Sunday, 24 September 2017

Precious 'Unravelings'

Earlier this year and people were getting excited for a new release by a band called Precious. It was (coincidentally) released on Record Store Day, although actually had nothing to do with RSD as far as I can tell. Anyway, there was an obvious excitement in the air, and (as usual) I had no idea what was going on. So I downloaded the songs, and pretty much instantly got it. Featuring the singer of Threadbare, guitarist and drummer from Adamantium, and bassist from Snapcase, this is a 90s hardcore fan's dream. That said, it doesn't really sound like something from the 90s. It sounds really modern, and yet kinda old and familiar at the same time. But man, some of these riffs are HARD, and they sink their claws into your brain and won't let go. After a couple of days of listening to this over and over, I knew I was going to have to buy a real life copy ASAP.

The main dilemma I was presented with was which colour to buy. Indecision Records had three colours to choose from, with the most limited being the orange swirl vinyl out of 200 copies, so I went with that.

It's actually more of a dirty yellow than an orange, but hey, who's counting?

However, I kinda felt that, despite being the most limited colour, the orange was the least well matched colour to the artwork. And also the clear blue (out of 395 copies) looked great. So I couldn't resist picking up one of those too.

And of course, picking up two copies would be weird when there were three available. So I rounded out the set with the white vinyl (also of 395).

I've been trying not to pick up multiple copies of new releases these days. But I totally couldn't resist with this one. This is one of the best records I have heard in a long time, plus the artwork and the vinyl colours are awesome to look at too. So you'll excuse me for indulging myself. If you've not heard this yet I suggest you follow the link to their bandcamp (above) and treat yourself ASAP.

Friday, 22 September 2017

Two Promises

I've been trying to avoid reissues for a few years now. My general view is that they are for people who weren't there the first time around, and people who were should stay away.

Well sometimes that's easier said than done. When Sub Pop announced that they were reissuing the 1998 Sunny Day Real Estate album 'How It Feels To BE Something On' and it was going to be on colour vinyl, I immediately got excited. I know, I know... I can't even take my own advice when someone dangles a piece of coloured plastic in front of me.

Sub Pop's limited 'Loser Edition' came on this interesting dirty, swirly yellow colour. I thought that the colour looked great as I always prefer solid colours to clears.

What happened next was that I saw a picture of a red vinyl copy. It was a total 'what the fuck?' moment. I then discovered that some weird record 'club' called Vinyl Me Please got licence to issue their own exclusive red vinyl version. And this colour looked even cooler than the yellow, and seemed a more apt choice given the cover art. So I decided I wanted one too... although I didn't want to pay the annual subscription (or whatever) to get the record from the label. So I waited a while and eventually got one from eBay or discogs (can't remember which).

Similar to the yellow, the red is some swirly shade. Very interesting and kinda unique. And the back cover carries the 'Vinly Me Please' logo in the bottom right corner.

So that's pretty much it. 'Dude who tries his best to avoid reissues buys two of the same record'. Dipshittery at it's finest.

They are good colours though aren't they?

Tuesday, 19 September 2017

Krimewatch

So last year Lockin' Out released the Krimewatch demo on vinyl. Because I am old and out of touch, I had no idea who they were. As with a lot of new bands, it seemed like everyone else had heard of them and there was a huge appetite for their record, as it sold out before I could even google their name in an attempt to figure out who they were.

So when a UK label, Static Shock Records, pressed up their own version, I was quick to jump in and grab one of the limited blue vinyl copies before it also sold out.

For those of you not in the know, Krimewatch are a band out of New York with a female vocalist who sings in both Japanese and English. They play short blasts of punk rock. Seems like a bit of an odd release for Lockin' Out to have put out, but hey, what do I know? It's not 2003 anymore. Things have changed.

I have to say, I usually get into the current hype bands. I have a tactic of not paying too much attention to a band until every man and his dog is into it, then I'll probably decide to give it a go, and inevitably realise what all the fuss is about. Krimewatch, on the other hand, I'm not getting quite yet. Maybe I need to give it more time? We shall see. But one thing's for sure - their logo is cool as hell.

Saturday, 16 September 2017

I'm Just Fine

Here's another record I managed to pick up for a second time after the first one vanished in my missing box last year...

This is a test press of a split 12" between a couple of relatively obscure 90s bands - 2 Line Filler and Pezz. I picked this up because I posted a picture of my Two Line Filler records on instagram and someoone pointed out that I was missing this split. So I went to discogs and found somenoe was selling a test press for a cheap price. So I bought it and, as I've already mentioned, it went missing. But a couple of months after my lost box I was looking to see if anything could be replaced, and I found another test press for sale on discogs. It even came from the same seller!

