Sunday, 29 October 2017

I Told You I Was Freaky

Earlier this year I picked up a colour vinyl repress of the first Flight Of The Conchords LP. After picking it up, I also wanted the second LP, 'I Told You I Was Freaky', on colour vinyl too in order to complete the set. A couple of weeks ago a copy popped up for sale in the UK at a fair price, so I grabbed it quick.

Like a lot of clear purple records, the record itself looks really dark, but looks a lot more majestic with a light source behind it.

The record itself comes in a printed inner sleeve which has a photo on each side - one of Brett, and one of Jermaine. Each has diamond tears of a rapper on their face.

There's also an insert which contains the lyrics:

And there's a huge poster too:

I'm guessing that most people who read this aren't into or familiar with these guys. They're a New Zealand duo who had a TV show that aired on HBO network in America for two seasons between 2007 and 2009. I re-watched the shows a couple of years back and then ended up downloading the songs and listening to them a lot. Even though the songs are are in-built into the episodes of the show, and (obviously) meant to be comical, they're well written and catchy as hell. And also, in case I never mentioned it previosuly, their records were released by Sub Pop!

These bufoons are playing live in the UK next year and the tickets sold out in seconds. I missed out and am bummed as there are rarely any shows that my girlfriend actually wants to come to with me. I'm still hoping to get some tickets on the black market nearer the time. Time will tell on that front I guess. But to finish, I mentioned the tears of a rapper earlier, so here's a link to a video in case you're feeling adventurous...

Saturday, 28 October 2017

Lincoln Union 7"

Being a hardcore kid of the 90s, there are some records I hold dear to my heart that a lot of people have either forgotten about or never really knew about in the first place. I think the band Lincoln fits into this category. Their first 7", released by Watermark Records in 1993, was one of the first 'new' hardcore records I bought when I first started getting into straight edge hardcore in 1993. At the time, the only other bands and records I'd bought or heard were older bands, most of which had broken up by 1993. But Lincoln was a current / new band, and their debut 7" seemed to have everyone's attention when it came out. As discogs says, Lincoln was 'an American emo/hardcore band that existed in the early 1990s known for blending song structures that were similar to Washington, DC straigtedge bands of the time with screaming vocals and were generally considered one of the more influential bands of the burgeoning second wave of 'emo' in the early 90s'. I think that's a pretty fair description.

Their debut 7" is often referred to as 'Union'... although I was never really sure whether this was the title of the 7" or not. 'Union' is the title of the first song, but doesn't appear as a title on the front cover, so I was never sure if it was actually titled 'Union' or whether this is just how people referred to it. Anyway, I just picked up this green vinyl copy for cheap.

One thing that was slightly annoying about this 7" is that the seller only sent me a photo of the record, not the cover. I wasn't bothered because I was mainly interested in the shade of green vinyl. But when I received it I found it had a price sticker on the front. Oh well.

I've actually owned a green vinyl copy of this for a long, long time. But the reason I picked up another copy is that it's a different shade of green. At least, that was my reason for buying it. I actually used to own two different green vinyl copies of this years ago, so always had it in the back of my mind that there were two different greens. So when I saw this for sale I asked for a photo to see if it was indeed the brighter green that I was looking for. But when I saw the photo, and went to check my record, it then realised that both copies also have different colour labels.

This is what I love about record collecting. After owning this record for over twenty years, this is the first time I realised that there are two very different versions of the green vinyl. Given the relatively obscurity of this 7" in the modern, internet age, I'm also wondering how many other people know (or care) about this. Probably not many I would guess. But this seriously made my week.

For anyone unfamiliar with this 7", check it out on boobtube:

Saturday, 21 October 2017

Do Or Die

When the pre-orders for the new Burn LP went live, I wasn't exactly excited. If anything, I would probably rank my interest level at 'indifferent'. Despite being a record collector, the number of vinyl options put me right off, as well as the fact that they were all splattery swirly options. I ordered the European version ('Transparent Red w/ Orange + Black Splatter') and left it there.

First observation when it arrived was that it was severely lacking in the orange department. It just looks like red with black splatter to me. Not that it matters really.

The whole package is pretty high quality, with lots of bits included. The record itself comes in a great looking inner sleeve with a huge Burn logo up the side:

There's also a ridiculously huge booklet included which contains the lyrics. It's 28 pages thick, and the record sleeve itself is wider than average to accommodate it.

