Monday, January 31, 2011

Deafheaven - Libertine Dissolves / Daedalus 7"

Anyone who checks out the Deathwish website will know that with the signing of the hottest new band of the hour, Deafheaven, Deathwish repressed two of the songs off their self released four song demo tape on to a bonus 7" that is not available for sale.
The only way to get one is to order something from the Deathwish e-store and roll the dice you get one thrown in. Kind of like the Cold World 7" from a few years back.

Well, as it turns out there were 1000 of these pressed so I don't know how many people won't get one. I saw that the New Lows lp went up for sale and figured it was worth a shot. I'm glad I did.

Deafheaven are primarily an experimental black metal band from San Francisco played by guys who don't wear corpse paint or run through the forest worshiping Odin or Satan.
To me they sound a lot like Leviathan or early Ulver but without the mystical folk influences or the overtly satanic mean edge.
They have been described as having some 90's screamo elements like Orchid. Sure I guess, but 90% of the time it sounds like amazing straight up atmospheric black metal. I haven't loved a black metal recording like this since the first time I heard Darkthrone's "Transilvanian Hunger".

The fact is, I was praying I would get this record. The Deafheaven demo was my favorite recording of 2010, and now this record is by default my favorite of the short year so far. I have a hard time seeing how anything will top it.

Like I said before, 1000 pressed in total, all on black vinyl with blank black labels.

Go check out their demo which can be found online for download very easily. Try bandcamp or Deathwish. If you can find the original tape, grab that and then sell it to me. That would work too.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Killing The Dream - Lucky Me lp

The new Killing The Dream lp, "Lucky Me" ended up on a few Best of 2010 lists, and I am not going to argue with them.
The lead track "Blame the Architects" alone warrants all the accolades this record is getting. To use a 90's reference, it would be going on side 1 of a mixtape.
The rest of the record kind of rules too. It's as aggressive and hard as any of their other records but it also has a cool dynamic with a spacy vibe in certain breaks that reminds me of Cave In or newer bands like The Carrier.

I had heard there was a bit of grumbling on the internet before the album came out that usually happens when bands drop words like "growth" and "progression" to describe a new album. Usually it refers to attempts at singing instead of keeping the aggression up 100% of the time.
Well, that is pretty much unfounded when it comes to the record. For like 45 seconds of one song there is some singing, but you are not going to mistake it for a Glee album. There's nothing to worry about.

Fuck it. I suck at trying to describe music.
If you read this blog then you know I don't like shit music. Just get it.

If I had only one complaint it's that the record is way too short! I just wanted more when it was over. There are single Rush songs that are longer than the seven songs combined on this album.
Still, it isn't a bad thing to be left wanting more. It's better than being bored!

The first press of the vinyl is on three colors as per the usual Deathwish pressing formula.

Light Green & Dark Green mix/300

Light Green/Black split/700

Light Green/1000

Unless you were born under a rock, you will recognize the Jake Bannon art work. Once again - awesome. Prints were done for the cover artwork as well. I think one variation or color is still available. I actually ordered one this time around for one reason - no skulls.
Hey, I am a 41 year old father of two young girls and have a wife who was raised on Garth Brooks. If I am going to get away with any art work in the house at all - no skulls. Those are the rules!

Finally, I just wanted to mention how great the Deathwish mailorder department (Janelle) is. There was a small mix up with my order regarding a duplicate color and they sent me a new one with my Carrier pre-order, no questions asked. Anyone else would have dismissed me as a whiny collector nerd.
So thanks again to everyone at Deathwish, I really appreciate it!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Blue Monday - Rewritten : Rivalry Showcase 2006

Not too much to say about this one. I am just so happy/relieved that some damn mail is showing up! It was getting bleak for a while there.

A few weeks back I got a copy of this lp in my Bridge Nine Mystery Box. I already had one, but it was a nice reminder of how much I liked it. I started checking for Blue Monday stuff on ebay and ran across this gem.

Rewritten Picture disc from the 2006 Rivalry Showcase.

The picture disc was from the second press and made especially for a 2005 European Tour. 50 were set aside or left over and screened covers were made for the Rivalry Showcase.

The 50 were hand numbered on the inside of the cover. Like Mike says, got to love those low numbers. I personally don't really care. 50 is tough enough to find.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Mental - And You Know This 7" record release

I finally had a couple records trickle in this week and I was very excited to finally have this in my hands.

Mental - And You Know This on clear vinyl with the home made record release cover.

This was the first release on Lockin' Out Records which has become damn near legendary as far as hardcore labels go.

The vinyl is from the first press of 300 on clear. 100 were used for the record release.
The labels were hand numbered in silver ink.

The inside of the cover is dated for the show. Hard to believe how fast the years are ripping by!

Foldout of the cover shows the band name with a red, green and yellow "reggae" motif. The cover is eight years old and it still kind of feels wet or tacky. What the hell kind of paint was used for this?

For whatever reason, I have been snaked on this record for years. It doesn't pop up that often on ebay, and when it does I have been outbid every damn time. Well, except this time. The record consistently sells in the $60 range which isn't too bad, it just doesn't show up very often.

I guess those who have it, obviously like it and hold on tight. I don't blame them.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Leeway - Born To Expire

Sometimes record collecting doesn't means you have to break the bank and buy multiple versions. Every once in a while, one is enough. This is one of those times.

"Born To Expire" was Leeway's first and absolute best album. It is revered by most older hardcore fans and for good reason. 20+ years on, it still rages. I can't even pick a favorite song off the record. There are so many great tunes, it changes every time I listen to it.

Leeway were an easy band for me to get into back in the very late 1980's. Along with crossover bands like D.R.I and C.O.C, they provided a smooth transition into hardcore from my thrash metal roots. The first time I heard the riff from "On The Outside", I was hooked.

