Jane’s Addiction Vinyl Box Set – Sterling Spoon

Here’s a look at the new Jane’s Addiction box set entitled Sterling Spoon! It has two of the band’s most famous studio albums, a B-sides/rarities compilation, and a live album.

This set was put together by Rhino to commemorate the band’s 25th anniversary. It is a limited edition set, but 5000 were printed, so I don’t think most fans will have trouble getting a hold of this. As you go through my quick takes what is featured here, I’m letting you know I didn’t take pictures of the vinyl as they are all black – 180 gram. (Video at the end of the article)

Nothing’s Shocking (Warner Brothers, 1988)

I can’t believe this was released way back in 1988 as the songs and the production still sound as fresh and relevant as ever. It’s really hard for me to pick a favourite song off of this album but I still think “Up the Beach” leading into “Ocean Size” still does it for me. I know it’s probably also cliché but I can’t even get sick of “Jane Says” either. What a wonderful bunch of songs.

I cranked this album as soon as it came in the mail and I can say this is the best I’ve ever heard these songs. You’d never know this was on a vinyl record as there is no popping, hissing, or surface noise. I’m VERY happy just having this album but there’s more to the box!

Ritual de lo habitual (Warner Brothers, 1990)

Before I even start talking about the music on this release, I’ll touch on the controversy. For some reason there was some big stink about the cover art. I really didn’t understand why when I was 13. Hell, I still don’t know why as I don’t there’s anything really anything graphic about it. It’s probably because there’s male genitalia represented and we all know that’s a no-no. We can have graphic artwork with blood, guts and the sort, but the human body (besides maybe female breasts)? That’s a no-no. FFS…

As for the music and album, this was actually the first release I bought from the band as this is where they really took off with the singles “Been Caught Stealing” and “Stop!” Suffice to say, lots of rotation on MuchMusic (the Canadian version of MTV) had me hooked and it took me a while to find the version with the uncensored cover.

While the main singles are still great songs to crank, I also really had a liking for the songs “Ain’t No Right,” “Three Days,” and “Of Course.” If you only listened to the two main singles back in the day, go back and take another listen to this album as you’ll find it’s pretty much a front to back experience, just like Nothing’s Shocking.

Selections from Kettle Whistle

The original Kettle Whistle release came out in 1997 and this box set has one vinyl that features some of the tracks from that compilation. There are some interesting takes on here but I’m not sure anyone than Jane’s Addiction super fans or completest will really care to own or listen to multiple times.

 Live at the Palladium (December 19, 1990)

This is the first release of this concert officially on vinyl. It was originally released on CD in the A Cabinet of Curiosities box set that was released in 2009 with four tracks appearing on the original Kettle Whistle release. I don’t even own that set as it was impossible for me to find at the time and until I began writing about this vinyl box set, I totally forgot it existed. I think I have some hunting to do.

I’m happy that they didn’t cheap out with this release and actually spread it across two records. It sounds just as good as the other records in this set and features the same quality as there are no pops, hisses or skipping with crystal clear sound. I also have to mention that the band plays very well here!

At $110 (Canadian) you get a cool case for all the records and this is the only way to get the live album. If you price each album at $25-30, it is a reasonable price, I suppose. I’m happy with the purchase and I think I got my money’s worth, especially with how these sound.