Skip to main content

Enter your email below to be the first to hear about new releases, upcoming events, and more from Dig!

Please enter a valid email address
Please accept the terms
Best Reissues Of 2024: 20 Of The Year’s Most Essential Releases
List & Guides

Best Reissues Of 2024: 20 Of The Year’s Most Essential Releases

The best reissues of 2024 are bringing classic albums back to life in ways fans have never seen nor heard before.

Back

While there’s no denying the impact the digital world has had on society’s consumption of music, physical releases more than hold their own in the marketplace. But that’s not really such a revelation when you consider how much vinyl and CD formats have to offer serious music fans who want the complete package – everything from a fantastic sleeve and detailed liner notes and rare photos through to previously unissued tracks and improved, audiophile-quality pressings. Indeed, when it comes to great music, physical product still takes some beating, which means there’s a wealth of tempting treats among the best reissues of 2024.

Best Reissues Of 2024: 10 Of The Year’s Most Essential Releases

20: Chaka Khan: ‘Chaka’ (black vinyl, red vinyl, CD)

After recording a series of platinum-selling albums such as Rufus Featuring Chaka Khan and Ask Rufus with the influential Chicago funk band Rufus, Chaka Khan embarked on her own singular solo career with 1978’s Chaka. Featuring her anthemic, Grammy-nominated signature song, I’m Every Woman, the record also included landmark fan favourites Roll Me Through The Rushes and Some Love along with contributions from the likes of Stevie Wonder and Arif Mardin. Kicking off an ongoing Chaka Khan reissues campaign which will also see titles such as Naughty and What Cha’ Gonna Do For Me returning on vinyl, the evergreen Chaka was released on black (and limited red) wax and also on CD on 22 March, and it immediately saw the “Queen Of Funk” reign supreme among the best reissues of 2024.

Must hear: I’m Every Woman

19: The Other Two: ‘The Other Two And You’ (vinyl, CD)

New Order topped the UK charts with 1989’s near-flawless Technique album, but their future looked increasingly uncertain during the early 90s, with all four band members turning their attentions to side projects. Bernard Sumner’s high-profile partnership with The SmithsJohnny Marr in Electronic inevitably attracted mainstream acclaim, while Peter Hook’s Revenge also made waves. Yet Stephen Morris and Gillian Gilbert’s two releases as The Other Two are also more than worthy of attention.

Recorded in part at Peter Gabriel’s Real World Studios, with New Order producer Stephen Hague at the controls and A Certain Ratio mainstay Jez Kerr also contributing, the duo’s debut album, The Other Two And You, remains the dark horse in the New Order side-project stable. Introduced by a memorable first single, Tasty Fish, the album was released by London Records in 1993, following the collapse of Factory Records. It contained a second minor hit in Selfish, but while the album missed the charts, its best tracks (both singles, plus Feel This Love and Innocence) revealed that Gilbert and Morris were capable of creating sublime, shimmering electronic pop on their own terms. Now granted a welcome return on both CD and vinyl, the new edition of The Other Two And You also includes a previously unreleased Love To Infinity remix of Innocence which further clinches the collection’s place among the best reissues of 2024.

Must hear: Tasty Fish

18: Television: ‘Marquee Moon’ (black vinyl)

Although initially released as the very height of punk, early in 1977, Television’s Marquee Moon was light-years ahead of most of the era’s three-chord chancers. Brittle and angular in design, though also unafraid to flaunt the dazzling interplay of twin lead and rhythm guitarists Tom Verlaine and Richard Lloyd, the New York City quartet’s landmark debut album included a slew of brilliantly tense, elliptical songs such as See No Evil, Friction and Torn Curtain. An enduring influence on successive generations of future-shaping guitar bands ranging from Echo And The Bunnymen to The Strokes, Marquee Moon invented post-punk long before the term officially entered the lexicon, and it returned on 180g vinyl in January as part of Rhino’s High Fidelity series. It’s never sounded better.

Must hear: See No Evil

17: Pink Floyd: ‘The Dark Side Of The Moon: Collector’s Edition’ (2LP crystal-clear vinyl)

The whopping 50th-anniversary box set edition of Pink Floyd’s ageless The Dark Side Of The Moon was a highlight among 2023’s reissues, and this follow-up edition already sits among the best reissues of 2024. Released on 19 April, the new Collector’s Edition has been pressed on two crystal-clear, 180g vinyl discs, with a UV artwork printing on the fourth side. It also features the album’s famous prism spectrum design seen through the playable side of the vinyl. Housed in a gatefold sleeve with a slipcase and an exclusive poster, this Moon landing is one Floyd fans will cherish.