So the funny thing is that I knew I was missing this Two Line Filler record is because I used to own a copy. I bought it when it came out circa 1997. However, I sold or traded it away at some point. I think that part of the reason I let it go was because the front cover was so fucking awful that I couldn't bear looking at it. But when I bought the test press I also decided to re-buy a regular copy. Which means I now re-own this goddamn record cover again.

Despite the questionable front cover, the Two Line Filler songs on this record are great. Heck, everything the band did is great. If you're at all interested in checking them out and hearing their unique brand of 'straight edge emo pop punk' (I just made that up, but it's pretty much spot on), then check out a song HERE. Oh yeah... you're welcome.

Thursday, 14 September 2017

Allroy Saves (Me Money)

Last year I lost a big parcel of records in the mail. Yeah yeah, I know, I've mentioned it a few times before. But in that box was a near enough full set of ALL LPs. I was gutted abot many records lost in that parcel, but the ALL LPs were high up the list at. Anyway, the only early LP that comes on colour vinyl is the 3rd LP 'Allroy Saves', which came out on Cruz Records in 1990. It comes on two different colours - gold and green. I'd managed to acquire one copy of each colour last year, until fate cruelly robbed me of both copies. Even more satusfying was that I'd bought both for good prices too, much less than the going rates on discogs. So when I looked to try to replace them, I couldn't find either for any lower than the standard $30-40 each. Knowing I had bought both previously for less, I couldn't face paying the market rate, hoping I would have some good luck in future and once again find them cheap. And lo and behold, a gold copy popped up on eBay a couple of weeks ago at a low starting price, and I bid and won it for only $5.50! I was stoked. Well, that is until I realised that postage was super fucking expensive, which kinda killed the satisfaction dead. But still, even factoring in the additional $27 for shipping, it was still much cheaper than getting a copy from discogs. So I still won.

It was hard to get the vinyl colour to show up properly in the photos. The white paper inner sleeve reflects the light and makes the record look bright yellow, but it's actually more gold. The second photo, of the record on top of the front cover, is a much more accurate representation of how the colour looks in 'real life'.

What's also good is that, as well as being cheap(ish), both the record and cover are in really great condition. So I'm happy. But I'm still hoping to find a green copy for a bargain price (again) at some point. I mean, why would I stop at one copy when I could potentially own two?

Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Amnesia

After finishing my series of posts of stuff I got in one lot from one seller, today it's back to business as usual...

At the back end of April this year I ventured out of the house to see Paint It Black play in London. This was literally the day after seeing Integrity play. It's not often that I go to see anything these days, but two shows in two days I haven't been out since. Anyway, after seeing Paint It Black play I was really impressed and listened to them for a few days afterwards. Sometimes you need these reminders of how good some bands are I guess. So this prompted me to look around to see if there were any records for sale. By coincidence, a few weeks later someone in the UK sold off a bunch of Paint It Black records on eBay. I intended to win a few, but only won a single 7" - this brown vinyl copy of the 'Amnesia' 7" on Bridge Nine:

I vaguely remember reading something a few years ago where the band apparently thought that they had put out three full lengths in a short space of time, and vowed to only release 7"s for a while. There were then three 7"s released in 2008/09, and this was one of them. I don't own any of them, and as you may expect there are multiple pressings of each, so it always felt a little too much to get into. But this brown vinyl copy, being a first press copy and also the rarest colour, seems a good place to start.

I didn't pay much for this record, and after winning I was feeling a little down because the same seller also sold a cool tour press of the second LP and I missed it. But when this arrived my spirits were lifted because the seller also threw in another copy of the same 7" for free. A third press, green marble copy of the same record. It may be the last pressing and the most common colour, but it's a really cool colour - very similar to the green Gorilla Biscuits 7" (although it looks a bit lighter in this pic for some reason):

So it turns out that Paint It Black released another 7" in 2013, but nothing since. I'd kinda figured the band had called it a day, so it was cool to see that they are still around in some form. And after being really impressed with their live show, I'm sure they still have some life left in them. Hopefully something new will emerge soon.

Tuesday, 12 September 2017

Worn Thin

Finally I've reached the end of the stuff I bought in a lot from one seller, and I made sure to save my favourite until last...

I always liked Worn Thin a lot. They were around in the early 00s and, compared to most bands of the time, were a little less hard and a little more melodic. They only put out three records, but got progressively better with each release, and I thought it was a shame that they called it a day after their excellent full length. Well anyway, I recently took the opportunity to pick up some rare copies of their first 7" (on Malfunction Records) as this was the record I was most lacking.

First is the test press. I don't know how many were made.

