I’d been holding out for an original pressing of Digable Planet’s debut, 1993’s Reachin’ (A New Refutation of Time and Space), that was, until I discovered this limited gold vinyl 25th anniversary reissue from February of this year. As the first official vinyl reissue, this double LP is limited to 1000 copies worldwide, and doubles as an “Indie Record Store Exclusive” which is exactly where I found it. The Planets released a total of two studio albums (spanning 1993 – 1994), both of which are essential owns. Next up is 1994’s Blowout Comb, which I’m hoping will get the same 25th anniversary treatment next year.
Well, a very, very bad mistake can now be put to rest, thanks to my wife (thank you!). You see, I’d stupidly passed up a chance to acquire the limited, aqua blue double vinyl release of Old 97’s classic, Too Far to Care. Little did I know that the next opportunity, and the only other opportunity (for nearly 5 years) would price this album 3x – 4x higher than that copy I’d originally put back on the shelf (for shame!). Missed opportunities die a slow and painful death in the life of a record collector, as you well know, so I’m grateful to finally put this one into the ground.
Leave it to Mondo. Am I right?! At the end of May they reissued the 2 LP soundtrack to John Williams’ Jurassic Park. This 180g yellow and red swirl with black splatter color variant showed up on their site for about a day, and is now no longer available. Preowned copies are up on Discogs for $79 to $199.99, so I’m glad I ignored my hesitation and nabbed this gem when I did. Nobody beats John Williams. Nobody.
That’s the official vinyl color for this recent pressing (May 25th) of Odessey and Oracle by British chaps, The Zombies. Technicolour Explosion. (Yet) another Newbury Comics exclusive (limited to 1000 copies), this gorgeous reissue feels like 180 gram vinyl, though this perk isn’t noted anywhere in the item’s description. This is now our third version of this essential album, with (at least) one more to come… the US alt cover reissue from 1969.
It surprises and kinda weirds me out that this double LP of Deltron 3030 Instrumantals is still available from Newbury Comics. Limited to a staggering 300 copies, this 12-track giant strips out Deltron while preserving Dan the Automator and Kid Koala’s legendary foundation. If you have half a mind, are in to amazing conscious hip hop, and have $24 in your pocket or bank account… GET THIS ALBUM!
It was a Front 242 type of morning, as you can clearly see. I’d all but forgotten about all the groovy goodies inside the 2016 release from Alfa Matrix titled, <Filtered> Pulse. The gold record is limited to 242 pressings, and included is a nifty poster, a postcard type thing, and the 9-track CD of the record. For a solid (gold) EBM fix, look no further than <Filtered> Pulse (also available on clear & solid purple, solid yellow & black, and solid purple colored vinyl. All colors limited to only 242 pressings.)
The Promise Ring’s debut album, 1996’s 30° Everywhere is, was, and will forever be the soundtrack to dark and dreary winter evenings in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Originally released on Jade Tree Records in a variety of colors (blue, grey, red, white, yellow…), this 12-track opus is considered an integral part of emo’s second wave. Most scoff at the term emo, and they’re not necessarily wrong, as the term has ballooned into absurd and embarrassing proportions, but this album, this band, at that time… well, there was little better.
Ministry’s 2001 greatest hits album (appropriately titled Greatest Fits) received its first vinyl release via means of Run Out Groove last month. Double, colored, 180g vinyl, this 13-track monster is considered the only vinyl pressing to include the band’s contribution to Steven Spielberg’s A.I. film, What About Us?. Over the past several months we’ve seen Ministry do a fantastic job of releasing limited, and very often first-time albums on vinyl. Certainly, nobody is complaining here.
Man, I need to catch up on my spins. For their 24th studio album, The Kinks released Phobia. A 17-track diddy that would prove to be the band’s last studio effort. For Record Store Day this year, a double LP of Phobia was released on this fancy orange swirl colored wax. What’s better than The Kinks participating in RSD is that Phobia was only previously released on vinyl in Spain upon its original release back in 1993, and with copies going in the $800 range, this beautiful reissue was a no-brainer.
