Thursday, December 30, 2010

Pissed OFF!

As far as Black Flag goes, I've always been partial to the Keith Morris era, and it goes without saying that I've been a long time fan of the Circle Jerks. In my long list of favorite shows, I would have to include the two times that I saw the Circle Jerks...once in 1990 for their "farewell" tour, and then again in 2003 with G.B.H. and Good Riddance for a reunion tour. There have been rumors for years about another Circle Jerks album...a follow up to 1995's Oddities LP. Apparently disagreements within the band have kept the album from getting finished. Because of these disagreements, Keith Morris began working with the producer for the new album and wrote some songs for a side project called OFF!. They joined up with Mario Rubalcaba (who handled drums for 411) and Steven Shane McDonald from Redd Kross (who also played on the first Tenacious D album) and recorded 16 songs to make up four EPs for the band.

I've got to say, I'm pretty impressed. Fast and with a fistful of punk attitude, these songs sound like they were written right after the Circle Jerks session for Group Sex.

Packaged with original artwork from Raymond Pettibon, this box set contains the four EPs from OFF!, and looks amazing.

I'm not sure why the band chose to release these songs across four separate EPs, instead of just doing one LP. Still, there is no question that this is Keith Morris' strongest release in over 20 years.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010


I've been to a few really big Hardcore shows. The New Bedford Fest in 1995 with Chokehold and Lifetime, Ten Yard Fight's last show in 1999, In My Eyes' last show in 2000, Posi-Numbers '05 with the Bold and Underdog reunions, The First Step's last show in 2008. All of those were great shows, with people travelling from all over the world to be there, but the last Have Heart show has to top them all. I've never seen so many people at a show.

Like Champion's last show, Bridge Nine was there to capture Have Heart's set on film. I remember hanging outside of the show, waiting to get in, and Wrench from Ten Yard Fight came over with his video camera and asked me a few questions about Have Heart. I felt pretty stupid and awkward as he "interviewed" me...ugggg...I'm just glad that it didn't make it into the live DVD.

Man, the show itself was amazing. So many great bands helped send off Have Heart in style. No Tolerance, Step Forward, Rival Mob, Cruel Hand, Foundation, Bane, plus Sweet Pete doing a few In My Eyes songs. By the time Have Heart started their set, the club was already pretty hot, and I was already pretty tired. Watching the DVD today, I still amazed at how crazy things get once Have Heart start playing...people packed to the front of the stage...singing along and stagediving everywhere. There is a sea of people crushed up front to see Have Heart do their thing one last time. Wow...I forget that there were so many people there. The DVD really captures how much energy there was at this show. Myself, I ran out of energy about half way through Have Heart's set and spent the last part of the show at the back of the club trying to catch my breath and not pass out.

When Bridge Nine put up pre-orders for the new live Have Heart album, I didn't hesitate to order...and to pick up the new pressings of their studio albums as well.

I'm not sure what the deal with the pressing info is. When the album went up for pre-order, it listed red vinyl as the color with with DVD package deal. It also stated that "if you buy the LP alone, you'll likely get the less-limited blue or white vinyl". Of course, I ordered three copies.

I got the white vinyl.

I got the blue vinyl.

The color that I got with my CD/DVD package was not red, but clear vinyl. Clear vinyl? I didn't know they were selling clear vinyl. I checked the B9 discography page and it lists a green vinyl as well. What the Hell? Even more strange is that all of them seem to be sold out. I guess that now I have to track down a couple more copies of this album.

Along with the release of the live album, Bridge Nine also did another pressing of Have Heart's two studio albums. The sixth pressing of The Things We Carry. On clear gold vinyl, and limited to 1,000.

The fifth pressing of Songs To Scream At The Sun. Solid orange vinyl, limited to 1,000.

Sunday, December 26, 2010

Fire & Ice

I've been on a mission recently...working to clean up the backlog of new vinyl that I have stacking up around my turntable. The past couple of months saw a lot of new records arrive in the mail, and I've gotten really far behind in my posts. Not only am I trying to get caught up on this backlog of posts, but more importantly, I'm trying to get new releases for 2010 up on the blog before the new year hits.