The other two copies I picked up were both from the record release show, which took place on the 3rd of November 2001. Both come with one of these pieces of paper inside:

The reason I have two is because, despite being part of the same pressing, these records look completely different. The first copy is a kind of burnt orange / brown colour:

Oh, and it also comes in a stamped dust sleeve.

The second copy is almost gold, but has some black swirls:

I do really like the sleeve used for the record release copies. It looks so much better than the regular sleeve.

Well, that's that. I also pulled out the only other copy of this record that I own to fill out a collection picture. As well as the vinyl colours, I really like the sleeve variations here:

I think there is also a limited black vinyl pressing of this which is possibly the rarest version. I'm not entirely sure. But I imagine that if I can track one down it won't cost too much.

Monday, 11 September 2017

Time Flies...

Yet another record from the the same seller, and yet another test press. I'm not sure how well remembered the band Time Flies are these days, but around the turn of the century they were one of my favourites. Even though I have a few of their records, my collection is far from complete. They're one of those bands whose records I've never really chased hard, but over time several of their records have fallen into my hands. And here's the latest example - a test press of their first 7":

This was first released by InVAsion Records, and then repressed by Malfunction Records. The test press was for the original press on InVAsion, and seeing as the Malfunction repress used the same plates, a repress test press wasn't necessary. So there is only one test press for this record despite it being released on two different labels. Checking the pressing info on discogs, there were apparently only 6 copies of this test, although this isn't numbered. So basically, I'm pretty lucky to have this. Maybe I should now think about actually going after the copies of this that I'm missing as I'm not that far away from having a full set. Although having said that, it's kinda fun to just sit back and see what comes along in time...

Sunday, 10 September 2017

Wheeljüngen

Another 7" from the same seller, and another test press. This 7" is from a band called Wheelbite, who were from Richmond, VA and were active 1998-2003. Their entire output was a demo and one 7", released by Malfunction Records around the turn of the century. Back then, Malfunction was one of the hot, new labels putting out some cool bands, and I got myself into the habit of picking up everything that they put out. So picking up this 7" by a band I'd never heard of was no big deal. Their 7" was probably the most low key of all the label's releases, but I always kinda liked it. It was just a typical hardcore record in many respects, with skateboarding an obvious theme, and short songs (there were 10 on the 7"). SO I picked up this test ress for cheap. It's out of 13 copies with the Wheeljüngen sleeve.

I don't really have anything else to say about this one, but if you're remotely interested in hearing this band I just discovered that you can listen to their discography on the Flatspot Records bandcamp page. Enjoy!

Saturday, 9 September 2017

Rusty Medals And Blue Badges

Another record from the same seller, but this time an LP. After picking up test presses for both Over My Dead Body LPs last year, I had been reminded about how good they were. So when I spotted a blue vinyl copy of their first LP for sale, I badly wanted it. However, I was a little sceptical, because it's not supposed to exist. So I asked for pictures and, sure as shit, it was clear blue.

This particular clear blue vinyl is one of those colours that is not easy to photograph. It's quite a dark shade. So I did my old trick and put it next to the window to show the colour better:

As I said, this colour is not supposed to exist. The Indecision discography shows that there are 103 clear red copies of this LP, and 286 copies on clear purple. But no mention whatsoever of a blue. I hadn't seen my purple copy in a while, and I did wonder whether the blue is only a slightly different shade to the purple, so I put the two side by side, to discover that no, they're not remotely similar.

So the only question left is how many copies there may be like this. I emailed the label to ask and got this reply:

It's the same pressing as purple. All the colored vinyl was sealed so there's no way to know how many of either there are.

Friday, 8 September 2017

Face In The Crowd

Next in the batch of records from the same seller is this test press for the Voorhees 'Bookburner EP'. One of the later Voorhees releases, this was put out by THD Records in 2000.

This is an example of a really great, fun sleeve. The only other time I have seen this in real life was one time about ten or eleven years ago when I went to Lecky's house and he showed me a copy, and told me the story about the sleeve.

I don't know if Kerrang! magazine is still going, and I can't be bothered to google it seeing as I couldn't really give a fuck, but back in the 90s they used to have a competition called 'Face In The Crowd'. They would publish a picture of the crowd at some gig from the last week, and then circle someone, and if that person was you then you instantly won some kind of bullshit prize (probably a Limp Bizkit CD or tickets to see Thunder live at Doncaster ice rink). Anyway, it turns out that this one time Lecky (Voorhees singer) actually appeared as the face in the crowd in the magazine! What a stroke of luck for him. Finally he had a chance to get that Marilyn Manson poster he'd always been dreaming of.