Must hear: Time

16: Pretenders: ‘Learning To Crawl’ (crystal-clear vinyl)

Pretenders’ third album, Learning To Crawl, was aptly named, as the band were forced to recalibrate following the tragic deaths of guitarist James Honeyman-Scott and bassist Pete Farndon. Happily, frontwoman Chrissie Hynde and drummer Martin Chambers were able to recruit smart, sympathetic replacements in guitarist Robbie MacIntosh and bassist Mo Foster, and the group returned with one of their strongest sets: an album featuring both classic hits (Back On The Chain Gang; the shimmering Christmas song 2000 Miles) and enduring deeper cuts (Time The Avenger, Watching The Clothes, Thin Line Between Love And Hate).

Proving that Pretenders were still a force to be reckoned with, Learning To Crawl was quickly certified gold in the UK and platinum in the US, and it remains a benchmark release in Chrissie Hynde’s canon. It was remastered by original producer Chris Thomas in 2018 and now makes its vinyl return sounding more vital than ever before.

Must hear: Back On The Chain Gang

15: Duran Duran: ‘Rio’ (vinyl, CD)

Duran Duran really were a full-blown cultural phenomenon during the 80s. Indeed, having rapidly transcended their association with the New Romantic movement, the Birmingham quartet cranked out hit after hit during their imperious first phase, chronicled by their initial spree of albums, all of which yielded multi-platinum returns.

Crucially, though, the group were able to match style with substance, ensuring that the newly remastered vinyl and CD editions of their legend-securing albums – the self-titled Duran Duran (1981); Rio (1982); Seven And The Ragged Tiger (1983); Notorious (1986); and Big Thing (1988) all now demand reappraisal, with the unimpeachable Rio especially standing as a mandatory entry among the best reissues of 2024.

Must hear: Save A Prayer

14: Van Halen: ‘Live: Right Here Right Now’ (4LP box set)

Remarkably, for a band widely regarded as one of the biggest live draws of their era, Van Halen never released an official live album until they were ten studio records in. However, they put that right in 1993 with Live: Right Here. Right Now, a 24-track collection featuring the best of two particularly aggressive shows recorded at the Selland Arena, in Fresno, California, towards the end of the band’s massive world tour in support of 1992’s For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge album.

An excellent showcase for Van Halen’s Sammy Hagar-fronted era, Right Here, Right Now’s tracklist leans heavily on cuts from For Unlawful Carnal Knowledge, though it also dips into the Dave Lee Roth catalogue for spirited renditions of hits such as Panama, When It’s Love, Ain’t Talkin’ ’Bout Love and Jump. A Van Halen essential, this newly-remastered 4LP box-set edition of the album features all 24 songs from the original 1993 release, plus three additional live songs – The Dream Is Over, Eagles Fly and Mine All Mine – that confidently make the case for its inclusion among the best reissues of 2024.

Must hear: Panama (live)

13: Jethro Tull: ‘The Chateau D’Hérouville Sessions 1972’ (2LP black vinyl)

Having established themselves as one of rock’s premier acts with 1971’s Aqualung and the following year’s US chart-topping Thick As A Brick, Jethro Tull decamped to the Château D’Hérouville studio near Paris, France, with the intention of recording a new double album. After a series of setbacks, including equipment malfunctions and severe cases of food poisoning, they gave up on the sessions and returned to the UK, where they wrote and recorded what would become 1973’s A Passion Play.

Nonetheless, as The Chateau D’Herouville Sessions 1972 reveals, Tull did successfully record a mound of highly promising material during their French sojourn. For years known as the band’s “great lost album”, the material was eventually released in 2013, after receiving a Steven Wilson audio makeover as part of the A Passion Play: An Extended Performance collection. It now makes its overdue vinyl debut.

Must hear: Sailor

12: Seal: ‘Seal: Deluxe Edition’ (black and “milky white” 2LP, CD + Blu-ray)

Even the greatest artists can struggle to replicate the success of a runaway debut album, but Seal made light work of that with 1994’s Seal (aka “Seal II”), which bettered his widely-acclaimed self-titled debut album’s multi-platinum yield.

