Sunday, 25 June 2017

Problematic

Another ALL LP for the collection. 'Problematic' is the band's 8th album (or 9th if you include the live album 'Trailblazer') and originally came out back in the year 2000. I wasn't really into them back then, so have no idea how it was received, but I would guess that it probably didn't make much impact.

This copy is a reissue from a couple of years ago. The fact that this is still available from the label two years later kinda suggests that this isn't the most popular record or band... which is a shame, as this is a really great record. In the same way that the Descendents 'Everything Sucks' and 'Cool To Be You' LPs don't sound quite the same as their early LPs, this doesn't sound much like the early ALL LPs. However, just like those aforementioned Descendents LPs, it's full of catchy tunes.

I've lost count now of how many ALL LPs I have managed to pick up now, but I've still got at least couple more to get for the full set.

Friday, 23 June 2017

Fastbreak Friday

I picked up another copy of the Fastbreak 'Don't Stop Trying' 7". It's funny, but this record came out in 1996, and I probably picked up my first copy a year or so later. And here I am, 21 years later, still picking up more different copies. This one is the (I think) 5th pressing from sometime in the mid 00s. I'm not sure how many were made exactly, but I do remember when it was pressed not buying one and thinking it was lame to repress this again years later. Which makes it kinda funny that I just caved in and bought one.

And only a couple of weeks after I picked up the solid yellow copy, I FINALLY had an opportunity to grab a 1st press blue vinyl copy. This is the one that eluded me for years, and ended up being the last colour copy for me to track down. Cool to finally have one.

So that's that. Twenty one years on from this record's release and I have a collection I'm happy with. Here's a couple of pics of the lot together:

Included here is: 1st press test press (/55), 1st press blue vinyl (/100), 2nd press gold vinyl (/100), 3rd press red vinyl (/100), 4th press clear vinyl (/100), 5th press yellow vinyl (/not sure).

There is actually a second test press that was made for the mid 00s repress. I think there are quite a few of those (50 or so) which, I guess, it would be nice to have. If I did have one, however, it would make the photo more challenging. I mean, 6 is a much easier number to deal with than 7, right?

Tuesday, 20 June 2017

Test II

Not much of a story to this one. I was browsing eBay and came across this test press for the second Black God 7", entitled 'II'. I won it as the only bidder and snagged it for $10. Good job, Captain!

I thought it was pretty cool that I appeared to get number 1 out of 10 too. But then I saw ANOTHER copy for sale on eBay which wasn't numbered at all. Which makes me think there are probably more than ten. Which made this one then seem less cool than I first thought.

I see this as the start of another collection. The objective is to get test presses of all 4 of the Black God 7"s. Kinda funny as I don't even own the third or fourth 7"s at all yet. Once again I'm probably setting my sights unrealistically high...

Monday, 19 June 2017

A Second (And Third) Glimpse

When the latest Dinosaur Jr LP came out last year, it felt that there were too many colours of vinyl, and as is often the case with new releases, I was determined not to get sucked in. So I went to my local shop and purchased a purple vinyl copy. And I thought I was happy. Well, that was until I realised that purple vinyl was out of like three million copies, and there was a rare clear vinyl version. Then I wasn't quite so happy after all. But by good luck, and via a reader of this blog, I was able to get a copy of the clear vinyl from Newbury comics direct for much less than copies were trading hands for on eBay and discogs.

And of course, once I had the purple and clear, I couldn't help then going to the Amoeba Records online store to order a copy of their exclusive blue vinyl version too, in order that I may 'complete the set'.

So there it is. Proof once again that if there are multiple versions available, I will make it difficult for myself by ignoring them when they first launch, only to then decide I want them once they are sold out. Fortunately, however, this time my own dumbass plan backfired and I ended up with all three copies for new release prices.

Sunday, 18 June 2017

Do Not Request Clear

If you know anything about Relapse Records, you'll know that they press 100 copies of every release on clear vinyl. These are for the bands and label only, and are not available to Joe Public. Their store always makes a point of clarifying this by stating the pressing info for the release which always includes '100 x clear' along with the statement 'Do not request clear'. See HERE for an example.

