Archive for April, 2011

+44 – Lycanthrope 7″

Posted: April 26, 2011 in Vinyl

The 7″ single for “Lycanthrope” is very similar to the 7″ for “When Your Heart Stops Beating.” Both feature the band’s logo on the a-side, only in different colors, and both feature a group shot of the band on the b-side, only different photos. The 7″ for “Lycanthrope” also comes with a sticker, which the 7″ for “When Your Heart Stops Beating” does not. These two 7″s are the only ones released off of the band’s debut, and likely last album.

I finally got both of them in a bundle deal, which I love doing because not only do you save on shipping but often times the seller is willing to sell them to you cheaper because you’re buying multiple records. I don’t know how many copies of this 7″ were pressed, but the numbers are probably similar to the 7″ for “When Your Heart Stops Beating,” anywhere between 1,000-5,000 copies.

One thing of note is that +44’s full length album, When Your Heart Stops Beating, is being pressed on vinyl and will be released sometime in late May. It will only be available at Hot Topic.


+44 – When Your Heart Stops Beating 7″

Posted: April 26, 2011 in Vinyl

The 7″ single for “When Your Heart Stops Beating” was pressed as a picture disc. The a-side is the +44 logo and the b-side is a group shot of the band. Each record comes housed in a picture disc sleeve and features a sticker on the front. I do not know how many copies were pressed, but it’s probably somewhere between 1,000-5,000.

I have kept on top of Vampire Weekend’s vinyl releases pretty well but this one slipped through my fingers as it was released and I had no clue about it. It’s most likely because of its origin. I’m still not 100% sure as to which country this was meant to be released in. my local store, which has gotten in every Vampire Weekend 7″ minus their first one and now this one. After doing an ebay search to see if I could get their latest 12″ single cheaper, I stumbled across this 7″ from an overseas seller.

That seller claimed it was a French only release, which seemed odd to me at first because France is not a big player in the vinyl singles game. They are somewhat big on vinyl being in Europe, but nothing compared to the UK, Germany or The Netherlands. Another thing that seemed odd was that is what listed by a seller living in the Netherlands. A few months later more copies of this 7″ popped up on ebay but from UK sellers. At that point I have still yet to see a U.S. distro or ebay seller listing this for sale. The logical conclusion is that this 7″ is a European release, not specific to any one country, because all this time I have never seen one on the French ebay.

Finally about a month ago a U.S. seller listed one for sale, cheaper than any other seller to date. How he got copies is beyond me but he is also selling them in his independent brick and mortar store that I’ve never heard of before. After all was said and done I paid just about $10 for this 7″ including shipping, which is much less than the $25 plus some European sellers are asking for on ebay.

I do not know how many were pressed, but all copies were pressed on white vinyl (the obvious and fitting choice) and feature a remix version of “White Sky.” No download code is offered and the jacket features a matte finish as opposed to a glossy one. The jacket is also good quality and is printed on heavy stock.

I was holding off on posting about this 7″ till after I got the mail-order version of it in the mail even though I already had the Record Store day version in my hands, so here it is. The Frustrators are a bay area punk band, with their most notable member being Mike Dirnt, the bassist for Green Day. This is their first 7″, entitled Griller. Griller is also the band’s first new material in over eight years. Prior to this 7″ EP the band has released one 10″ EP and one full length. There are three variants to this 7″, two of which are getting harder and harder to track down.

Griller has a mail-order version, a Record Store Day 2011 version and a regular version. The mail-order version features a different cover than the other two version and there were only 100 copies of this variant pressed, all on clear with black swirl/smoke vinyl. The Record Store Day 2011 variant was press on red vinyl and was limited to 200 copies. The RSD version also comes in a poly sleeve with a Dr. Strange Records Record Store Day sticker on the front. The regular variant was pressed on black vinyl and was limited to 650 copies. This variant is widely available through most retail outlets. The RSD and regular variants feature the same artwork, but it is different from the artwork for the mail-order version. all copies come with the same double-sided insert however. There is also a CD version of Griller, which features entirely its own unique artwork.

Some of the finer details of the two exclusive variants need further explaining. The mail-order version was not available through mail-order only, as 50 of the 100 copies were given to the band to sell at one of their four California shows earlier this year. The 50 remaining copies that were available through mail-order were only available through Dr. Strange Records. The Record Store Day version was not widely available on RSD, it was one of a handful of regional releases. The regions this 7″ was available in was never published, but stores along the East coast, some in and around the New York City area, along with several stores in California were confirmed to get copies in. Dr. Strange Records also sold a few copies online through their webstore that became available early on Record Store Day and have since sold out. As of writing this copies of the mail-order version were still available, so don’t pay $20 or more for it on ebay as Dr. Strange is selling it for $6.90 before shipping.

The record I wanted most for this year’s Record Store Day was hands down the deluxe edition/re-press of Jimmy Eat World’s Bleed American. Aside from Static Prevails, it’s the only Jimmy Eat World album I didn’t have. Just like with Anberlin’s Cities, I snagged the last copy of this that my store got in. This deluxe edition/re-press of Bleed American was pressed as a triple LP on 140 gram black vinyl in a triple gatefold jacket.  Advertising a record as 140 gram records is pointless in my opinion.