Accordingly, such a landmark release deserves a bells-and-whistles reissue, and Seal certainly gets it with this deluxe 30th-anniversary edition: a lavish affair which arrives in a variety of physical and digital formats, with the 2CD + Blu-ray version also including a Dolby Atmos mix and PCM 24/96 High Resolution Stereo mixes.

Seal, though, impresses regardless of the listener’s hi-fi preference. Featuring a host of classic tracks (Prayer For The Dying; Bring It On; the Joni Mitchell duet If I Could; and the US chart-topping, Grammy Award-winning Kiss From A Rose, from the Batman Forever soundtrack), it was one of 1994’s most essential releases, and its new edition – which includes ten previously unreleased recordings – is no less essential among the best reissues of 2024.

Must hear: Kiss From A Rose

11: Yes: ‘Talk: 30th Anniversary Edition’ (4CD, 2LP white vinyl)

Yes’ 14th studio outing, Talk was one of the first albums to be recorded digitally and edited without using traditional audio tape. Yet while it embraced technology, it also represented a return to the band’s roots in the sonic sense. Indeed, standout tracks such as The Calling and the spectacular 15-minute closing song, Endless Dream, recall the classic, multi-layered Yes sound of the early-to-mid-70s.

Strangely, despite its cohesion, Talk fell short of commercial expectations, yet it remains a firm fan favourite among the best Yes albums. Its expanded 30th-anniversary reissue will be warmly welcomed by long-term supporters of the group’s 80s line-up featuring Trevor Rabin and Jon Anderson, with Anderson himself recalling the making of the album as “a very harmonious experience”.

Must hear: Endless Dream

10: David Bowie: ‘Waiting In The Sky (Before The Starman Came To Earth)’ (black vinyl)

David Bowie’s The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars is, of course, one of 70s rock’s most future-shaping releases. However, as Waiting In The Sky (Before The Starman Came To Earth) reveals, this justly celebrated album could have sounded rather different, as several of its key tracks – not least the record’s signature hit, Starman – weren’t originally intended for inclusion.

With this in mind, Waiting For The Sky presents the record Ziggy Stardust could have been had Bowie boxed it off in its original guise. The songs are taken from the Trident Studios 1/4” stereo tapes dated 15 December 1971, and the record has been created from the project’s provisional tracklist.

One of the best Record Store Day 2024 releases, this limited vinyl pressing of Waiting In The Sky features four songs that didn’t make the final cut. On Side One, in the place of Starman – one of the last three songs recorded for the album – in February 1972, is Round And Round, a Chuck Berry cover and a regular in Bowie’s live set of the time. Initially picked to close the album’s first side was Bowie’s version of Jacques Brel’s Amsterdam (also recorded by Scott Walker), which would later appear as the B-side of Sorrow, from Bowie’s covers album, Pin Ups.

Meanwhile, Side Two features two further long-time favourites, Holy Holy and Velvet Goldmine. The former is a re-recording with The Spiders of Bowie’s standalone 1971 single, while Velvet Goldmine is a lost Ziggy-era classic that remained buried until appearing as a B-side on the 1975 reissue of Space Oddity.

Must hear: Amsterdam

9: Grateful Dead: ‘From The Mars Hotel: 50th-Anniversary Edition’ (3CD, picture disc)

Relatively direct and concise by Grateful Dead’s standards, the legendary Californian band’s 1974 studio set, From The Mars Hotel, was praised by Village Voice critic Robert Christgau for sounding “brighter and more uptempo than [the preceding] Wake Of The Flood… with almost as many memorable tunes as American Beauty”. High praise, indeed – but then From The Mars Hotel does include a flurry of memorably accessible tracks such as US Blues, China Doll and the reggae-infused Scarlet Begonias.

On its own merits, then, the album is a landmark release, but long-term Deadheads will be thrilled by this 50th-anniversary reissue, which also proffers demos of China Doll and Wave That Flag. There’s also a previously unreleased live performance recorded at the University Of Nevada in May 1974, taking in classics such as Brown-Eyed Women, Tennessee Jed, Mississippi Half-Step, Truckin’ and Sugar Magnolia. If all that hasn’t already done the trick, a variety of physical options, including a specially-designed picture-disc pressing created in partnership with zoetrope pioneer Drew Tetz, will seal the deal for this anniversary reissue of From The Mars Hotel.

