Thursday, 26 November 2009

Pegboy 7" Test Press

Goddamnit, I am so far behind with this blog right now. Ugh. It's beginning to feel like a chore. I see this little stack of records next to me that I "need" to write up and it just feels like something I HAVE to do rather than something I WANT to do. Am I getting tired of doing this? Well, no, not exactly. It's just that I have so little time right now and this feels like a waste of it. I need to keep it short else I will never catch up.

Today's update is a pointless test press:

Pointless in the sense that it looks boring and isn't even for a record that I am that bothered about. But I picked it up because it was pretty cheap. It's a test for a Pegboy 7"... a band that I got into back in about 1992 because they were on a skate video, although I don't remember exactly which song it was nor which video it was. Well anyway, I picked up this 7" in about 1993. Here's what the regular version looks like:

Pegboy were always one of those bands that should have been bigger than they were in my opinion. Their best record is the album 'Strong Reaction', a test press of that sold on eBay a few months ago for next to nothing and, like a fool, I forgot to bid. I guess this 7" is some kind of consolation prize.

Finally, here's a video I found on youtube. Interesting whether you know the band or don't:

Monday, 23 November 2009

ON 'Control EP' - White

Back in August I got given a black vinyl copy of the ON 'Control' 7" on by a friend. I didn't actually want to get into ON at all. But I have ended up doing so, and recently took an opportunity to pick up the same record on white vinyl.

I have no idea on the pressing info for this one. The pressing info for the 'Vital Times' 7" (which I don't have at all) is all over the nerd, but the info for this 7" is hard to find. I checked the HYE trade board and a few people have this listed as being out of 350, but maybe one person wrote that and then everyone else just copied it. Who knows eh?

Oh yeah, if anyone wants the black vinyl version, I'm happy to let that one go.

Sunday, 22 November 2009

Hellmouth LP

So here we go. Hellmouth 'Destroy Everything, Worship Nothing' LP on Livewire Records. I bought this simply because because Livewire put it out, even though it didn't look like the kind of stuff I like much anymore. I mean, the CD is on Ferret, which puts out some pretty awful stuff. But anyway, I figured I'd trust the Livewire guys' judgement and check this out. There were 666 copies made, with the first 166 being on red vinyl:

I really wanted to like this. I like the feel of this record, and I used to listen to a lot of stuff like this about ten or twelve years ago.

I also like the statement on their myspace page:

HELLMOUTH want to take people back to the glory days of the underground and remind people of the fear, anger and honesty that once existed in a music scene that's since gone soft and has lost all integrity. It's back to brutal basics; making music that flows in the blood. Not punk. Not metal. Not hardcore. A crossover of all three to create a soundtrack for pain, misery and the end of existence.

Unfortunately though, I'm not into this. I haven't managed to listen to it through once in one sitting. I just struggle to listen to stuff like this these days. But I plan to stick with it & try again. I mean, there's a lot to like here.

This LP is hand-numbered out of 666 copies, and I got a pretty cool number - 48. I guess most people wouldn't like number 48, but it's perfect for me.

Reminds me of another record I own with the same number:

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Bane - 11:58 PM Dublin 7"

SO THIS IS IT - The first of too many Bane 7"s to be released in the next few weeks. A total nightmare for collectors, there are 6 songs being released as two different 7"s… and different continents are putting out their own versions. So the two 7"s in the States are on two different labels, and the two 7"s in Europe are on another label. Each version of each record has about three versions (excluding tests), except for the first Euro 7" which has five versions. So, in total, there are going to be at least 14 different 7"s to pick up. Excluding tests. Oh yeah, then there's some other Bane 7" coming out with some zine, which also has two or maybe three versions. So basically, my Bane collection is going to double in size by the end of the year.

So what is this 7" like? Well, it sounds much more like "Give Blood" than "The Note" to me. Although, that said, perhaps it's just to do with the time of year it has come out. I remember back in 2002 when "Give Blood" came out that I was playing it whilst travelling on the bus to my night job at Milo's in Leeds. I remember it being dark and cold and Bane being the perfect soundtrack to life at that time. Well, these three songs give me the same feeling. Each night I drive the dark, wet roads to the gym and I play these three songs.

