Monday, May 29, 2017

I Spy

I dig chasing new music, and while the level of my interest ebbs and flows, I generally enjoy keeping up on new bands. That said, the excitement of adding new releases to the collection, pales in comparison to crossing off a classic from the Want List. I get such a charge out of buying these old records, that at times it makes me wonder why I bother buying so many new releases.

When I first heard the No For An Answer album, it was when I bought it on cassette back in '90 or '91. I haven't listened to cassettes for over 20 years, and I've never owned A Thought Crusade on CD, so it blows my mind that it has taken me this long to finally own the album.

In this age of vinyl reissues, it is surprising that your only option for A Thought Crusade is to dig for an original Hawker pressing. Black vinyl only. I'm sure it is only a matter of time until this changes, and someone presses this on a few different colors for the nerds.

Saturday, May 27, 2017

Welcome To The Night

A couple years back, Night Demon released their killer debut, Curse Of The Damned. That album was great, and the only reason that it didn't crack my Top 10 for the year was because it was such a strong year for Metal...something had to get cut from the list, and unfortunately Night Demon had to step aside and make room for other records that I was obsessing over.

It might to early to call it right now, but with Night Demon's new album, Darkness Remains, they should be making my list easily this year. This album is a blast...such a great Iron Maiden/early 80's Metal influence. In fact, the band pay homage to Maiden with their song Maiden Hell, with lyrics full of Maiden song titles from the band's debut, all the way up to and including their latest, Book Of Souls. Some might find the song a bit cheesy, but I'm loving it.

500 pressed on metallic silver vinyl.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Conformicide

Alongside Warbringer, another one of those Thrash revival bands from around 2010 that was at the top of my list at the time was Havok. Their Time Is Up album from 2011 was one of my favorite Thrash albums from that time. The fact that I did't own a single piece of Havok vinyl is kind of embarrassing.

When Century Media posted pre-orders for Conformicide, I thought that maybe it was time to finally pick up my first piece of Havok vinyl. Their last album was a bit dull, so I was a little hesitant, but as soon as I tuned in to their video for Hang 'Em High I was sold. Lyrics with a political slant about rebellion and corruption...reminds me of those old Sacred Reich albums. Fucking old school Thrash!

400 pressed on yellow vinyl for the U.S. pressing...with a D-side etching that is difficult to see (as they usually are).

Tuesday, May 23, 2017

Rejected Battery

Greatest hits records for Hardcore bands are weird, and for those us that are diehards, they are absolutely pointless. When it was announced that REV was releasing this compilation of Battery songs, I was prepared to pass it by, and leave it for the completists.

When Chris over at Unwavering Spirit offered to grab a copy for me at Battery's reunion at the Damage City Fest, I figured that adding a limited REV pressing to my collection couldn't hurt, so I took him up on it. Honestly, if this was anything but a special pressing that was basically being laid at my feet, I wouldn't have bothered, but this opportunity was too good to pass up. Too bad this record didn't include the new Battery song, My Last Breath, that the band recorded as they prepare for the reunion show. It would have been a nice addition on this record.

Number 157 out of 200.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Calling The Coroner

When it comes to Metal records, there have been a few labels that I've entertained the idea of chasing...silver label Megaforce and green label Combat top that list. Now we can add the Noise Record label as well.

While I've always enjoyed the bands on the Noise roster, for one reason or another, I've just never been enticed to collect them...until I started reading Damn The Machine, the story of Noise Records. Suddenly, I found myself dusting off those old Running Wild and Kreator CDs, obsessing over Celtic Frost, and downloading stuff that I'd never heard like Hellhammer and Warrant. I couldn't get enough of those Noise bands.

As I was spinning a Noise playlist, and hunting for vinyl on discogs, I came across the original German pressing of Coroner's Punishment For Decadence record. Instead of the cover image of a skeleton playing the violin that I was familiar with, instead we get this twisted mass of bodies that was a piece of The Gates Of Hell sculpture. Having never seen this original cover before, I had an immediate need to get my hands on a copy.

Punishment For Decadence is an underrated classic. I didn't fully appreciate it at the time, when it was originally released in '88, but this album as certainly held up over the years, as I've been listening to it day after day during this Noise obsession.

I love inserts that list the labels catalog to that point, and I can review and dream of which one I want to add to the collection next.

Friday, May 19, 2017

Growers Of Mushroom

Since sorting my record collection chronologically by release year, I tend to focus on those albums that are still missing from my shelves...especially when I get into a 70's frame of mind. I mean when my music playlist from 1971 only includes 19 albums, I get stuck focusing on those few that I still don't own the vinyl for. When I start obsessing over those years, I immediately hit up discogs, looking to fill those few remaining holes.

Leaf Hound are one of those buried treasures from the early 70's. I've loved their Growers Of Mushroom album since I first discovered it around 10 years ago, when I was heavily on the hunt for obscure 70's bands. With a strong early Zeppelin sound, the band became one of my favorite finds from that time period.

Last summer, I was scooping up a number of those early 70's records that I was still missing, and I came across the Leaf Hound album. I hit up discogs to see what it would take for me to grab an original pressing, and I was floored. Apparently a first press of Growers Of Mushroom is quite the collectors item, and the average going rate tops $3,000. Fuck that. Do I look high? That is some crazy cash. Looks like I'll be settling for the Repertoire reissue from a few years back.

Tuesday, May 16, 2017

Hunger Farm

Nemesis Records were a pretty big deal when I started buying Hardcore records back in 1990. No doubt about it, the label defined the Southern California Hardcore scene, and they released some of my favorite records from that time...they also released a lot of records that didn't even come close to being on my radar. It is amazing to look back and see just how many records that Nemesis put out that I've never heard of, or know very little about.

Case in point...Hunger Farm.

As I was reading through the recent Nemesis Records book, I came across the Hunger Farm entries. I'm sure that I must have heard this name at one point or another, but if I did, I promptly ignored them, and never bothered to check them out.

Reading the one-page write up for each record, Big Frank mentioned numerous times that he was certain that Hunger Farm was going to be a huge success. Out of all the bands on Nemesis, he thought that this band was really going places. With his high praise behind the band, I figured that the least I could do was check them out.

After getting burned on that Fishwife record a few years back, I wasn't taking any chances, and I hit up youtube to preview a couple of Hunger Farm songs before investing any money into this chase.

These two records are full of quirky and catchy punk songs, that really remind me of that early 90's time period. Not as tight as those first Green Day records, but definitely in that same fun pop punk vein. I don't really hear that next-big-thing potential that Big Frank was picking up on at the time, but I still really like these records.

No special colored vinyl pressings for these two 7 inches...black vinyl only...and given that these aren't the most popular Nemesis records, I was able to scoop them up through discogs for cheap. Over 25 years after their release, and I'm still able to pick them up for what it would have cost me to buy them through Ebullition's distro back in 1990. Good deal.