Sound System (album)

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Sound System
Clashsoundsystem.jpg
Box set by The Clash
Released9 September 2013 (2013-09-09)
Recorded1977–1982
GenrePunk rock
LabelSony Legacy
ProducerThe Clash, Micky Foote, Sandy Pearlman, Bill Price, Guy Stevens, Jose Unidos, Lee "Scratch" Perry, Julian Temple, Don Letts
The Clash compilations and lives chronology
Live at Shea Stadium
(2008)
Sound System
(2013)
The Clash Hits Back
(2013)

Sound System is a box set collection by The Clash released in September 2013.[1][2] The box contains the band's studio albums (minus their final album; Cut the Crap) newly re-mastered by Mick Jones, with a further three discs featuring demos, non-album singles, rarities and B-sides, a DVD with previously unseen footage by both Don Letts and Julien Temple, original promo videos and live footage, plus an owner's manual booklet, reprints of the band's original 'Armagideon Times' fanzine and merchandise including dog tags, badges, stickers and a poster. The boom box packaging was designed by Paul Simonon. The set was released simultaneously with 5 Album Studio Set, which contains only the five studio albums, and a greatest hits package titled The Clash Hits Back.

In a September 2013 interview, Mick Jones announced the box sets and hits package will be the final time he works on anything involving The Clash and their music. "I’m not even thinking about any more Clash releases. This is it for me, and I say that with an exclamation mark." Jones said.[3]

Remastering[edit]

Clash guitarist, Mick Jones, who oversaw the re-mastering said "The concept of the whole thing is best box set ever. Re-mastering'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 catalogue] was remastered in the 90s."

All the music has been remastered from the original tapes, Jones said. "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."

Bassist Simonon highlighted a guitar line on "Safe European Home", from the band's second album Give 'Em Enough Rope, saying he'd never even heard it before. "It's probably some session musician, while I was asleep," Jones joked.

Reception[edit]

Professional ratings
Aggregate scores
SourceRating
Metacritic96/100[4]
Review scores
SourceRating
Allmusic4.5/5 stars[5]
Filter90/100[6]
PopMatters7/10 stars[7]
Rolling Stone5/5 stars[8]
Spin9/10[9]
The Telegraph5/5 stars[10]
Under the Radar90/100[4]

PopMatters journalist J.C. Maçek III wrote "The initial interest may come in the fact that the packaging looks like a classic Boom Box emblazoned with “THE CLASH” in a military stencil with the overall box decorated in a Combat Rock reminiscent camouflage. This is definitely a visual treat for Clash fans to add to their mantle."[7]

Rob Sheffield of Rolling Stone said "It takes a band as myth-saturated as the Clash to live up to a career-summing box as ambitious as this one. But Joe Strummer and his crew of London gutter-punk romantics fit the bill."[8]

The Telegraph's Patrick Sawer wrote "The tracks, remastered by the band’s guitarist Mick Jones and Tim Young (who won a Grammy for his work on the Beatles 2006 ‘Love’ album), sound fresh as ever, crisper even. Jones, the official muso of the band, said that during the remastering process he discovered guitar lines he couldn’t remember and previously buried instrumental details certainly stand out – along with Strummer’s biting ad-libs."[10]

Track listing[edit]

All tracks written by Joe Strummer and Mick Jones, except where noted..

The Clash (UK Version) (1 CD)
No.TitleLead vocalsLength
1."Janie Jones"Strummer2:03
2."Remote Control"Jones, Strummer3:00
3."I'm So Bored with the U.S.A."Strummer2:25
4."White Riot"Strummer1:56
5."Hate & War"Jones, Strummer2:05
6."What's My Name?" (written by Strummer, Jones, Keith Levene)Strummer1:40
7."Deny"Strummer3:03
8."London's Burning"Strummer2:12
9."Career Opportunities"Strummer1:52
10."Cheat"Strummer2:06
11."Protex Blue"Jones1:42
12."Police & Thieves" (written by Junior Murvin, Lee Perry)Strummer6:01
13."48 Hours"Strummer1:34
14."Garageland"Strummer3:12

All tracks written by Joe Strummer and Mick Jones, except where noted. All lead vocals by Strummer, except "Stay Free" by Jones..

