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• Back in May/June 1986, the New Musical Express released one of their regular mail-order cassettes. Reflecting the latest trends in Indie music, C86 was a 22-track cassette which was inspired by the NME’s C81 tape from half a decade earlier.
• Aside from a few name bands (The Pastels, Primal Scream, the Wedding Present, the Mighty Lemon Drops), most acts were relatively unknown beyond the back pages and gig listings of the weekly music press. A few hadn’t even issued a record!
• C86 slowly but surely became the NME’s best-selling ever compilation, selling an estimated 40,000 copies and eventually being reissued on LP and cassette by Rough Trade the following year. C86 prompted a week of shows at the ICA and would come to embody a whole musical style and era.
• C86 is now reissued on vinyl as a deluxe, gatefold sleeved double-LP edition. The music has been re-mastered, with better sound quality due to not being ‘groove crammed’, with picture inner sleeves depicting original artwork and photos and detailed sleeve-notes by C86 compiler Neil Taylor.
• This long-overdue reissue follows the spectacular acclaim which followed Cherry Red’s 3-CD expanded edition of C86 in 2014.
• C86 is now widely regarded as catching the birth of a certain type of Indie music…