If I can get personal for a second, Spiderland is one of the catalysts for my interest in music in the first place. It came out of nowhere for me, sounded like nothing I’d ever heard, and became the spark that fueled my passion for experimental music. The only band poster I keep at the Stereogum office is a very beaten-up Slint poster that I found in a used copy of Tweez in high school. Simply put, I really don’t think I would be doing what I do if it wasn’t for this band.
Today, Touch & Go Records announced a massive box-set reissue of Spiderland by Slint, and while 2014 might not be a noteworthy anniversary for the album, this is an extremely important year for this to happen. This year marks the 20th anniversary of the coinage of the term “post-rock,” which first appeared in an article in the experimental music magazine The Wire. It’s a term that some roll their eyes at these days, but in its earliest use, it was simply a struggling attempt to describe a movement of music for which people seemed to lack the vocabulary. Released in 1991, Spiderland predates the term, but was one of its essential catalysts (along with one other album, but that’s another story for another time.) Aside from being one of the absolute best albums of the ’90s, it’s made all the more legendary because the band, despite the occasional live show, has never followed the record up.
The CD and vinyl box set, which you can pre-order here, is in a limited edition run of 3,184 copies (3,183 now since I dropped the $150 for this thing on the spot) and is packed with a fair amount of unreleased material including alternate-take, demos, and a few of the post-Spiderland (and pre-breakup) songs in progress selected by the band that never came to be. It also comes with a 100+ page booklet with photos, a forward by Will Oldham (who took the ominous photograph that became the iconic album cover), a feature-length documentary by Lance Bangs, and more, which you can see listed in the full specs — and watch a trailer for the album — below.
– Spiderland, remastered from the original analog master tapes by Bob Weston and pressed on 180 gram vinyl
– Fourteen previously unreleased outtakes & demos personally selected by Slint, mastered by Bob Weston, and pressed on two 180 gram vinyl albums
– 104 page book with over 100 never-before-seen photos documenting Slint’s entire history, as well as lyrics to the songs on Spiderland, and a forward by Will Oldham
– Remastered Spiderland on one CD, and the 14 bonus songs on a second CD
– Breadcrumb Trail, a brand new, never-before-seen, 90 minute DVD documentary about Slint and the making of Spiderland; directed by Lance Bangs
– Packaging concept and design by Louisville native Jeremy deVine (of Temporary Residence fame)
– Pre-order the Spiderland Box Set before March 8, 2014 and receive a free T-Shirt created from the recently discovered silk screen Slint used to hand print their one & only 1989 tour T-shirt. These shirts will only be available with box set pre-orders on this site. They will not be sold separately or in stores.
The Spiderland reissue is due 4/15 via Touch & Go.