Fire & Ice are just one of the bands that I didn't bother checking out until just before the Triple B Showcase in September. A couple weeks before the show I was downloading all that I could, to try and familiarize myself with the newer bands that I'd never heard before. The funny thing is that, at this point, I don't even remember the band playing that weekend. They were scheduled to play the first day of the Showcase, and all that I remember is that every band was amazing that day.

Oh yeah, another thing that I remember is that I was hoping to pick up some vinyl from some of the bands, but for some retarded reason, hardly anyone had records for sale...there were plenty of shirts, but vinyl was pretty scarce. Fire & Ice were one of the bands that I was planning on buying records for. Triple B Record has a pretty extensive roster, and it was their Showcase, so I'm baffled as to why they only had the America's Hardcore comp for sale. Either way, I was forced to pick up both of the Fire & Ice records through mailorder after the show.

The first pressing of the 2009 release, Gods and Devils, is sold out. That left me with the metallic gold (100 pressed) and the ice blue colored vinyl (300 pressed) from the second press.

Featuring the guitarist from Down To Nothing, and the singer from Iron Boots...I'm not sure why I waited so long to finally check out Fire & Ice. I'm really digging this band. Their newest 7 inch, Grim, continues in the same vein as Gods & Devils. Solid hardcore with the same kind of influence from the member's past bands. I wish that I had hopped on the bandwagon earlier. By the time I went to check out the band, Triple B only had black vinyl (600 pressed)available. With the label releasing an LP that includes both Fire & Ice 7 inches, I wonder if they plan on doing a second press of the Grim 7 inch.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Warped Sword

The Sword drop the fantasy theme for their newest album, Warp Riders, and opt for more of a 70's Star Wars looking album cover. Incredibly well done Stoner Metal with riffs that were made to simply crush your head. Goddamn, this album is so good.

The packaging is a beautiful gatefold sleeve that continues with the outer space theme.

Hand numbered and limited to 5,000.

The Sword also released a picture disc for the single (The Night The Sky Cried) Tears of Fire. The b-side of this single is an unreleased song, Farstar, that is a bit more trippy, and not that strong of a song. I typically don't go for the picture disc...especially for just a single...but I liked the new Sword album so much that I figured what the hell, and picked it up.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Remission: Past and Present

Remission are so good. If you like Verbal Assault and One Step Ahead, there is no reason for you to not like this band. They are set to have a new 7 inch released on REACT! any day now, there is talk about them doing a split 7 inch with Police & Thieves, Assault Records is doing a Euro pressing of their first LP, and here comes Amendment Records with their second pressing. 237 pressed on clear vinyl and a new insert.

Remission also recently had their demo pressed to vinyl. They packaged it with Tribute fanzine and limited it to 300. Nothing really new here, as all three songs on the demo made it to the Accept LP, still it was cool to finally pick this up.

While I was picking up the Remission records, I saw this 7 inch from Approach. I'd never heard them before, and the cover is so weird that it gives me the creeps...however, the description mentions that it has members of Remission, so I figured that I'd check it out. This record really surprised me. It totally reminds me of the first two Strife 7 inches, before they signed to Victory, and that is definitely a good thing. Great early 90's vibe from this band. 200 pressed on black vinyl.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Much Love For Youngblood

Youngblood Records doesn't make noise very often, but when they do, it is usually pretty impressive. Their newest release, Sacred Love's self-titled EP, is no exception.

Ev from Mindset switches roles, and moves from vocals to bass, with this new band out of Baltimore. While they cite the early Dischord roster and Bad Brains as influences, there are times during the song Peace of Mind that really remind me of Betrayed. 200 pressed on purple vinyl.

300 pressed on black vinyl.

I do not give a shit about cassettes, and I generally refuse to purchase demos pressed in this terrible format. Fuck that...I'll download it, and if it gets released later on vinyl, I'll pick it up then. Of course I also hate to pass on a new Youngblood release, so I bit the bullet and bought the new Police & Thieves cassette. Man, the new songs sound great, and I can't wait for the new record to drop in 2011. Limited to 100 copies, this cassette was released on Youngblood's imprint label, Youngblood Vaults, and is listed with catalog number 2. Wait. There was another release on Youngblood Vaults? What was number one?

