Has it been almost half a year since we mentioned the revived Altered Images? Well, we actually knew about the pre-release of the album for order several months ago, but since it will be released on August 26th of 2022, I thought, “why rush things?” The album has a name, if not a final face.
The album is called “Mascara Streakz,” and that’s about all we can be sure of this early on. The song titles are unknown and even the cover mockup as shown above and on their webstore warns us that “final artwork may differ from this image.” So why should we buy it, apart from an abiding love for all things Altered Images dating back 41 years? For a start, the album packages that are being presold on their webstore are very attractively priced with generous cost-to-feature ratios! Here’s what we can pre-order right now.
- CD autographed by Clare Grogan – £10/€12/$14
- Cassette autographed by Clare Grogan – £7/€9/$10
- Color vinyl LP £25/€30/$34
- CD/Cassette/Bonus Acoustic CD EP [all autographed by Clare Grogan] – £15/€18/$20
- CD/Cassette/Bonus Acoustic CD EP [all autographed by Clare Grogan]/Color vinyl LP – £40/€47/$54
It sort of makes sense that Altered Images would be riding the cassette nostalgia wave, seeing as how the band had one of the earliest UK cassette singles back in 1981 with “Dead Pop Stars.” I’m more impressed with how all formats [apart from the LP] will be autographed by the obviously game Ms. Grogan. But that sounds like a recipe for carpal tunnel syndrome in the making! I’m taking a wild guess here but the LP being the only format not autographed and its release date still five months away, probably have everything to do with the getting-longer-by-the-day lead times on LP production. Ms. Grogan might even have all of the cassettes and CDs in hand right now, signing a relaxing 20 per day in her spare moments during the long LP lead time. The whole campaign is probably waiting for that LP and it will ship [hopefully in time for the planned release date] and then it’s “bombs away” for “Mascara Streakz!”
I love that the DLX CD edition comes with a bonus disc of newly recorded Altered Images acoustic versions of a few of their big hits. And let’s be frank, I really like that the pricing for all of this is all surprisingly modest! Only the LP is close to pricey, and the bundles are generous to a fault! Even the all-in-one gives four formats [three autographed] for a can’t complain, musn’t grumble $54. Even so, I’ve got that $20 three format bundle in my sights, even though I could care less about any cassette, and I actually have a nice working deck! If you need to lock in your purchase of the welcome return of Altered Images, then you know what to do. DJ hit that button!
Re: Vinyl fabrication – the Soft Cell / Pet Shop Boys Collaboration due this month: vinyl copies available from November 2022…….. – CD’s available immediately.
Fred – I knew it! This whole vinyl bubble is poised to pop eventually, right? How much more of this can we take? The new Blow Monkeys album was ‘thankfully’ available as a DL/CD back in September and the word came this morning that the LP had finally arrived and was being posted this week.
…Wait, Soft Cell/Pet Shop Boys collaboration??!!!
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Don’t bother with the SC/PSB – it’s DREADFUL!
Gavin – Apart from trance mixes of 28 years ago, I’ve never heard anything from PSB I’d call DREADFUL… hmmm. I see the digital single is out today and the song is from the upcoming Soft Cell opus.
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hi mr monk,
i like it. its similar to ‘always on my mind’. an upbeat, catchy chorus
filled song. not expecting too much, but the remixes should be good too.
physical releases will be in the fall.
negative1ne – I will have to try to sample the wares [if I can remember to do that].
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I saw Altered Images in Brighton in December – Clare sounded wonderful, and the one new song they played was pretty decent. Must remember to preorder the Mascara Streakz CD plus acoustic disc (plus whatever useless format I’m forced to buy for the bundle!). Meanwhile, to correct something said above – the Soft Cell/PSB collaboration is not available til November even on CD single, not just vinyl. Annoying! And while all opinions are valid, I must counter the one calling Purple Zone dreadful. I think it’s a wonderfully lovely pop song which sounds like fun upbeat Pet Shop Boys (hints of Always on My Mind, Go West, and others) with a great Marc Almond guest vocal. It’s not a world changer, but hardly any pop songs are!
Thanks for the head’s up. I’ve just ordered the CD/Cassette/Acoustic CD combo. I’m sure its a mistake but after ordering it stated that the CD and cassette will be released on 26th August but the acoustic CD on 22nd April!
Richard Anvil – You’re right. That’s got to be a mistake! But it is nice ordering things months in advance. When I do I can stop worrying about what I haven’t bought yet; it just comes and…yay! If you’re me, you do a lot of worrying about things you haven’t bought yet!
I also have ordered the CD/Cassette/Acoustic CD combo. At this point I don’t have anything other than the Epic compilation CD and a single or two, but I liked those singles enough that the thought of Clare Grogan autographs was something I simply could not pass by, especially given, as you noted, the reasonable cost.
Big Mark – At those prices, they are practically paying fans to buy the bundles!
Mascara Streakz arrived in NYC today. Will try to listen tomorrow
schwekno – Mine shipped on Friday, so it will take a while still on this end. Do report back with your findings! Each of the three extant albums were very different from each other ala ABC ★★★ and Spandau Ballet. So maybe we’ll get a fourth re-invention?
I’m still waiting for mine, though I have received the shipping notification!
My Mascara Streakz bundle has arrived. I have listened twice today, and yea verily, it is better than anyone had any right to expect! Thoroughly wonderful, and the EP of new versions of old tracks is a worthwhile companion piece. My favorite after a couple of listens is “Changing My Luck”. Big fun!!
Big Mark – I’ve been listening heavily for the last week, and I’ll drop the strong hint now: look for an Altered Images Rock G.P.A. starting next week! I think Schwenko’s mileage has varied from ours, so hopefully he’ll chime in with his thoughts.