In the ’90s, the Pumpkins were one of the most prolific bands. To follow up a double album, the band put out a 5-disc b-side collection. That’s pretty hardcore in a pre-Ryan Adams era of music. Though the Pumpkins took a hiatus through most of the ’00s, they made a big comeback in the teens re-releasing of all things…their ’90s of material. While other bands may take years in between reissues (I’m looking at you Pavement). The Pumpkins have been turning out reissues quicker than Fast and the Furious sequels. This past week saw the release of the Pumpkin fan favorite Aeroplane Flies High. A 5-CD EP set of b-sides, covers, and who the hell know what the “Pistachio Medley” was. Expanded from 33 to 104 tracks, the Pumpkins don’t shy away from giving their fans their money’s worth like some bands that will re-issue an album with one bonus demo or live track. This is the fifth album in the Pumpkins re-issue series and though the packaging may be the strongest of the series, it’s probably one of the weakest when it comes to content. That’s saying something when their release with 70 extra tracks is the weakest of the re-releases. So far Pisces Iscariot has set the bar for the re-releases. With a spot-on second disc of rare unreleased tracks, where every song was winner, it’s by far the package that encourages the most re-listens. Also, it bares the best DVD show of any of the releases, featuring a live show with an entire slate of unreleased songs. Gish and Siamese Dream hold up as strong contenders both with solid discs or rare tracks and DVDs with stellar live shows. Gish‘s DVD is slightly better because Corgan has yet to begin evolving into Jesus-mode. Mellon Collie seemed like it would be the best of the bunch but was the biggest let down so far. Though it is packed with 3-discs of alternate takes (most which sound a lot like the originals) and rare tracks (most are instrumentals), there are very few true gems in the package. This makes it increasing frustrating due to the re-issue’s hefty $130 price tag. That’s a lot of money for some alternate takes and instrumentals, especially when the package comes in a cumbersome vinyl-sized box set that doesn’t include any vinyl! I mean honestly, where the heck am I supposed to store this? Also, they included b-sides that would be included on the Aeroplane box. What’s the point of that? The Aeroplane box set is much bigger and much more concise and structured with the instrumentals on one CD, the alternate tracks on another, and the live tracks on their own. It’s also $40 less for 6 CDs versus 5. That’s still a lot but at least I feel like I’m getting my money’s worth.
Here’s a look back at the best new tracks we’ve heard on the expanded editions.
Here are the 11 Best Smashing Pumpkins Reissues Rare Tracks:
- Siamese Dream (Siamese Dream Bonus)
- There It Goes (Pisces Iscariot Bonus)
- Speed (Mellon Collie Bonus)
- My Dahlia (Pisces Iscariot Bonus)
- Methusela (Mellon Collie Bonus)
- STP (Siamese Dream Bonus)
- Crawl (Pisces Iscariot Bonus)
- Jesus Loves His Babies (Pisces Iscariot Bonus)
- Moleasskiss (Siamese Dream Bonus)
- One and Two (Mellon Collie Bonus)
- Translucent (Pisces Iscariot Bonus)
Buy The Smashing Pumpkins Deluxe Edition of Aeroplane Flies High…now!