Monday, 30 January 2012

Enjoy! (((white)))

I'm loving the SST colour vinyl at the moment. Not only are they cranking out the reissues, but recently I got a couple of leads on some of the early 90s colour vinyl that I'm missing - one Descendents record, and one Black Flag record. This one here is the former, which I bagged on ebay. I spotted this one when it only had a day or so left. The price was pretty low. The main problem was that I was going out for a meal when the auction was ending, so I couldn't be there to watch the auction close out and sneak in some last minute bid action. So instead I set up the sniper and left the house. Fortunately for me I took my iphone out with me and checked the auction a few minutes before the auction ended. At this point I realised that the amount I had put in the sniper had already been exceeded, so I then had to top it up with more. A couple of minutes later this amount had also been exceeded. So there I was, at some family dinner, spending half my time with phone in hand bidding on ebay. Priorities!

Descendents 'Enjoy' on white vinyl. I'm pretty sure that the only other colour this comes on is pink, which I already have. Cool that both colours seem to have been selected to match the artwork on the front cover.

This copy has a small purple smudge on either side. You can see it in the photo, although it seems a lot more obvious in real life:

I think there are only 4 colour LPs I'm missing now... and I've just realised that three quarters of them are blue:

- 'Hallraker Live' on green

- 'Liveage' on blue

- 'Cool To Be You' on blue

- 'Everything Sucks' on blue

Can anyone help? I guess I'd rather buy than trade, but if you want to trade then we can certainly talk about it. Hit me up.

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Give 'I Am Love'

One of the few current bands that I listen to these days is DC's Give. They sound like Swiz to me, which is a good thing. There's a series of three 7"s just about to drop on three different labels. Here's the first, courtesy of Triple B Records, entitled 'I Am Love'.

What I love about Give's 7"s is that they go for the same layout every time. Even though there are three new 7"s just coming out, and the layouts all follow the same theme (live shot on the front with the flower logo in the top left corner, and lyrics on the back cover), the same layout was also used on the previous two 7"s from last year (or maybe it was the year before).

The pressing info for this one is 200 on clear, 300 on red and 400 on black.

Also, all three new 7"s can be downloaded for free (along with all previous Give releases) on the Give bandcamp page. Enjoy!

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Pale Creation 'Twilight Haunt' LP

Back in July 2010, I picked up a 7" on A389 Records by a band called Pale Creation. The 7" came as part of an Integrity pre-order package, and I had to buy it in order to get a rare Integrity record. No doubt if I wasn't forced to buy it then I probably would never have heard it. But in the end I was glad to have had to buy it because it ended up being my favourite 7" of 2010.

Anyhow, because this was a 7" by a band I had never heard on from a label that I knew was putting out a lot of current acts, I just assumed that Pale Creation was a new band. But then someone directed me to a free download of their album, 'Twilight Haunt', which it turns out came out way back in 1999 on East Coast Empire Records. I did some research and discovered that this album had never been pressed on vinyl, but was (for some weird reason) released as something called a 'CD'. No, I have no idea what that means either, but it sounds kinda lame.

A couple of months ago, A389 Records decided to finally right this wrong and press up some vinyl copies of this long lost album. A very limited run of only 250 copies was pressed on 'blue storm' vinyl:


(Despite the very limited pressing, there are still copies available for purchase in the A389 online store HERE)

Monday, 23 January 2012

In My Brown Head

Continuing the recent SST colour vinyl reissues, here's a brown vinyl copy of Black Flag's 'In My Head' LP. Way back in the early 90s, this one was issued on pink vinyl, which remains one of the few colour vinyl 'original' (ahem) Black Flag records that I'm still missing. Seems a little less urgent now though seeing as it is easier to find a colour version, and this brown seems like a much better colour choice seeing as it nicely matches the cover.

And here it is next to the brown vinyl copy of 'Loose Nut' that I also picked up, just to show the different shades of brown.

There's also a yellow and a light brown knocking about out there. Beyond that, who knows? I still need the original early 90s pink pressing though. Can anyone help?

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Loose Nuts

You may or may not know that SST Records have recently repressed a few records on color vinyl. This hasn't really been done since the early 90s, which is when pretty much all the SST color vinyl was originally manufactured. But now, twenty years later, the latest round of represses have appeared on non-black wax. And to keep things interesting, there's more than one colour of everything. Yay!

