Posts Tagged ‘Soundtrack’


Collecting records can lead you down some strange roads. I never thought I would buy the soundtrack to a movie about a guy stranded on a desert island finding a dead body (played by Harry Potter), befriending it ala Tom Hanks with Wilson in Cast Away, and riding it around like a jet ski that is propelled by farts. But here we are, with that record added to my collection and you reading about it.

The soundtrack to the film Swiss Army Man was composed by Andy Hull and Robert McDowell of Manchester Orchestra fame. Harry Potter (Daniel Radcliffe) even contributes vocals to some songs. It was released by Iam8bit in conjunction with A24 under license from Lakeshore Records. This is the first Iam8bit release I own, and I have to say I’m impressed. Iam8bit is a niche label that specializes in video game products and has a bit of a cult following like Mondo, Waxwork or Spacelab9.  And following in line with those labels, they overcharge for their releases. This single LP cost $28 before shipping directly from Iam8bit. I was able to buy this from Amoeba for $25 with free shipping, plus I was able to use their monthly 15% off coupon to get it for a little over $21. I always found it ridiculous that some labels charge more than physical record stores and other distros.

The soundtrack may or may not have gone through a second pressing. I know for a fact that the label was sold out of the soundtrack for a brief period, then it was suddenly available for purchase again. Which indicates they had to press more copies. The pressing info has never been released, and as of posting this Iam8bit has never responded to my efforts to find out the pressing info. What I do know is that at the very least, all copies of the first pressing (if there are multiple pressings) were pressed on “ocean” colored 180 gram vinyl. The “ocean” color is simply opaque blue with white marble, which I included a photo of.

Another indication that there may be a second pressing is that Iam8bit’s website used to have “ocean” blue copies for sale, but now they just list it as 180 gram vinyl with no color given. Also, keep in mind mock ups aren’t final and do change, the original mock up Iam8bit released had the color listed as translucent “ocean” colored vinyl. But I doubt they changed the color from translucent to opaque for a re-pressing. For what it’s worth, the hype sticker on my copy (pictured below) simply says 180 gram vinyl; no color is mentioned. I’m still waiting for a response back from the label about this.

All copies also come housed in a gatefold jacket with a printed dust sleeve and an insert of sorts. This insert is comprised of cut out/punch out paper doll characters and props that are meant to be used on the diorama, with the diorama being what I’m assuming is the inside of the gatefold jacket. The artwork was done by Mark Englert. No download card/code is included with physical copies, but if you order directly from Iam8bit they will email you a download code. Ridiculous that a label charging $28 for a single LP can’t pay for download cards.

Regarding the price of this record, some people have foolishly paid over $50 for it on the secondary market. Don’t be one of those idiots. As aforementioned, the label is selling these for $28 plus $5 shipping. Save yourself money.

 


Once again I decided to camp out for Record Store Day (RSD), getting to my store 8 ½ hours ahead of opening. I know I said on Twitter that I likely wouldn’t bother with RSD this year, but things changed obviously. That thing was adding more and more things to my list, which ending the debate of do I want to go out for the one thing I know I won’t be able to find online for retail price. I’d rather not spend $30 on something if it means the only thing being sacrificed is a good night’s sleep. If you think I’m crazy for waiting that line and getting to a store that early, keep reading. But I do sleep for at least 2-3 hours of that wait time. If you want to skip this column-esque story, skip ahead five paragraphs for the start of the write up on this particular RSD release.

To lay the ground work for RSD this year, I actually had fun the past two years (2016 & 2017) waiting in line, which makes the time go by faster. That was not the case every other year, and I’ve been attending RSD since its inception in 2008. I had some cool people to talk to these past two years, which rarely, if ever happened every other year for RSD. I’m talkative person, it’s the other people who either can’t or refuse to hold a conversation for whatever reason. The past two years I was next to the same group of people actually. You see, at my local store, the same groups of people show up around the same time every year, especially the diehards. I’m talking about the real early birds, the people who get there 7+ hours ahead of opening. And at my store you have to show up by 4 am (for an 8 am opening) in order to have a serious chance of getting what you want. Otherwise you’re like 150+ in line and will spend around 2 hours (after opening) just waiting to get in and get checked out. It’s a popular store in a highly populated area.

