Monday, 19 September 2016

Over My Dead Body

I was always a fan of OVER MY DEAD BODY back when they were going around the turn of the century. They were a straight edge hardcore band, but with a very punk edge. They covered The Sex Pistols and Reagan Youth on their records, and had an obvious interest in English football. To me, they stood out from the crowd at the time. I haven't listened to them in a long time, but a few weeks ago I got a chance to pick up test pressings of both of their full lengths, so I jumped at it.

The first LP, 'Rusty Medals And Broken Badges' was released by Indecision Records in 2001. The test press came in this plain white sleeve with a sticker on the front. Not sure if they all came like this or whether a previous owner made this sleeve themselves. Regardless, most Indecision releases only had 8 tests made, so it's a pretty major deal to score one.

Here's a pic of the test with the regular record cover, because it somehow looks more interesting.

The second LP, 'Sink Or Swim' was released by Takeover Records in 2003. This is such a great LP, and reminds me of the first Bane LP in several places. I vaguely recall some kind of controversy surrounding this when it came out, although I can't remember exactly what it was. Maybe just that some of the people who pre-ordered never actually received anything? That old chestnut. Just like the I Hate You discography and the Suicide File / R'N'R split 7" from around the same time. Anyway, I digress. The test press is typically understated in its appearance:

So yup, you guessed it, I decided to take another pic with the regular cover.

I'm not sure that this band are still remembered today to be honest. Shame if not, but the positive side of that is that their records should be pretty cheap to pick up for those of us still looking to fill some gaps.

Friday, 16 September 2016

Celebrated Summer

So as Summer draws to a close, and I'm sitting here (as every year) wondering where the fuck it went, I can at least look back and be satisfied that it's actually been a pretty good one. But now we head into the autumn and winter, with dark evenings which means there's no light for record photos. This could therefore be the last evening photo of the season.

I picked up a grey vinyl copy of 'New Day Rising' back in 2012. It was my first attempt at getting into Hüsker Dü. Well, my first attempt since my first real attempt back in 1992. Since then I've gotten into the band a lot and so I'm now on the hunt for any colour vinyl copies I can get my hands on, so when this purpley pinkish copy appeared for sale I figured I'd grab it.

I think these two copies are both represses from the same era (2011/12). The may even be part of the same pressing of 'scrap' vinyl, which seems to often range from grey to purple and everywhere in between.

This LP was first pressed on colour vinyl back in the early 90s, on both blue and also grey vinyl. I still have my eyes peeled for copies on either of those colours too. Maybe one day...

Tuesday, 6 September 2016

Oops, I Did It Again

Only three weeks ago I put up a post showing a purple vinyl copy of Mudhoney's 'Every Good Boy Deserves Fudge' LP and mentioned that I had been thinking about trying to build a collection of that particular album for a few years. Well, you know what they say... no time like the present! The same seller that I bought the purple copy from had several other versions that he was selling, and I managed to grab three more copies.

First is this copy which is a US pressing on a greyish colour with purple swirls. I'm guessing this is part of a 'scrap' vinyl pressing as it is not really any colour in particular.

The next copy is this bright green. This is a European pressing, denoted by the different label catalogue number. Also, it has a different sticker on the front, and the colours on the cover are slightly lighter in tone.

And third is another European pressing, this time on grey vinyl.

I've had this album in my collection in one form or another since 1992. But the funny thing is that until three weeks ago I owned one copy. Now it's five. And all this because I spotted a Seaweed 7" for sale on eBay.

Sunday, 4 September 2016

Higher Power 'Year One Collection' 12"

My record room is such a mess right now. I have cubes full of LPs, then a shelf unit with LPs I bought last year, then I have three piles of LPs on the floor of things I've picked up this year. The three piles on the floor are in no order whatsoever, and it seems that whenever a new record comes in it just goes into one of the three piles. It's random, and as a consequence I forgot about this Higher Power 'Year One Collection' 12".

Higher Power are a UK band from Leeds, which is a city approximately 200 miles north of London. I used to live there but moved away about ten years ago. It always had a good hardcore scene, but the last few years it kinda went next level. Higher Power are one of the newer bands who are earning a real name for themselves, having toured the States and Europe.

This 12", released by Control Records, compiles the demo and the 'Space To Breathe' 7" that were both released in 2015. There were only 135 copies made in total. I bought this when it was released and it arrived when I was away on holiday. So I've had it since the beginning of July, but misplaced it for two months.

I love these really minimal, basic looking 12"s, probably partly because they remind me of the Straight Ahead 12", although I acknowledge that if you come here to see pictures of records then this one is probably slightly disappointing.