As much as the inclusion of a booklet is a cool move, this feels like a slight let down. I mean, if it were full colour and contained photos of the band and more of the burning building artwork it would have been cool, but devoting each double spread to one song's lyrics seems a bit of a wasted opportunity.

Anyway, what about the record itself? What's the verdict? Well, I have to say I like it. It's good. I was sceptical at first, and not overly impressed with the first song, but after getting over that and giving the other songs a chance, I think this is a good record. It sounds familiar enough to be recognisable as Burn, yet slightly different and up to date sounding. I was slightly disappointed to find that it contains re-recorded versions of two older songs ('Last Great Sea' and 'New Morality'), although I have to say that they definitely sound good. Both songs have been slightly slowed down and harder. So overall, this has proved an enjoyable record. Not an instant hit that I crave constantly, but one that I find myself going back to every couple of days. More of a slow burn, if you will ;o)

Oh yeah, and they also threw in a gigantic poster too... although between the booklet, the record and the poster, there are too many pieces to fit inside the sleeve.

So overall a good record but a few mild irritations on the packaging.

Tuesday, 17 October 2017

Nothing But The Blame

A couple of years ago, Rev reissued the third Soul Search 7" 'Nothing But A Nightmare', which had previously been released on Back To Back Records. I was into it and made a mental note to pick up other Soul Search 7"s if they fell into my path. And two years later, a couple did.

I picked up these two different colours of the 7" that Rev reissued. I have no idea on pressing info for this record, but I suspect that these two colours are second press and are probably not too rare. Still, they look much nicer than the reissues.

I also picked up this gold vinyl 'Bury The Blame' 7" on Triple B Records. This is a second press copy and the most common colour pressed out of 440 copies.

Nothing too interesting to see here, I admit, but at least they were all pretty cheap.

Monday, 16 October 2017

Give Me More RSD 2017

Earlier this year Give announced via instagram that they had a couple of records available on Record Store Day. As with previous years, these things were only available at one shop in the whole wide world (Joint Custody Records), making them pretty hard to get for someone who lives approximately 3700 miles away. However... the difference between hard and impossible is a thousand miles wide...

The first record is the band's first release - the 'S/T' 12" on Moon Flower Records. Apparently they 'found' 25 copies leftover, so put them in a plain black sleeve with a sticker int he top right corner. Looks pretty cool if you ask me (although was tough to photograph on a black background!).

The second record was the 'Boots Of Faith 7" with a limited 'Anthony Dye' cover. This 7" was their second release, back in 2010, so I'm guessing these are also 'found' (or leftover) copies.

I'm glad that they made this because this 7" was, until now, the only one of their 7"s that didn't come with a limited cover featuring one of the members of the band on the front. So now it finally fits nicely into the series.

Overall, a slight con that these 2017 RSD releases are just old records in different covers, but hey, that's what record collecting is about. And with there being only 25 copies of each of these records in existence, I'm very happy to have them.

Sunday, 15 October 2017

The Cult

Earlier this year Lockin' Out Records released the 'Electric Flower Cult' 12" by Give. It contains 4 songs recorded at the same time as their last two releases (the 'Electric Flower Circus' LP and the 'Sonic Bloom' 12") as well as a re-recorded song from their full length. It was quite a surprise to see this pop up on Lockin' Out Records... although in a way it's not too surprising if you think about it - the band has released 10 different records on vinyl, all on different labels except for two (the 'Electric Flower Circus' LP and their first 12" both came out on the band's own label - Moonflower Records). And because Lockin' Out color vinyl sells out in two minutes flat, I ordered one right away.

The funny thing is that MOST Lockin' Out color vinyl sells out in two minutes flat. But not all. Because this record on gold vinyl is still available from the Lockin' Out store as I type this. I'm guessing this is because fewer and fewer people seem to care about this band as time goes on, rather than because the label pressed a few thousand too many.

I eventually got into their full length, although I have to agree with Mike that Give is better in smaller doses. The LP was just too long. This record, however, is a much more digestible length. The one thing I am intrigued by is what's next for Give...

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Traders Like Us

It's not that often that I trade records these days. It's not that I'm averse to it, more just that opportunities don't present themselves too often. But I always enjoy trading when it happens, because it feels like records for free. Getting records and not having money come out of your bank account is a satisfying feeling.

So I traded this test press of the Down To Nothing / Kids Like Us split 7" from Mark a few weeks ago. I was surprised he offered it to me, as I know he likes his test pressings, but I gladly accepted it because I like tests too.