For those curious about what store I go to, I never mention it because I want to maintain some privacy for myself. I don’t want people knowing where I live. It’s not a matter of turning people onto the store and having more people show up. Trust me, this store is well know and one of the most popular stores in the region. It draws people from four different states for RSD, and there are no shortages of record stores in the area either.

The only thing that changed in the 10 years RSD has been happening is how early I have to line up in order to get everything I want, or at the very least the few things I would have a hard time tracking down for a decent price online. I used to get to my store around 5 am, and got everything I wanted with no problem. But ever since 2015 the line has gotten out of control. I used to be no more than 20th in line with a 5 am arrival from 2009-2014, but I learned my lesson in 2015 after getting there at 2 am (thinking that additional 3 hours would be enough to compensate for the Deja Entendu release) and being like 50th in line, resulting in missing out on stuff I wanted for the first time ever. And I mean for the first time ever. Prior to that year I never missed out on a single thing on my list.

Ever since then my goal was to get there by midnight, and it’s worked. And I’ve had more fun in line than ever. People bring beer, people are more talkative, offer to get food and coffee for people and are just more helpful and nicer in general. I think a lot people are immediately grumpy when they get there later in the morning and come to the dreaded realization of how long the line actually is. The line can be a bit deceiving because it wraps around the building/strip mall. Lots of people see what they think is the end of the line at the end of the building/strip mall, only to walk over and discover it keeps going. I’ve heard plenty of obscenities being yelled at 5 and 6 am, some from like a hundred feet away.

That one thing mentioned above was the Thrice 7”. That is what drew me out for RSD, but I also picked up a bunch of other things rather than deal with paying for shipping and the potential for damage during shipping. The Pineapple Express Soundtrack was one of the other releases. But I debated buying the soundtrack due to it price; $35. Thankfully my store has a rewards program where if you spend a certain amount of money (accumulation tally) you get a $10 rewards credit. So I used that rewards credit to get the soundtrack for $25, a much easier price to swallow.

Considering I only wanted this soundtrack for the Huey Lewis And The News song, yes I’m nuts, the $35 price tag was even more ridiculous. To illustrate how ridiculous that suggested retail price was, there was a store selling copies of this soundtrack for $25 (before shipping) on Discogs. So odds are this soundtrack won’t be able to be given away, which makes me even crazier for buying. To be honest, I debated buying it as far as the point where I was walking in the door of my local store. Ultimately the deciding factor was regret of missing out on it due to it being one of the more limited releases I was interested in.

The Pineapple Express Soundtrack was pressed as a double LP limited to 1,800 copies, with all copies pressed on “Green Grass Marble.”’ The records do actually look like weed, which you can judge for yourself after looking at the photo gallery below. Typically I only photograph the a-side and c-side (if it’s a double LP), but with this record I opted to do the a-side and d-sides instead. The a-side and c-side labels are the same, save for the track listing, and the b-side and d-side labels are the same with the artwork. There are two hype stickers, both affixed to the top right corner. One sticker indicates the color of the records while the other is a RSD release sticker, but not one of those silver foil stickers though. That seems to be big this year; using a RSD release sticker but not the official silver foil RSD sticker.

The aforementioned Huey Lewis And The News song is the theme song for the movie, an original song Huey Lewis wrote for the film simply titled “Pineapple Express.” He is no stranger for writing songs for movies, and was embroiled in an infamous lawsuit over one. Other artists on the soundtrack included Cypress Hill, Mountain, Public Enemy, Bone Thugs-N-Harmony and Peter Tosh.

No download card is included, which is unacceptable these days. The double LP release does not come in a gatefold jacket, just one of those cheap, flimsy oversized LP jackets. An insert is included, but it’s not full size. So basically, the label cut all corners on this release and made it as cheap as possible while charging beyond top dollar for it. Typical RSD BS.