Case in point - 'Loose Nut'. The original early 90s colour pressing was on clear blue (I picked one up in June 2008). Now we have at least three new colours on the scene... a brown, a light pinky grey, and a deep pink:

To make things worse (for me) I have just scanned eBay and seen a super dark grey version which the seller describes as 'olive'. I'm starting to think that these were maybe pressed on 'scrap' colour vinyl, which is where the plant uses random leftover colours which then results in almost countless different variants. If that's the case then I best give up now or I'll end up owning 20 copies on varying shades. Although, in a way, that would be kinda cool...

Fire & Ice Collections LP

As you probably know by now, I struggle to keep up with the latest bands these days. And my level of interest is not what it used to be. But I do love to hear new music and last year, after much hassle from Mike, I finally caved in & downloaded some Fire & Ice songs. He kept telling me I would like the band, as they feature dudes from Iron Boots and Down To Nothing, both of which I have also kinda liked. Well, I soon found myself playing these songs on a daily basis as I rode my bike to & from work, and it felt good to be listening to a current band who really brought the mosh. Or in my case, the pedal power. It was inevitably only a matter of time until I started buying their records.

I picked up a couple of their 7"s a couple of months ago, and now I have the 12" which compiles both the 7"s onto one handy disc. This is on glow in the dark vinyl.

This record has without doubt the biggest lyric sheet I have ever seen in my life:

This would definitely have been my top record of 2011 if only it had shown up in 2011. Goddamn post office. They ruin everything.

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

New Breed Compilation double LP

Today's entry is an old New York hardcore compilation which (for those of you who don't know) was originally released way back in 1989 when Chaka Malik (singer of BURN) and some other dude released a TAPE compilation of some up & coming New York hardcore bands. The comp was called 'The New Breed', a name that was to hint that these bands represented a new generation of kids set to take over the scene. Apparently 700 of thee tapes were sold, and ever since this comp has always been regarded as a classic, even despite having never been released on a 'proper' format (at least that's how I see it - tapes just don't count in my book). Well anyway, fast forward 22 years and these dudes have decided to finally release it on a proper format. Oh yeah, and they've also put it out on CD too for some weird reason.

I got my order in pretty quickly when this was announced back at the start of November. This meant that I was lucky enough to get one of the first 200 copies which come in a screen printed cover, and which are on colour vinyl. The regular black vinyl pressing has been available for a few weeks now, but the special covers were slightly delayed. Mine finally turned up yesterday. First thing to say is that this was worth the wait. This thing looks great. Straight away I'm loving the front cover, which is a red & yellow New Breed logo on top of a light blue background. Very simple design, but very striking:

The back cover has the track listing glued on the back and is numbered in the bottom right corner.

The cool move here is that this also includes a copy of the original zine that came with the tape. I guess this has simply been photocopied, just the original zine probably was way back when.

There is also another insert - a single glossy sheet that has a full colour photo collage on one side, and a written piece about the history of the comp, the social backdrop against which it was created, and it's relevance today on the reverse:

The vinyl itself is nice looking. It is pressed on clear blue vinyl. I'm not sure if this is intentional, or if other copies are like this, but my two records are slightly different. One is pure clear blue, whilst the other is clear blue with some black streaks in it. The two do look quite different when laid side by side, although I'm not sure that this picture really shows it that well:

I also got a little hand written apology for the delay. I particularly like the wording about the spirit of '89.

It's clear that putting this comp to vinyl was a real labour of love. The quality and the passion really shines through. I'm stoked to have got this special pressing, and it's great to see this thing finally put to vinyl. I have to wonder though how many of the original band members are aware of this and/or have been sent copies. Anyone know?

For now I'll leave you with the first paragraph & final sentence of the liner notes:

At its best, music can perfectly capture a moment in time, a location, or the life and surroundings of its creators. In this way, the New Breed tape compilation was completely successful. Like many classic recordings before it which captured the essence of their time, place, and the feeling of the conditions under which they were created, the New Breed compilation captured the New York City of the late 1980s.

More than two decades later, the New Breed still resonates with all the power and energy of its time, and all that NYC was, is, and will be.

