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.