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Published on July 12th, 2013 | by Brent Chittenden

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Top Ten Unreleased Albums In New Rock

By Brent Chittenden

When I first came up with the idea for this list, I was worried there might not be enough “unreleased” albums to make a list of ten. In fact I was worried I was going to have to make every even numbered entry a Prince reference. I can’t say it officially but in terms of unreleased material, Prince has to lead the pack in volume. You know how we’ve gotten new Tupac albums for years after he died? Well I think it’s a very safe bet that my great grandkids will be hearing never released Prince material.

I tried to stay fairly modern with this list so no Beatles or Stones or Beach Boys (only one classic rocker is included this time) but I think there’s a lot of cool stories in here. Check it out, the Top Ten Unreleased Albums In New Rock!

10) Kurt Cobain – unreleased solo album

Now, this is at number 10 just due to the fact that I don’t think it exists. During my internet hunt for information on the albums on this list, the suggestion that there is a Cobain solo album out there somewhere. For the alternative generation, this would be a great find. The truth however is, I don’t think it’s real. I’m not a lawyer but if it did exist, this would not be material owned by Nirvana and with all her legal and money woes, Courtney would have released it or at the very least out right stated that it existed…. but it’s kind of nice to think about, isn’t it?

9) Neil Young – Homegrown

… okay so one classic rock artist but I have my reasons. The story goes that Neil had recorded two albums. He played them both at a party for some friends and decided that Homegrown was a bit of a downer. The other album, Tonight’s The Night, was a stronger album and it was released instead. It’s an album that has influenced a huge amount of today’s artists like Dallas Green’s City and Colour. So… it makes you wonder what Homegrown would have done? It’s never been released in it’s entirety, officially or bootleg and supposedly it’s being reconstructed for Neil’s second archive box set.

8) David Bowie – Toy

Not sure what the story is here and to be fair, unreleased may be stretching it a little. Bowie worked on and recorded an album called Toy in 2001. The process worked so well that it lead directly to Bowie recording the Heathen album. Chunks of this album has been seen since as re-titled songs, b-sides to singles from Heathen, and an internet leak of the full album but we have yet to see an official version of it.

7) The KLF – The Black Room

An album that never happened but if it had, may have changed some things. The KLF were kind of a techno or acid house group that had a pretty solid album hit with their album, The White Room. The follow up (The Black Room) was said to be a lot heavier and contained collaborations with grindcore band Extreme Noise Terror. Keep in mind, this would have been around 1992, before The Prodigy brought a heavier electronic sound to the mainstream public. Would this have done it? I’m not so sure but it certainly was different.

6) Weezer – Songs From The Black Hole

The follow up to The Blue album was supposed to be kind of a space opera. An album where everything flowed into one another. Then, Rivers Cuomo went to Harvard and his focus changed and the space opera was dropped. Some of the songs did make it on to Pinkerton (the album that replaced SFTBH) but they were apparently re-worked.

5) Deftones – Eros

Originally aiming for a 2008 release, Eros was supposed to be the album where the Deftones came back together. Their previous two albums had been made with a lot of turmoil amongst band members and they had begun to patch up differences and record as a band again. Unfortunately in the midst of this, bassist Chi Cheng was in a car accident that left him in a coma and hospital ridden until his death earlier this year. Not wanting to work on the album without their friend, the Deftones recorded another album (Diamond Eyes) with (at the time) fill in bassist Sergio Vega. At this point the band has said they will release the album at some point as a tribute to their late friend but for now there are these performances of the song “Melanie” (the working title).

4) Green Day – Cigarettes and Valentines

This sits lower on the list just because this may have been released… maybe. Cigarettes and Valentines was going to be Green Day’s follow up to 2000′s Warning. They recorded about twenty or so songs… and then the master tapes were stolen. The band talked with the producer and decided that it wasn’t their best work and they started from scratch and recorded American Idiot which completely revitalized their career. Cigarettes was no more… or was it? A band on Billie Joe Armstrong’s record label called The Network released an album called Money Money 2020 in 2003. The theory is that the band is Green Day (very probable) and that Money Money 2020 is a version of Cigarettes and Valentines (maybe). The band has denied this of course but it is possible.

3) Tool & Rage Against The Machine – Revolution

Not an album but this is so cool and had so much potential, I had to include it. In 1993, a number of alternative bands teamed up with their hip hop counterparts for the soundtrack to the film Judgement Night. Tool and Rage got together and put together this song. It didn’t live up to either band’s expectations so it was never submitted… which is a shame because personally I think it’s pretty kick ass, and this is just a rough demo version. Speaking of Rage…

2) Zack de la Roch – solo albums (yes, two of them)

When Rage Against The Machine broke up, It kind of sounded like Zack was going to be the first of the bunch out of the gate with new material. First he worked on album with guys like Roni Size, Questlove, El-P and DJ Shadow. And it was scrapped. Then Zack hooked up with Trent Reznor and put together an album of about twenty tracks. Reznor says that they were “excellent” but that would probably not see the light of day due to Zack not being ready to do an album. Zack himself seems to think the album had great qualities but his portion was kind of going through the motions. We did get a glimpse of the Reznor project though with the song We Want It All that found it’s way to the Songs and Artists That Inspired Farenheit 9/11 and March of Death with DJ Shadow.

1) Tapeworm – untitled album

Tapeworm was a side project of Trent Reznor’s and NIN live band members Charlie Clouser and Danny Lohner. The idea was that instead of just Trent working by himself, this would be more a band mentality. And there was a lot of guest collaborators. Maynard James Keenan from Tool was a part of it as was Atticus Ross and Josh Freese and Phil Anselmo from Pantera and a number of other names you’d recognise. So what happened? According to Trent, it just wasn’t very good, especially considering who was involved. The project was shelved and the closest we’ve gotten to it is the A Perfect Circle track (in the above video), Passive, which is a re-working of a Tapeworm track called Vacant. Keenan also released another re-working called Potions as part of his Pucifer project.

And there is a ton more where these came from. Does anyone have any favourites? Heard any rumors about shelved albums? Please share them in the comment section below!

 

 

 

 

 

 


About the Author

Brent Chittenden is a freelance writer with a gift for the geek. Currently a writer with A Journal Of Musical Things and Geek Hard Radio, he's also written for Comic Book Daily, Explore Music and a dozen other places. You can find out more at www.facebook.com/bcchittenden



2 Responses to Top Ten Unreleased Albums In New Rock

  1. PSamson says:

    Great list… The one I'm most curious about though is the Massive Attack and Radiohead collaboration. Rumour was that back in 1997, Radiohead had asked Massive Attack to remix in its entirety OK Computer. The project was later shelved. I often wonder what it would have sounded like…

    http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1431902/radiohead-meets-massive-attack.jhtml
    http://www.mtv.com/news/articles/1427202/massive-attack-drops-plans-remix-radiohead-teams-with-cocteau-twins.jhtml

  2. markosaar says:

    Two I can think of… first, I recall Alan telling the story of Lee Mavers throwing the La's follow-up's master tapes into the fireplace. Guess we'll never hear that.

    But more amazingly, PWEI recorded a follow-up to Dos Dedos Mis Amigos which was lost at Nothing Records when the band imploded. It's recently been rediscovered however and cleared to be released as a bonus on the Dos Dedos re-issue: [pweination.com]

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