Friday, July 30, 2010

Modern Life Is War - s/t 7"

It's not very often in this game that you can say, "Done". Between tour presses, weekend show stamped covers, fest covers, friends presses, multiple colors, variants, error presses and test presses (which I don't collect thank god) it is near impossible to say you have them all unless you:
a. are in the band
b. are friends with the band
c. run the label

The average guy doesn't stand a chance!
That is why I am pretty happy (for the moment) to say I have finally finished my Modern Life Is War s/t 7" collection. I have touched on individual versions in the past, but this is the first time I have all of them together thanks to a recent purchase.

No band has got so much mileage out of a single release. Between two labels and countless represses, this record has stayed alive for damn near a decade.

Here is run down of each of the 12 records in release order. I have added the insert in each picture when there was one as it is a major factor in determining different presses. Thanks to the Lifeline discography page for the pressing numbers. Good times!

1st press. Clear vinyl out of 500 on Modern Life Is War Records. Basically they self released it. I'm not sure why they changed the insert after this because I think it rules.

Friends press out of 50 on various colors. Mainly it's a mix that ends up brown. No insert but a message on the back flap of the cover thanking friends for their support.

2nd press. Black vinyl out of 500 still on Modern Life Is War Records. Still with original insert.

3rd press. Red vinyl out of 150 for the 2003 Spring tour. This is also the first press for Lifeline Records who would release every press from now on. Color insert and the first of many changes. The outer cover is a wrap around vellum/parchment type deal over top of the regular cover.

3rd press. White vinyl out of 1150 on Lifeline Records. This 3rd press is different from the subsequent white vinyl releases due to the posed band photo insert.

4th press. Green vinyl out of 325 pressed for their European tour. Dust sleeves are stamped and numbered. This is also the introduction of the most common insert picture that would be used from this point on. The insert is green tinted to go along with the colored vinyl.

5th press. Black vinyl out of 600. This pressing came with Lifeline Records stamped dust sleeves. Apparently it was a pressing plant error, but I think it looks bad ass.

5th press. Clear yellow vinyl out of 150 for their Japanese tour. I've said it before, I'll say it again - OBI strips are awesome.

6th press. White vinyl out of 3125 and counting. This version is still in press and makes up 99% of all the MLIW 7"s you will see out there. I like that Joe from Lifeline has kept this available and as we have seen, there is still a demand for the music.

Lottery press. 50 pressed on white with black streaks. I posted on this record before. I have never won anything in my life, so this was especially satisfying to get. The outer sleeve is a contrast of the regular black cover. Dig it.

Final Tour Press. Blue vinyl out of 200. This was bundled with the final tour press of the Midnight In America lp. This was not available separately.

9th press? Grey vinyl (looks a lot like the white w/ black streaks lottery press) out of 100. Joe had a box of 100 of these that he put together with red covers, insert and a clear transparency to wrap over top. Each are hand numbered on red inserts.

I am not naive enough to think this is the end of collecting this record. At least for now I can say, "Done".

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The Misfits - Halloween 7"

Well, this will be the last Misfits 7" post for a while. My wallet couldn't take the strain!

I guess I saved the best for last because growing up, "Halloween" was the song that hooked me on the band. It's pretty awesome and quite satisfying to have the original now.

I love the overall look and feel of this single as the band had made the move to Doyle on guitar and had changed their logo to the Famous Monsters of Filmland style font. This was the version of the Misfits I was most familiar with and enjoyed the most, mainly due to the awesomeness of the "Walk Among Us" lp.

On the collecting side, this was also the easiest and cheapest (relative term when it comes to this game) seven inch to obtain.
One pressing of 5000 on black vinyl. That's it. No label variants or different covers. One set of matrix numbers. You can't ask for more clear cut than that!
Of course Misfits Central gets into 10 copies that Danzig gave to friends with a photocopied cover, but whatever. Good luck chasing that down.

The insert is a lyric sheet for the song "Halloween". Not all copies came with the insert for whatever reason. That is pretty much the case with all their original records. The lyrics for the B side, "Halloween II" are on the back cover.

Bootlegs exist for this as with all the Misfits 7"s, but they are pretty easy to spot with this release. Blank labels and wrong matrix numbers are the big giveaways. Also, the insert has been bootlegged as photocopies on orange paper, but the original isn't exactly indian ink on high end parchment paper either.

I was also going to post on 3 Hits From Hell, but I ran into some bad luck. After all my histrionics about bootlegs, the research I do and the questions I ask of sellers - I ended up with a $300 bootleg.

I swear the listing was fine. The labels looked good, cover looked legit with sharp colors and lines, insert included, everything looked good. The Buy It Now option is always appealing as well.

The first sign of trouble was the record showed up in a bubble envelope. No cardboard backing, no box. How it survived the trip I have no idea.

I opened the package up and slid the record out of the sleeve. I can't tell you how close to a heart attack I had when I held the record up to the light to read the matrix number "Promo 7003". A far cry from the "Masterdisk PL 1013-A/B" or "R-10261/2" I was hoping to see.

I'm too fucking old for this kind of stress.

The insert is an obvious copy as well as part of the image is cut off on the top from the original.