I always had a tough time trying to classify them. I never really thought of them as a crossover band. They were just Leeway.
The vocals, song length, and lyrics were definitely rooted in hardcore, but musically it was so metal. Double bass and screaming solos. I mean just listen to the solo in "Mark of the Squealer"! 100% horns in the air.

As far the vinyl goes, a completely large and unknown number of black vinyl records were pressed. Good luck ever figuring the numbers out from a label as big as Profile was. I guess the same thing can be said of The 'Mags - Age of Quarrel lp.

The dreaded printed inner sleeve. I think these things crinkle if you look at them too hard.

Listening to the album right now, I can't get over how good this is. A perfect album for the time and place it was created.

Cause this world is all about money, and that doesn't make it funny
Just uncomfortable

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Bridge Nine Mystery Box 2010 - Bonus 7"s

Ah, the B9 Mystery box. This annual (well, two years now) event raises more controversy and stink from message boards than almost any other sales event.
The concept is quite simple, pay $15 and receive whatever B9 feel like. Some argue this is nothing more than an opportunity for the label to unload overstocked merch they can't sell, others think of it as the lottery - the one chance to score big for very little investment.

The 2009 Mystery Box sale was more in the hidden gem dept. People were going online to regale the masses of their stories of scoring test presses and out of print American Nightmare 7"s.

2010 was different as three Bonus 7"s were pressed in limited quantities of 500 each and distributed based on the kinds of bands you liked off the B9 roster.
At the time of the pre-order you picked one of three Mystery boxes available based on a grouping of three bands. "For fans of Champion, Have Heart and Foundation" was the one I thought I ordered.

For some reason that still eludes me, I ended up ordering Box #3. This was for fans of Polar Bear Club and Strike Anywhere. I don't know how that happened. By the time I figured out what I had done, the other two were sold out.

So, fast forward a few weeks and this is what I got:
  • the Blue Monday "Rewritten" lp on purple vinyl (which is awesome),
  • a couple posters,
  • and this, Polar Bear Club "Drifting Thing" Bonus 7".
This record is one sided, screened on clear vinyl out of 500.

Also included in the box was an unmarked padded envelope. Inside was this.

Yeah, I don't know what it is either! There are no identifying marks except for the matrix which reads, "4-64509-M-A B0 Bonus 10:10 Polar Bear Club Drifting Thing Remix by Goldie".
My first instinct is to call it the PBC Bonus 7" test press, but test presses at least trim the excess vinyl after the stamping! They usually have labels as well. So, test of a test? Maybe someone with connections at B9 could fill me in.

The cool part is it does play. The excess vinyl curls up so much it almost hits the tone arm, but it does play fine.

Of course I am never satisfied and once I found out what the other two Bonus 7"s were, I made it my mission to get them. Ebay here I come!

First up, Have Heart "Live at Sound & Fury 2007".
500 pressed on black vinyl.

Next, Verse "Live at Sound & Fury 2007".
Also 500 pressed on black vinyl.

The live recordings are just that, live - with warts and all. You can sense the energy from the shows and I guess that is what matters. I have gone on and on in the past about being at S&F back in 2007 so I will spare you all the stories other than to say I really wish they could go back to the Alpine. That place was awesome.

All in all a pretty cool haul and if nothing else, I rediscovered how much I like that Blue Monday record. Plus, it reminded me of bowling with guitarist Dave Mitchell at a bachelor party last summer.

I lead quite the wild life.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Verse - From Anger And Rage

Anger and Rage indeed.

This sentiment is pretty much how I have felt the last two months with record collecting.
This shit has gone sideways on me.
  • I have multiple records from won ebay auctions and from distros not showing up.
  • I had to open three paypal disputes last week because it had been six weeks since I paid and I am tired of getting burned.
  • I have outstanding pre-orders from a fucking year ago, plus the whole Mindset Live lp mess.
  • I also have two B9 board deals that are getting very close to six weeks outstanding and I will have to deal with those next week.
  • I have also received the wrong records from some distros.
  • I am also attempting to contact by email (and failing miserably) New Age Records for not receiving records I ordered three months ago.
Why the fuck do I bother with this shit? Sometimes I think I should go back to hockey cards.

So - "From Anger and Rage" is blasting on the stereo as I type this up. This album is bottled up aggression in 25 awesome, awe inspiring minutes. I feel better now.

This was Verse's second full length and was released on Rivalry Records at the height of both the band and label's popularity. Vinyl colors, packaging, and artwork are all amazing. This was perfection for record collecting back in 2006/07.

First press. Friends press. 1/2 brown, 1/2 green out of 110. I wrote about this one before. Still my favorite of the entire run.

First press. Red/Yellow swirl vinyl out of 270. This was the pre-order color from Rivalry mail order.

First press. White vinyl out of 670.

Here is where things get a little wonky.

Record release cover out of 108. Covers were spray painted with the date of the record release show. The vinyl used was the regular first press white vinyl for most of them (around 80 of the 108). The rest of the 108 (roughly 28) used 2nd press Red/White nuclear pattern vinyl. There were a total of 305 on that color.

The inner sleeves were stamped and numbered.

There was a second press on white that is identical to the first except for a "II" on the b side label a la Bridge Nine releases. There were a total of 720 pressed.

110 of the second press white vinyl was used for the Sound and Fury 2007 press. Covers were spray painted gold on the front, inside and back.

"A" side labels were also numbered.

Verse were so good at Sound & Fury in 2007. Bridge Nine just released a 7" of three songs from their set as part of their 2010 Mystery Box sale they had a couple months back. I would love to post about it, but that is one of the missing records I am dealing with. F*CK!!!!

Now I am pissed off all over again.