Thursday, 4 April 2013

Systems Remixed

For the last three years, Organized Crime Records have done a special Halloween package. The contents are never revealed in advance and kept as a surprise to those who pre-order literally until the packages arrive at peoples' front door. Kind of like that Bridge Nine Have Heart ruler thing, only good. Anyway, I've never actually ordered any of these Halloween preorder packages, yet have managed to acquire them all later when it inevitably turns out that I really want whatever the thing was. I should probably learn my lesson there. This year, as soon as I saw what the item was, I was gutted that I had missed out... but I then realised that the store still had some available. So I checked out as fast as I could and was happy when it showed up only about 4 days later.

So this year's package contains a special pressing of Integrity's 1995 sophomore album, 'Systems Overload'. This is the A2 / Orr mix of the album. Basically, when this thing came out, Victory calmed the recording down. The intention was to have it sound more raw and noisy, like some of the Japanese punk, but Victory thought they wouldn't make as much money off that or something. I don't know. Anyway, this remix is an attempt by the guitarist at the time and the current guitarist to get back to how the record should have sounded. A pretty good idea I think. And as ever, if they were going to do this, Organized Crime were going to pull out all the stops to make it look every bit as special as it should sound.

So it comes in a special silver plastic bag. I don't know what this material is called, but I would describe it as what astronauts would pack their sandwiches in. I saw 'space food' for sale one and it was packed in this stuff.

Once you take the stuff out of the silver sleeve, you find a giant poster folded up to form a cover, and a red vinyl LP.

There's also an insert which explains the concept behind the record, with writings from both A2 and Orr. This is then numbered out of 165 copies.

The package also included a shirt. I doubt I'll ever wear it though. I'll probably just keep it folded up somewhere.

Overall this is a great package, and I feel lucky to have bagged one. The same thing is being released in an edition of 365 copies on black vinyl for the annual farce that is Record Store Day. So I'm happy that I've managed to get a rarer version without going through the hassle of standing outside some shite shop with a bunch of fools who only buy records once a year.

Oh yeah, the record also sounds good. A definite improvement on the original. Does make me wonder if Victory butchered anything else though to make it more marketable. Anyone know?

1 comment:

Willem Termote said...

I also heard that A2/orr mix and it does definitely sound more real, raw, deeper and more honest IMO.