I'm into the songs, but I am not into the aesthetics of this record too much. I don't like the layouts much, and I sure as hell don't like that this is the first Bane record pressed on inferior euro vinyl. And I also don't like that two of the three colours are pretty much the same colour. But hey, I'm fussy.

Most limited version is orange with white speckles out of 200:

Next is plain orange out of 300:

And finally, black vinyl out of 380. These have different labels to the orange vinyl due to a pressing plant error. These labels are from the tour version, which I should have got over two months ago but still don't have.

And finally, the money shot:

Monday, 16 November 2009

Rot In Hell LP Test

I managed to find a test for one of my fave records of the year - the ROT IN HELL 'Hallways Of The Always' 12" on A389 Records. The only slightly disappointing thing is that it only comes in a plain white paper sleeve - I was hoping for something a little more interesting.

This marks 6 versions of this record. I'm betting that not many people can match or beat me on this one.

If you still don't have so much as one copy as this yet, please sort your life out.

Thursday, 12 November 2009

XClaim! 5 & 6

Thanks to Fred Hammer for breaking his own "no shipping to outside of the US" rule, I now have parts 5 & 6 of the XClaim! puzzle.

XClaim! number 5 is the F.U.s 'My America' LP. Otherwise known as "the one with the weird cover". Or "the one with the cover that isn't quite wide enough so that when you put the record in a little bit of the dust sleeve sticks out of the side":

XClaim! number 6 is the Jerry's Kids 'Is This My World?' LP, which is debatably the best of the XClaim! releases:

Numbers 2 & 3 still elude me... but hopefully not for much longer.

Tuesday, 10 November 2009

Random eBay 7"s x 3

Picked up three records from the dude who does Rivalry Records on eBay a couple of weeks ago. He was selling lots of rare Rivalry stuff plus a load of other things. I had my eye on three items that I thought most people wouldn't be interested in and got them all for a bargain price.

First up is the Life's Halt / No Reply split 7" with the Misfits sleeve for the final No Reply show:

In fitting with the Misfits theme, there were 138 copies made, which makes this about the third most common version of this record:

I now have 4 versions of this record. So only 26 more to go to have the full set. And no, I am not exaggerating.

Next up, a test press of the Holding On / Coalition split 7":

I don't even own a regular version of this record. Just bought it because I liked the label.

And finally, continuing today's "138 copies made" theme, here's the second Worn Thin 7" on Youngblood Records on white vinyl, made for some 2004 tour:

I love this band, and (finally) now have the final version of this one i was missing. Cool.

Monday, 9 November 2009

Dinosaur LP on Yellow

I was so excited about this one that I even boasted about having it on facebook the day I won it. Talk about tempting fate! Anyway, until this arrived in the mail this was my 3rd most wanted record. The first Dinosaur Jr LP, original pressing on Homestead Records from 1985... on colour vinyl.

I was stoked as hell to get this. Until about two years ago I never even knew this record existed on colour vinyl. Then I saw one on eBay and have been trying to get one ever since. It is quite highly sought after though. It usually sells for over $100, and indeed, a couple of weeks before I won this copy, I was watching one that went for $160 or so. Imagine then how stoked I was to get a SEALED copy for only $70!

I find it pretty amazing that a record from 1985 can be sealed. I mean, where the hell had this been hiding for 24 years to avoid being opened?

This also exists on red vinyl, although that colour seems even rarer than this one. But clearly I need to get one. Two words - never satisfied.

Thursday, 5 November 2009

Sunny Day Real Estate Reissue LPs

I guess it must be double LP reissue week over here right now. Here's the next installment...

Originally released in 1994, Sunny Day Real Estate's 'Diary' LP was something of a slow burner I guess. One of those records that more and more people latched on to over time. Fifteen years later, it is hailed as a massively important record, so Sub Pop have given it the reissue treatment.

I first heard this album on a copied tape that Ben Doyle sent me in the post. Ben was a bit of a metalhead and generally into all things heavy, so I was pretty surprised when he sent me this and I first played it. But as well as being surprised because it was nothing like I imagined, I was also surprised at how good it was. I was REALLY into it. Kinda hard to describe, but back then this just sounded like a completely new sound. Really gentle, whiney vocals over some quite heavy(ish) guitars. I don't know, I am crap at describing bands, but I knew straight from the first second that this was something new and interesting, and I played nothing else for weeks. Quite a while later I finally bought a copy of the LP from Jumbo Records, and was stoked to get the blue splatter vinyl version (which I still have). A few years later (circa '99 maybe?) Sub Pop reissued it on a clear green vinyl, and I bought one of those too. And now we have a double LP, red vinyl, gatefold sleeve version. I'm not complaining though. They could press a different version of this record every week and I'd buy it every time.

