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10/2/15

As if Q4 couldn’t get any more competitive, Capitol will release an extended version of Sam Smith’s blockbuster debut album on 11/6. A “creative collaboration” with fashion brand Balenciaga (who’s autumn/winter 2015 campaign is fronted by Smith), In the Lonely Hour: The Drowning Shadows Edition will feature a second CD with nine new and exclusive tracks.

Opener “Drowning Shadows” was co-written by Smith and Fraser T. Smith, and produced by Jimmy Napes and Steve Fitzmaurice. It’s described as a “stripped-back, heart wrenching ballad that debuts Sam’s impressive vocals over cascading strings and piano.”

Other tracks include a cover of Amy Winehouse’s melancholic love song “Love Is a Losing Game” (from the late singer’s multi-Grammy Award winning album Back to Black) and Whitney Houston’s “How Will I Know.” Reworks, live and acoustic versions of some of Smith’s smash singles with A$AP Rocky (“I’m Not the Only One”), Mary J Blige (“Stay With Me”), Disclosure (“Omen” and “Latch”) and John Legend (“Lay Me Down”) are also listed.

It’s Smith’s final surprise before his second album, and is a “present directly from me to my fans,” he wrote on Facebook. “This album, this journey has changed my life. So I have listened to all your wants and wishes and put some tracks on this album that you all wanted originally. I have also got a new song, and a special new cover for you all. This is my thank you to you all, and the final bow before my second album.”

Smith’s debut In the Lonely Hour has sold over 9m copies worldwide since its release in May last year and notched up a record-breaking 69 consecutive weeks in the Official Albums Chart Top 10—the longest unbroken run ever for a debut album.

In the U.K., the new release will go up against Polydor priority act Ellie Goulding with her third album Delirium and SYCO X Factor graduates Little Mix with Get Weird, the girl group’s third album. Will Smith scupper their chances of reaching #1?