The Blue Nile deluxe reissues

The Blue Nile / Hats and A Walk Across The Rooftops reissuesVirgin Records will reissue the first two critically albums from The Blue Nile on 19 November 2012.

A Walk Across The Rooftops (1984) and Hats (1989) have both been remastered by band members Paul Buchanan and Robert Bell, alongside the original engineer Calum Malcolm.

They will be released as two-CD sets with bonus discs containing rarities, live recordings, previously unreleased tracks and B-sides. See below for full track listings.

A Walk Across The Rooftops


  • 1.     A Walk Across The Rooftops
  • 2.     Tinseltown In The Rain
  • 3.     From Rags To Riches
  • 4.     Stay
  • 5.     Easter Parade
  • 6.     Heatwave
  • 7.     Automobile Noise

Bonus CD

  • 1.     I  Love This Life – the band’s first single
  • 2.     Heatwave – Rhythm Mix
  • 3.     St Catherine’s Day – previously unreleased
  • 4.     Tinseltown In The Rain – mix
  • 5.     The Second Act – B side to I Love This Life
  • 6.     Stay – Little Mix
  • 7.     Regret –  B-side to Tinseltown In The Rain



  • 1.     Over The Hillside
  • 2.     The Downtown Lights
  • 3.     Let’s Go Out Tonight
  • 4.     Headlights On The Parade
  • 5.     From A Late Night Train
  • 6.     Seven AM
  • 7.     Saturday Night

Bonus CD

  • 1.     Seven AM – recorded before the end of the Hats sessions
  • 2.     Christmas – previously unreleased
  • 3.     Let’s Go Out Tonight – vocal 2 – the 2nd vocal take
  • 4.     Saturday Night – vocal 2 – early mix
  • 5.     Headlights On The Parade – Live In Tennessee
  • 6.     The Wires Are Down –  B side to The Downtown Lights single

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Re: missed tracks non album tracks.

Honestly guys, i’d hate to see your mix tapes. The Blue Nile are not the ‘track completists’ type of band. Surely you’d have worked this out by now. Maybe their record label may have done it, but these reissues seem to be a labour of love by the band. They obviously wanted to use the non album tracks they had to make a mini album to compliment each album. Their track order on each album has always been perfection in my view.
So for me this is part of their perfectionist tendencies. They wanted to make a complimentary mini album that had a track order and flow like the main album … not just track after track for completists (or just shoehorned in the end). So no point in slight variations of the same track side by side or repeating similar sounding tracks.
You may have also noticed each 2nd CD is 31/32mins long (while the main albums are about 38). I do not think this symmetry is a coincidence.
I love the fact they have done it this way. It is very Blue Nile. Very punk.

[…] Virgin Records are finallt releasing remastered deluxe editions of The Blue Nile’s first two albums, 1984’s A Walk Across The Rooftops and 1989’s Hats. Both albums are accompanied by a bonus disc rarities, live cuts and unreleased tracks, and will appear in shops on November 19. For full track list on both albums, go here. […]


Seems the deluxe edition of Peace at Last finally being issued March 3, 2014. No track listing issued on Amazon.co.uk yet though.


Some copies of both Hats and Rooftops appear to be faulty. The most notable issue is distortion in the right-channel, usually to do with the bass/bass-drum parts. Curiously, the iTunes deluxe versions don’t suffer from this problem, and not all pressings of the CDs appear to be affected.

It’s NEVER simple with the Blue Nile!


Mine turned up today.

There is a sticker on the front saying “Remastered in 2012”. Hats has a brief mention in the booklet that it’s been remastered but that’s it.

The remasters themselves are excellent. A bit more bottom end seems to have helped the sound. A Walk Across the Rooftops is the best of the two. It’s a joy to listen to.

They seem to have a new source for I Love This Life and the Second Act. Didn’t sound like vinyl rips to me, but my first listen was on my laptop which isn’t the most discerning source.

It’s all a bit minimalist in terms of information, but if you’ve followed the story so far, that’s to be expected.


A friend of mine bought both sets last week (when they were released in Germany). As ‘deluxe editions’ go, they’re a big disappointment.
There are no liner notes, no indication where the bonus tracks come from (the magazine advertisements for these releases actually give more information than the credits on these sets!). And there’s no mention of remastering or remixing either (so, WERE they actually updated?). In fact, both sets don’t even mention that these recordings were previously released – judging from the sleeve they’re 2012 recordings from a band called The Blue Nile. But the band’s business company is mentioned FOUR TIMES on each set….

(To answer two previous questions: “Stay (Little Mix)” is the single version, while the Rhythm Mix of “Heatwave” is NOT the Instrumental Version from the original single.)