The last thing that Youngblood released with their September pre-orders was the final pressing of When The Lights Go Out from Fired Up. Pressed on purple vinyl and with a special Final Pressing sleeve. I love this record and will proudly proclaim that I own 9 different copies of it.

Number 108 of 110 pressed.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Bane BHC

I've said it before, but there was a time when I just wasn't interested in anything new that Bane released. While The Note still had a few amazing songs on it, the album as a whole just failed to really sink it's teeth into me and leave a mark. I guess that I kind of got bored with them. When they released a series of new 7 inches last year, I could have cared less. I wasn't paying attention, so I didn't really know what was going on. All I knew was that the record was released on a bunch of different labels from around the world, and titled from the city that they were released in...oh and there was something about the songs being named for soap operas. Meh.

So when it turned out that they were going to be playing the Triple B Showcase in October, I figured that I'd download some new songs to check them out before the show. I had downloaded the Boston EP, and was amazed at how good the songs were. Then when I had such a fun time during Bane's set that weekend, I stopped by their merch table and picked up the only piece of vinyl they had for sale...the Los Angeles EP.

The funny thing is that I had thought that the songs for the new 7 inch were the same for each release. I got home and listened to the Los Angeles EP, and soon realized that these were not the songs that I had downloaded. Turns out that there were 6 songs. Three on some of the releases, and another three on the others. Someone with the knowledge, please tell me that the Boston and Los Angeles EPs cover all the new songs. I find the whole thing confusing, and it hurts my brain to think about it.

The covers for the new Bane 7 inches are some of the ugliest that I've seen for a long time. I don't like the look of them at all. It reminds me of some cheesy page design that I would expect to see in some cheap photo scrapbook. When I picked up the Boston EP, I was struck that the band name wasn't even on the cover. It took me about 5 minutes to find it hidden in the design. Uggg.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Limited Control

How much would you pay for a piece of paper that's been stamped with the words Legitimate Bros? What if only five of them existed? Surprisingly, the answer isn't as much as I would have thought...but maybe I'm slightly retarded for placing so much importance on these things. Who knows? The story from the guitarist of ON, Ben Berres, is as follows:

There are only 5 copies of this version of the record. After selling all the red copies of this record at the record release, we found 4 more copies in a box. A few weeks later, another copy was sent to us strangely by the record pressing plant along with the records plates. So, there are a total of 5 copies of this record and one was distributed to each dude in the band.

I actually picked this up for kind of cheap from Ben on eBay. I'm assuming that part of the reason is that doing a search for "ON" through eBay is not really an efficient way to look for the bands records. Sure you can add "Champion" in the listing name for them, but maybe that isn't even enough to boost your selling price. Good deal for this buyer.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Two Dollar Boots

Some bands seem to never really become "collectible". Their records consistently sell for dirt cheap prices on eBay. I love Iron Boots. After seeing Marcus post a few records from them on his blog, I figured that I'd check them out. Great Warzone-inspired Hardcore. I got into them long after the band broke up, but I've slowly been building my collection with their records, and each piece of Iron Boots vinyl I've purchased has been pretty inexpensive. Since their demo has been pressed on three different record labels, I assume that at some point the band must must have been a hot commodity. So what happened? How was I able to pick up this copy of their demo on vinyl for under $2.00?

300 pressed on grey vinyl from Grave Mistake Records.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Deluxe Death Magnetic

I'm a big fan of Metallica. Sure they lost me for about 10 years as they released The Black Album and a couple of Loads, but nowadays, I can even appreciate those albums. By the time Metallica released their eighth album, St. Anger, in 2003, I was listening to Metal again and interested in what they were doing. St. Anger was a step in the right direction, but it wasn't until 2008 that the band was able regain some serious credibility with the release of Death Magnetic.

