Music collectors who have been buying albums since the 1960s and 1970s have enjoyed a good thirty five years run of generous box sets released by their favorite artists during the CD era. Staring in the late 1980s, record companies had a great run releasing many classic rock band’s entire catalogs on lavish box sets that would feature every studio album and more. As the CD era was still pretty much in its infancy, the release of those multiple album box sets would give fans a chance to collect all of a bands albums on CD for the first time as many fans had not yet replaced all their albums on CD. Included in these box sets were often huge table top sized books along with other material like postcards, posters stickers and more.
Bands like Led Zeppelin and Pink Floyd enjoyed great success with their box sets that featured all their studio albums. Over time, new box sets would be released that would cover live albums, unreleased material and demos all continuing an overall trend of covering a band’s career. Some just picked individual songs and placed them on three or four CD box sets like Eric Clapton’s Crossroads or The Allman Brothers Dreams. Many fans loved these box sets and collectors always gobbled them up. The release of these career spanning box sets went on for a long time as CD sales continued to flourish. However, after over thirty five years of record companies releasing everything in the vaults, the well has begun to run a little dry.
Record companies can’t keep releasing career defining box sets over and over again. How many times can they release the Led Zeppelin or Beatles catalogue in remastered versions? In recent years we have seen the trend start to turn to the release of deluxe box sets based on individual albums instead. 2021 seems to be the year in which most of the box sets released were based on that concept. These new box sets seem to be designed for the hardcore fans as the general public probably has no interests in buying multiple cd sets of an individual albums just to get all the demos, unreleased tracks, handwritten lyric sheets or whatever the record companies decide to add to the set. Even some of these bands loyal followers may not opt to purchase these extreme box sets. Yet, record companies know the die hards will and if there is anything that is left of a culture that no longer buys material products, it’s the die hards and complete collectors that most certainly will.
This New Music Box Sets For Christmas 2021 article will focus on just presenting some of the most popular releases based on individual albums that have been released for the 2021 Holiday season. Most of them are based on Anniversary issues like the 20th 30th, 40th and 50th years anniversary of an album’s release. It’s hard to believe that we are actually celebrating 30th anniversary issues of albums from the grunge era. Talk about feeling old.
All album photos are Amazon links..
# 10 – Rolling Stones – Tattoo You
The Rolling Stones legendary album Tattoo You was first released in 1981. The Rolling Stones have released the 40th anniversary issue in a Super Deluxe 4CD Box set. There are numerous versions of the 40th anniversary issue being released from a single remastered disc to this lavish Super Deluxe 4CD Box set which is the ultimate version of this album. The Super Deluxe 4CD Box set includes the original album in its remastered format a Lost & Found disc filled with nine previously unreleased songs, plus a two CD live set from Wembley Stadium in 1982. Of course there is the traditional table top book in its 124 page glory. For a more detailed review of this album check out our Tattoo You Review.
# 9 – Frank Zappa – 200 Motels Soundtrack 50th Anniversary
The 50 Anniversary editions of Frank Zappa’s 200 Motels gets the ultimate box set treatment with ist release on December 17th 2021. Talk about last minute Christmas Shopping for Zappa fans. This is 6 CD Set that retails for $149.00. For that price you also get a movie poster, a keychain, and a do not disturb hotel door hanger sign from 200 Motels.
# 8- Nirvana – Nevermind
The album and band that changed the direction of music for a decade gets the ultimate box set treatment. Nirvana’s Nevermind has been released in Super Deluxe 8LP box sets that includes the original album on vinyl along with a series of lives concerts all on vinyl. It also includes a 40 page hardcover book. Retail price is around $250.00
# 7 – Laura Nyro American Dreamer Box Set
While this box sets is not actually focused on just one album, its releases is significant as many of these original Laura Nyro albums have been out of print for a long time. However it’s very expensive for just a catalog box set at $269.00. Yes we know it’s not just based on one album but we love Laura Nyro and we wanted to show this one off….
# 6 – Kiss – Destroyer 4 CD Box Set
Kiss fans will never have a shortage of box sets or merchandise to buy from their favorite band. This one celebrates the 45th Anniversary release of their legendary Destroyer album. Check out our review on this album…. Destroyer Review
# 5 – The Who Sell Out 2 Singles
The Who is another band that are no strangers to box sets. The group has released a 5 Cd box set in tribute their The Who Sell Out album. This one contains 112 tracks with forty six of them being unreleased.
# 4 – The Band – Cahoots 50th Anniversary
Everyone loved the Band. It’s hard to believe it’s been 50 years since this album was released. The 50th Anniversary of Cahoots includes a new remix and remaster of the original album. Also in the set is a live concert from the Olympia Theatre in Paris recorded in 1971.
# 3 – Pat Metheny – Road to the Sun Limited Deluxe
It may not be rock but its breathing guitar work that is almost out of this world. Any true music fan will appreciate this brilliant box set by the legendary Pat Metheny based on his 2021 album Road To The Sun.
# 2 – The Beatles – Let It Be Super Deluxe Box Set
We figure it would be best to include the Beatles and yet another reissue of a classic Beatles album. This one comes in 4 CDs and an Ep featuring twenty seven tracks from the Let It Be Sessions that fans have never heard before. An audio Blu Ray is also included.
# 1 – Metallica – The Black Album Deluxe Box Set
Metallica has released an amazing box set that centers on the Black Album. It’s not cheap at $219.o0 but it does probably offer the best bang for your back compared to all the other box sets. This one houses the original album remastered on 180-gram double LP and a CD. It also includes 14 CDs and three live Lps and Six DVDs. There is also a 120 page hardcover book. The box set is also numbered ensuring collectability. This is our pick for the best box set of 2021.