Panic! At The Disco’s latest album, Too Weird To Live, To0 Rare To Die! was released in 2013. There were two variants for for the first pressing, one being a Hot Topic exclusive and the other widely available on black vinyl. The Hot Topic color was red/white/blue splatter and was limited to 1,000 copies. Hot Topic charged an outrageous price for the record compared to other retailers, $22 before shipping , obviously only $22 plus tax if you bought in a store. Other places were charging around $15, which is why I decided to get it on black vinyl rather than paying more for a rarer variant and giving my money to a company I hate. Unfortunately I have to buy records from Hot Topic from time to time because they are the only ones who have it, but I try not to buy from them whenever possible after the stunts they pulled not too long ago with records.
Each copy comes with a download code, which has an expiration date. Yes, an expiration date, and one that expires too soon after the album’s release date. The code in my record expired in mid December 2013. I’ve seen expiration dates with download codes/cards before, but it’s usually a few years after the album or record’s release date. Considering the album came out in October and the code expires in December of the same year, that’s insanity. I would hope the label would put new codes in the records as they are getting pressed, but it’s highly likely many people will not get to use the download codes that came with their copy of the record because it’s expired. I’m sure the label pressed up a huge batch of this album at one time, probably 3000-5000 copies, and all those copies did not sell before the end of 2013.
Apparently sometime in 2016 this was unnecessarily re-pressed as a cash grab, getting another $hit Topic exclusive variant (clear w/ red, yellow and blue splatter). Considering the record is still widely available on black vinyl, with some indie record stores even selling used copies for $10, this new pressing is clearly a cash grab. It’s also a bit puzzling because at the time it was released $hit Topic was starting to greatly scale back their vinyl endeavors. They were phasing out vinyl from physical stores, by no longer sending records to physical stores to sell and going as far as putting whatever remaining records were in stores on clearance for insanely low prices. To this day (late February 2017) my closest $hit Topic still has records on clearance for like $3, and of course they are in horrible condition (no shrink wrapped, horrible bent corners (well past the point of corner dings), writing on them and any records with white covers are dirty and/or stained), jammed into a cardboard box on the floor. My closest $hit Topic actually started out having their vinyl section unalphabetized in milk cartons on the floor, then graduated to alphabetizing them in somewhat proper shelving, then devolved back into not caring and putting them back on the floor in a jumbled mess. But this time sinking lower and putting them in a crappy cardboard box with one side cut out.