Monday, 30 April 2012

Bridge Nine #60

Any idea what Bridge Nine's 60th release is/was? Well, according to the discography, B9R060 is this weird CD compilation which was apparently only available from Hot Topic and the B9 webstore.

Interestingly, however, B9R060 was originally intended to be something else entirely. Specifically, the second album from No Warning, entitled 'Suffer Survive'. This originally came out on CD only on some whack label that was part of a major called Machine Shop Records. I remember at the time hearing a few people talking about how bad it was, and that it sounded like Linkin Park. The fact that there was no vinyl and everybody said it sucked meant that I decided not to waste my precious money or time with it. Yes, that's right... I wrote it off without even giving it a chance. If I'm honest though, if Bridge Nine would have put it out on vinyl I would definitely have picked up a copy. But they didn't and I didn't. Fast forward about 6 years to a time when it was easier to check music out without buying it, and I was listening to 'Ill Blood' when a thought entered my brain - 'Why don't I check out the second album?'. So I downloaded it, prepared myself to laugh and/or hit the delete button pretty fast, and sat back. What I heard was not what I was expecting at all. Ok, sure, it was different to 'Ill Blood', but it was hardly Linkin Park. After a couple more listens I began to really enjoy it, and pretty soon I was addicted to it. Shit me, I LOVED it. And I could have had this record in my life six years earlier if I weren't such an idiot.

Well, fast forward another two years and I am now the lucky owner of a vinyl copy of this record. But hang on a second, didn't I just say that there wasn't a vinyl pressing of this? Well, yes, that's right. Almost. Bridge Nine did have the rights to release this on vinyl back in 2004, to the point where a test pressing (consisting of 16 records) was made. After this, the release was scrapped and the B9R060 catalogue number was given to the compilation CD I referred to above. I'm not exactly sure what happened. Rumours and folklore suggest that the album was so badly received that everyone involved wanted to pretend it didn't exist and move on. All I know is that this is perhaps the most 'exclusive' record that I own. I can't think of anything else I own where there are less than 16 copies on vinyl in total.

Perhaps unsurprisingly, the band didn't last long after this record came out. I guess they couldn't go back to being a 'hardcore' band after recording this, but given that this was not well received then they had nowhere else to go. I remember at the time just assuming they were some band that had ridden hardcore to the point of success and then tried to 'make it' but that failed so they called it a day. This kind of thing used to happen all the time. But now, with the benefit of hindsight, it seems like a shame. Regardless of what anyone from 2004 says, this is a damn good record. It was probably just too far ahead of its time when it came out. No doubt if this was released nowadays it would go down a storm and B9 would sell one shitload of records. Ah well.

To wrap this up, I found this video for my favourite song on this album. My favourite moment is the growl as the clock hits 2:53. Great stuff.

Sunday, 29 April 2012

Ancient VVisdom LP

Anyone who reads this blog regularly will know that I am not too up on new bands these days. It's hard trying to sift through all the rubbish or average bands to find the good ones. Fortunately I can always rely on fellow bloggers to inform me about what's going on out there that I should give some of my precious time to.

I was reading Daniel's blog Memories Lie Frozen recently and he featured the Ancient VVisdom 'A Godlike Inferno' LP. He wrote about it with such passion that I figured it well worth a listen. Well, within about two days I had developed a mild obsession for the band, and had listened to the album about 5 times a day. I simply could not stop listening to it. And then I found out that they were touring the UK in a month's time. It's been a long time since I got really excited about a live show, but damn, I was excited about this one.

Sometimes when you are excited about seeing a live band they le you down, but I really enjoyed Ancient VVisdom live. Even the crowd of metalheads waving beers about in the air didn't put a dampener on it. And at the end of the night I couldn't help but buy a record, even though I had already ordered one direct from the label. At least the band were selling a different colour though. This one is referred to as 'Toxic Wasteland', which pretty much means 'dirty green with lots of other colours mixed in'. Looks good.

My friend Bez came along and took some photos. Dude is good with a camera... although not so with a tomtom. I thought I would put a couple of his photos up here (you should click on them to view full size, they look better that way):

And finally, here's a link to a video I shot of the song 'Lost Civilisation'. The lighting was weird (i.e. red) but it's still a good watch if you like the band. Nathan Opposition was not playing drums as he usually does live, which I think made it visually more interesting. Enjoy...

Saturday, 28 April 2012

Green Voicebox

So this 7" is one that I am pretty sure that nobody else cares about. The band is called Voicebox, but I don't think it was a real band. It was more a project, I think. The two songs on this 7" are the only songs they released. Voicebox was Dan O'Mahoney and Chuck Treece. If I were to list all of Dan O's output in order of how much I liked them, this would be right up there. Great songs, which are undoubtedly made by the guitars.

