Sunday 24 January 2016

Journey Blind

To say I was excited to get the new Magic Circle LP would be a slight understatement. Their debut, self titled LP came out in 2013, and was one of my favourite releases of the year. But when the LP had dropped it had proven quite difficult to get hold of. Like a lot of records out of Boston these days, it got a lot of hype (rightly so) and the vinyl sold out super quick. So when it was announced towards the end of last year that a new album had been recorded, it got me excited. And I was determined to learn from my experience a couple of years ago, and not miss out on the vinyl. Despite this plan, however, when Deathwish Inc. put up a pre-order option in their store, I didn’t actually bother. I think it was because there was no limited edition or color vinyl option. It made me feel that the situation was not urgent. So I just waited. And then a couple of weeks ago, the band put something up on facebook announcing that there were 100 blue vinyl and 100 white vinyl copies available for pre-order. So I clicked the link and checked out as quick as I could.

The label imposed a limit of one colour vinyl copy per person, which was annoying as it meant that I couldn’t order both colours. So I ordered one myself and then had a friend order me the other one. Hopefully it won’t be too long until I receive the blue, but for now, I only have the white one.

I love the front cover of this. I don’t know why exactly. I mean, if I tried to describe it in words it would no doubt sound stupid. But in reality it looks great. Unlike, say, the back cover.

I've been playing this solidly the last couple of weeks. Goddamn, it's good. So good that there is nothing else I want to listen to at the moment. The only problem I face is whether this is technically a 2015 or 2016 release. According to the label, it came out in November 2015. However, the vinyl only started shipping in 2016. You might think that this doesn't matter, but here I am in January already thinking about my end of year list and whether this is already the best thing we're gonna get in 2016.

Sunday 17 January 2016

Higher Power

So here we are, the first record to arrive at my house in 2016, and it's a UK release.

Higher Power are a UK band from my old stomping ground of Leeds. I saw them last year support BURN, and thought they were pretty good, so I downloaded their songs and gave them a listen. After playing them quite a lot, I took the next step and ordered their debut 7".

Someone described them to me as sounding like Life Of Agony. Their bandcamp page also references Leeway as an influence. So if you like bands that sound like bands with names start with the letter 'L', this could be the band for you.

This yellow vinyl copy is the most limited colour, being out of 75 copies. There's also white, purple and black which are still available from Neutral Words Records. And for those of you in the States, this band will be playing at United Blood fest this year, so make sure to check them out if you're going.