It was pressed on two color variants, red limited to 500 copies and black limited to 1,500 copies. Red copies were a Coachella exclusive color and were only sold at the Zia Records tent at the festival over this past weekend, first being available on Record Store Day. The 1,500 black copies were made widely available throughout the rest of the country. All copies are individually numbered in gold foil stamping on the back of the jacket. I can’t speak for the red copies because I have yet to see one, but I’m pretty sure it will be the same as the black copies; each copy comes sealed in a poly bag instead of shrink-wrap, and features a Record Store Day 2011 exclusive sticker on the front along with a promo sticker in the top left corner. This pressing of Bleed American was done by ORG, the Original Recordings Group, who have made a name for themselves doing high quality re-presses of albums, most of which are unnecessary if you ask me. This is one of the few, along with the Nirvana re-presses, that I felt are necessary. The retail price of this record was $45.99, which comes out to roughly $15 per LP.

Obviously I would have preferred this be cheaper, but it’s better than paying $80 or more trying to get a copy on ebay. After opening up the record I was severely disappointed by the quality of the records. I wasn’t expecting them to be heavy weight, but I expected them to be much heavier than they are. 120 gram is typically the standard weight for records these days, and if this is supposed to be 140 gram something is way off. Most of the records I own are not as flimsy as the records in this so-called deluxe edition. I guess what they mean by deluxe edition is cramming in as many songs as possible from the Bleed American era and going all out on the jacket.

Speaking of the jacket, the quality of it is pretty good. It’s pretty sturdy but there is no actual pockets for the records like a true gatefold jacket that houses two records. They are more of  a pouch or a slip than a pocket. They are not sealed on either end and you can take the records out from either end. This is the only triple gatefold LP in my collection, so I don’t know if this is how all triple gatefold jackets are done, but I would prefer the openings for each record to be sealed on one end so they can’t slide out and around on their own free will. Other than that the printing of the artwork and liner notes is great, high gloss and full color all around. Overall the quality of the jackets outweigh the quality of the records, which is one of issues I have with ORG releases.

The biggest problem I have with ORG’s re-issues is that they seem to put more effort into and pay more attention to the jackets. It comes off as they only care about the aesthetics of records, which if you ask most record collectors or vinyl enthusiasts is their number one pet peeve; people who buy records just to have, look at, frame, never open, etc. In other words, people who buy records with no intention of ever playing them. While I do appreciate the aesthetics of records and their jackets, I do enjoy listening to them more and the main reason I buy them is to actually listen to them.

Anberlin – Cities (1st Press)

Posted: April 18, 2011 in Vinyl

I scored the one and only copy of Anberlin’s Cities that my local store got in for Record Store Day. Call it cynical, but it makes me somewhat happy that I snagged the last one of something because by the time I got in something else that was towards the top of my list of wants was already gone.

The album was pressed as a double LP on black vinyl limited to 1,000 copies. The record comes in a gatefold jacket with a matte finish. Upon opening it I was really impressed with the quality of the jacket. It also comes with an insert that has the lyrics of each song printed on one side. The other side of the insert is just the album artwork.

Many fans were frustrated that the Appendage EP was not included on the Deluxe Edition of Blue Sky Noise. Many people misunderstood that the digital download code included deluxe edition of BSN is also for the Appendage EP for that the Appendage EP is pressed on one of the actual records. How people could read that info, gather that this EP is pressed on the d-side of the record, then be pissed and whine about it when it’s not actually on it is beyond me. But from past encounters it’s always the people who are wrong who are the loudest and the first to complain.

After all that got sorted out, even though it really shouldn’t have needed to get sorted out, the Appendage EP was eventually pressed on its own. But there is still some confusion that many people still don’t have right about something Circa Survive record related and either refuse to admit it or don’t want believe what is actually happening.

The Appendage EP was first announced to be a Record Store Day 2011 exclusive with only 2,000 copies pressed on Oxblood colored vinyl. Then it was later announced that it would be sold on the band’s upcoming tour and that 3,000 copies were pressed. This is where the confusion began. Only 2,000 copies were sold on Record Store Day and another 1,000 will be sold either on tour or through the band’s webstore. Some people think there are 5,000 copies total being pressed, which is not the case; adding the first 2,000 to another 3,000 copies. Some people think 3,000 copies were sold on Record Store Day, which is also not the case.

What is the case is that a total of 3,000 copies of this EP were pressed, with 2,000 of those copies being sold on Record Store Day and the remaining 1,000 copies going to the band to sell on tour or through their webstore. The Record Store Day copies could be viewed as its own pressing entirely and the copies left over as its own pressing. The Record Store Day copies come with an RSD exclusive sticker on the front of the jacket and the other ones will not.

The Oxblood color is a shade of red, and it’s one of the more unique colors I’ve ever seen. It’s opaque and not clear and it doesn’t really match any creature’s blood at any stage of existence. But it does match the album artwork pretty well. All copies for RSD also come with an insert.