Thursday, 1 September 2016

The Smoke Of Hell

A few weeks ago I went to see the Dwarves play in London. I've been a fan of their unique brand of rock n roll since I was 17... which is quite a long time ago now. But I had never seen them live and I'd never listened to anything they put out since thir 1997 album 'The Dwarves Are Young And Good Looking'. But seeing them live made me fall in love with them all over again and I've been listening to them quite a bit lately. So when I bought the Mudhoney LP a couple of weeks ago, and I saw checked what else the seller had listed, I was pleasantly reminded of The Supersuckers. They sound very similar to later Dwarves, and I used to own their first LP, 'The Smoke Of Hell', many years ago before I decided to sell it when I decided that only straight edge hardcore should occupy my record shelves. Dipshittery of the highest order. So anyway, I decided to re-buy the thing probably 20 years after I sold my clear pink vinyl copy.

This copy right here is definitely not the clear pink that I used to own. Instead, it is some weird colour that looks whitish clear when held to the light, and a dirty yellowish when there is no light behind it. I'm guessing it is some kind of transition colour as there are a lot of pink streaks.

As you can see, it looks pretty unique.

The best thing about this band that I had completely forgotten is the singer's name. Eddie Spaghetti. I mean, seriously... can you imagine introducing yourself to people with a name like that?

Monday, 29 August 2016

A Lion Riding A Horse

So back on 6 June, a limited version of the World Be Free 'The Anti Circle' went on sale via the band's webstore. Or rather, it was supposed to go on sale. What actually happened was that a lot of people got excited about the record and the store crashed under the volume of traffic. I was sat at work at the end of the working day, and found myself clicking 'refresh' constantly for about an hour, not wanting to go home in case the store came back online and I missed out. So for an hour I found myself staring at the blue gator:

Well, the band then posted a message to say that they were working on getting a new site up to sell the records. So in the meantime I took the opportunity to escape the office and get myself home. And then a couple of hours after it should have gone on sale, it went on sale on a different site. I think the site crashing actually helped me, as it meant that a lot of people in the States were at work and not in a position to place an order. So when it went on sale the second time, I was able to grab one without problem.

The previous versions of this LP were pressed on orange and green vinyl. There was also a second pressing on clear vinyl (which I don't have yet), and based on the labels on the record itself, as well as the vinyl colours chosen, it felt like a homage to the War Zone 'LESC' 7". Well, this version confirms that's the case beyond a shadow of a doubt:

This limited cover is a cartoon parody of the infamous 'Lion Attacking A Horse' sleeve of the War Zone 7", which nobody has ever seen in full.

There were only 100 of these, numbered by hand. The hand numbering has been done in a style and colour that matches the rest of the text, which is good attention to detail, right?

The slight downside to this version was that it cost a lot because it came as part of a bundle, which included a couple of other bits of gubbins - a shirt and a slipmat. The shirt matches the LP cover, but the slipmat really doesn't. It looks dirty and used.

So this is the second limited cover for this LP that has been made. The first I never got. I had one coming to me in a big box with loads of other stuff that got lost. I was really looking forward to that record. Something about the cover just made me want it bad. It was one of the records in the box that I was looking forward to the most. So I made a split second decision to buy a second copy of this limited bundle so that I could try to trade one for the first limited cover version of the LP which got lost. Only, when the second copy arrived, it was slightly different to the first one, as the back cover was printed the wrong way up. Here's a short video which shows the misprint.

As of now I haven't traded one away and still have two. And I admit, I'm slightly tempted to keep them both as they are different, in some weird unintended way. But I'm curious - what would you do? Keep both or trade one?

Sunday, 28 August 2016

Hypercaffium Spazzinate Part 1

So unless you've been living under a rock, you'll be aware that there's a new Descendents album which has just dropped. I think it would have been possible to miss either of the last two albums when they came out, but in the modern era I think it's pretty much impossible to have not noticed this one. It's called 'Hypercaffium Spazzinate' and is actually the first Descendents record to have been released since I got into them. The last LP, 'Cool To Be You', came out way back in 2004 when I was not into Descendents and when record collecting was in a different place. In 2004, for example, Epitaph didn't press anything on colour vinyl (save a couple of exceptions) and Fat Wreck saw fit to press only 197 copies of 'Cool To Be You' on color vinyl in total - the rest of the press was black vinyl. In 2016, however, the world works differently and within a week of the new album's released, Epitaph had pressed 8 different colors of vinyl (plus some on black too).

When the pre-order launched I got sent an email containing a link to a special pressing on glow in the dark vinyl. I was on the way out for a walk, and figured I'd order when I got home. Unfortunately, however, by the time I got home it had sold out. I saw this as a sign that there was going to be a lot of interest in this record, so made the decision to immediately order the other versions that were available. These were as follows:

1. 'Clear with black swirl' vinyl. This was the pre-order version from Kingsroad Merch in Europe.