Must hear: US Blues

8: Eagles: ‘To The Limit: The Essential Collection’ (6LP box set, 3CD box set)

With Eagles criss-crossing the US and beyond on their final tour, the 12 April release of To The Limit: The Essential Collection is extremely well timed. One of those great, does-what-it-says-on-the-sleeve collections, this generous multi-disc, career-spanning set combines the band’s greatest hits with beloved album tracks and classic live performances.

Indeed, Take It To Limit caters for long-term fans and newbies alike, proffering 51 of the best Eagles songs released between 1972 and 2020. All the hits are present and correct, including New Kid In Town, One Of These Nights, Tequila Sunrise, Hotel California, Heartache Tonight and Take It To The Limit itself, along with fan favourites aplenty, such as Desperado, Victim Of Love and In The City. With its release coinciding with the group’s farewell tour, the collection fittingly contains highlights from the live albums Eagles Live (1980), Hell Freezes Over (1994), The Millennium Concert (2000), Live At The Forum ’76 (2017) and Live From The Forum MMXVIII (2020).

Must hear: Hotel California

7: Deep Purple: ‘Machine Head: Super Deluxe Edition’ (grey vinyl + 3CD + Blu-ray box set)

Hard-rock behemoths Deep Purple had famously intended to record Machine Head at the Montreux Casino, in Switzerland, but the venue burned down right before the sessions began. However, that unfortunate event did provide the catalyst for the album’s signature song – the legendary Smoke On The Water, a rock classic powered by one of the best guitar riffs in history.

Nonetheless, as further standouts such as Space Truckin’ and Highway Star prove, Machine Head was far more than one track. Arguably a career highlight for Deep Purple, it still stands as one of the best albums of the 70s. It’s long since cried out for some major TLC, and finally receives it with this new super-deluxe edition which also includes new stereo and Dolby Atmos mixes by Dweezil Zappa, plus two captivating live shows from the period – from Montreux, in April 1971, and from London’s Paris Theatre, in March 1972 – all of which cement the collection’s place among the best reissues of 2024.

Must hear: Highway Star

6: Alice Cooper: ‘Billion Dollar Babies: Trillion Dollar Deluxe Edition’ (3LP, 2CD)

Another career best for a group of indisputable rock legends, the Alice Cooper Band’s sixth album, Billion Dollar Babies, captured the zeitgeist with its heady mix of hard rock and glam laced with macabre lyrics exploring wealth, political corruption, decadence and the darker side of fame. A transatlantic, multi-platinum smash on release in 1973, the record’s excellent, newly-expanded reissue – dubbed the Trillion Dollar Deluxe Edition – now features session outtakes (Coal Black Model T), single mixes (Mary Ann) and rarities (Slick Black Limousine) alongside a hits-stuffed live show recorded in Texas on the album’s supporting tour and an oral history of the record’s creation narrated by the band’s surviving members plus producer Bob Ezrin.

Must hear: Elected

5: Ed Sheeran: ‘X: 10th-Anniversary Edition) (green eco vinyl, CD)

Ed Sheeran has racked up sales figures most artists only experience in their wildest dreams, but the Suffolk singer-songwriter would himself admit that his second album, × (aka “Multiply”), was the true catalyst for everything he’s since gone on to achieve.

Moving a staggering 22 million copies globally (it went 13-times platinum in the UK alone), × includes many of the best Ed Sheeran songs, among them Don’t, Sing, Photograph and Thinking Out Loud, so it’s no surprise that the album returns to celebrate its tenth anniversary this year. Reissued in a variety of physical options, it takes its birthday bow with a selection of nine bonus tracks, including I See Fire (originally featured in Peter Jackson’s The Hobbit: The Desolation Of Smaug) and All The Stars, which Sheeran recorded for the soundtrack to the 2014 coming-of-age movie The Fault In Our Stars.

Must hear: Thinking Out Loud

4: Air: ‘Moon Safari’ (2CD + Blu-ray)

Air grabbed headlines at the very start of the year, playing their seminal debut album, Moon Safari, in full at a series of sold-out European shows during February and March. These dates coincided with the release of the 25th-anniversary edition of the record, which brought the multi-platinum assemblage of electronic pop back onto the shelves as a deluxe audio-video package. Highlights include a Spatial Dolby Atmos mix of the original album along with extremely rare or previously unreleased tracks, plus Mike Mills’ 1999 Air documentary, Eating, Sleeping, Waiting And Playing, filmed during the band’s first-ever worldwide tour. An absolute must-have, the expanded Moon Safari deservedly tops this list of the best reissues of 2024.

