Be afraid, Pink Floyd fans — they’re coming for your bank balance!
After 2010’s reworking of their catalog (single-disc Discovery remasters, with Dark Side of the Moon, Wish You Were Here and The Wall also released in multi-disc Experience and super-deluxe Immersion sets), followed by 2016’s massive Early Years set, the Floyd is preparing to unleash The Later Years: 1987-2019 this November 29th. Focusing on albums and shows from after the split with Roger Waters, you may be surprised at what’s included — what’s not — and what it’ll set you back. But that’s for after the jump …
The Later Years is set to include:
- 5 CDs that feature:
- A Momentary Lapse of Reason, remixed and updated (with live keyboard parts by Rick Wright and new drum parts by Nick Mason)
- The official live album from that era, Delicate Sound of Thunder remixed (on 2 CDs)
- A CD of Live Recordings from 1987 & 1994 and Unreleased Studio Recordings from 1994
- The Knebworth Concert 1990
- 6 Blu-Rays that feature:
- A Momentary Lapse of Reason, The Division Bell (2014 remix) and the Unreleased Studio Recordings in Hi-Resolution stereo and surround mixes
- The Delicate Sound of Thunder video, restored and remixed in stereo and surround
- 1994’s Pulse video, restored and re-edited in stereo and surround
- Videos of The Venice Concert 1989 (stereo) and Knebworth 1990 (stereo and surround)
- Unreleased Live Films, Music Videos & Concert Screen Films
- Documentaries and Unreleased Music, including Ian Emes’ film of The Endless River (in stereo and surround)
- 5 DVDs which duplicate the material on Blu-Rays 2-6
- 2 7″ singles of previously unreleased tracks:
- “Lost for Words” from the Pulse rehearsals
- “Arnold Layne” from the 2007 Syd Barrett tribute concert
- A 60-page hardback photo book designed by Aubrey Powell & Peter Curzon (“including many previously unseen images”)
- Replica programs from 1987, 1989 and 1994
- A Lyrics Book designed by Aubrey Powell & Peter Curzon
- Replica memorabilia (tour passes, stickers, posters — but no scarves or marbles)
So to sum up:
- Only one of the three post-Waters Floyd studio albums on CD (though they’re all there in some form on Blu-Ray)
- Only one of the two live albums on CD (and the Delicate Sound video features different performances than the CD version)
- Two new live concerts from the archives on video (one also on CD), along with miscellaneous outtakes
- DVDs which duplicate the material on the Blu-Rays at lower resolution (effectively making The Later Years an 11-disc set, not a 16-disc one as advertised). Easier than manufacturing different sets for Blu-Rays and DVDs, I suppose.
- The spectacular omission (possibly due to rights issues) of the Live 8 reunion
And all for just … $475???!???
Call me cynical, but WHY?? This set costs nearly as much as The Early Years, which included probably twice as much material. And six months after that big box was released, Pink Floyd broke that set up into six smaller, much more affordable boxes.
It’s tempting to wait for a similar thing to happen with The Later Years. (Or just pick up the single CD/2 LP sampler that will come out the same day.) But if the price drops enough … or if I just can’t resist … well, watch this space.
(P.S. The Later Years will leave Animals and The Final Cut as the only Floyd albums that haven’t received some level of deluxe treatment, although a surround mix of Animals has been rumored for a while. Maybe they’ll save that for The Middle Years …)
— Rick Krueger