(If you want to read the rest, go HERE)

Sunday, 15 January 2012

Integrity / Hatebreed Gold

Not much to say about this one. Another colour of the Integrity / Hatebreed split 7". This came out somewhere round '95 or so I think. I bought one copy when it came out. I used to be happy enough with one copy. Unfortunately, not any more. So now I'm going back & adding more copies of records I don't even listen to into boxes on shelves. Kinda pointless really. Well, aside from being fun.

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Striving Higher

Way back on Black Friday I ordered some stuff from Six Feet Under Records. The main thing I wanted was the Tremors 7" on green vinyl. I picked up the UK pressing last year and loved the record so figured I may as well pick up the US pressing too. The US version has a different sleeve and one less song. It still looks good though:

After adding that to my virtual cart, I had a look to see if there was anything else I wanted to pick up whilst prices were low...

My second choice was the new 7" by Inside, a Japanese straight edge band. This record is imaginatively titled 'Tokyo Straight Edge'.

When I ordered this I thought it would be interesting. I kinda figured it would be a straight edge record with a Japanese hardcore influence. In reality this is just a Japanese band that sounds exactly like a US band, but with lyrics in Japanese and there's pretty much nothing here that interests me.

The next record I went for was the Alert 7". I have read good things about this band and I'm always interested in good quality straight edge bands. I think this is the most common version on clear purple vinyl.

This sounds pretty much as you would expect. Straight edge by numbers. If you like that kinda thing you will love this. I'm a sucker for this stuff. I don't know why its taken me this long to check out Alert. Idiot.

Finally, the the 'Striving Higher' compilation LP. I guess I wanted it to check out some bands that I never heard before. Yes, I could use the internet I suppose, but I ended up ordering this last minute as an impulse purchase & I wasn't going to sit down and spend an hour trying to listen to loads of bands online in order to decide if I wanted part with $12 or whatever it was. My time is worth more to me than that. Plus, that would be no fun. So I just ordered the record. I had the choice of two vinyl colours, and I chose red. No idea which colour is the rarest and I'm not sure I'm really bothered either.

This comes with a big glossy booklet. Like comps of old, each band gets their own page of the booklet. Gives me something interesting to flick through whilst listening.

Oh yeah, and it also comes with a complimentary Blacklisted flexi:

I own a lot of compilations. But there are only a very, very small handful that ever get played more than about twice. I guess that in theory comps are great, but in reality they aren't. The problem is that when you want to listen to a record, you have a particular type of sound you want. So the problem with comps is that the first song may be exactly what you are looking for, but then the second might be a different band with a different sound that isn't the kind of thing you are in the mood for. However, there are times when comps are perfect. Firstly, when they bring together a bunch of bands from a particular time and/or place. I'm thinking of Revelation's legendary 'New York Hardcore' comps, or Dischord's 'Flex Your Head'. Or secondly (which was mainly the case before the internet) when you want to check out a bunch of bands you never heard before. For me, this comp serves the latter purpose. I've listened to it a few times the last three days and it's been a good introduction to a few bands I never bothered to check out before. The stand outs for me were the songs by The Mongoloids, Rhythm To The Madness, and Blacklisted. My stand out favourite, however, is the song by War Hungry. Why did I never listen to this band before? If this song is anything to go by this could be my new favourite band.

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Sinking Ships Demo 7"

I picked up a couple of rarer Sinking Ships 7"s on eBay just before xmas. I wasn't THAT excited by them, but it looked like they were going to go for cheap, so put in a couple of lowish bids and was surprised to find that I won. I guess some bands get forgotten about quick. It took me a while to get this band, and whilst they are far from my favourite band of the past ten years, they have some really great songs. These two 7"s are a couple of rare versions of their Demo 7" that was pressed to wax by Excursion Records.

Pre-Release version. This one is numbered 2/30, and has a printed acetate front cover.

And the 2005 West Coast tour cover. Number 2/64.

Just for information, the rarest version of this 7" is known as the 'Treasure Hunt' edition. This is because, when the record came out, the label packed up ten copies and hid them in various locations around Seattle. Clues to the locations were then posted up on the Excursion website. At least one copy was buried in the ground. All copies were found and claimed years ago. I guess anyone outside of Seattle was at a slight disadvantage. Anyway, this all happened a few years ago when it came out, but if you are interested you can still view the clues to the hiding places (and where the things were eventually discovered) on the Excursion website HERE.