This week is going to be a little different. While this album is not out of print NOW it almost was not heard by a generation of electronic musicians. That album is The Planets by Isao Tomita.
The year was 1976. (A scant two years after I was born) Japanese synthesist Isao Tomita had released several critically acclaimed electronic albums albums (including electronic interpretations of versions of Moussorgsky's Pictures At An Exhibition and Stravinsky's Firebird Suite) but was found him self with a legion of new fans as his version of Gustav Holst's The Planets found it's self at #67 on the Billboard pop chart at the #1 slot on the classical chart.(1)
One subset of fans that he didn't have was the estate Gustav Holst. They demanded the album be withdrawn as it was a sub-par recording, and an abomination. (The other complain from classical music purists was several of the tracks were abridged versions, which As a result the album was pulled from stores, and a generation of electronic musicians lost out on an amazing recording.
Enter the age of the Compact disc. Not Only is The Planets Available on CD, but it was given the special edition treatment with a new recording and mix in 2003!
While not everybody's cup of tea (some people find it fairly kitschy) The recordings really stand the test of time as a really cool piece of electronic music history.
Tomita official site
Tomita fan site
download Mars here
(1) interview with Tomita originally from Keyboard magazine available here