 


In 2016 the entire six part Star Wars scores/soundtracks were re-pressed or pressed (obviously depending on whether or not they were released yet) in a box set. Most if not all of the scores/soundtracks were released outside of the box set and available for purchase as stand alone records. The first trilogy of films was pressed on 180 gram gold vinyl, with replicated packaging from the original RSO Records or 20th Century Records pressing.

The third installment of the trilogy; Return Of The Jedi, has some major deviances from the “replicated original packaging,” as the insert/booklet is not included. I doubt it’s just my copy that showed up without that has production stills from the film printed on it. Other than that the gatefold artwork and cover art are faithfully re-created.

The audio was “restored” from the original masters. So in other, more proper words, the audio was re-mastered from the original masters. Despite that some people are complaining about the sound quality of this re-press. I found hardly any flaws with it, as do most people. It doesn’t sound perfect, but that shouldn’t scare you from buying it if you want a new copy instead of playing Russian roulette with a used copy that may come with lots of scratches and a horribly worn jacket. To sum up people’s complaints about the sound quality, one of the biggest complainers used the term “vinyls.” So that should be enough evidence for people to throw away that person’s opinion.

All of the re-pressings of the original trilogy are European pressings. But at the time Return Of The Jedi was released in August 2016, Barnes & Noble (B&N) falsely advertised that they were the exclusive retailers of the records on gold vinyl. They’re not even the only U.S. retailer to carry these re-pressings. B&N even created a fake holiday; “Vinyl Day,” to capitalize on the surging vinyl sales, with this Return Of The Jedi re-press being part of the “Vinyl Day” celebration. Basically the only things that sets apart this fake B&N exclusive from the legitimate European release are the barcode numbers and a white square hype sticker on the cover that falsely advertises the record as a “Barnes & Noble exclusive.”

Pressing info has not, and likely never will be released. But these scores/soundtracks are becoming harder to find, especially The Empire Strikes Back. Many distros no longer have copies of the second score/soundtrack for sale at all, or have them on back-order. Return Of The Jedi is following quickly on its predecessor’s heals though. Retail on Return Of The Jedi is around $25 because it’s a single LP, but retail on Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back is around $30 because they’re double LP’s. I would advise trying to find copies of The Empire Strikes Back and Return Of The Jedi sooner rather than later. If you’re waiting for a sale don’t. If you’re waiting for a better 20% or 25% off sale instead of a 15% off sale; don’t. You likely won’t be able to find a copy if you play that game.


In 2016 the entire six part Star Wars scores/soundtracks were re-pressed or pressed (obviously depending on whether or not they were released prior) in a box set. Most if not all of the scores/soundtracks were released outside of the box set and available for purchase as standalone records. The first trilogy of films was pressed on 180 gram gold vinyl, with “replicated packaging” from the original 20th Century Records or RSO Records pressing.

The first installment in the Star Wars trilogy has some major deviances from the “replicated original packaging,” as the insert/booklet and fold out poster are not included. I doubt it’s just my copy that showed up without that stuff. Other than that the gatefold artwork, cover art and center labels are faithfully re-created.

The audio was “restored” from the original masters. So in other, more proper words, the audio was re-mastered from the original masters. Despite that some people are complaining about the sound quality of this re-press.  Some people are claiming it’s an off center pressing, resulting in hissing in the right channel. I did not run into this problem, but some people are reporting that they exchanged their copy and received a better sounding one. Of course you can’t take everyone’s complaints seriously when the label doesn’t come out and admit there is a problem or it’s defective pressing. Accepting returns/exchanges does not mean a label admits there is a problem.

All of the re-pressings of the original trilogy are European pressings. But at the time Star Wars was released in June 2016, Barnes & Noble (B&N) falsely advertised that they were the exclusive retailers of the records on gold vinyl. They’re not even the only U.S. retailer to carry these re-pressings. Basically the only things that sets apart this fake B&N exclusive from the legitimate European release are the barcode numbers and a white square hype sticker on the cover that falsely advertises the record as a “Barnes & Noble exclusive.”

