Because you need some vinyl to play on your new candy cane coated record player, The White Stripes will reissue their first three studios albums — 1999’s s/t debut, 2000’s De Stijl, and 2001’s White Blood Cells — on November 30th via frontman Jack White’s personal imprint, Third Man Records. All three records have been out of print since 2005 and according to the label, “the utmost care was taken in presenting these records in the best way possible.” What follows is a lengthy account of what exactly that process entailed:
“We started by mastering each LP from the original analog master tapes, the first time this process had been used for any of these titles. While extremely labor-intensive, this method ensured that the material was never converted into a digital signal. The result is an audio quality that stiffens the hairs on the back of your neck.
“We pressed each record on 180-gram vinyl, again, the first time any of these three albums have been afforded this superior vinyl weight.
“For artwork, we started from scratch and went back and tracked down all the source material, working from the original photographic prints to provide the crispest versions possible of these album covers.
“From there, we printed the artwork on the deluxe old-style, tip-on sleeves from the wonderful folks at Stoughton Printing in California. This process involves printing the artwork on on sheet of paper (a slick) which is then folded over and hand-glued to a heavy board blank jacket. The difference in the final product of a tip-on sleeve as opposed to a regular, direct-to-board sleeve is akin to the difference between hardcover and paperback books.”
Each record will also come with a coupon for mp3 downloads of the entire album, so you’re covered both physically and digitally. Also, for the collectors, Third Man pressed limited numbers of each title on split-color red and white vinyl.
All three albums will be available on black vinyl for purchase from the label’s online store starting on November 30th. The split-color and black vinyl of The White Stripes will be available for purchase on November 30th at Third Man Records’ Nashville, Tennessee HQ, with the split-color and black vinyl of De Stijl and White Blood Cells to follow on December 7th and December 14th, respectively. Christmas is going to kick ass this year.