For a whole lot of people, 1986's Kaleidoscope World was the introduction to the world of New Zealand's The Chills. Originally released on the wonderful Homestead Records here in the United States, the comp. was part of a wave of releases of bands on the Flying Nun label that made people like lifelong fans of both that label and that band.
It's worth remembering that while Brave Words (1987) was the first official full-length album from The Chills, Kaleidoscope World was the release where so many of us heard so many classics from this band. "Pink Frost", "I Love My Leather Jacket", "The Great Escape" and on and on, there are just so many durable songs from the Chills back-catalogue here that one can easily make the case for this compilation being an absolutely essential purchase, and certainly an equal to that official first album (Brave Words). Originally released at a shorter length, Kaleidoscope World has now been expanded to 24 tracks on this upcoming Flying Nun vinyl and CD reissue which I'm happy to report will be released in August.
The new track listing for Kaleidoscope World:
1. "Kaleidoscope World"
2. "Satin Doll"
3. "Frantic Drift"
4. "Rolling Moon"
6. "Flame Thrower"
7. "Pink Frost"
8. "Purple Girl"
9. "This Is The Way"
10. "Never Never Go"
11. "Don't Even Know Her Name"
12. "Bee Bah Bee Bah Bee Boe"
13. "Whole Weird World"
14. "Dream By Dream"
16. "Hidden Bay"
17. "I Love My Leather Jacket"
18. "The Great Escape"
19. "Oncoming Day (Early Version)"
20. "Dan Destiny and The Silver Dawn (Unplugged)"
21. "Martyns Doctor Told Me"
22. "I’ll Only See You Alone Again"
23. "Green Eyed Owl (Live)"
24. "Smile From A Dead Dead Face (Live)"
You can listen to that early version of "The Oncoming Day" below. The cut, later a standout on the band's major label debut here in the United States, Submarine Bells (1990), is here rougher and a bit more insistent than it would later be. Like most of the stuff from The Chills, it succeeds on the back of Martin Phillips' very distinctive delivery. When I first heard a lot of this stuff in 1987 or 1988, his talents seemed so unique to me and I quickly became a fan of The Chills. And when one considers the superb bits of songwriting on last year's Silver Bullets, one is thankful that Phillipps is still plying his artistic trade as he is, without a doubt, in the midst of a bit of a career renaissance these days.
This new version of Kaleidoscope World will be out in mid-August via Flying Nun Records. Follow that site for more details on this reissue.