Pressing info has not, and likely never will be released. But these scores/soundtracks are becoming harder to find, especially The Empire Strikes Back. Many distros no longer have copies of the second score/soundtrack for sale at all, or have them on back-order. Return Of The Jedi is following quickly on its predecessor’s heals though. Retail on Return Of The Jedi is around $25 because it’s a single LP, but retail on Star Wars and The Empire Strikes Back is around $30 because they’re double LP’s. I would advise trying to find copies of The Empire Strikes Back and Return Of The Jedi sooner rather than later. If you’re waiting for a sale don’t. If you’re waiting for a better 20% or 25% off sale instead of a 15% off sale; don’t. You likely won’t be able to find a copy if you play that game.


With the popularity of vinyl, you sometimes get re-pressing that are long overdue and releases getting pressed on the vinyl for the first time that are long overdue. What you can’t control unfortunately is how they’re pressed. The Beavis And Butt-Head Do America Soundtrack was finally released on vinyl in 2016, but sadly as a picture disc.

My bigger complaint about this is that it falls into the cash grab category, capitalizing on two trends; picture discs and soundtracks. Lately the two go hand-in-hand, but that never used to be the case.  First it was the soundtrack craze, with labels cashing in on multiple facets of consumer culture; nostalgia, collectors and trendiness. There are film nuts and score/soundtrack nuts who will collect anything related to a film they like, and then there are people who don’t like the film, or haven’t even actually seen it, who still collect soundtracks/scores because they like the music. There will always be those who buy things for nostalgia’s sake, which sadly is a strong selling point with records these days. And it leads to things like picture discs, $35 single LP’s and stuff like My Little Pony and the Forest Gump Soundtrack clogging up pressing plants.

This soundtrack comes in a picture disc sleeve with a hype sticker affixed to the bottom right corner, with the sleeve having one of those re-sealable flaps. No idea on pressing info, and it will likely never be released because this is a major label release. No download card/code is included, which isn’t a huge shocker. The soundtrack was released for the film’s 20th Anniversary, which is noted on the hype sticker.

Circling back to the mention of $35 single LP’s, when this record first came out in April 2016, that was the price for it; $35. And it’s why I held off on buying this for almost one year after its release. It took that long for me to find it within the price threshold I wanted to spend. Prices have been steadily falling on this record though, just not fast/far enough. The price slashing has seemed to stall around $21. But considering original pressings were going for

The reason I wanted this comp is for the Red Hot Chili Peppers and No Doubt songs. The Chili Peppers contribute a cover of Ohio Players’ “Love Rollercoaster” and No Doubt has a song from their often overlooked The Beacon Street Collection; “Snakes.” Aside from those two bands, this comp features other big bands like Ozzy Osbourne, White Zombie, Isaac Hayes, LL Cool J and AC/DC.

This Beavis And Butt-Head picture disc does sound better than the Beavis And Butt-head Experience picture disc. There were some complaints with the sound quality of The Beavis And Butt-Head Experience picture disc.


With the popularity of vinyl, you sometimes get re-pressing that are long overdue and releases getting pressed on the vinyl for the first time that are long overdue. Some that are not even really necessary. What you can’t control unfortunately is how they’re pressed. The American Pie Soundtrack was released on vinyl in 2015, but sadly as a picture disc. Though no one would argue against it being pressed as a traditional record (on any color) in a traditional jacket with inserts and maybe even a download card/code.

My bigger complaint about this is that it falls into the cash grab category, capitalizing on two trends; picture discs and soundtracks. Lately the two go hand-in-hand, but that never used to be the case.  First it was the soundtrack craze, with labels cashing in on multiple facets of consumer culture; nostalgia, collectors and trendiness. There are film nuts and score/soundtrack nuts who will collect anything related to a film they like, and then there are people who don’t like the film, or haven’t even actually seen it, who still collect soundtracks/scores because they like the music. There will always be those who buy things for nostalgia’s sake, which sadly is a strong selling point with records these days. And it leads to things like picture discs, $35 single LP’s and stuff like My Little Pony and the Forest Gump Soundtrack clogging up pressing plants.

