Aztec Camera | 12/18/13

Image: High Land , Hard Rain

Domino are very honored to announce the North American release of the 30th anniversary edition of Aztec Camera’s classic debut album, High Land, Hard Rain.

With the original album remastered from the analog tapes (i’ve heard the test pressings and it does laps around the original pressing) and the CD package full of all sorts of super rare nuggets (many not available before digitally), this deluxe re-issue does not disappoint.  This announcement comes in the wake of three sold-out command performances by Frame in the UK to commemorate the 30th anniversary by playing the album in its entirety (complimented by additional material from his repertoire) to universal acclaim.   

Contemporary with fellow Glaswegians Orange Juice, Aztec Camera made their debut on vinyl with the release of the “Just Like Gold” single on the seminal Postcard label when Frame was only 16 years old.  Another single followed on Postcard with “Mattress Of Wire” before the band made their move to the more firmly established Rough Trade label to record their debut album, High Land, Hard Rain (released in North America on Sire Records). 

The album opens with the exuberant pop of “Oblivious,” one of the enduring songs of its decade, which very nearly became Rough Trade’s first UK Top 40 hit in the early days of 1983 (Fear not, the song’s re-issue on WEA later that year would drive it into the Top 20 eventually).  Follow-up single “Walk Out To Winter” is yet another tour-de-force of pop songwriting, as well as showcasing Frame’s prodigious talents as a guitarist.  Frame re-visited the Postcard b-side “We Could Send Letters” to end side one.  A sweeping dramatic masterpiece of heartache and yearning, it is easily one of his most beloved compostions to this day.

In his new liner notes for this edition, Rolling Stone’s David Fricke calls High Land, Hard Rain “ten songs of anxious yearning, romantic urgency, big hurt and hard-won learning, distilled into compact dramas of buckskin-folk jangle and skewed-pop elegance.”  We call it the one of the greatest debut albums in the history of rock ‘n’ roll.  That it was written and conceived by the group’s EIGHTEEN YEAR OLD mastermind, well that just defies all logic and sense of fair play.


  • Oblivious
  • The Boy Wonders
  • Walk Out to Winter
  • The Bugle Sounds Again
  • We Could Send Letters
  • Pillar to Post
  • Release
  • Lost Outside the Tunnel
  • Back on Board
  • Down the Dip

CD 2/LP Download

  • Pillar to Post (original single version) 
  • Queen’s Tattoos
  • Orchid Girl
  • Haywire
  • Walk Out to Winter (Tony Mansfield 7” version)
  • Set the Killing Free
  • Back on Board (live on CFNY)
  • We Could Send Letters (live on CFNY)
  • Walk Out to Winter (Kid Jensen Session)
  • Down the Dip (Kid Jensen Session)
  • Back on Board (Kid Jensen Session)
  • Release (Kid Jensen Session)
  • Walk Out to Winter (John Brand unreleased single version)
  • Walk Out to Winter (Tony Mansfield 12” version)
  • Oblivious (Colin Fairley remix)
  • Oblivious (Langer / Winstanley remix) 

The vinyl version is pressed on 180-gram virgin vinyl and includes a complimentary digital download card for both the original album and the rarities included in the compact disc package.  The first 400 pre-orders will also receive a bonus 7” of rarities:

  • The Boy Wonders (Capital Radio Session)
  • Release (Capital Radio Session)
  • We Could Send Letters (C81 Version)
  • The Bugle Sounds Again (Bedroom Demo)

You can pre-order the release HERE.