Saturday, 23 October 2010

Unbroken in London

Last Saturday night (16 October 2010) I went to a show in London with a some friends. I guess you could say that it was a show that, in theory, I had been waiting to go to for a LONG time. It must be circa 17 years since I first heard Unbroken, and 15 years since I first spoke to bass player Rob Moran (when he used to work at Revelation Records, and I would phone up and order records using my Dad's credit card!), and finally after all this time I was going to see the band play live. Cool. And even better, there were some other good bands playing too:

When I walked in I made straight for the merch tables. I knew that Unbroken had a record for sale and obviously I wanted one. However, after surveying the scene for a couple of minutes, I decided not to bother. I have never seen such a huge gathering of people at a merch stand ever. It was about ten people wide by 6 deep. And the worst part was that only two dudes were actually working the merch stand. I did a quick calculation and figured I would be waiting until the end of time itself, so I went and chilled in the bar for a bit first. A while later I decided to brave the merch area again. Upon arrival, I found my friend Mark, who had already sneakily bought some shit. In the mayhem it seemed that nobody had realised that Disembodied had a merch stall and that they also had a record for sale, which came in a limited sleeve numbered out of 50 copies. Now, I'm not exactly a big Disembodied fan, but I figured this record would still make a nice momento of the show, so I snatched one up:

The funny thing is that when I got home it took me ages to even understand what record I had bought. Turns out it is a collection of some older recordings that have been remastered. The record is called 'Psalms Of Sheol' and it was released last year. What you may not know is that the limited sleeve above is a parody of the New Order 'Movement' LP, which looks like this:

Once I had the Disembodied record in the bag (or rather, in Mark's bag) I knew I would have to deal with the queue for the Unbroken records. Couldn't risk not getting one. So I waited it out. Wasn't as bad as I expected though, as I only had to wait for about 10 minutes. But it was worth it in the end because not only did I get a record, but I got served by Jesus, who now appears to be playing bass in Ceremony and who performed the miracle of selling 300 Unbroken triple LPs in one evening. Praise be!

When I initially heard that this triple LP discography had been repressed I was a bit disappointed. I mean, I was lucky enough to get one last year even though they sold out in one night, and I didn't want to buy a second copy of a triple LP (which was itself a reissue of a bunch of records I already own from when they were pressed in the 90s). But like an idiot, I ended up buying one anyway. Still, they made it cool by making it different to the version made that came out last year.

Note - one of these is mine, the other two were bought for friends who couldn't be in London - they have already been dispatched to their rightful owners. I guess I'm a good friend sometimes eh? The only slight disappointment with this record is the vinyl colour itself - some raspberry ripple style white splatter effect thing. You know how much I hate that euro vinyl already, but it could have been acceptable if it had been on plain colours rather than the splatter. Oh well.

I took the trouble to photograph this version next to last year's US version so that you could see the difference... although the colour of the US version didn't come out too well in these. But at least it shows the two side by side so makes the differences clear:

I guess they were trying to make this version look more like a traditional hardcore LP, whereas the previous one looks like some Joy Division record or something. The results are pretty impressive. Don't think I would go as far as to buy a third version (Indecision Records are selling a clear vinyl copy in their webstore right now).

Oh yeah, I also took the time to get my record personalised by Rob. I figured this would make it an even more special souvenir of the show:

The only other thing to say about this is that IT IS NOT A BOX SET!!! Seems that everyone in the world is referring to this as a box set. Is literally everyone stupid? I mean, the clue is in the name - BOX set. Do you see a box anywhere here? No. Quite clearly it's a triple LP set in a tri-fold sleeve. NOT a box set. OK?

After buying this stuff, I then had a great evening watching bands and chatting to people. I won't say too much about the show as this isn't a show review blog. But Rot In Hell were tighter than I have seen them before, which was good, and Ceremony were every bit as good as I oped they would be. The singer reminded me of a young (and skinny) Henry Rollins, and if I weren't so old i would have been down the front jumping on people when they played, rather than stood on the balcony like some old fart. Still, the balcony had its advantages - it gave a good vantage point for filming. I filmed a couple of the Unbroken songs - their first song ('And') and also their penultimate song ('In The Name Of Progression') on my iphone, and they came out pretty well. The second video is the better one to be honest, since the energy present in the room comes across so much better - near the end you can hear the whole crowd singing along, which sounds really powerful. Check 'em out:


Mark-Sandwell said...

Was a great show no doubt and it was good to hang out after ages. You forgot to mention that Jesus was in a unholy foul mood though. Probably found out he was going to get crucified. Let me know if anything else is happening in London and I'll try and get down.

jhulud said...

A good friend you are indeed! That Dismbodied record looks dope too!

-cja said...

i remember speaking with Rob too when he worked at Rev. funny stuff. i've seen Unbroken once when they toured with Mouthpiece in '95/'96 or so. while not my favorite band they were REALLY good live.

Nathan said...

Didnt see you or Sandwell. Spent most of the night eating free food in the back. Morans the man though.
Wish i'd got that disembodied record.