Say Anything – …Is A Real Boy 10th Anniversary Box Set (1st Press)

Posted: November 12, 2015 in Vinyl
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To mark the 10th Anniversary of Say Anything’s breakthrough album, …Is A Real Boy, Doghouse Records re-pressed the album yet again, but this time doing a box set containing four 10″ records along with a bonus 7″ of previously unreleased songs. Before the first pressing of this box set even sold out Doghouse put up a completely unnecessary second pressing. However, the first pressing was not without its problems.

The colors Doghouse announced for the first pressing and the mock ups that went along with them turned out to be completely wrong from how the finished product turned out. Doghouse didn’t even acknowledge that the colors were blatantly wrong, even after posting pictures of all the variants on social media. People’s reactions were like hot sauce; some people were slightly upset, some were mildly upset and some were livid while others could care less.

Before delving further into the color debacle, here is the pressing info for the first pressing of the box set. There were 200 copies half & half splatter, with 100 of them being available in test press bundle. Yes, Doghouse pressed 100 tests and sold all of them. The test press bundle cost $130. Noting the price for the test press bundle, you could buy that half & half splatter variant without test pressing for $65. The half & half splatter was supposed to be half white/half green w/ black splatter but came out half yellow/half green w/ green/brown/black splatter.

Next up is a variant limited 300 copies, which was supposed to be purple/white/green tri-color but came out red/white/green instead. There is a variant limited to 500 copies on color in color that was supposed to be purple/white but came out orange/white. Lastly there are 1400 copies on purple, which is the only variant to come out as intended. The purple /1400 variant cost $55 while all the other variants cost either $60 (tri-color & color in color) or $65 (splatter) simply because they were rarer. To date the only variant not to sell out is the purple.

On top of the color mix up, the records were delayed for a few months. Pre-orders went up in December 2014 with a scheduled release date in May 2015. The box sets did not start shipping until July 2015. To make matters worse Doghouse seemed to sparingly ship orders, as quite a few people had to pester Doghouse about actually shipping their order. As if more things couldn’t hit the fan; better duck and cover. When Doghouse finally did start shipping orders they discovered they oversold one of the variants (color in color /500) and offered people the least rare variant (purple /1400) as a replacement.

I never pre-ordered this for multiple reasons. First was the months-long preorder, second was a combo between the prices and how many copies were being pressed, and lastly was the fact Doghouse was shipping orders, as I know from others’ past horror stories they are hit or miss when it comes to fulfilling orders and with customer service. But when I finally ordered a copy of the purple variant in September 2015, almost one year after pre-orders first went live, I was very pleased with how the box set turned out.

The box has a glossy finish and the band’s name/logo is embossed with green foil. There is a hype sticker on the cover (box comes shrink-wrapped) indicating this box set is a “Special 10th Anniversary Box Set.” All the records inside the box come in full color, glossy dust sleeves. It’s minimal color, as only the album title, track names and Doghouse Records logo are printed on the sleeves. A full size (for a 10″ release) booklet is included, which has stories from the era in the words of Max Bemis. It highlights the recording process, where Max was as a person at the time and him reflecting on that time from today’s perspective. My only complaint is that the booklet is very short, it’s only six pages. The bonus 7″ features two songs; “But A Fleeting Illness” on the a-side and an acoustic version of “Belt” on the b-side. Both songs on the 7″ had never been released prior to this release.

As aforementioned, before the first pressing sold out Doghouse announced and put up for pre-order a second pressing. This second pressing went up for sale in early September 2015, which was before I bought my copy from the first pressing. Doghouse ordered the same colors that got screwed up from the first pressing. And they’re still charging more for the rarer variants and still ordering 100 “test pressings.” The pressing info for the second pressing is as follows: 200 copies on half white/half green w/ black splatter (cost $65, $5 more than other variants because rarest. 100 copies available in test press bundle. Test press bundle initially cost $120 but was inexplicably lowered to $100 about a week after pre-orders went up). 300 copies on transparent green w/ white marble ($60) and 400 on transparent yellow w/ “heavy” white splatter ($60).

Doghouse unfortunately still hasn’t learned their lesson with pre-orders, as they expect this second pressing to be ready to ship by November 2015. Seeing as they couldn’t ship the first pressing by the scheduled release date, which was five months away, I foresee the second pressing running into the same problems as the first pressing. Hopefully for anyone who orders a copy from the second pressing, the colors aren’t screwed up this time as well.

Below I’m including photos of the mock-ups Doghouse made and posted in their webstore, with the pictures (posted on Doghouse’s social media) of how each variant turned out next to its respective mock-up. If not obvious enough, these photos are at the end of the gallery. For information and photos of the first pressing of this record, which was pressed as a double LP, check here – Say Anything – …Is A Real Boy 2xLP (1st Press)

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