[…] Hats and A Walk Across The Rooftops both reissued as 2CD sets. More here. […]


Happy for the people who get to hear “Regret” for the first time. So beautiful. I hear hints of that song throughout Buchanan’s solo cd. “Regret” provides a favorite lyric in “It’s 3:30, and I’m thinking of you”. The song also combines nicely with Prefab Sprout’s “I’ve got six things on my mind. You’re no longer one of them.” (“Desire As”) on the mental jukebox.


I can understand that some mixes are not here. But it’s incredible that Virgin issues double CDs and then misses some B-sides (non album tracks) when they have a lot of space in the disks. Probably, each CD will only run for 40 minutes.


Check out the book NILEISM & its gives the background to the band – and crucially what they were doing in the many long years between albums …. brilliant read ….


When I first saw this, I had to do a double-take…surely this was too good to be true!? My favourite band, getting the deluxe treatment…all those 7″ mixes and B-sides that I only have in varying quality.

And then I actually saw the tracklists.

No edit of Downtown Lights? Come on! This is daft. To quote George Michael in his Wham! days, “if you’re gonna do it..DO IT RIGHT”.


I have only recently discovered this band. They have fairly not been represented down under by Virgin at all. Its good to see Virgin releasing these. But as people have noted above, if there is music missing from sessions or outtakes that have been documented or released in other forms…whats the point in not putting it into one release. From a Marketing perspective it simply makes the band look bad overall..Example PG box set (sorry to all for bringing that up again)

Michel Drolet

I will definitely get those but why include the bonus tracks on a second cd when (I reckon) they all could be on the main disc?


I’ll probably get them as they are two of my favourite album. But, first reaction on hearing they are being remastered is “why?” – these are two of the best ever recorded albums – how to improve on them ?

Now if there is also a 24bit / 96KHz version, then we are talking……

Simon Long

One way the sound of Hats might be improved (albeit slightly) is that it is one of the very few CDs that was encoded with pre-emphasis, at least on the original pressings. Anyone who has ripped the CD using a ripper that doesn’t decode pre-emphasis correctly (which basically means any ripper other than iTunes) will find that Hats sounds far too bright in the treble on the ripped copy. Pre-emphasis has long since fallen out of favour, and indeed later pressings of Hats (the ones with the pink label) didn’t have it – but if you have an original blue label copy, the remaster will probably sound better when you rip it.


i concur with these as -must- purchases.
i also concur, however, that there is an obvious deficit of bonus tracks.
checking my vinyl and cd-singles, it’s unfortunate that all the already issued material was not compiled here.

dare i hope for even more bonus material on japanese editions?


The masters were lost for I Love This Life and the Second Act so unless they have just suddenly appeared it will be vinyl rips. I’m looking forward to these being remastered by Calum Malcolm though the lack of extras on both second discs leaves a lot to be desired.

Ti m

I made my own deluxe versions of their albums long ago that are, barring the two new tracks, much better than this as far as the track listing is concerned. It’s dubious to call these deluxe reissues when their audience knows how much material is not included on these.


I’m sold ! Although i do agree there’s all that extra stuff missing.

Simon Long

I’ve been waiting for these to get a deluxe treatment for years – Hats is probably my favorite album of all time. Great to see the unreleased material, but it’s a shame that a lot of the single b-sides (some of which have never been on CD) aren’t included. Checking my collection, they seem to be missing:
– the instrumental version of Heatwave (unless that is the “rhythm mix”)
– Saddle The Horses, the instrumental version of Automobile Noise, which came in a standard and an extended version
– the standard and extended single remixes of Stay (unless one of those is the “little mix”
– Halfway To Paradise, from The Downtown Lights single
– the Clearmountain mix of Headlights On The Parade
– Headlights On The Parade with Rickie Lee Jones
– Our Lives, from the Saturday Night single
– the live version of Seven AM, from the Saturday Night single

Given the small number of tracks on the bonus discs, it would be great if some of those could also be on there – most of them are instrumentals, but it would be nice to have all of TBN’s published work preserved for posterity, as this is probably the last chance.

Still, a mandatory purchase – I’ll give Virgin 7 out of 10 for this one…


Yeah, there is a lot of material missing from these cds.
I’m guessing they are assuming that people already have the stuff already out on CD.
I’m wondering if I Love This Life and the Second Act are from the original tapes? The previous cd release of this was a vinyl rip if I remember correctly.


Fabulous news!! Wish they were being reissued on vinyl though


I used to adore Hats but could never get into the first album at all for some reason.

Bags O'Greeley

Great news! These are two of the greatest albums of all time!