Sunday, August 31, 2008

The One Thing That Still Holds True

Inspired by the new banner that Tyler added to his blog, I decided to try and add some personality to my layout as well. I have also been thinking of renaming this blog for a while now. I loved the Record Nerd name when I created the blog two years ago, but I wasn't aware that the name was already being used by a website to show off your record collection. I had probably heard the name at one point and stored it in my brain subconsciously. With a new banner, comes a new name, The One Thing That Still Holds True. The name, of course, comes from the band Chain of Strength. When I was running through song and album titles, trying to find something that clicked, this one just seemed perfect. Music has played such a huge part in making me who I am, and it is something that even now, after all these years, is still such a big part of my life. So there you go, Record Nerd is dead...long live this one thing that still holds true.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Happy Birthday From The Family

38 years old. Holy shit. Each year that my birthday rolls around and I'm forced to recognize how old I am, it always surprises me. When did get this old? In some ways I feel like I'm such a different person than I was at 20, but in many ways I still feel that I've never really grown up. I think that a part of it is that I'm still strongly attached to the same music that I loved through my teenage years. I need music and crave it at all times. I can't drive the car without needing to throw a CD into the player. If I have 5 spare minutes at home, I'm hopping on to the computer to check out a new song that I had downloaded. When I get home with the kids, it's a race to see if I can get the stereo on before they get the TV on. On a good day, I can make my way through 9 or 10 CD's while I'm at work. I surf around on the internet, checking ebay for records that I really can't afford to buy. I live and breathe this stuff. It keeps me young. My family is so good to me, that when my birthday rolls around, they give me gift cards to either Newbury Comics or Bull Moose Music so that I can go music shopping for myself. While this year, I also got some gift cards for Home Depot to buy materials for my music shelving, I also got enough for a good shopping trip.

The first item on my shopping list was the new album from The Raconteurs, Consolers of the Lonely. The band includes Jack White from The White Stripes, and this new album is simply an amazing rock record. I've even grown to appreciate the one song that includes some violin. The gatefold packaging for this double album is spectacular and well worth the $30. While shopping, I couldn't resist picking up the Metallica S&M triple vinyl. The album was priced at $16 with a "50% Off" sticker on it, so I grabbed it for $8. Sweet deal. The rest of the money from my birthday went towards a bunch of CD's that I wanted for my collection to replace those shitty burned CD's that I had.

Saturday, August 23, 2008

We're Back!

I got back from my week long vacation today. A week on the lake with the family. No distractions. While it was nice to get away, man, I missed the non-stop barrage of music. First thing that I did, once everything was unpacked, was hit the stack of new vinyl sitting here next to my computer.

One of my newest obsessions has been Back On Black...a new record label, like Night of the Vinyl Dead, that specializes in classic Metal vinyl. Back On Black releases look fucking amazing, and have tempted me to start collecting a number of them. My first order from CM Distro was for two bands that have made a pretty strong return to Thrash over the past couple of years. First up was Onslaught. I never heard this band back when they were releasing albums in the 80's, but after a recommendation, I did check out Killing Peace when it was released last year. I loved the album...great modern Thrash, and has made me go back and visit the bands roots as well. The other band making a comeback has been Exodus. Fuck, I loved this band as kid...I even had the album cover of Bonded By Blood as a back patch for my denim jacket. The band has a new singer now, but I am still loving the albums that they are putting out, and Shovel Headed Kill Machine from 2005 is no exception. Brutal album. Since I had downloaded both of these albums, and hadn't bought them, seeing them get the vinyl treatment from Back On Black was all I needed to pick up these two killer albums.

So, yeah, just like some classic Thrash bands, I'm back. The week on the lake was perfect. We had great weather all week long, and I spent a lot of time swimming with the kids. In addition to swimming and hanging out on the beach, I got a ton of reading done. I finished book number two for The Manly Book Club. Brent made the selection this month with Gates of Fire by Steven Pressfield. Unlike last month, I actually finished the book before our meeting. If I didn't have this past week off and was away from the computer and music, I'm not sure if I would have finished it. However, as strange as it may seem, I really enjoyed this book. I never would have believed that I would have gotten into a book based on the battle of Thermopylae, but damn, other than my inability to keep the names of all the characters straight, I had a great time reading this one. It's my turn to pick the book for next month. I may take the easy way out and go with something that Rob mentioned that he wants to read....Hell, it looks like a good selection, so I'll probably go with that.