I previously had this on blue vinyl and orange vinyl, but spotted this green vinyl one on eBay for cheap so figured I would take it.

It wasn't looking too green in the photos, so I trawled through the boxes to find the blue one to highlight the difference. I'm still not too convinced it's that obvious though.

Thursday, 26 April 2012

Some Kind Of Test

So this week I have acquired a test press for the Some Kind Of Hate 7" on Bridge Nine Records. It's hard to believe that this record is nearly ten years old. In some ways, it still seems like this came out last week. Wow.

I do't have much to say about this, but I while we're on the subject I have two odd memories that are vaguely related to this band. Firstly, when Bane toured in 2002, Dalbec asked me what I had been listening to recently and I said I was into the Some Kind Of Hate 7". I remember because Bedard asked what it was, and Dalbec chipped in with "Matt Pike's band". I then stood there thinking "cool, I'm more up to date than the singer of Bane". Ha!

The second piss poor anecdote is that I met Matt Pike briefly in 2006. He had flown into the UK to see the Cro-Mags and Morrissey (not together though, obviously. I mean, can you even begin to imagine how that would work?). Anyhow, I chatted to him for like 5 minutes and literally the only thing I remember about the entire conversation is him telling me he had an Isis test press. Back then owning an Isis test seemed impressive. These days, however, owning Tre's test press is far more desirable.

Wednesday, 25 April 2012

Pink Mayday!

Back in the early days of buying records and discovering hardcore, I picked up the split 7" that Integrity did with Mayday. It was one of the first split 7"s I owned probably. Both bands were great, but for some reason Mayday seemed the more intriguing of the two, perhaps because they were a completely unknown quantity for me at the time. I think it's always nice when you get a split record because of one band you know, but then realise that the other band you previously knew nothing about is just as great. Mayday was one of those bands for me, and immediately I wanted to hear more, so I wasted no time in picking up their other 7", 'The Underdark'. And now, many moons later I have FINALLY added a pink vinyl copy to my collection, which I am very happy about.

This is heavy, nasty stuff. I loved this 7" back in the day, and listening to it again in 2012 I don't think it sounds dated at all. Far from it. This still sounds as good to me today as it did when I was 18. In fact, if anything I have to say that this sounds even better on pink vinyl.

Monday, 23 April 2012

Crimpshrine / Mutley Chix Split 7"

So when I bought my Jawbreaker / Crimpshrine 7" a few short weeks ago, I noticed that the seller was also selling another rare Crimpshrine split. One which had been on my wants list since the beginning of time. The split with The Mutley Chix. This was released by No Idea Records back in 1989. It was only the second release on No Idea Records, and came 'free' with No Idea fanzine issue 7. I've seen a couple for sale over the years, but never with the zine. Not that I have looked too much though. It's one of those things that was never a high priority want. But seeing it for sale from the same dude who I had just won the Jawbreaker / Crimpshrine 7" from, and seeing that it looked to be in great shape and also come with the zine, I figured that the time was now and put in a bid that only just won.

The record itself ain't much to look at as it does not have a sleeve. There were 1,100 copies on blue vinyl and 1,500 copies on black.

The zine has interviews with both Crimpshrine and The Mutley Chix inside. It's kinda cool to be reading this for the first time 23 years after it came out!

I always find it interesting reading old zines, especially seeing the old ads & reviews of stuff that came out at the time. Here's an ad for the newly released No For An Answer LP on Hawker Records:

And here's a review of the Insted 7" and Insted 'Bonds Of Friendship' LP:

Anyway, as much as I would to stand here chatting, I can't. I have to go listen to some Crimpshrine. Later!

Sunday, 22 April 2012

Record Store Day 2012

Record Store Day. Some love it, some hate it. I'm somewhere in the middle. But I don't want to talk about my thoughts about the positives & negatives of what the day is trying to achieve. I haven't got time. I just wanted to post up pictures of the stuff I bought.

Last year I tried to go out early but got annoyed by the crowds so went home. This year I decided to go late enough to let the crowds die down. I wasn't entirely successful as I still had to stand around for about half an hour outside. This was the queue I joined in the early afternoon:

I guess waiting in line is just part of the event. The time soon passed & once I got in I found everything I wanted so it was cool.

Note - spare copies were picked up for friends. They are not destined to be flipped on eBay.

