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For anyone who swears by the original mono versions of the Beatles catalog you are in for a treat. This month will see the release of a vinyl box set containing official remasters of the band’s mono albums, and we have one that you can win. This is the same collection of albums as the Beatles In Mono CD collection that was released in 2009, however extra care has been taken for the move to vinyl. The remasters were designed to be as authentic as possible by not using digital equipment. The new records were cut by engineer Sean Magee in the Abbey Road Studios using the same technology and machines from the 1960s. This set includes a 108-page book featuring new essays about the albums and a detailed mastering history by Kevin Howlett. All together the set would normally run you $375 dollars before shipping. Below you can watch a video about the mastering process and read what albums are included along with our sweepstakes entry instructions.

Of all the bands that emerged from the British post-punk scene, XTC has been one of the hardest to pin down. You could peg them as an ’80s dinosaur whose most recognizable tracks pop up on cut-rate compilations of new wave or classic alternative rock. Or they could slot into an adult alternative playlist, to be heard between semi-hits by Natalie Merchant and Suzanne Vega on a Pandora playlist. Or they could simply be relegated to the bargain bin of your local used CD shop, copies of their later albums collecting dust next to a dozen copies of R.E.M.’s Monster.

We decided on this week’s 5 Best Songs only after a fairly brutal culling process: No question, Mastodon, Mr. Twin Sister, EMA, Beach Slang, and John Southworth deserved to be on here, and there were numerous others that made a strong case for themselves, too. But what eventually made it did so virtually unanimously — there was no argument whatsoever among Team Stereogum that each of these songs had to be on this list. You guys, though? You might argue. Check out the list below, and refute in the comments.


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