In addition to my Book Club reading, I also managed to also finish reading Judas Priest : Heavy Metal Painkillers by Marin Popoff. This book was more up my alley. All the pictures of the band's old singles, and discussion around each song from every, I really wanted to listen to this band over the past week. A really fun read, and I just love Popoff's books.

And since I can't help but act stupid when the camera comes out, here is a picture of me hitting the books this past week. Word.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Feeling Good

I found this excerpt from a Peanuts comic strip the other day. Someone had it as their signature on a messageboard, and I thought that it was a perfect reflection of my personality. There is no better way to turn around a bad day at work than skipping out at lunch and hitting the record store. I feel pretty lucky that I've got two great stores within a 5 minute drive from my office. When things get shitty and stressful at work, I've got a perfect escape just outside the doors and around the corner. New vinyl makes all the problems go away. Ha!
I got a nice big order from Very Distro the other week. I went a little crazy...they were having a sale on Earache Records titles, and I took the opportunity to grab a few different colors of the SSS record as well as a picture disc of The Art of Partying by Municipal Waste. I've started warming up to the idea of picture discs. While past readers of this blog should be know, I've always despised picture discs....there is no packaging and the sound quality is typically shit. Then it dawned on me the other day, who cares, they are great additions to my collection! For SSS, I picked up the clear and green colored vinyl, plus the original pressing on Dead & Gone Records, which was the bands record label before they moved to Earache. They released the SSS record on about 9 different colors of vinyl....I now have 3 colors. The other album that I picked up was Symptoms of Youth by Bad Reaction. Someone from turned me on to this band, as we both liked Fields of Fire, and Ben Edge from that band now plays in Bad Reaction. Very cool style of old school punk, in the vein of The Adolescents and early Circle Jerks.

Saturday, August 09, 2008

70's Priest

Man, I have completely fallen in love with early Judas Priest. Those first four albums, from '74's Rocka Rolla through '78's Stained Class, are just complete classics. While Sabbath may have "invented" Heavy Metal, Priest were one of the first bands to embrace the style and proudly attach the label to themselves. Between re-discovering these early records and starting to read Martin Popoff's book, Heavy Metal Painkillers, I have started to think more and more about starting to collect some of those early records. A few months ago, on a shopping trip with Jeff, I bought Sad Wings of Destiny and Sin After Sin to get the collection started, but this entry is for the more obscure Tyrant 12 inch on white vinyl. I really have no idea how rare this is, or if it is at all, and it seems like it might be a cash-in for Gull Records trying to squeeze some money out of the band's legacy by releasing this 12 inch single in 1984 for songs that were released in '74 and '75. Either way, I'm happy to add this to my collection.

Monday, August 04, 2008

True Colors of Vinyl

Six Feet Under Records recently posted on the Livewire Records messageboard about a new Down to Nothing 7 inch that they were releasing. I'd never heard of the label, but man, I loved the last DTN record, so I hopped on their site to place my order. While I was there, I saw that the record label had also done the U.S. pressing of the True Colors album. Tyler had turned me on to this band and man, I have been loving the Focus on the Light album lately. This album doesn't break down any musical barriers, it is just solid straight edge hardcore, played with sincerity and passion. I ordered the album on orange vinyl, which was limited to 105 pressed. I'm seriously thinking of going back and ordering the other color of vinyl for this one.

The Down to Nothing 7 inch, Hem Hem, is a little strange....I'm not really sure what to make of it. The cover photo for the record is a pretty good indication that this is coming a little bit from left field. The first song is some pretty ripping hardcore, but the lyrics are so over the top ridiculous that I'm left scratching my head. The rest of the songs are just as odd...Crucifixion of the Bunghole (???). I'm really not sure what the purpose of this record is. Maybe I'm just on the outside of an inside joke. Only pressed on black vinyl, limited to 270.