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The Plough & The Stars is a retrospective of New Jersey band Speed The Plough’s 30 year musical career. Speed the Plough originally emerged from Feelies offshoot the Trypes, a collective of like-minded friends and family who sewed together a sonic quilt that was equal parts homespun and forward thinking. The Plough & The Stars collection includes a total of 38 songs: a 17-track “Best Of” CD drawn from the band’s first four albums; a bonus split 12” LP with six new songs and five live tracks from a 1993 radio appearance; plus download card giving access to ten additional tracks as well as all the other audio from the collection. The set also comes with a 16-page booklet. The Plough & The Stars is released by venerable Hoboken-based label Bar/None in a limited edition of 500 copies.

The tracks on the "Best Of" CD were selected based on fan input, and stem from the group’s first four albums on East Side Digital, originally released between 1989 and 1995: Speed the Plough, Wonder Wheel, Mason’s Box and Marina. Past band members who appear on these numbers include the Feelies’ Brenda Sauter (bass/vocals), Stanley Demeski (drums) and Bill Million (guitar/production). Special guests include banjo master Tony Trishka, Mountain Stage guitarist Michael Lipton and former Blood Oranges mandolinist Jimmy Ryan, among many others.


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The bonus split 12” vinyl features Tag Sale, six brand new songs, on one side with five live songs performed on Nick Hill’s “Live Music Faucet” show on WFMU in 1993 on the flip side. Named Tag Sale because most of the songs end with a little something extra, these new recordings feature the lush array of woodwinds, percussion and vocal harmonies associated with the group’s classic style as well as a gorgeous string trio on "Labyrinth." The new studio recordings mark a return to the pastoral sound of Mason's Box and Wonder Wheel. They also mark the STP songwriting debut of seconnd generation member, Mike Baumgartner, who penned the instrumental "Ballad of Peggy Oki" and co-wrote two other songs with dad John.

The download card gives access to all the music mentioned above plus 10 additional live songs from their appearances on NPR’s Mountain Stage, and NY-area club appearances as well as an interactive version of the booklet, including links to videos and still more songs!

Also included is a deluxe 16-page booklet chock full of photos and reminiscences.



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