Smashing Pumpkins AEROPLANE FLIES HIGH

Smashing Pumpkins AEROPLANE FLIES HIGH

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Smashing Pumpkins includes: Billy Corgan, James Iha.
Additional personnel includes: Nina Gordon (vocals); Billy Corgan, Sr. (guitar); Eric Remschneider (cello); Keith Brown, Adam Schlesinger, Chris Martin (piano); Jimmy Flemion, Dennis Flemion.
Producers include: Billy Corgan, Flood, Alan Moulder, James Iha.
Engineers include: Flood, Jeff Moleski, The Mole.
Includes liner notes by Billy Corgan and James Iha.
Elaborately packaged in the kind of box in which people used to store vinyl singles, THE AEROPLANE FLIES HIGH is a set of 5 CDs, each containing a single from the Pumpkins' 1995 album MELLON COLLIE AND THE INFINITE SADNESS along with several B-sides. The singles are "Bullet With Butterfly Wings," "1979," "Zero," "Tonight, Tonight" and "Thirty Three," and the B-sides number 28, some of them previously unavailable in the U.S. THE AEROPLANE FLIES HIGH celebrates the chart hits while fetishizing those B-sides; they run the gamut of Pumpkindom, from stadium anthems and classic-rock ballads to metal thrashings and GISH-era indie rock.
The "Bullet With Butterfly Wings" disc alone offers five covers: The Cars' "You're All I've Got Tonight," Alice Cooper's "Clones (We're All)," the Cure's "A Night Like This," Missing Persons' "Destination Unknown" and Blondie's "Dreaming." These covers reveal the true heart of the Pumpkins, a band whose love of pop music is so unabashed and wide as to disallow any attempts to pigeonhole the band's sound. Some might consider this singles box-set business a bit of a self-indulgent vanity. But it's a perfect forum for the Pumpkins, who have always followed their whims and not commercial strictures.
The Aeroplane Flies High contains all five singles -- "Bullet With Butterfly Wings," "1979," "Zero," "Tonight, Tonight," "Thirty-Three" -- from Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness in a box set shaped like a 45 single carrying case from the '60s. Though the set contains all of the B-sides from the five singles, the running order isn't quite the same as the original releases; for example, in its original release, "Butterfly Wings" only had two B-sides, but it is augmented for covers of new wave artists like the Cars, Blondie, and Missing Persons. In total, the box set has more songs than Mellon Collie, and, by and large, the quality of the music is quite strong. Occasionally, Billy Corgan's prolificacy gets the better of him; there are a number of songs where his reach exceeds his grasp, and he doesn't quite come up with an engaging melody to match his detailed production. At other times, his musical experimentations catch hold, such as when he delves into jazz or orchestrated pop. Still, all of these pleasures are ones that are only of interest to dedicated Smashing Pumpkins fans who already know Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness inside and out. A casual fan will have a hard time sorting out the wheat from the chafe on The Aeroplane Flies High, but that work will be a pleasure for the diehards. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine

  • Released: 7/23/2013
  • Genre: Alternative
  • Rock & Pop: Pop
  • Format: Vinyl
  • RSD Release Date: DDD
  • Grunge: Grunge