Must hear: Sexy Boy

3: Lindsey Buckingham: ‘20th Century Lindsey’ (4LP, 4CD)

Fleetwood Mac is well documented, but the singular US singer-songwriter has also maintained a parallel solo career, thus far yielding seven studio albums and three live collections.

20th Century Lindsey handily rounds up the first three of these: Law And Order (1981), Go Insane (1984) and Out Of The Cradle (1992). Each one contains plenty to cherish, with Law And Order pursuing the quirky, new-wave stylings of the Mac’s Tusk, and yielding the US Top 10 hit Trouble; Go Insane featuring the ambitious Dennis Wilson tribute DW Suite; and the cathartic Out Of The Cradle largely dealing with Buckingham’s first departure from Fleetwood Mac, in 1987.

For devotees, though, the box set’s final disc holds the gold. Titled 20th Century Rarities, it is an eight-song compilation of hard-to-find mixes and soundtrack contributions, including Time Bomb Town (from Back To The Future) and Twisted: Buckingham’s duet with Stevie Nicks from the 1996 disaster flick Twister.

Must hear: Trouble

2: Joni Mitchell: ‘The Asylum Albums (1976-1980)’ (6LP, 5CD)

The latest release in the immaculate Joni Mitchell reissues series homes in on an especially transformative phase in the celebrated singer-songwriter’s career, as she explored ever more daring musical terrain during the late 70s.

Indeed, The Asylum Albums (1976-1980) reflects Mitchell at her most fearless: tackling dense jazz- and world-music-inflected songs on Hejira (1976) and Don Juan’s Reckless Daughter (1977), and collaborating with the jazz magus Charles Mingus on 1979’s experimental Mingus, an album which also features contributions from virtuoso musicians Jaco Pastorius, Wayne Shorter and Herbie Hancock. Rounding off this must-have collection is the exhilarating 1980 live album Shadows And Light, ensuring that The Asylum Albums (1976-1980) is right up there with the very best reissues of 2024.

Must hear: Furry Sings The Blues

1: David Bowie: ‘Rock’n’Roll Star!’ (5CD + Blu-Ray)

Musical trends came and went at an alarming rate during the 70s, yet David Bowie was always ahead of the curve, often directing the ch-ch-ch-changes with each new reinvention.

Nonetheless, while Bowie’s 70s arguably beat most artists’ entire careers, it’s difficult to refute the belief that the period from February 1971 through to June 1972 was his most transformative, seeing as it did the creation of Bowie’s deathless alter-ego, Ziggy Stardust, and the release of the game-changing The Rise And Fall Of Ziggy Stardust And The Spiders From Mars album.

The new 5CD set Rock’n’Roll Star! immediately assumes significance among the best reissues of 2024, as it chronicles the recording of that iconic album, and captures the Beatlemania-esque fanaticism that erupted as Bowie’s seminal starman went global. Boasting no less than 29 previously unreleased tracks, among them outtakes, covers, early songwriting demos and live recordings, plus two books featuring newly-written sleevenotes and reproductions of Bowie’s personal Ziggy-era notebooks, this set is surely the definitive take on one of rock’s most pivotal albums.

Must hear: Lady Stardust (Alternate Take)

Buy the best reissues of 2024, and more, at the Dig! store.

Original article: 22 April 2024

Updated: 9 July 2024

More Like This

Best Eric Burdon And War Songs: 10 Funk, Rock And Soul Classics
List & Guides

Best Eric Burdon And War Songs: 10 Funk, Rock And Soul Classics

From summery slow jams to pleas for peace, the best Eric Burdon And War songs offer grooves for the feet and messages for the mind.

Best Trevor Horn Productions: 10 Pioneering Songs That Shaped Pop Music
List & Guides

Best Trevor Horn Productions: 10 Pioneering Songs That Shaped Pop Music

From Seal to Yes and Pet Shop Boys, the best Trevor Horn productions changed the pop landscape in the 80s and beyond.

Sign up to our newsletter

Be the first to hear about new releases, upcoming events, and more from Dig!

Sign Up