When Death Magnetic was originally released, I immediately picked up the double LP pressing. While I loved it, and could not get over how good this album was, I couldn't bring myself to drop $100 on the deluxe box set pressing. When I recently saw the box set at Newbury Comics with a $40 price tag, the deal was too good to resist.

I love how thick and heavy box sets are. Holding it in my hands, I feel like I've got something really substantial...something special.

Five pieces of song per side...and each one comes with it's own heavy duty record sleeve.

Holy shit, this thing is fucking massive for one album.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Hardcore For Hardcore: Second Press

Six Feet Under Records recently did a second pressing of the new Rival Mob 7 inch, Hardcore For Hardcore. No one should really be surprised that the first press sold out so quickly. This record is amazing, and I'm trying to figure out how high it will end up in my Top 10 for 2010 list. The band is on fire at the moment, and as soon as Six Feet Under announced that the second pressing was up in the webstore, I quickly placed my order.

This time around we get a blue and white split, plus a blue with black splatter colored vinyl. I'm hoping that some one out there can fill me in on the pressing info.

Friday, December 10, 2010

Combat and War with eBay

I won a few records on eBay recently. Picked them up for dirt cheap, but unfortunately, not everything is as good a deal as it seems sometimes.

Sometimes I have bad luck when it comes to the first album that I buy from a band. The first thing that I heard from 7 Seconds was Soulforce Revolution...the first album that I bought from Warzone was their self titled 1989 album. Not great first impressions for either band. With D.O.A., I was introduced to them through their 1990 album, Murder. Luckily enough, I also picked up their Bloodied But Unbowed CD, which contained the bands first couple of releases from the early 80's, so I knew that the band wasn't complete shit. Honestly, when I bought the Bloodied But Unbowed CD in the early 90's, I still didn't give the band much of a shot, and I pretty much shelved the album for about 20 years. For some reason I dusted it off recently and found that I really enjoyed what I heard.

When I found an eBay seller with the original War On 45 12 inch EP, I figured that I'd try and pick it up cheap. The auction was ending soon, and sat with zero bids and a price tag of $6.00. The seller seemed to take pride in his records...when you call yourself a "record collector", I assume that you take care of your he listed the vinyl in "great shape". I felt confident, and was happy when I won it. Unfortunately, when I put the record on the turntable it was obvious that something was fucked up. It seemed like the record had warped, and had somehow been flattened back out. The record is flat, but there is something definitely wrong with the grooves for the first song on side two. It plays okay, I guess, but you can see the arm of the turntable bouncing around like the vinyl is warped. I was a bit bummed.

From the same seller I also picked up a copy of Jesus Is Dead from The Exploited. I've always wanted a copy of this record. I love the front cover artwork. As kids, my brother had a Jesus Is Dead t-shirt, while I would opt for my Dead Kennedys In God We Trust, Inc tee. The more offensive the better, and my brother won the battle with this one. I was always jealous of that shirt. Again, the seller listed the vinyl as "great shape", so I didn't mind the $13.00 winning bid for this copy...until I pulled it out of the sleeve and saw all the surface scratches on the vinyl. Man, this thing is full of surface noise, scratches and pops throughout the entire record. Fuck.

Ridiculous that Combat censored the record labels on this. After releasing it with the front cover artwork, what is the point of censoring the Jesus Is Dead record and song title on the record label. Stupid.

Finally, a record from this seller that looks and sounds good. I wasn't a huge Crumbsuckers fan back in the late 80's. I had the Beast On My Back cassette, but it didn't really get a lot of spins. It wasn't until many years later, that I finally downloaded their first album, Life Of Dreams, that I finally started to appreciate this band. Yeah, the vocals are a little different, and I could see how some people might have a hard time with them, but to me, it is all part of their charm. Crossover rules, okay?

You can barely see it on the back of the album sleeve, but it has a promo stamp. Typically, these promo stamps are gold, but it looks like all the gold has flaked off, leaving just the indent.

Man, I feel bad for this guy. Due to the nighttime photography and lighting, he ended up with a spot of light right under his nose. Not very flattering.

