Release Date: 25 August 2017
Format: Boxed Set Vinyl
|The Verve Urban Hymns Limited Vinyl 6LP Box Set
Every now and again, the world of music throws up a record that is out of the ordinary, something in its timing, quality and spirit that just feels right. The Verve’s 1997 album Urban Hymns, released 29/9/97, was undoubtedly one such record. It captured the mood and spirit of the times with songs of an emotional and musical depth, songs that touched a raw nerve throughout the world and ensured that they would graduate from highly respected indie favourites with two critically lauded, modest-selling albums to their name, to a genuine [alt.] rock colossus in the latter half of 1997, before parting ways in 1999.
A certified classic, it is one of the 20 biggest-selling albums ever in the UK (now 11 times platinum) and has sold over ten million copies worldwide.
The album spawned four highly successful singles – led by the epoch-making worldwide smash Bitter Sweet Symphony and the UK No. 1 The Drugs Don’t Work - and 20 years on the strength of the writing, the quality of the ensemble playing and the clever production ensure that the album sounds as riveting as ever.
To mark the anniversary, Virgin/USM are reissuing a remastered version of the album with a bounty of bonus material - all of the accompanying b-sides (and The Verve’s b-sides were something special) plus around three hours of powerful, previously unreleased live material, including the full triumphant May 1998 hometown show in front of around 35,000 fans at Haigh Hall, Wigan (on both CD and DVD).
The remastering and mixing work has been undertaken by Urban Hymns’ original co-producer Chris Potter and Metropolis’ Tony Cousins – as it was for the two super deluxe Verve reissues issued last year, A Storm In Heaven and A Northern Soul.
The DVD includes the documentary ‘The Video 96-98’, only ever available on VHS (outside of Malaysia, where it was issued as a VCD).
The deluxe packages also feature new interviews with the band and all physical releases draw on a vast array of previously unseen photography by Chris Floyd, who first travelled with The Verve on their US tour of 1994 and was granted unprecedented access during the making of Urban Hymns and beyond - up to and including the Haigh Hall show. His work brilliantly captured the band in the studio, on stage, backstage, during down time, on their video sets and tour bus.