Monday, February 27, 2012

Still No For An Answer

I've always been a big fan of No For An Answer, so I was pretty intrigued when I saw on Double Cross that the band was going to be recording a three song 7 inch. Now if we've learned anything from DYS, it's that sometimes it is better to just let the past be the past, and these reunions often times can be an embarrassing mess. Still, I really enjoyed Speak 714 and John Henry Holiday, plus they were finally doing a studio recording of Man Against Man, so I had a bit of faith in Dan O and crew.

The record itself is quite good. Two old songs get their first studio recording, and then one new one. Man Against Man rages just about as hard as the live version from The Icemen Cometh 7 inch. It Makes Me Sick was written back when the band was doing the You Laugh record, and would fit in nicely on that record. Seriously, the song isn't even seconds would have thought that they would have thrown it on their first record. In The Beginning finishes things off nicely and ends with the opening riff for Without A Reason. The circle is complete.

Limited to 500.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Getting Off!

Record Store Day 2011. I had heard that OFF! was going to have a special release for this day last year. I found the Live at Generation Records 7 inch, and was pleased that I was able to score this limited vinyl release. However, when I got home later that night, I started to hear some rumblings about a separate OFF! release from Southern Lord Records. While the 7 inch, Compared To What b/w Rotten Apple, is made up of two cover songs, OFF! truly make them their own.

By the time I'd heard about this record, it appeared to be sold out. As the months rolled by, I soon knew that I was going to have to rely on eBay if I wanted a copy. Colored vinyl for this release seems to be going for around $30. I went cheap for now and just picked up the black vinyl for $6. Someday I'd like to grab the blue and red pressings of this as well.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Euro Enough

While Iron Mind Records handled the regular US pressing of the new Enough 7 inch, Assault Records did a small run for the Euro pressing.

I really wasn't impressed with the layout for the Iron Mind release. It seems too small for the front there was some mistake, and the label didn't send the finished artwork to the printer. Thankfully the Assault pressing fixes this, and it looks so much better.

100 pressed on red vinyl. 200 pressed on blue.

Yeah, I'm missing the gold vinyl from the Iron Mind pressing, but for a new band that I started collecting last year, I've got to say the vinyl output has been pretty impressive.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Influence Of Halfmast

Back in 1994, it was a strange time for Hardcore. Bands seemed to be moving further and further away from that basic, stripped down sound. Bands were either adopting the emo/Revolution Summer sound, not smiling and getting serious about everything, or going chaotic and metal. Bands like Mouthpiece and Strife were few and far between. Yet, some bands deep underground, were desperately trying to keep that Youth Crew sound alive. Before Fastbreak and Ten Yard Fight made Hardcore fun again, bands like Halfmast were out there trying to keep the spirit alive.

I had purchased Halfmast's Together 7 inch back when it was released in 1994, but somehow I missed out on their Influence record released that same year. I was killing some time on ebay a few weeks ago, and I stumbled upon a copy of Influence, and snagged it for 99 cents. The record is pretty similar to Together...very raw production and rough around the edges, but still very much Straight Edge Hardcore played with heart.

While the record looks like black vinyl, it gives the appearance of some kind of translucent colored vinyl when held up to the light. For some reason, I want to say that Third Party Record just used cheap vinyl for their records, and this isn't really colored vinyl.

This record also came with a few additional inserts. Some advertisement for a movie called Barcelona, and a lyric sheet on heavy red paper. The songs on the red lyric sheet are not for the Influence record, and is titled Nation Under God. Is there another Halfmast that I'm not aware of? Confusing inserts to say the least.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

No More Cops

Back in the mid-80's, I was branching out from listening to only metal, and starting to dig into some punk bands. It was all blind luck really. I liked loud, obnoxious music that would shock people, so bands with "shocking" names like Butthole Surfers, Dead Kennedys, Suicidal Tendencies, and Dayglo Abortions...well, it seemed like a natural fit with my steady diet of Slayer, King Diamond and Kreator. One of the punk bands that I took an interest in, because of their name, was Millions of Dead Cops (MDC).

I didn't know anything about MDC, and took a shot in the dark with their Smoke Signals album...on cassette. I liked most of it, but with songs like Tofutti, South Africa Is Free, and Chicken Squawk, I was conflicted and didn't know what to think of the entire album. It wasn't easy for this Metalhead kid to digest.