2. Green / black swirl vinyl. This was exclusive to two stores in Europe (Green Hell and Flight 13). I got mine from Flight 13, which is why it has the extra orange sticker on the front.

It does look almost black in the photo, so here's the photo I put on instagram just to prove that it is in fact green:

3. Clear green vinyl. This was the pre-order color available from Kingsroad Merch in the States, but I don't have this one yet.

So that was that. There were four colours made, and I had missed one. I figured I'd get one eventually. But then, when the official release date arrived, there were suddenly 'new' colours being talked about. My approach to life is generally all or nothing, and seeing as I was already down the path to 'ALL' (se what I did there?) then I was left with no choice but to pull the trigger on the additional copies. These were as follows:

Silver / black swirl vinyl. This was the UK indie stores exclusive. No idea how many were made.

Red vinyl. I think this was available in both the States and Europe, but limited to 500 copies. No idea if this is rarer than other colours.

White vinyl. This was the US indie stores exclusive (big thanks to Mike for picking one of these up for me!).

So there you go. That's 5 copies I have, on possibly the most boring looking colours of vinyl I have ever seen. I did take a group shot but it looked so dull that I just deleted it. There's also a clear blue vinyl which is a Hot Topic exclusive, and there's also now a rumour of another blue, although I havent seen a picture of this and currently think it could be just confusion caused by people referring to the Hot Topic version as either 'coke bottle clear' or 'clear blue'. I don't know. But I have all copies covered now except that glow in the dark, which I could have ordered immediately if I hadn't have been confident that it would still be there an hour after I received the email. Ugh.

Saturday, 20 August 2016

We Are Love

It seems like only yesterday that Give appeared on the scene with their fancy flower imagery slapped over everything. It seemed new and interesting, as did their Swiz-like sounds. But it's been 6 years ago now since that they appeared, and in the time since they've released quite a lot of records. And especially after the last LP, it feels to me like people are losing interest.

Well, when people start to lose interest then I see it as an opportunity. One of the items I have been missing for nearly 4 years now is the 'Singles Going Confetti' 12" with limited sleeve. Back when I saw them play in 2012, they were selling their newly released 12", and I bought a yellow vinyl copy and was happy... until I discovered that I had somehow missed out on the limited cover version.

There were 110 copies with this limited cover and on yellow vinyl with black swirls. Some were sold by the band on tour, and some were sold via the label directly. The giant flower logo looks perfect blown up to this size, don't you think?

When I was a kid I used to think that 8 was my lucky number. I guess some things never change.

If anyone else is looking to offload any Give records, I'm still looking for a pink vinyl copy of the 'Electric Flower Circus' LP. Email me if you're looking to sell.

Wednesday, 17 August 2016

Purple Fudge

So when I spotted the Seaweed 7" for sale on eBay I couldn't help but do a quick search for 'Sub Pop' to see if there was anything else up for sale at that exact moment which seemed interesting. I guess I just prefer picking up whatever is there rather than waiting and targetting my spend at things I actually want. Haha! So anyway, I spotted a couple of copies of Mudhoney's 'Every Good Boy Deserves Fudge' LP. I've seen several colours of this record in the past and often thought about trying to build a collection, so when I saw a couple up for a good price I figured now was the time to start. I bid on two copies but got outbid on one, leaving me with this purple vinyl copy:

Back in the '92 this was one of the first records I bought. I had a picture disc copy that I buoght from the big HMV in Southend on Sea. I actually sold that copy years ago, and then a few years later re-bought a copy on some maroon type colour which I still have. So this purple copy here is the third copy of this LP that I have bought in 24 years.

Mudhoney were one of the first bands I became obsessed by. But I've never had more than one copy of any of their records. Some of them are quite expensive these days, so I guess I should have done this sooner. But since I won this I've been watching a couple more copies so there may be more Mudhoney posts to come in the near future...

Monday, 15 August 2016

Green Bills

So here's a variant of a record I've had for years that I have been meaning to pick up for years and only just got around to. Seaweed 'Bill' 7" on Sub Pop on light green vinyl.

I picked this up from a UK seller on eBay. After paying mainly international shipping charges, it's nice to 'only' pay domestic rates now and again, especially on a cheap pick up.

There are two known variants of this 7". This light green copy I have just picked up, and a darker, blueish greeny thing.

The reason it took me so long to pick this version up is that I could never remember which one of these I had. After I saw a seller list both on eBay, I decided to check which one I had, so that I could finally pick up the other. It's taken a few years, but I finally the job got done.

Saturday, 30 July 2016

Humanity... Remixed

Feels like a while since I've posted an Integrity record on here, and of course it's a test press.

