Thursday, February 23, 2012

React! Showcase 2011 Boxed Set

Man, this one is a long time coming. As you may know, with my age and responsibilities, going to showcases or festivals is pretty much a luxury I can't afford anymore. That fact just kills me as I love hitting them up and especially love the special vinyl that most bands or labels bring with them.

Case in point, the React! Records Showcase held in Berkeley, California. This last one was in September and I had already gone to Chaos In Tejas earlier in the year. So the next best thing to going is to get a friend who basically runs the thing to grab what he can for you.

So for the second year in a row, Aram was able to get me the limited Showcase boxed set React put out. This year was an lp set of their most recent releases at the time.

Of course there was the usual add-ons such as the essays, stickers and download cards.

The coolest part of the set was the special React! edition of the Effort Fanzine, made just for this fest. It was a really nice touch. Profiles of the bands involved and the people who make React! happen. The zine had been wrapped up for a while and it was cool that they resurrected it for this set.

The vinyl is all wrapped up nice in a bow with a knot/wrapping system that would make the boy scouts proud. Since I already have all the albums, I think I will just leave it as is. There is no way I could figure out how to redo the bow anyways.

The box states that it is limited to a total of 100. I'm not sure if that includes the small color version out there, or if there are 100 black total. Really, who cares?

My only issue with the set is that the screened outer box won't fit in my record storage shelves. I guess the Swedes from Ikea need to get together with the folks at Bags Unlimited or wherever and hammer this shit out. Damn!

Aram was also able to get me vinyl from This Is Hardcore that came with this package. I might do something on that soon. Seriously, thanks a lot my man. The last thing you need to be doing is humping records around from shows you are organizing or playing in. It is greatly appreciated and anytime you are back downtown in Calgary, the veggie sushi rolls are on me. Avacado or cucumber. That's how I roll.
Get it? I'm hilarious.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Have Heart - Demo 2003 7" : 7th Pressing

Here we go again, adding on to the single craziest collection I own; the Have Heart Demo 7".
The last time I posted about this record, I had just cherry picked a dude's collection which brought me from 15 to 33 different versions. You can check it out here.

Well last year, another pressing was released courtesy of Jeff Lasich at Bottled Up Records. The old Bottled Up myspace page had always hinted that there would be another pressing due to the fact that there was still demand and that Jeff had a lot of left over covers just collecting dust.

The first two I was able to pick up from the new 7th press was from Revelation. They had two colors available, clear green out of 250 and white out of 500, which was a RevHq webstore exclusive. I immediately picked up one of each.

Clear green/250


Fast forward a few months and I am surfing the internet, checking out all the record labels I usually follow. I stumble on to the new Bottled Up store to see that there are an additional two colors of the 7" available, clear red out of 150 and Clear gold out of 100. That's two more I order asap.
Clear gold/100

Clear red/150

This gets me thinking, if there is one thing with this record it is the color transitions that get counted as separate pressings. These transitional records sometimes end up with a cool different cover or something to set them apart. That's usually enough to keep me interested.
I did a quick check at HYE? to see if other people maybe had some versions I didn't know about. Five seconds later, I'm staring at the 7th press motherload! I messaged Jeff through the React! board and was able to score an additional five copies.

Dirty green/17

Dark green/13

Dirty white/12


Black with inverse black and white cover/10

As you can see, these small variants are all some kind of combination of the larger number pressings of white, green, red and gold. Well, except for the black vinyl with the inverse cover.

As luck would have it, or not have it, I'm still missing at least one. Red with black swirl out of 11. Jeff didn't have an extra to part with, so it is off to ebay to hopefully find it some day.

That brings my new total up to 42. 42 copies of the same record. I've said it before and I will say it again, what the fuck is wrong with me?

Oh yeah. I was also sent a full discography to check out as well. According to that list, I'm still 11 copies away from the complete collection, and that doesn't include tests. Kill me now...

Friday, February 10, 2012

Ceremony - Hysteria 7"

Ceremony continue down the growth and progression trail to develop into what I can only imagine is this decade's Wire. I for one, couldn't be more pleased.

As much as I dig the early stuff and will always love the fury of "Ruined" and "Violence, Violence", I feel something clicked when I heard "Sick" off Rohnert Park and especially the songs off the covers album. This clean, driving, post-punk/new wave/experimental sound they have going on is really working for me.

They seem one step ahead of everyone right now by standing out from the traditional hardcore pack. I can't wait to hear more off the full length album next month. First up though just to whet the appetite is the new "Hysteria" 7" released on their new big time indie label, Matador.

I really don't know how many were pressed in total, but word is that there were only 200 pressed on color with the rest on black. I was able to jump on the pre-orders through the Matador webstore pretty fast and put myself down for two. I wrote in the special instructions section that I was hoping to get one of each. One color, one black vinyl.

Well fast forward to when the mail came this week, I was surprised to see that I did end up with two copies - both on clear. Nice. Trade bait! I'm now accepting offers.

The b-side of the 7" is a Urinals cover, "I'm A Bug". I had to look them up to find out they were a early LA punk band. Alright then, good enough. This appropriately titled song about being a bug has the same vibe as the songs off Ceremony's Covers 12" from last year.
I think we can say that this new direction isn't changing anytime soon. Cool.

Now just waiting for Zoo...