A couple months ago, I was blasting through a playlist that included albums that I've rarely listened to, and Smoke Signals came up. I had forgotten about how good some of these songs are...No More Cops, King of Thrash, The Big Picture...great stuff. Punk rock that was on a mission to change the world.

Of course layout for the gatefold LP looks a lot better than the lousy cassette copy that I've owned for the past 25 years.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Suicidal Maniac

Early 80's Hardcore has been ruling my life the past couple of weeks. I can't get enough of it right now. Even newer bands with that similar sound are getting sucked into my daily playlists. One of those bands is Career Suicide.

I was first introduced to the band back in 2008 through a fellow blogger at the time. I picked up their Attempted Suicide album, and even though I loved that LP, I didn't search out any other records from them. For the life of me, I can't imagine why I didn't branch out any further from that one LP.

After picking up the Night Birds vinyl through Grave Mistake, I decided to browse through their webstore to see if anything else jumped out at me. I saw the first EP from Career Suicide, and figured that it was finally time to expand my collection. Great stuff.

When I received my order, I was surprised to find the new reissue of Career Suicide's Cherry Beach 7 inch. I didn't order it, but if you want to give it to me, I'll take it. Originally released back in 2008 as a limited tour 7 inch, the band re-recorded 2 of the 3 songs, and reissued it with two new songs last year. Nice to see they are still active and releasing some cool music.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Flock of Night Birds

I love surprises, and one of the biggest surprises of 2011 was Night Birds. I'd heard the band's name thrown around for the past couple of years, but I'd never really put forth the effort to check them out. When I heard that they were releasing an LP on Grave Mistake, I figured that I'd download it and give it a chance. Much like the surprise of the album from Crusades, I could not believe how great Night Birds were.

The comparisons to Agent Orange are obvious with that great surf guitar sound, but I also hear a ton of Dead Kennedys influence with the guitar as well. This whole album is infectious as hell, and this band is getting tons of time in my playlists lately.

I was late to the party, so I missed out on the pre-order screened cover, and had to settle on the regular black vinyl. I believe that Grave Mistake is doing a second pressing of the album, so I hope they do some colored vinyl for this in the future.

While I was picking up the LP from Grave Mistake I also grabbed the two 7 inches that were available. The first 7 inch is from 2010, and this is the third pressing of the record, with the dark red logo sleeve.

The latest 7 inch, Midnight Movies, was released early last year. This band can do no wrong. Get into it.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Save Yourself

At the end of 2011, I kept seeing the band Saviours showing up on people's Top 10 lists for Metal. Even one of my favorite newer Metal bands, Orchid, was talking about how good the Death's Procession LP was. At that point I decided to download and check it out.

I gave the songs a couple spins, but it didn't really grab me. I had other stuff that I'd picked up recently, and I was more excited to listen to that, so I put Saviours aside. A month or so ago, I was flipping through the vinyl section at Bull Moose Music and saw a copy of the Death's Procession had a decent price tag on it, and a pretty sweet embossed cover, so I took the plunge and picked it up.

Overall, I think this album is a little disappointing. Some songs, like Crete'n and God's End, bash along at a nice quick pace and are really good. Other songs just seem to plod along, and become background noise. Maybe with repeated listens I'll warm up to this more, but right now, I don't know if I really want to bother.

Nice touch with the limited edition, hand numbered vinyl though.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

On Trial

Back in September, I ordered the new Trial repress from New Age Records. So much time had passed since then, that I'd forgotten exactly what I'd ordered. When Sandwell posted four copies on his blog in December, I didn't remember ordering that many copies. For some reason I only remembered ordering two copies. If this was true I was going to need to place another order with New Age, and I was not looking forward to that possibility.

When the package finally landed in my mailbox in January, I was thrilled to find that I had ordered all four copies.

200 pressed on grey vinyl.

300 pressed on clear.

500 pressed on brown vinyl.

For best results, hold up to light.

Don't forget about the '77 pressing that New Age does with each repress. 77 copies on grey vinyl with the Walk Proud labels. Damn, did they have that many labels left over from the original Walk Proud run, or has New Age been printing them just for these '77 pressings?