I think there are quite a lot of these out there. I don't know how many exactly, but it's one of the most common tests that I have seen for sale over the 13 years or so since it first came out. Or maybe there aren't many after all, but everyone just thinks it's shit and can't see a good reason to keep it in their collection? Still, I've watched a few of these on eBay over the years and just never got around to picking one up. So it's cool to finally bag one.

Well, that was the trade we arranged, and I was happy with that. But when the package arrived it instantly felt heavier than a 7". Once I opened it I found a bonus 7" inside, which was this clear vinyl copy of the 'Upside Down' 7" by Angel Du$t.

This was a great freebie for me as it replaces another record that I lost last year in my giant vanishing box. It seems I am slowly replacing everything that was in there. Probably in about another three years I will have recoved the contents 100%. Well, maybe.

Monday, 9 October 2017

Suicide Black Snake

Integrity week, day 8. Yes, I messed up and had posts for 8 days, which clearly takes us beyond a week. Ah well.

'Suicide Black Snake' is an album that was released back in 2013. Back when it came out I picked up two copies, but left it there because collecting the lot felt like too much. The first press consisted of 8 different colours, and each one was exclusive to one seller or another, meaning no postage discounts for buying multiple copies. With the price of each LP (including shipping) being $30+, I threw in the towel. Not long afterwards, there was a second pressing, which consisted of a further 7 colours. It seemed like a new level of insanity that not even I was going to attempt to reach.

Well, a few months ago I saw Dom from A389 post that he was selling a bunch of stuff, and I saw an opportunity. So after a few emails I managed to work out a really good deal for both a test press and ALL of the other colours of this LP that I was missing. Depending on which side of the fence you sit, you'll either think that this is one of the most ridiculous things you have ever seen, or really cool. I'm still not even sure where I stand myself yet to be honest, but at least I got this lot for a really good price. Anyway, here's the rundown...

First up, the test press. This comes in a 'mirror' cover and is numbered out of only 10 copies:

Next, the remaining 6 first press colours that I was missing...

Orange splatter, aka 'fireball'. This was originally the A389 preorder colour:

Gold splatter, aka 'bronze fireball'. This was some band or tour edition.

Clear, black and white stripe vinyl. This was exclusive to Magic Bullet Records.

Clear vinyl. This was another Magic Bullet exclusive:

Clear splatter. This was made for Cobraside distribution.

Gold. Another Cobraside distribution colour.

That wraps up the first press colours that I was missing. Next, the second press colours...

Blue splatter, aka 'Twilight Haunt'. This one SOLD OUT quick. 100 copies.

Red splatter, aka 'Thee Red Fury' / 100:

Green splatter, aka 'Leffe blood splatter'. This was a band colour.

Purple, aka 'M.A.N'. 100 copies.

Red vinyl / 550:

Red, white & black tri-color / 550:

And finally, pink vinyl with a blue inner cirle (aka 'round and round'):

So that's that. And whilst I was photographing all of these, I also pulled out the two copies I've had for the past 4 years (white and grey) so that I could take this one picture of all of them at one go. Despite the large number of different colours, the good thing is that the number forms a nice 4x4 square:

Well, that concludes my week of Integrity posts. I'm still expecting more Integrity records in the mail, but they'll have to wait for later. For now, it's back to business as usual...

Sunday, 8 October 2017

Humanity Remixed

Integrity week, day 7.

So as well as the vinyl reissue of 'Humanity Is The Devil' that Organized Crime put out, Magic Bullet Records also decided to mark the 20th Anniversary of the record's release. They did this by releasing a remix version. They put it out of something called a 'compact disc'. I decided to pass. But then a year or so later, Organized Crime came to the rescue with a vinyl pressing. They pressed 213 copies of it onto orange vinyl and sold it as a soecial pre-order for Halloween 2016. It comes in some pretty fancy packaging, which is pretty much identical to the 2012 Halloween version of the 'Systems Overload' remix.

And, just like the 2013 'Systems' remix, the cover folds out into a giant double sided poster.

The insert contains a piece written by Dwid which kinda explains where the name of the record comes from.

As you will appreciate, 213 copies on vinyl isn't very many. So earlier this year, Organized Crime pressed up another 715 copies for the masses, launched as a Record Store Day release. This is a more basic, stripped down version, on black vinyl and without the mylar bag.

As much as I like 'Humanity', I'm not really sure why there was a need for this remix. I get why it was done for 'Systems Overload', but not this one. Still, if it's an excuse to press more Integrity records, then I probably shouldn't question it.