Give 'Em Enough Rope (1 CD)
No.TitleLength
1."Safe European Home"3:50
2."English Civil War" (Traditional; arranged by Jones and Strummer)2:35
3."Tommy Gun"3:17
4."Julie's Been Working for the Drug Squad"3:03
5."Last Gang in Town"5:14
6."Guns on the Roof" (written by Topper Headon, Jones, Paul Simonon, Strummer)3:15
7."Drug-Stabbing Time"3:43
8."Stay Free"3:40
9."Cheapskates"3:25
10."All the Young Punks (New Boots and Contracts)"4:55

All tracks written by Joe Strummer and Mick Jones, except where noted.

London Calling (2 CDs)
No.TitleLead vocalsLength
1."London Calling"Strummer3:19
2."Brand New Cadillac" (written and originally performed by Vince Taylor)Strummer2:09
3."Jimmy Jazz"Strummer3:52
4."Hateful"Strummer2:45
5."Rudie Can't Fail"Strummer, Jones3:26
6."Spanish Bombs"Strummer, Jones3:19
7."The Right Profile"Strummer3:56
8."Lost in the Supermarket"Jones3:47
9."Clampdown"Strummer, Jones3:49
10."The Guns of Brixton" (written by Paul Simonon)Simonon3:07
11."Wrong 'Em Boyo" (written by Clive Alphonso; originally performed by the Rulers; including Stagger Lee)Strummer3:10
12."Death or Glory"Strummer3:55
13."Koka Kola"Strummer1:46
14."The Card Cheat"Jones3:51
15."Lover's Rock"Strummer4:01
16."Four Horsemen"Strummer2:56
17."I'm Not Down"Jones3:00
18."Revolution Rock" (written by Jackie Edwards, Danny Ray; originally performed by Danny Ray and the Revolutionaries)Strummer5:37
19."Train in Vain"Jones3:09

All tracks written by The Clash, except where noted.

Sandinista! (3 CDs)
No.TitleLead vocalsLength
1."The Magnificent Seven"Joe Strummer5:28
2."Hitsville U.K."Mick Jones, Ellen Foley4:20
3."Junco Partner" ("writer, at present, unknown" on liner notes)Joe Strummer4:53
4."Ivan Meets G.I. Joe"Topper Headon3:05
5."The Leader"Joe Strummer1:41
6."Something About England"Mick Jones, Joe Strummer3:42
7."Rebel Waltz"Joe Strummer3:25
8."Look Here" (written by Mose Allison)Joe Strummer2:44
9."The Crooked Beat"Paul Simonon5:29
10."Somebody Got Murdered"Mick Jones3:34
11."One More Time" (written by The Clash and Mikey Dread)Joe Strummer3:32
12."One More Dub" (Dub version of "One More Time"; written by The Clash and Dread)Instrumental3:34
13."Lightning Strikes (Not Once but Twice)"Joe Strummer4:51
14."Up in Heaven (Not Only Here)"Mick Jones4:31
15."Corner Soul"Joe Strummer2:43
16."Let's Go Crazy"Joe Strummer4:25
17."If Music Could Talk" (written by The Clash and Dread)Joe Strummer4:36
18."The Sound of Sinners"Joe Strummer4:00
19."Police on My Back" (written by Eddy Grant; originally performed by The Equals)Mick Jones3:15
20."Midnight Log"Joe Strummer2:11
21."The Equaliser"Joe Strummer5:47
22."The Call Up"Joe Strummer5:25
23."Washington Bullets"Joe Strummer3:51
24."Broadway" (Features an Epilogue of "The Guns of Brixton" sung by Maria Gallagher)Joe Strummer5:45
25."Lose This Skin" (written by Tymon Dogg)Tymon Dogg5:07
26."Charlie Don't Surf"Joe Strummer, Mick Jones4:55
27."Mensforth Hill" ("Something About England" backwards with overdubs)Instrumental3:42
28."Junkie Slip"Joe Strummer2:48
29."Kingston Advice"Joe Strummer2:36
30."The Street Parade"Joe Strummer3:26
31."Version City"Joe Strummer4:23
32."Living in Fame" (Dub Version of "If Music Could Talk"; written by The Clash and Dread)Mikey Dread4:36
33."Silicone on Sapphire" (Dub version of "Washington Bullets")Joe Strummer4:32
34."Version Pardner" (Dub version of "Junco Partner")Joe Strummer5:22
35."Career Opportunities"Luke Gallagher, Ben Gallagher2:30
36."Shepherds Delight" (Dub Version of "Police & Thieves")Instrumental3:25

All tracks written by The Clash, except where noted.