In addition to the Trial 7 inches, I also picked up a copy of the Suppression Swing LP. Of course I originally bought this on CD back in the late 90's, but for $4.00 I figured it was time to grab a vinyl copy. Much to my surprise, I found that the vinyl has a bonus track that wasn't on the CD. Truly, one of the last great New Age releases.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

MIdnight Six Sixty Six

Sandwell likes some good Hardcore, but there is no doubt about it, the guy knows his Metal as well. Back in December he posted about a new album from a band called Midnight. I'd never heard of them, but he was loving the album so I quickly downloaded it to check it out.

Midnight is basically a whole lot of early Venom, wrapped up with some Motorhead. I can see why Mark likes this so much. With those influences, you can't lose. I mean, every time I see the band's name, I can't help but start to sing the first lines of Venom's Leave Me In Hell...."Midnight six sixty six...". Serious 80's Metal worship going on much so that I can ignore the sophomoric lyrics on songs like Lust, Filth and Sleaze, and the bonus song that is only available on the vinyl pressing, TAP (Tits, Ass, Pussy). Juvenile? Yes. Good thing I don't have a high level of standards for Metal lyrics.

There were a few different vinyl options for the LP. I went with the blue vinyl pressing.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Disengage Expressions

When Disengage released their first 7 inch, back in 2010, I didn't take much notice at first. I gave it a couple of spins, and while I thought it was good, it didn't really knock my socks off. I'm not sure what my problem was...maybe I was listening to too much Dio at the time...I don't know, but a few months later I was LOVING that Disengage record. When the new LP dropped just before the end of 2011, there was no doubt that it would make my Top 10 List for the year.

12 songs in a little over 13 minutes. This record blasts in and out quicker than Break Down The Walls, and leaves you with just as big of a smile. Destined to be a modern day Straight Edge classic.

This was a split release between Back To Back and Triple B. 120 pressed on white, and 880 pressed on black vinyl.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

I Don't Care

Think I Care play a style of Hardcore that is ugly and mean. No tough guys here...Think I Care are just vicious. I've owned two of their albums for years, but I rarely gave them a spin because they were just so abrasive. Over the past year or so, I've started to listen to them more and more, and I've finally started to appreciate them.

One of the obvious holes in my collection was the Mongrel record. I downloaded it last year, and before too long, I knew that I needed to hunt down a copy.

I managed to dig up a nice copy on eBay, and you know, I don't even care that it is a 10 inch record. It is an odd ball format, and I know know why you wouldn't just release it on a 12 inch. Still, my collection has slowly grown, and the more 10 inches I pick up, I less I hate them.

The funny thing is that I've always thought the front cover for Mongrel featured a couple of snarling polar bears. I guess the record title should have tipped me off, but the back cover confirms that they are actually dogs.

Thursday, February 09, 2012

Six Songs Of Ceremony

I like Ceremony. I don't feel the need to collect every pressing of every one of their records, but I still really like this band. Collecting the new six song cover record seems to be be the exception to that rule. Sure, it wasn't too difficult, but my collection for this is now complete.

Red vinyl was the most limited pressing for this record. 500 were pressed, but Bridge Nine originally only made them available through some package deal. I wasn't interested in spending a few extra bucks on the package to get a giant poster of Ceremony's singer deep throating a microphone, so I passed and just went with the clear vinyl.

For Black Friday, Bridge Nine made a big deal about a sale they were going to have. Those interested were urged to get in early for the opportunity for some great stuff. With thoughts of limited vinyl dancing in our heads, a bunch of us were online at 6:00 in the morning expecting to find some awesome surprises. The whole thing was a pretty much a bust. No Warehouse Pressings, no long lost vinyl. The best thing that I walked away with was the red vinyl for the Ceremony 12 inch at the regular price. I got out of bed early for this?

Since my local record store had about three copies of the Ceremony on black vinyl. I figured that I'd grab one to complete the collection.

While the red and clear vinyl have a screened b-side, the black vinyl is etched. Limited to 1,000.

All three of these were really well done, and truly show Bridge Nine's creative side. Nicely done.