Well, not quite. This is where the story takes a bizarre and amusing turn. It just so happens that his mug appearing in Britain's premier music magazine was not the usual random photo coincidence that usually befalls the average System Of A Down fan, but was instead a crafty set up. Apparently at the gig in question (Sick Of It All in Dudley in Feb '99) the Kerrang! photographer pissed Lecky off (can't remember how or why), so Lecky kicked him in the head. So the dude then published this picture in the magaine hoping that Lecky would write in to claim his Korn 1999 calendar prize, thus supplying the dude with Lecky's name and address. What he would then have done is anyone's guess. Gone round to dish out some street justice? Call the cops? Organise an impromtu Skid Row reunion in his back garden? We'll probably never know.

Thursday, 7 September 2017

What You Have Created... I Want Burned

Next in the batch of records I got from the same seller who sold me the TouchXdown 7"s are a couple of 7"s by Extinction. The 'What You Have Created... I Want Burned' 7" was released by Catalyst Records back in 1997. The band were from Chicago, and had a pretty strong vegan straight edge agenda, like all the bands that Catalyst put out. However, for me, this was pretty much THE best record of it's type. You know, the vegan metal crunch style bands of the 90s. I guess this one came out a little later than most similar 7"s, but to me this is the one that has aged the best. So having the opportunity to grab a couple of extra colours for cheap was something I couldn't help but go for.

I never really knew the pressing info for this, but apparently the first press featured 100 black copies and 900 on clear.

And then the second press was 400 on blue and 100 on red. I never really realised this until I got the clear copy above, but obviously they changed the labels on the b-side for the second pressing.

Funnily enough, I could also have picked up a black copy from the same seller, but didn't as I just figured it was the most common colour. But since getting these and looking up the pressing info, it appears that black is the most limited. Never mind. I'm happy with just three (!) copies of this one.

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

A Test For The Better

Here's the next record in the lot I bought from some dude a couple of months back - a test press of the 'A Change For The Better' 7" compilation. This was one of the first hardcore comps that I ever bought back in the early 90s, which was a transaction based purely on the fact that this record features Endpoint, who I had figured out that I liked pretty early on in my hardcore career.

The sleeve for this one is kinda weird. I mean, on the front you get a couple of things that don't really go together - Marilyn Monroe and a graffiti style font:

Given that there are 50 copies of this record, which is a lot for a test press, I asked Dave Brown what the deal was with this record exactly. Here's his response:

This is what happened (to the best of my memory)... I called to ask about my order, and asked for 15 tests. They sent 50 instead (misheard me). So I made these covers. Then I called to ask why I got 50? They said that's what I ordered, but I didn't. We argue a bit. I get off the phone. A week later, another box shows up... 50 MORE tests in that box. So I made a different blue sleeve, and ised them as 'promos' for a show in Baltimore, MD. Such a headache, to say the least.

Nex, on to the back cover, which also features two more things that don't really go together - Marilyn Monroe and The Simpsons:

Quite why the Simpsons bits got added I have no idea. So I asked Dave about that too. The answer was a little shorter:

Hahaha... it was just to fill up space on the back, from what I recall'

Tuesday, 5 September 2017

It's Not Too Late

The same guy who sold me the Seaweed 7" was also selling a lot of other cool stuff, so I ended up buying quite a few bits from him. I'm going to cover them in a few posts over the next few days.

Today's installment is a few different copies of the TouchXDown 'Reach For The Top' 7". I've actually never known whether the 'X' was a part of the band's name or not. I mean, you know how it is, usually the 'X's are added for aesthetic reasons, but also optional. Then again, most 'X's are added at the start and end of a band's name. This one is in the middle. So is the band's name 'Touchdown' or 'TouchXDown'? I have no idea. Not that it matters I guess. Anyway, this record was a first time vinyl release for this band who were active circa 1988. It came out in 2004 as a split release between Youngblood Records and Malfunction Records. I remember at the time getting the red vinyl and gold vinyl copies when they came out, and then years later I found out that there were some super limited second press colours that must have come out on the sly. So it was cool to get the chance to pick all of them up in one go.

Apparently there were only 25 copies each of the grey vinyl, blue vinyl and purple vinyl copies.

And of course, if I was picking up the limited second press colours, I figured I may as well also grab the test press. This test comes in a cool sleeve:

Theidea is that the sleeve folds out to look like a t-shirt... although to my eyes it looks like a short shirt with long arms. But hey, I'm being picky. It still looks pretty cool.

And with those 4 copies added to the copies I've owned since when this came out, I now appear to have a pretty cool little collection going on.

The final thing I will say that if you've never heard this you really should check it out. Late 80s D.C. straight edge never sounded so good.