Anyway, just before Xmas last year, I was searching eBay and came across an auction for the new(ish) Ringworm LP, 'Snake Church', on clear vinyl. I added it to my watch list. I noticed that it was being sold by the label, so knew it would be a good condition, unplayed copy, which kinda made me want it more. To my surprise, I bid and won it for not too much money at all, and a decent amount less than people were trying to sell copies on discogs for sure.

Just like the last Ringworm LP, the cover looks awesome, and the clear vinyl compliments it perfectly. Definitely the best colour to own it on I'd say.

Well obviously I looked at the other items being sold by the label, and there were a lot of clear vinyl records. Maybe they were trying to recoup some cash and figured xmas would be the perfect time. And whilst I'm not the biggest fan of the label, it does have a few bits that I like, so I ended up watching a few auctions. Most of them went for lots of money and I didn't even enter a bid. But there was one recent release that was sitting at a pretty low price, so I had a cheeky bid and, surprisingly, ended up winning it.

This is the debut LP by Sumerlands. It's a metal record featuring DFJ from every hardcore band of the last 10 years. I actually listened to this band a couple of years ago on someone's recommendation and wasn't overly into it. But when I read Mike's blog a few months ago, I was going through a period where I was searching for something new and interesting to listen to, and his post made me want to give the band another go. So I downloaded the album and gave it a few listens, and started to get into it. And then saw the clear vinyl copy for sale. Basically, the planets aligned and everything fell percectly into place.

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Blessed Majesty

So it was 7 years ago that A389 Records released Integrity's 'To Die For' LP as a 10" record. And back then I pushed the boat out and paid for a test press. I was pretty stoked back then because the test press was on a cool blue vinyl, and numbered out of only 5 copies. Well, at some point later I learnt that there was also a red vinyl test press too. I had no idea when it was released, and suddenly felt short changed. I mean, imagine, you fork out some big money for a test press and then find out that there was another different test press. So I waited and waited and eventually I managed to get one.

I do like the cover on the red vinyl test press. Definitely the most attractive cover in this set of 10"s for sure.

Well anyway, shit got worse, because after I found out that there was a red vinyl test press, which I was chasing, I then found out that there was also a black vinyl test press too!!! I mean, holy crap, three different test presses. What the fuck was going on? No idea, but it really doesn't matter. The point is, it's an Integrity record, it exists, I need to have it. And fortunately, I managed to grab one at the same time as the red one.

So finally the quest for the 'To Die For' test presses is complete:

There are 25 test presses in total - 5 blue, 15 red and 5 black. Obviously there can't be more than 5 people who could possibly own all three, so I count myself very lucky here. Or possibly very stupid. Definitely one of the two.

Sunday, 11 June 2017

Soul Structure

It was two years ago that I first saw and heard Higher Power play live, supporting BURN in London. They were pretty good, and I picked up their debut 7" as a result. A week or two ago their debut LP came out, and man, it's a good one. Released by Flat Spot Records in the States, and Venn Records in the UK, 'Soul Structure' comes in a sleeve that makes it look kinda like a mid 90s grunge record.

My copy is the clear with orange haze vinyl from Venn Records in the UK. I think there were 300 of these made.

Musically this reminds me a lot of the second Leeway LP. It's hard but also has a real groove going on. I have played this once or twice every day for the past couple of weeks, and no sign of it getting boring yet. This one will surely be the sound of summer 2017, mark my words.

Monday, 5 June 2017

Last Piece Of The Puzzle

I've always been a fan of Gameface. Well, not always obviously. I mean, when I was like 3 I had never heard of them. But ever since I first heard them, I've been a fan. I first saw them play in Summer 1995 or 1996 (can't remember which exactly) and since then they've always been a band whose records I have picked up, to the point where I now have a pretty good collection. The latest edition is this test press of their first record, the self-titled 7" which was released in 1991 by Nemesis Records.

In line with tradition, here's the test press next to the cover for the regular version of the record:

This represents the 4th Gameface test press in my collection, which I'm pretty happy about. Unfortunately, a couple of their records came out on Revelation, so I'm never going to own those. But there are a couple of other releases that I could realistically aim to find in the fullness of time, so fingers crossed...