Monday, February 06, 2012

Not With The Majority

Some people collect Hardcore classics. They build collections of Brotherhood vinyl, others go with Turning Point or even Wide Awake. I love those bands, and every once in a while I'll commit myself to picking up one of those big purchases. Yet, most of the time I find myself more excited to pick up those records that most people could care less about. Yeah, you might have a copy of Bringing It Down on green vinyl, but I've got myself a copy of Reveal's 7 inch with the blue cover, and three copies of the Billingsgate 7 inch. That's right, you're all jealous.

My latest find in the Who Gives A Fuck of eBay searches was the Rage 7 inch from Majority Of One. I first heard the band with their tracks on the Voice Of The Voiceless comp, and their One Man 7 inch. As a 20 year old kid just getting into hardcore, I loved this band. The 2000 Years Of Indecision LP was total emo/post-hardcore shit, but man, in 1990 and 1991, Majority Of One were putting out some great Hardcore. The 99 cent price tag on this eBay win tells me that I may be alone with that opinion.

Sure this isn't as cool as the gold vinyl pressing. I'll have to keep my eyes open and try and pick up a copy of that as well.

Saturday, February 04, 2012

10 Years Of Giving Blood

I've never been a collector of Bane vinyl. I loved the band when I first heard them around 1996/1997, but at the time I wasn't really collecting records, and soon after I fell into a CD slump. As the years went by, I kind of got bored with what they were doing. When I saw them a year or so ago at the Triple B Showcase, it was like a punch to the head. The band were still intense and passionate live, and revisiting their last couple of albums, I found that they really held up over the years. Yeah, I was back on board the Bane bandwagon.

2011 marked the 10 year anniversary of Bane's Give Blood LP. Triple B took on the task of releasing this special pressing, and the job they did is of the highest quality. For the anniversary pressing, Triple B went with new cover art on an embossed gatefold sleeve.

Red with white splatter colored vinyl. Limited to 200.

Even though the album cover got new artwork, the original cover found it's way to the nice booklet that was included.

The booklet is a nice reproduction of the CD insert from the original Equal Vision release. Was it similar to the original vinyl release? I have no idea, I've never owned one. Having the Anniversary pressing kind of makes me want one though.

While I was in the Triple B store, I figured that I'd grab a copy of the Downpresser 7 inch. I really like this record and have slowly been building up my collection for this band. I still need the purple vinyl to complete things, but now I've got the most common pressing. Red vinyl is limited to 600.

Friday, February 03, 2012

Yawn Of Today

Nothing too exciting to see here. The vinyl re-issue of Were Not In This Alone...on black vinyl...yawn. The fact is, I only owned this re-issue on CD, and I wanted a vinyl copy because one can never have too many Youth Of Today records. I already own the superior Caroline pressing, but this copy has been hanging out a my local record store for too long. It was time to give it a good home.

I never had a problem with the layout of this Revelation remastered pressing. Ray looks like a maniac tearing into the mic, and really captures the live intensity of the band. Sure the original cover is better, but honestly, this cover is nowhere as bad as Can't Close My Eyes and Break Down The Walls. I'll spin this once, and then put it on the shelf. What is the point, you ask? It is Youth Of Today, and that is the only reason I need to buy this.

Thursday, February 02, 2012


Since picking up the first two remastered Fugazi records last year, I've been contemplating picking up Repeater as well. I'm not a huge Fugazi fan, but you can't deny that everything up through Repeater is a classic. My local record store had a copy of the vinyl in stock, and my Mom was nice enough to pick it up for me at Christmas.

Black vinyl. Big deal. This would have looked great on a clear blue colored vinyl.

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Still Raining

Another Rain On The Parade record...another tip from Marcus. This time around it is for my first vinyl copy of the When It Rains It Pours LP. Of course when this album was released back in 2000, I was stuck in CD Hell and never bought this on vinyl. To this day, I'm still making up for this mistake. Marcus sent me a message about this piece of vinyl on eBay, so I had no choice but to win it.

This copy was the pre-press/winter tour version with a special cover.

Even the record labels are unique to this pressing, as they identify it as the winter tour pressing, and state that it is limited to 300.

The back cover is a nice tribute to the early Dischord stuff.

Number 78 out of 300.

The back cover states that the record was sold for $8.00. "Why pay more"? I won't. My copy cost only $5.50.