Harry Nilsson’s 1974 collaboration with John Lennon falls a bit short from misguided expectations, but is still a necessary inclusion to any collection focusing on pop music history. Pussy Cats was hyped as having been recorded during Lennon’s 18-month “Lost Weekend,” a period he’d spend in the early 70’s apart from Yoko. Nilsson’s broken voice and (obviously) medicinally-influenced demeanor are something to note in this gluttonous series of 10 tracks. Buy it not expecting much, and you’ll be pleasantly surprised. This 2018 RSD release on hardwood vinyl is limited to 1500 copies. Enjoy.
Finally… the much anticipated Moosebumps has arrived. Limited to 1000 copies on clear w/ blood splatter colored vinyl, this Dr. Octagon website exclusive comes with a unique cover in addition to the exclusive vinyl color. Moosebumps is the first time that DJ Qbert, Dan the Automator, and Kool Keith would collaborate as the mighty Dr. Octagon since 1996 with their debut, Dr. Octagonecologyst. An instant classic, this sci-fi hip hop trio does not disappoint, given the 22 year gap, and Moosebumps is a necessary addition to any collection with room for the extreme. There’s also a hemoglobin red exclusive still available out of Newbury Comics, for those interested.
Bay area ska-punksters Link 80 were huge among my inner circle back in the late 90s thanks, in large part, to their inclusion on Asian Man Records’ 1998 compilation, Mailorder is Fun!. If you’re in the mood for upbeat skacore with a punk attitude, look no further than Link 80, and for the love of everything holy, get your hands on Mailorder is Fun!. 29 tracks of pure, late 90s ska-punk bliss!
If you can get past the nearly unavoidable reflection of the photographer, you’ll notice that you’re looking at two versions of Duck and Cover by Solvang’s reggae-ska-punks, Mad Caddies. The first release, you’ll want to look to the record on your left, is the standard black vinyl release, the first pressing, from way back in 1998. Until 2011, this was the only version available for pure, listening pleasure. That’s where the record on the right comes in. Limited to a slim 199 pressings, this splatter green vinyl is the second of only two pressings of this essential album, and today, fetches from a cool $70, to a whopping $189.99 on Discogs. My advice, check Fat Wreck Chords early, and often.
I’ll admit that I didn’t think much of Beach House’s Devotion when I first heard it back in ’07, but I will say, without any hesitation, that I strongly stand behind their choice of colored wax. Featured here is the Vinyl Me, Please 10th anniversary edition. I’m hopeful that time has been kind to this album, but I guess we’ll see.
The Beatles Christmas Album, bootleg or otherwise, is more of an historical artifact than a single, cohesive “album.” Originally released on 7″ flexi-discs to fan club members from 1963 – 1969, this 7-track collage of voice and (minor) song should be taken with a grain of salt, and although it rightfully deserves an assigned slot between Abbey Road and Hey Jude (Let it Be is organized by recorded date, not release date), it comes across as more of a contractual obligation record, but is still well worth the price of admission. Spin with an open mind… a practice you should always adhere to.
As a follow-up to “yesterday’s” post, Wildflower is the second (of two) albums by sample-maniacs The Avalanches. Receiving its worldwide birth in July of 2016, singles from the album include Frank Sinatra, Colours, and Subways. This isn’t your mother’s electro hip-hop, but if you’ve had any eyes, ears, fingers, or tongues outside of standard radio garbage for the past (nearly) two decades, you’re already well aware of this group’s global influence, and can easily understand how essential this good-time Charlie band has been.
Oh, the subtle luxury of the limited colored vinyl reissue. This time around it’s the “legendary” debut album by Australia’s The Avalanches. Since I Left You was originally released, mainly in Australia, back in 2000 (with copies going for well over the $350 mark), so the frugal side of me held out for this 2017 translucent blue double LP reissue. Hype sticker on the front quotes Pitchfork as saying, “Quite possibly the best sample record ever made” and though I’m partial to Paul’s Boutique, they may not be wrong.