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Gang Of Four Bolsters ‘Entertainment’

Out of print since 1997, Gang Of Four’s seminal 1979 debut album “Entertainment!” will be reissued on May 17 via Rhino. The original 12-song track list has been bolstered with the four-track “Yellow” EP and four additional previously unreleased recordings. “Entertainment!” has also been re-pressed on 180 gram vinyl for a May 10 release. Among the new additions, perhaps of most interest are alternate versions of album tracks “Contract” and “Guns Before Butter” and live versions of the unrecorded “Blood Free” and a cover of the Velvet Underground’s “Sweet Jane.” Originally released in 1980, the “Yellow” EP is highlighted by the angry, brittle “Outside the Trains Don’t Run on Time” and “He’d Send in the Army.” The release also features the songs “It’s Her Factory” and “Armalite Rifle.” Although never a commercial success, “Entertainment!” has influenced scores of bands in the past 25 years, particularly the current crop of up-and-coming British rock acts like Franz Ferdinand and the Futureheads. Since 1995, the album has sold 12,000 copies in the United States, according to Nielsen SoundScan, but since 2000, an import edition has shifted an additional 14,000 units. As previously reported, Gang Of Four’s original lineup reunited earlier this year for the first time in more than 20 years. The group will begin a three-week North American tour May 1 at the Coachella Valley Music & Arts Festival in Indio, Calif. Guitarist Andy Gill recently told the BBC that Gang Of Four was working on an album featuring a disc with new recordings of old songs plus a collection of remixes, but a spokesperson could not confirm details of the project at deadline.