Combat Rock (1 CD)
No.TitleLead vocalsLength
1."Know Your Rights" (Strummer/Jones)Joe Strummer3:39
2."Car Jamming"Joe Strummer3:58
3."Should I Stay or Should I Go"Mick Jones3:06
4."Rock the Casbah" (Headon/The Clash)Joe Strummer3:44
5."Red Angel Dragnet"Paul Simonon/Kosmo Vinyl3:48
6."Straight to Hell"Joe Strummer5:30
7."Overpowered by Funk"Joe Strummer/Futura 20004:55
8."Atom Tan"Mick Jones/Joe Strummer2:32
9."Sean Flynn"Joe Strummer4:30
10."Ghetto Defendant"Joe Strummer/Allen Ginsberg4:45
11."Inoculated City"Mick Jones2:43
12."Death Is a Star"Joe Strummer/Mick Jones3:13
Sound System extras (1 CD)
No.TitleLead vocalsLength
1.""White Riot"" (Single version)Joe Strummer1:59
2."1977"Joe Strummer1:40
3."Listen/Interviews"Instrumental11:08
4."Capital Radio"Joe Strummer2:08
5."London's Burning"Joe Strummer2:11
6."Complete Control"Joe Strummer3:13
7."City Of The Dead"Joe Strummer2:22
8."Clash City Rockers"Joe Strummer3:57
9."Jail Guitar Doors"Mick Jones3:04
10."(White Man) in Hammersmith Palais"Joe Strummer4:01
11."The Prisoner"Mick Jones3:03
12."1-2 Crush On You"Mick Jones2:59
13."Time Is Tight" (Booker T. Jones)Instrumental4:04
14."Pressure Drop" (Toots Hibbert)Joe Strummer3:25
15."I Fought The Law" (Sonny Curtis)Joe Strummer2:43
16."Groovy Times"Joe Strummer3:26
17."Gates of the West"Mick Jones3:25
18."Capital Radio Two"Joe Strummer3:20
19."Armagideon Time" (Willi Williams)Joe Strummer3:52
20."Bankrobber"Joe Strummer4:33
21."Rockers Galore...UK Tour" (written by The Clash and Mikey Dread)Mikey Dread4:39
Sound System extras disc 2 (1 CD)
No.TitleLead vocalsLength
1."The Magnificent Dance" (Dance remix of "The Magnificent Seven")Joe Strummer5:36
2."Midnight To Stevens"Joe Strummer4:36
3."Radio One"Mikey Dread6:17
4."Stop The World"Joe Strummer2:32
5."The Cool Out" (Dub version of "The Call Up")Instrumental3:53
6."This Is Radio Clash"Joe Strummer4:11
7."Radio Clash"Joe Strummer4:11
8."First Night Back in London"Joe Strummer2:59
9."Rock The Casbah" (Bob Clearmountain 12" mix)Joe Strummer3:42
10."Long Time Jerk"Joe Strummer5:08
11."The Beautiful People Are Ugly Too" (Combat Rock outtake; Previously Unreleased)Joe Strummer3:46
12."Idle In Kangaroo Court" (Combat Rock outtake listed as Kill Time; Previously Unreleased)Joe Strummer5:04
13."Ghetto Defendant" (Unedited version; Previously Unreleased)Joe Strummer/Allen Ginsberg6:13
14."Cool Confusion"Joe Strummer3:12
15."Sean Flynn" (Extended 'Marcus Music' version; Previously Unreleased)Joe Strummer7:22
16."Straight to Hell" (Extended unedited version from Clash on Broadway)Joe Strummer6:50
Sound System extras disc 3 (1 CD)
No.TitleLead vocalsLength
1."I'm So Bored With The U.S.A." (first ever recording session at Beaconsfield Film School 1976 produced by Julian Temple)Joe Strummer2:22
2."London's Burning" (first ever recording session at Beaconsfield Film School 1976 produced by Julian Temple (Previously Unreleased))Joe Strummer1:57
3."White Riot" (first ever recording session at Beaconsfield Film School 1976 produced by Julian Temple)Joe Strummer1:53
4."1977" (first ever recording session at Beaconsfield Film School 1976 produced by Julian Temple (Previously Unreleased))Joe Strummer1:50
5."Janie Jones" (second ever recording session November 1976, Polydor demos produced by Guy Stevens)Joe Strummer2:05
6."Career Opportunities" (second ever recording session November 1976, Polydor demos produced by Guy Stevens)Joe Strummer1:53
7."London's Burning" (second ever recording session November 1976, Polydor demos produced by Guy Stevens (Previously Unreleased))Joe Strummer1:58
8."1977" (second ever recording session November 1976, Polydor demos produced by Guy Stevens (Previously Unreleased))Joe Strummer1:40
9."White Riot" (second ever recording session November 1976, Polydor demos produced by Guy Stevens (Previously Unreleased))Joe Strummer1:58
10."City of the Dead" (Live at The Lyceum, London 28 December 1978)Joe Strummer2:55
11."Jail Guitar Doors" (Live at The Lyceum, London 28 December 1978 (Previously Unreleased))Mick Jones3:02
12."English Civil War" (Live at The Lyceum, London 28 December 1978)Joe Strummer2:31
13."Stay Free" (Live at The Lyceum, London 28 December 1978 (Previously Unreleased))Mick Jones3:27
14."Cheapskates" (Live at The Lyceum, London 28 December 1978 (Previously Unreleased))Joe Strummer3:12
15."I Fought the Law" (Live at The Lyceum, London 28 December 1978)Joe Strummer2:25

