Lloyd Cole and the Commotions multi-disc box set in the works

Lloyd Cole is working with Universal Music to help compile material for a forthcoming Lloyd Cole and the Commotions box set.

Nothing has been officially announced, but Cole has mentioned the set a few times on Facebook. He has also confirmed to this writer that the box will be a six disc set which will consist of the three albums (Rattlesnakes, Easy Pieces and Mainstream), a B-sides disc, a rarities disc and a DVD with TV appearances and presumably promo videos.

Only yesterday LC posted the following:

“Commotions Box Set Rarities disc, if we can find all the tapes, is looking like 20 tracks, 18 of them previously unreleased. Including ‘lost’ Paul Hardiman, Stewart Copeland and Chris Thomas productions, and loads of demos.”

He also referenced the box set earlier on in the day with this pithy post:

“If you’re feeling old thanks to some unfortunate unavoidable task, then you can feel a little better knowing someone had it worse and you didn’t just have to watch your mid ’80s TV performances… Yes, some of these will be included on the Commotions box set and several are hilarious, and I was very, very young and now I’m not…”

Previous Lloyd Cole boxes

This project sounds really exciting, particularly since Lloyd Cole is a great curator of his own back catalogue, having personally put together two great boxes; 2001’s four-disc Collected Recordings by Lloyd Cole (released on xiii bis) and the Cleaning Out The Ashtrays rarities set (also four CDs) issued via Tapete Records (both pictured above).

SDE will bring you more news on this when we have it.

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[…] we get to the summer and the Tears For Fears reissue campaign is set to continue. Lloyd Cole has happily revealed that a six-disc Commotions box is happening It’s now over four years since Duran […]

Tim Barton

The fact that The Commotions were so short-lived makes this just about perfect in scope. Perhaps the solo stuff can follow bit by bit. Looking very forward to this!


Further to my last post decided to search on YouTube just not he off chance and ‘bingo’ here is the clip I was referring to. Haven’t seen it since it was originally broadcast apparently in 1987 but clearly it stuck in my head:


Incidentally at around this time I ran into Cole on the tube one morning – I was on my way to work and he was heading home from an-all nighter in the studio apparently. I was somewhat star-struck but he was perfectly nice and friendly (especially considering he had been up all night).
I have his autograph in one of my old notebooks somewhere.


Thanks for link Johnny – very interesting to hear a somewhat different style (and a song I have not heard before although perhaps it is related to Down on Mission Street).

As for video content I would *love* to see Cole’s appearance on an early Johnathan Ross show (can’t recall the name – possibly the Last Resort). It was prior to the release of Mainstream and Cole performed a sparse version of the title track accompanied by a synthetic drum kit only.
I remember it being a great version (of a song I hadnt heard yet) and that afterwards the first words he said to Ross were “I was scared!” (and indeed I seem to recall he did look very nervous throughout – possibly due to the lack of any Commotions on set with him).

Johnny Law

Very much looking forward to this. Hopefully the demos prior to Mainstream will surface, as well as the three superb tracks from the From the Hip farewell EP (Lonely Mile/ Love Your Wife/ Please) which have been out of circulation since the late 80s.
I wonder if Lloyd will sanction the inclusion of Down at the Mission? Can’t imagine so! If you’ve not heard this recording/ version, prepare to hear the Commotions as you’ve never heard ’em before… (Aside from the also radical Irresistible Force remix of Perfect Skin.) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=asZXOFfeuio


sounds great…..tho i liked his earlier Commotions years, i think “Mainstream’ is his/their most solid and consistent release, and i’d love to hear what else they did at the same time……thanks for the good news!!


Really looking forward to this.
Never really liked the mastering on the original Mainstream CD – it sounded a bit weak to me. A lot of 80’s cds seemed to suffer from a lack of bass.
I’d love to hear the Nottingham 87 gig as well or any other of the Mainstream era gigs.


This will be fantastic! I have to admit that I was hoping for loads of rarities and, perhaps, the complete Nottingham 13, 1987 gig that was recorded by the BBC. However, I have to completely agree with the above comments that the releases LC has been directly involved in (boxsets, deluxe releases etc.) have been absolutely top notch.

Paul English

Hopefully there will be 7″ and 12″ mixes.


What happens to the second disc for the deluxe Rattlesnakes? Are those n the b-sides/rarities disc ?

Paul H

About a month ago Easy Pieces was being cited on LC’s FBook feed as being ready for a deluxe reissue. Looks like it has morphed into a bigger project, but Rattlesnakes got a great deluxe issue itself in 2004.


pete paphides, on his Twitter, put about writing the sleeve notes for it…


Ashtrays is a nice collection

Lee Carson

From reading Lloyd’s comments on FB over the last few months he is involved in the project and had very high standards as seen by the Clearing out the Ashtrays release which was fantastic

20 tracks on the rarities disk would be excellent

Rattlesnakes had a deluxe double CD release a couple of years ago and it is the other 2 Commotions CDs which are hard to find


Wow! Am I excited or what? Already can’t wait for the Lloyd Cole & The Commotions box set to come out! I hope that Lloyd includes the “Perfect Blue” mix used on the 1984-1989 Best Of comp. Really looking forward to this and everything tastefully remastered.


This is exciting!

Love Lloyd Cole (especially the three ‘and the Commotions’ albums and his first three solo works.

If he manages to achieve the level of care and attention that went into ‘Clearing out the Ashtrays’ then it will be very cool indeed.
A good solid rarities disc would be a great addition.