This is a test press of a record which hasn't actually been released yet. A couple of months ago, for record store day, Organized Crime Records reissued the 1995 classic 'Humanity Is The Devil'. They did the same a couple of years earlier for 'Systems Overload', and then a little later they put out an updated, remixed version. Well, the same is going to happen for 'Humanity Is The Devil'. Magic Bullet Records already released it on CD, with the vinyl version to follow at some stage in the near future. This is the test press, with a cover hand made by Dwid himself.

As the year rolls on, I'm still struggling to move on from the major disaster of my lost parcel. One of the items in there was a test press of the recently released Integrity / Power Trip split 12". I bought the record directly from the label, and then paid a little bit extra to have Dwid make a cover for it. Well, the record was coming to me from the States and got lost, but the cover made it over from Belgium just fine. So after I'm left with a handmade cover for a record I don't own.

It's a pretty cool looking cover and all, but it seems a cruel twist for me to get sent two bits of a record and to end up with the more useless bit. Still, one day I may be able to pick up the record, and there will be a nice cover waiting for it.

Sunday, 24 July 2016

Jug

My interest in records, and in particular Revelation represses, fell off a cliff recently. But sometimes when you go off track, you can get pulled back unexpectedly. And so it was with this yellow vinyl repress of 'Bringin' It Down'.

When I first saw it I was disappointed that it had been made at all. I mean, back in 2001 I bought what I was told was the 'final press' of this record. Then a few months ago Rev delivered a 25 year anniversary edition, which I could forgive as it was, in theory, a one off. But another repress on another colour just felt like a line had been crossed. I wasn't excited by it, and wasn't too fussed about picking one up. But then two things happened - firstly, a photo of a transition copy appeared on instagram and then, more importantly, it suddenly sold out. It turns out that only 252 copies were pressed, and I guess the numbers of people buying two copies in the hope of finding another transition copy had ensured it sold double quick. I then did what any self-respecting Rev collector would do - I panicked, and started searching frantically for one . Thankfully I was able to find one for sale via another online retailer, so I grabbed one while I still could.

A few people have been saying that this new yellow pressing is too close to the 2001 'final press', although I don't really see it.

Tuesday, 14 June 2016

Fuck Your Sympathy

So after what must be at least two years of talking about it, I finally caved in and traded away a record from my collection that I didn't really want to part with. I'm not going to say what record it was, but suffice to say that it was a test press, and the main reason that I gave it up was that I got an offer that I couldn't really refuse. So I finally said yes to the proposed deal and sent off my record, and I received this beauty in return:

To clarify matters, this is a test press for the Unbroken 'Ritual' LP on New Age Records. I don't think I have ever met anyone who thinks that this LP is superior to their second LP (the now legendary 'Life. Love. Regret'), although when I play this one I find it tough to imagine that there could be a better record in existence. As some general advice, I'd say that you should never allow yourself to forget how good this LP is. If you're at all sceptical, go and put the thing on right now. You'll be agreeing within seconds. It's fucking incredible. I'm lucky as hell to have this test press, and I'm stoked that it came in a sleeve too, for shelf filing purposes.

It doesn't just stop there though. In negotiating the trade, as often happens, we decided to expand the deal. I gave up something else that I'm not going to mention, and in return got hold of another legendary New Age records test press. Catalogue number 10.

For those of you not familiar with what NA10 is (which I can forgive as not even I know many catalogue numbers off the top of my head), I dug out the regular record so I could snap the test (not literally) with a cover. And all so that your brain could compute what this record is.

Man, I love this record. Back when I was getting into this shit, this 7" was one of the first straight edge records I heard, and it blew me away. I'm stoked to have this test, although it's not anywhere near enough compensation for the red vinyl version that got lost in my missing parcel.

Sunday, 12 June 2016

In Faith & Loyalty

I lost touch with React! Records a long time ago. The label started strong, got a little lost for a while, and then Ev took it over and brought it back stronger than ever. But after the 'lost' period, I removed the label from my list of labels I could trust, and unfortunately it has never made it back on there. These days I pick up some of their releases, but I'm a long way behind the preorder crowd. So by the time that I started to see pictures of the For Pete's Sake 'In Faith & Loyalty' LP on clear blue vinyl appear, and decided that I wanted one, it was long gone. A couple of months later and I picked one up on Discogs.

I really like the artwork on this thing. I love how it's not typically hardcore. The front cover looks like something you'd find hanging on the walls of Tate Modern, and the clear blue vinyl goes with it perfectly.

This band features Peter from Sportswear on vocals, but this is nothing like that band at all. For Pete's Sake sounds a lot more mature, which is exactly what you'd expect from a band in their 40s. I've been enjoying it a lot recently, although it took a few plays to get into it. It's definitely a grower rather than an instant hit I guess, which is the exact opposite to the cover and lovely clear blue vinyl.