Tracks 10–15 from Sound System extras disc 3 are incorrectly credited as dating from December 1979.

All tracks written by Joe Strummer and Mick Jones, except where noted.

All tracks written by Joe Strummer and Mick Jones, except where noted.

Bonus DVD[edit]

Julien Temple Archive - 6:15

White Riot Promo Film (Promo and interview with Tony Parsons) - 7:11

  • 1977
  • White Riot
  • London's Burning

Sussex University '77 - 8:29 (previously unreleased)

  • I'm So Bored with the USA
  • Hate & War
  • Career Opportunities
  • Remote Control

Don Letts Super 8 Medley - 11:45

  • White Riot
  • Janie Jones
  • City of the Dead
  • Clash City Rockers
  • White Man in Hammersmith Palais
  • 1977

Clash on Broadway - 22:31

  • London Calling
  • This Is Radio Clash
  • The Magnificent Seven
  • The Guns of Brixton
  • Safe European Home

Promo Videos - 37:37

  • Tommy Gun
  • London Calling
  • Bankrobber
  • Clampdown (Live)
  • Train in Vain (Live)
  • The Call Up
  • Rock the Casbah
  • Radio Clash
  • Should I Stay or Should I Go (Live at Shea Stadium)
  • Career Opportunities (Live at Shea Stadium)

Personnel[edit]

Charts[edit]

Chart Peak
position
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Flanders)[11] 99
Belgian Albums (Ultratop Wallonia)[12] 99
UK Albums (OCC)[13] 53

References[edit]

  1. ^ Hann, Michael (21 May 2013). "The Clash to release new box set of remastered albums and rarities: Sound System set to be accompanied by best-of album, sequenced to copy a 1982 Brixton show". The Guardian.
  2. ^ "The Clash Announce Deluxe "Sound System" Box Set". Yahoo! Finance. 21 May 2013.
  3. ^ Greene, Andy (30 August 2013). "The Clash's Mick Jones: 'This Is It for Me': Expects the band's huge new box set to be last reissue project". Rolling Stone.
  4. ^ a b "Sound System". Metacritic. Retrieved 15 October 2013.
  5. ^ Erlewine, Stephen Thomas. Sound System at AllMusic. Retrieved 9 September 2013.
  6. ^ Martell, Nevin (10 September 2013). "The Clash: Sound System [box set] - SONY LEGACY". Filter.
  7. ^ a b Maçek III, J.C. (2013-09-20). "The Clash: Sound System". PopMatters.
  8. ^ a b Sheffield, Rob (10 September 2013). "The Clash: Sound System (Album Review)". Rolling Stone.
  9. ^ Aswad, Jem (10 September 2013). "New Clash, Sly & the Family Stone Box Sets Clean the Vaults, Test Fans' Boundaries". Spin.
  10. ^ a b Sawer, Patrick (21 July 2013). "The Clash Sound System, box set review". The Telegraph.
  11. ^ "Ultratop.be – The Clash – Sound System" (in Dutch). Hung Medien.
  12. ^ "Ultratop.be – The Clash – Sound System" (in French). Hung Medien.
  13. ^ "CLASH | Artist | Official Charts". UK Albums Chart.

External links[edit]