| March 29, 2011 | Comments (1,133)

In the beginning in 1991, Pearl Jam’s debut CD “Ten” catapulted the little-known Seattle-based band into superstardom. Nine studio CDs, hundreds of unique live performances and nearly 300 concert bootleg releases later, the band continue to be critically acclaimed and commercially successful — with over 60 million CDs sold worldwide. Over the past twenty years, Pearl Jam has remained a major force in rock and roll, as much for its aggressive loyalty to its social and political principles and restless experimentation as for its rock radio staples and bestselling CDs.

Now, Epic Records and Legacy Recordings celebrate Pearl Jam’s 20th anniversary with the release of newly restored and expanded editions of Pearl Jam’s massively popular second and third CDs, 1993′s “Vs.” and 1994′s “Vitalogy”.

I have listened to it these CDs and they are a must for any Pearl Jam fan to own!

Originally released in 1993, “Vs.”, Pearl Jam’s sophomore effort faced the daunting challenge of following the success of “Ten”. Shattering all expectations, “Vs.” rolled into its first of five weeks atop the Billboard 200 at #1 with the highest first week’s sales (more than 950,000 copies) in music history; a record it would hold for the next five years.

Released in December 1994, Pearl Jam’s third studio CD, “Vitalogy” entered the Billboard 200 at #1, second only to “Vs.” as the fastest-selling CD in chart history at that time.

Each CD will each be available in Definitive Legacy Editions, Deluxe Editions and together in a Limited Edition Collector’s Boxed Set starting today with the option of CD or digital files. Both CDs will also be released in new commemorative, vinyl editions on April 12th in time for Record Store Day 2011 on April 16th.

The definitive Legacy edition of “Vs.” includes three bonus tracks recorded by Brendan O’Brien at The Site studio during the “Vs.” sessions:  A previously unreleased acoustic version of “Hold On”; “Cready Stomp” – a previously unreleased studio outtake; And the band’s cover of Victoria Williams’ “Crazy Mary”.

The definitive Legacy edition of “Vitalogy” includes three bonus tracks: The previously unreleased guitar/organ-only mix of “Betterman”; A previously unreleased alternate take of “Corduroy”; And a previously unreleased demo version of “Nothingman”.

Deluxe Edition CD version – “Vs.” and “Vitalogy” will be available together in a (3) CD deluxe edition which includes: The Legacy edition of each CD; A copy of “Live at the Orpheum Theater”, Boston, April 12, 1994. A special performance recorded at the tail end of the mythic “Vs.” tour, Live at the Orpheum Theater showcases a dream set list created especially by the Pearl Jam crew and has for years been one of the most sought-after recordings among serious aficionados.

“Vs.” and “Vitalogy”  Limited Edition Collector’s Boxed Set (5 LPs, 3 CDs, 1 Cassette, Digital Download, Composition Notebook, Memorabilia-filled Envelope) will be available together in a limited edition collector’s boxed set that includes 59 unique Pearl Jam performances on three CDs, five LPs and one cassette in addition to a number of guest artist performances. The Limited Edition Boxed set is only available for sale at their website.

In fact, 2011 will be a yearlong celebration of Pearl Jam’s rich twenty-year history. The anniversary festivities kicked off in January with the release of a new live compilation CD, “Live on Ten Legs”. Of course, the expanded reissues of “Vs.” and “Vitalogy” are now available. Late summer brings a Pearl Jam 20th anniversary destination weekend bash followed by the fall release of Cameron Crowe’s film, “Pearl Jam Twenty”, along with an accompanying book and soundtrack CD. Interspersed between these PJ20 highlights will be a number of additional special events and new, unexpected releases.

To keep up with all the events, please visit the Pearl Jam website.


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Category: Reviews