The sticker on the shrink wrap claims that this is the first time on LP in its entirety, which is true - the previous vinyl versions have been lacking a couple of songs that were on the CD version. They've also padded this out with a couple of other songs from their second 7" before they got signed by Sub Pop.

Even though I hate gatefold sleeves these days (because even the crappiest records with the worst artwork use them), having one on this release seems like the right thing to do. It works well.

Interestingly, one of my two discs had a small flash of black. I guess modern idiots would call this the 'transition press' and claim it to be a different variant on the red vinyl. Haha!

Well, anyway, the story doesn't end there. Sub Pop have also given the same treatment to the second Sunny Day Real Estate LP and reissued that as a double LP too... but thankfully, without a gatefold sleeve! And thankfully, someone had the sense to match the vinyl color to the artwork, which is always a nice touch. So here we are - 'LP2', otherwise known as 'pink':

I like how the two records are different shades of pink. Keeps it interesting.

Also, the dust sleeves have some nice stuff printed on them. A history of how the record came to be, written by all the band members and the guy who recorded it, including an explanation of why the cover is just pink.

And finally, because I ordered directly from Sub Pop, I got a couple of extra pieces of crap thrown in:

I've been playing these records again recently. As much as I loved 'Diary' when it came out, I find it difficult to listen to now, simply because I played it too much in the past. The pink album seems far more interesting. Visually though, 'Diary' beats it hands down. The artwork is beautiful and very cute. Overall, Sub Pop have done a great job with both reissues. Each have extra songs and some nice things to read, making them worth picking up even if you have the original versions. Two (or rather, four) great pieces of vinyl.

Monday, 2 November 2009


The funny thing about getting older & time passing is some of the things you remember. Or things you don't remember. I remember talking to Hallam from Above All and him telling me that he had seen Rorschach play in a pub in London. I also remember seeing Stalingrad play at a festival at the 1in12 Club in about 1994 and somehow knowing that they sounded kinda like Rorschach, even though at that point I had never actually heard Rorschach. I also remember buying Rob Holden's spare Rorschach 'Needlepack' 7" for £2, and wondering why he had two copies of the record in the first place. And I remember getting the 'Protestant' LP in the mail and staring at the purple sky on the cover for ages thinking it didn't really look like a 'hardcore' record at all. However, the thing I have no memory of is how I became aware of Rorschach in the first place. A lot of bands I remember friends pointing me toward, or hearing songs at people's houses, or reading about them. But I have no idea on how I picked up on Rorschach. All I know is that I suddenly had a strong urge to buy their second LP, and after doing so I knew I had made a wise choice.

Despite breaking up many years ago, Rorschach got back together recently to play a couple of shows. I'm not sure how or why this came about to be honest. But anyway, they played a few shows at the end of September 2009. You can see some footage on youtube if you wish. A couple of weeks ago I found out that they made a record for this little reunion tour. So obviously I had to grab one. The record is a double LP, with each disc containing one of their two albums.

There were 5 different colours of vinyl, and 150 copies of each colour, with a different one being sold at each show. I wasn't about to buy all five, so picked the red vinyl, which is from the New York show:

All copies were numbered. I think mine is number 4. Although it my also be number 48. Not sure.

As with every record that comes out these days, this has a gatefold sleeve:

... with all the lyrics printed inside:

Overall I'm not so into this package. It kinda feels like pressing this double LP was a bit of a late decision and it was done in a bit of a rush. The artwork just looks a bit bare and too far removed from the original LPs. So visually a bit of a let down really.

The best thing about this package, though, was the download code, which gave all the songs in 320kbps mp3 format. I used to own the discography cd, but the mastering was so bad that it was next to useless. I had the songs in itunes ripped from the cd, but never listened to it because the volume was stupidly low. It kinda sounded like it had been recorded by someone using a tape recorded whilst their friend played the records to them down the phone. SO I haven't really listened to Rorschach in a while. But listening to these songs with a bit of volume makes them so much better and reminds me why I got into this band in the first place.