I am working on a return (money and record) with the seller who was bummed to find out it was a bootleg. He bought it from a indie record store for big bucks too. Makes me wonder if any of this is worth it...
Then I look at my Halloween, Horror Business, Evilive and Beware records and yeah - sometimes it's worth it!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

React! Showcase Box Set and other goodies

I don't think there is any secret in my love for React! Records. Aram puts his heart and soul into the label and consistently releases top shelf straight edge hardcore records from amazing bands. That is why it seriously bummed me out that I could not make it to the React! Showcase that happened back in April. For collectors, there is always a buzz with what fests and Showcases can deliver in the way of special limited press vinyl. I live for this shit!

However, being a full time corporate office drone, plus full time husband and dad, pretty much cramps my ability to run off to festivals anymore. Luckily, I have known Aram for a long, long time and had no problem hitting him up by email for a favor.
The email pretty much went, "Hey can you grab me anything special you might have at the Showcase?" Well, let's just say I am pretty freaking happy with what I got.

First up is the infamous React! Showcase box set. This is a set of all the recent 7"s that the label had released. There were a total of 94 made up and they probably could have made another hundred for how crazy the demand has been for them. Leftovers were put on the React! webstore and sold out in about 10 seconds. One sold on ebay right after the Showcase for close to $110. Damn!

All sets all contain black vinyl with stamped dust sleeves wrapped up nicely in a bow!

There are a ton of extras included such as stickers, lyric booklet, two posters and five of those React! inspirational/motivational, "one to grow on" inserts that come with each release.

My set is #88. Youth Crew!!!!!!! (I like to think this was intentional.)

Next up in the big box of goodies was the Get The Most record release press. I'm glad they waited until the Showcase to drop this.

133 pressed on green vinyl. Tasteful foldover 1/4 cover as well. Awesome looking and a hell of an album.

Next up is the most limited color of every new React! release.
Common Cause - Statement of Purpose on gold/100
Damages - Unrequited on orange/100
Praise - Growing.Changing.Healing on pink/100

Lastly, is one record I wasn't expecting at all. Aram let me know that my package was on the way and that he threw something extra in there. Well hot damn, this is a hell of a throw in.

Fuck yeah, record release of the new Betrayed - Suffering 7".

These songs are amazing. Betrayed have been a favorite of mine for a long time and I was so happy to hear they were starting up again. This record just solidifies for me everything good about hardcore. Thoughtful lyrics, hard and fast yet melodic songs played by dare I say it, professional musicians.
More important than having the record release (which is awesome) is hearing all four songs early. Hell yeah. Good mail day.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

The Misfits - Horror Business 7"

Continuing on with my insane Misfits buying spree, the next record to arrive in the mail was the Horror Business 7".

Maybe it's because of the pressing numbers, the age of the record or that it is on color vinyl, but damn this sucker was expensive. I guess it makes sense, the older you get in the Misfits catalog - the higher the prices. Boy, I can't wait to see how much I am going to end up spending on a Bullet or Cough/Cool 7"! Good times!

According to Misfits Central and a couple other Misfits reference websites, the only pressing of this record your punk asses are ever going to see is 2000 on clear yellow vinyl.

25 black vinyl copies were pressed quickly for an upcoming Misfits show by Glenn without sleeves. They were mainly distributed to promoters to get some shows and were sent out in screened envelopes. Whatever the deal is, I'm not going near it. The idea of having one or even seeing one in my lifetime is preposterous. Let's move on.

As far as the regular yellow vinyl goes, the matrix numbers for Side A are: PL 1009 A

The matrix for Side B: PL 1009 B

Of course there are black and also red vinyl bootlegs out there but those will be pretty easy to spot.The bootlegged item you have to look out for is the insert.
If the line of text on the insert "(note esp. Teenagers From Mars)" has a capital N on the word note, it is a bootleg. Devious mf'ers!

I guess there is also some way to tell a bootleg insert by the contrast of the picture and the type of paper, but if you have never seen one in the first place, how the hell are you supposed to tell?

Oh and there is also the issue of the alternate rejected back cover picture, but you can read about that from better collector websites than this one. I'm just glad this thing arrived in one piece and is in such great shape!

Three down, two to go...for now.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

The Misfits - Beware

Continuing on with my Misfits buying spree, this one was especially satisfying just because of what I had in place of the real deal for so many years.

Yeah, this.

Back in 1989, Calgary had an import record store called The Attic. They specialized in music no one had ever heard of and certainly you wouldn't see on Much Music. It is the store where I bought way too many Revelation cassette tapes instead of records and where on one fateful day I ran into this piece of shit. Damn! I didn't even know what a bootleg was.

Before the internet, I had no clue what Beware was supposed to look like. It sure wasn't like they were being stocked in the local Sam the Record Man. (sorry - Canadian reference) That day it was either Napalm Death - Scum or Beware. I went with the songs baby!

So ever since I found out what the real deal actually was, it has stuck in my craw that I had this in my collection.

Thankfully, with help from Vinyl Noize and the seller Paul Richard from Adrenaline OD, I now have a honest to goodness, real deal, Beware.

All the tell tale signs are there. The Beware title white goes to the top of the cover, the smoke effect off Jerry Only's shoulder and of course the run off matrix numbers.

Side A Matrix: ARMAGEDDON PLP-009-A2 LYN7721-2T MAX

Side B Matrix: PLP-009-B LYN7722-1T MAX

The cover was surprisingly light and flimsy. I think I creased it by breathing on it. Still, the vinyl is super clean and when I cleaned with my VPI machine it might as well have been new.

Anyone want a red vinyl bootleg?