Friday, November 16, 2007

Jeff's Bargain Basement

A while back, Jeff and I spent another afternoon in his basement, flipping through old records and just generally kicking back, listening and talking nothing but music. It was really the first time that I had gone through his Heavy Metal section, and numerous times I needed to wipe the drool from my chin. So many amazing records. Raven, Savatage, early Megadeth and Manowar, Demon, Witchfinder General....damn, I could go on and on. I was literally jealous of his collection. Jeff is a few years older than me, so he grew up buying vinyl in the early 80's, totally catching Metal as it started to take off. I was a few years late to the scene. Plus, when I started buying music, CD's were starting to take off so there was a very small period where I was buying music on vinyl. I look back now, and remember seeing all those great Metal records in the stores, but instead of vinyl, I bought it on cassette or CD. If I had a time machine...

Jeff sold me some of the records that he no longer wanted, or they were ones that he had originally bought, but never got into them. He still owed me some money for the Black Sabbath tickets from the concert back in the Spring, so we made a trade to pay off that debt.

  • Virus : Force Recon - I'm pretty sure that Paul owned this on cassette when we were younger. I couldn't remember what it sounded like, so I put it on Jeff's turntable. Pretty decent mid-80's thrash, so I grabbed it. Still trying to find the mp3's on Soulseek so that I can burn it to CD.
  • Vicious Rumors : Soldiers of the Night - I had never heard of this 80's Metal band, but I had read a lot of reviews in The Collectors Guide to Heavy Metal - Volume 2, and recognized the record label, Shrapnel, that this album was on. I put this one on the turntable as well. Pretty standard Metal fare, but I did want it simply because of the historical significance of the record label.
  • Overkill : Taking Over - Now this is what I had come for. I remember Jeff talking about owning this record from a past conversation, and I knew that he had no interest in it, so I was hoping to walk away with it. This album is pure Thrash classic. One of my favorite records from this genre.
  • Helloween : Judas - Just an E.P. from Helloween, but it was from their early days...around the same time as the Walls of Jericho album, which was another one that Paul owned. This was back when the band was doing a good job of ripping off the Judas Priest sound. Good stuff.
  • Fates Warning : The Spectre Within - Funny, I never owned anything by this band, but again, Paul had an album by them. I didn't remember much about the band except that I thought that the album that Paul owned was pretty dull, progressive Metal in the same vein as Queensryche (although not nearly as good). The Spectre Within was an early album and it rocks a little harder, plus it was an early release on Metal Blade Records, so again, I took it for historical significance.

In cleaning out the duplicates in his collection, Jeff handed me a few records from The Doors for free. No need to go into each one, but I believe that Strange Days is the only vinyl from the band that I don't own. As a collector I also have the box set from them, where each CD is packaged in a replica sleeve to look like the original vinyl release, complete with gatefold sleeves and inserts.
And then there was the stack of duplicates and various 12 inch singles that he bundled together and sold to me for $10.

  • The Who : Meaty Beaty Big and Bouncy - A compilation of hits, and I was surprised by how much I enjoyed this album. Seriously, I never thought that I could listen to Pinball Wizard one more time, yet here on the album, I found myself singing right along.
  • The Who : Live at Leeds - When Jeff played this for me the last time I was over, I was floored at how heavy the guitars sounded on this live album. The guitar sound for Young Man Blues is just killer. I had tried to get into this band previously and they did nothing for me. This album though, this one kept my attention.
  • Black Sabbath : Never Say Die - Certainly not their best, but that title track still kicks ass. The only pressing that I had of this, other than the CD copies from the box set and the Castle remaster that I have, was the Earmark Re-issue out of Italy. This one is the original U.S. pressing. Nice addition to my slow growing Sabbath collection.
  • Elf : Trying to Burn the Sun - Before Ronnie James Dio became a Heavy Metal icon though bands like Rainbow, Black Sabbath and Dio, he fronted Elf, which was more of a bluesy/roots rock band from the early 70's. Not nearly as good as the bands he would sing for down the road, but it is still cool to hear his voice from those early days.
  • Vile : Solution - I still haven't listened to this entire record yet. I was surprised to find it in Jeff's collection, as it is straight up raw punk. Loud, fast and dangerous, with a strong "I don't give a fuck" attitude. Jeff said that he doesn't think that he had ever listened to the entire thing. He bought it during a time in his musical life where he was searching for something new and interesting when Heavy Metal started to bore him.
  • Nuclear Assault : Good Times Bad Times - Yes, they covered the Led Zeppelin song, and there was a time where I actually thought this was much better than the original. The b-side is a song that never made it to one of their albums, so I grabbed this 12 inch single.
  • Thin Lizzy : Cold Sweat - Holy shit, this song is so good. Great heavy guitar, and a hook that won't quit. This 12 inch single is from the end of the bands career...good rockin' stuff.
  • Hear n Aid : Stars - Yeah, the project pulled together by Vivian Campbell and Jimmy Bain from the original Dio band, as a Heavy Metal kind of We Are The World song to raise money for the hungry. Metal singers came from all over to participate in this worthwhile cause, and the song just kicks ass.


BB said...

thin lizzy is definitely in my top 10 bands of all time, maybe 3 spots below battery :)

Mike said...

I only have a few albums by them, but man, Fighting and Jailbreak are just amazing.

Bandit said...

It seems like you need to thank Paul for all of your music choices, without him would you have had anything? or would you still be listening to Duran Duran?
eh, Wrinkles?

Mike said...

Yeah, remember when we would go record shopping together, and we would pick up a few tapes each of some Metal band that neither of us had heard before. Good times, Pule, good times.

blackoperations said...


Please contact me about the Vle 'Solution' LP.


Anonymous said...

that viule record sells on ebay for $ 300+. just saying.

Mike said...

I know that know! :) And that is the reason that I no longer own that record. Cha-ching!