My main interest was the Revelation Records reissues. I get the impression that most people who are fans of Revelation were disappointed by their choices this year. Previous years have seen classic 7"s like Sick Of It All, Burn, Quicksand and Youth Of Today repressed on new colours of vinyl. This year, the classics were from the early - mid 90s that most of today's Rev collectors aren't too fussed about. For me though, these bands are my favourites. Farside, Into Another & Sense Field are three of my favourite bands of all time, and I was more than happy to buy three of their records again.

I love each of these records dearly. But I am slightly curious as to why, of all the Revelation releases, these were chosen to be repressed in 2012. Mind you, I wondered the same about the Elliott LP last year.

The fourth rev repress was not originally released by Revelation. Ignite 'Call On My Brothers' LP. This one was originally put out by Conversion Records in 1996. I remember mail ordering the original when it came out, sending cash in an envelope and wondering if I would ever get anything, such were the horror stories I heard about mail ordering from New Age & Conversion. As it turned out my stuff came in three weeks, which was pretty amazing. Some labels can't even manage that these days even with instant online payment systems. Anyway, I was least bothered about this one before I left the house, but this one is definitely my favourite color record of the day. Its a clear-ish purple swirl colour. Very very similar to the purple Uniform Choice 'Screaming For Change' LP. Looks great.

Next up, Endpoint's 'In A Time Of Hate' LP. This reissue is on Simba Records, and comes in a nicely made screen printed cover hand numbered out of 500 copies. Again, this one was originally put out by Conversion Records. This isn't my favourite Endpoint record by a long way, but its cool to see it put out for a new generation of kids. Or rather, for the same generation to buy again. Ha.

Next up, the Misfits 'Walk Among Us' LP on purple vinyl. This one was pressed on three different colours for US citizens, and then there were 1500 copies on purple vinyl for the International markets. Ha. I've never really been a Misfits fan, but for some reason I was interested in picking this one up. Such is the madness of record store day. You get tricked into buying shit you're not that fussed about. I'm not convinced this is purple, more of a dark red, but it turns pink when you hold it to the light which looks way cooler.

Once I'd taken all of the LPs out of their sleeves to photograph, I couldn't resist putting them all together for a 6 pack shot.

Poison Idea 'Pick Your King' 7" reissue on TKO Records. I've never really been too interested in Poison Idea, but seeing this classic 7" reissued I couldn't resist. 1000 pressed. I think they're all on clear vinyl.

And finally, the Tomahawk 3xLP Box Set. Tomahawk is a Mike Patton band. I've checked out a couple of songs in the past but never been excited enough to get into them. I mainly picked this up because it was cheap - only a couple of quid more than one of the Rev LPs, which seemed a really good price for a triple LP box set. I'm not sure if I'll end up keeping this one or not.

So that's it for RSD 2012. Kind of a funny day really. I did enjoy being in a record store and flicking through the racks, which I rarely do these days. But as I sit and reflect I think it fair to say that I got sucked into the hype a little bit. Ah well. No real harm done.

Sunday, 15 April 2012

Jawbreaker - Crimpshrine

For those of you who weren't around in the late 90s, Revelation Records used to have a cool website which incorporated the first online record trade board. I loved it. I used to trade stuff all the time. At the peak, I think there was a time when I got records in the mail every single day for three weeks straight. Good times. Anyway, there were a few records I traded away that I figured I would be able to get back pretty easily. This one has taken me somewhere in the region of 12-15 years to reacquire. The Jawbreaker / Crimpshrine split 7".

When I first bought this, it was an easy find. A common record. That's why I let mine go. I figured it would be a piece of cake to pick up again. Then all of a sudden this became sought after and the price went up and up. And when you used to see a record for sale frequently for like $5, it is hard to justify paying $30 or more. Then it started going over $50. There was a story once that this started to become hard to find because it WAS actually pretty rare. Apparently the 7" was some kind of benefit and the money was supposed to go to some charity, but the label was keeping the money, so one of the bands destroyed 700 copies of the record, leaving only 300 of the 1,000 copies pressed. No idea if this is true or not, but it's a pretty punk rock sounding tale, so who cares if it's true or not? Well after the price reached what I used to think was a crazy level, I figured I would wait until I found a copy for a bargain price, even if that took a long time... which it did. But patience is a virtue, and this truly mint condition copy cost me $17, which I'm happy with.

This also reminded me of many years ago when I had just started collecting, and I realised that some black vinyl appeared to be clear brown if held to the light. I used to wonder whether this was some kind of secret colour that not many people knew about. Ha. What an idiot. I should have known that 'cheap & thin' was not a colour!

If you've never heard this, by the way, you should check it out. Great, exclusive songs by both bands. You can hear these songs pretty easily if you use google.