members to have this deluxe, definitive version.”
Enter the Wu-Tang will be available for sign-ups starting August 26.