This soundtrack comes in a picture disc sleeve with a hype sticker affixed to the bottom right corner, with the sleeve having one of those re-sealable flaps. No idea on pressing info, and it will likely never be released because this is a major label release. No download card/code is included, which isn’t a huge shocker.

Circling back to the mention of $35 single LP’s, when this record first came out in September 2015, that was the price for it; $35. And it’s why I held off on buying this for almost two years after its release. It took that long for me to find it within the price threshold I wanted to spend. I paid $17 shipped for this, which I’m comfortable with because this record is actually becoming harder to find via traditional means. But of course places like ebay and Discogs will always have copies, but those sellers rarely, if ever, lower their prices.

The reason I wanted this soundtrack is for the Blink-182 and Third Eye Blind songs. Blink-182 contributes “Mutt” off Enema Of The State and Third Eye Blind offers up “New Girl” off Blue. If you went to high school when American Pie came out, or even recently graduated, you undoubtedly love the movie, at least the first one. Personally I feel like the choice of using Blink’s “’Mutt” for the scene where Jim runs from his house to Kevin’s house to watch Nadia change, and then picking the song back up again as Jim runs back home to “score” with Nadia, really added something to the scene. It at least made it more memorable for me, hence why I’m able to recall it with such ease.


If there is one band out there that will always generate interest it’s Nirvana. People go crazy for almost anything related to the band when it gets pressed on vinyl, including myself. I have more than my fair share of Nirvana bootlegs, so much so that I have live performances that overlap onto other bootlegs I’ve bought. I’ve even foolishly bought the same exact bootleg, only under a different title. I’m a bit more careful now, as I have photos of every bootleg I have to check the track listings. So when it was announced that a Kurt Cobain documentary was being worked on, what some people were calling the definitive biopic, and that an accompanying soundtrack would be released, many people were exited, myself included of course.

Montage Of Heck is the title of the documentary and corresponding soundtrack. The soundtrack is comprised of never before heard demos, outtakes, covers and various other early recordings Kurt Cobain recorded over his lifespan. Some of the songs are Cobain just tooling around and predate Nirvana, while others were written intended to be Nirvana songs. After listening to the soundtrack it is a bit of a letdown however. There is nothing earth shattering on it, and some of the songs have made the rounds online through Nirvana collector circles. If you’re like me and are a huge Nirvana fan/nerd and want to hear everything the band or Kurt Cobain has done, you’ve heard the demo version of “Sappy” and “Been A Son” before. This is just the first official release they’ve seen the light of day on.

There have been many complaints about the sound quality of this soundtrack. And all those complaints are unfounded. It’s nothing to do with the pressing, it being on vinyl, the mastering, etc. Some of these songs were literally recorded into a hand held tape recorder Kurt set up. So the source audio was far from worthy of being mass produced and released to the public. But with that said, the soundtrack itself is not worth buying for the casual fan. You should only buy this, on any format, only if you’re a diehard fan or completist. And you should definitely not buy this for full retail price.

Retail price on this soundtrack is $35. For that money you get a double LP pressed on black 180 gram vinyl, a gatefold jacket, insert and download card. Despite what the hype sticker says; “320 kbps MP3s,” that is not what you get via the download card. The download cards yields WAV files. A nice touch for the price, but useless files for most people. You can’t play WAV files in iTunes, they have o be converted to MP3. And since there are 31 tracks on this soundtrack, the file is well over 1 gig in size.

The soundtrack for Montage Of Heck was released over one year ago (December 11, 2015) as of posting this. And prices are still not coming down enough. Many distros are still charging way too much for this. Some are still charging full retail. Your best bet to find this soundtrack on the “cheap” are places like ebay or discogs. Prices on the secondary market have dropped significantly; to around $15. That is more than 50% off. While a deal can be had there, distros are marking this down to $30, or $25, in a pathetic effort to move old stock. I bought this soundtrack, brand new, for $10 shipped on ebay.

Pressing info has never been released, and never expect it to be because it’s a major label release.