So there it is...two out of the three records that I picked up for cheap were fucked up. I was upset, and sent a note to the seller. I wasn't asking for a refund since they were kind of cheap, but I was expecting some response or apology that the condition of his records were not a "great" as he described them. Nope, response. Fuck you dude.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010


I'm really not a fan of compilation records. Very rarely do they become something truly special. In most cases, the good bands on the comp will turn around and include the song that they submitted on their next record. Within a year, the compilation is just the equivalent of someone's mixtape. Yawn. Plus, I tend to listen to bands and not songs...if that makes sense. When I'm scrolling through bands in my ipod, I think of albums and 7 inches that I want to hear, and compilations rarely come to mind.

Still, when a new compilation LP is released that is as strong as America's Hardcore, I'll still pick it up. The Rival Mob, Cruel Hand, Thought Crusade, Foundation, and Wolf a bunch of other bands that I've been meaning to check out. Backtrack has a song on this comp, and while I really didn't care for them at the AHC record release show, their song here makes me want to revisit them and give them another chance.

White with red and blue splatter. 300 pressed.

I noticed that Triple B Records had the Free Spirit pre-orders up when I ordered the AHC comp. The more limited color was already sold out by then, so I only picked up the red colored vinyl, which was limited to 700.

There was lots of hype around Free Spirit, and I was excited to finally hear this 7 inch. Unfortunately it falls a little short for me. Not that it is bad, but it just didn't really grab me the way I expected it to. The band plays lightening fast, and it pretty similar to Straight Ahead, so maybe with repeated listens, this one will catch on.

While in the Triple B store I noticed that they had the Sound and Fury pressing of the Downpresser 7 inch. I've had the mp3's for this record for a while, and I figured that it was about time that I finally purchase it.

Sound and Fury fest cover. Limited to 100.

Downpresser play that mid-90's style of Hardcore that is making a resurgence nowadays. I can hear a bit of NYHC influence as well. It's not a style that always grabs me, but this is cool shit.

Sunday, December 05, 2010

The Right Way

Following up on their 2008 REACT! release, Right Idea release a new 7 inch for 2010. Maybe it's just me, but there didn't seem to be a lot of hype around this release. I remember the band released a song, United Front, sometime over the was a different sound for the band...going for more of an Oi! sound...I wasn't really feeling it, and was kind of bummed. Then I found out that Refuse Records was releasing this 7 inch, and I was bummed even more. Not that I really have anything against the label, but first of all, they are from Europe which is going to mean high shipping costs. Second of all, Refuse does not have a webstore. If you want to order records from them you have to send an email, get a message back on how much it will cost, and then send your payment. It is just too much of a pain in the ass for me. Therefore I was excited when Jeff Hess posted on the REACT! messageboard that he had a few copies of the 7 inch, with the tour cover, in the band's webstore.

It seems that there were a few records that I over the summer that had significant delays. Between ordering from New Age, getting fucked over by Dead End Records on the Outlast/Reveal The Truth 7 inch, questions about if the Mindset live album will ever get shipped, and then after ordering the new Right Idea 7 inch back in July, I was starting to wonder if it was going to show up when November rolled around. I fired off an email to Jeff Hess, to check to see what might be happening, and by chance the record arrived a few days later. Thankfully, the songs on the 7 inch don't all sound like the United Front song...this is still Right Idea playing some great Youth Crew styled hardcore.

For some reason the tour cover lists the name of the record as Our Way, yet the actual name of the record from Refuse Records is Right Way. Nice looking cover for the Euro tour. Hand stamped a-side labels, and limited to 100.

Friday, December 03, 2010

What's Words Worth?

Back in 1978 Motorhead played a benefit show to preserve some William Wordsworth manuscripts. Motorhead wasn't getting a lot of attention at this point, and even though their set was recorded, it wasn't released until 5 years later as the What's Wordsworth? LP...a cash in from the band's former label to capitalize on the bands success. This recording is rough and ugly, but so aren't Motorhead, therefore, it is perfect.

I've picked up and handful of Back On Black re-issues this past year, and the best looking ones have got to be the ones for Motorhead. The inside gatefold sleeve is full of photos, plus a story of how the album came to be. I wish that Back On Black would do more layouts like this.