Sonntag, 21. April 2019

whitechapel - the valley

end of april and finally i am able to write about my first new release of 2019, whitechapel's seventh full length release called "the valley". i don't get overly excited over a new album of the band anymore, still i buy them religiously because i know it is worth it. i ordered this record at some point in late 2018 at emp mailorder.
do not ask me why pre-orders started so early. release date was 29th of march this year, so it was round about five months of waiting. longest official pre-order process i can remember. anyway, of course i opted for the most limited colour-way on orange and purple marble vinyl. well, the outcome looks not as exciting as the description sounds.
the vinyl colour came out as some sort of clear burnt orange which is nice in its own right but i expected more of the purple to come through. whatever, who cares what i expected? of greater interest is the musical part of this release. next to their typical technical modern death metal sound, they gave more space to the more melodic side. clean vocals are more prominent. even though i prefer the first three records, i do enjoy "the valley".
mainly because the lyrical part is very interesting here. vocalist phil bozeman wrote about his difficult youth with his mother suffering from schizophrenia. very intimate and interesting stuff. the artwork is something pretty different in comparison to the bands other records, very cinematically. i like it more the more often i look at it. 100 copies made. i have #35. metal blade. 2019.

Freitag, 19. April 2019

atheist - unquestionable presence

this is post #1.000 on this blog. wow, never thought i would keep the blog going for that long. it's still fun to write about my passion, it makes me curious where the journey will take me. we will see. for now, this post is about a new and nice re-press of atheist's second full length "unquestionable presence" on season of mist records.
this album was originally released in 1991 and the only atheist record that was missing in my collection but i didn't stress out to get a copy. as french label season of mist did a few re-pressings for it already, i knew that further pressings  were just a question of time. so when the high roller records shop from germany announced pre-orders for a blue vinyl variant, i was there for the taking.
musically this is just the raging complexity and love for detailed arrangements i knew from the follow-up "elements". the album is not widely regarded as their finest moment for nothing. atheist in their prime. not to be missed by any fan of proggy metal. this latest pressing comes on clear blue vinyl cut at 45rpm and is out of 350 copies. season of mist records. 2019

Donnerstag, 18. April 2019

obscura - omnivium (splatter re-press)

i usually do not buy multiple pressings of one and the same record. i am happy with one copy for the collection and rather burn my money for a bigger range of albums than for a bigger range of colour-ways. for some selected records and/or bands i love to make exceptions. one of those special bands is definitely obscura.
when relapse records announced the re-pressing of the first three obscura full length releases, i walked away with "retribution" only, because i already had first pressings of "cosmogenesis" and "omnivium". when the first pictures of the "omnivium" re-press surfaced on the net, i was really intrigued with the look of the yellow blob of this splatter pressing. it looks so melted and irregular that i kind of wanted a copy.
at the time relapse had sold out on all of their copies. thankfully the band had a bunch of them to offer via their webshop and i got one for my birthday. i went to see them play live in hamburg in last february together with fallujah and boy, they have been great. they had copies with them but i was already covered. 250 copies pressed of this beauty. relapse records. 2011/2019.

Montag, 15. April 2019

meshuggah - koloss

the last record of the nuclear blast meshugah re-issue is their full length studio album from 2012 "koloss". this one completes my studio album collection of the band and i could not be happier. when i obtained "the violent sleep of reason" in late 2016 (it baffles my mind that this is already over two and a half years ago), i wondered how long it may take to get the remaining records on vinyl.
it seemed like an impossible target because at the time most of the records had very few pressings and thus prices were enormous. even though i would have wished for the original cover artworks, i am pleased that nuclear blast made these records available again. especially this version of "koloss" is top notch, probably my favourite of the haul.
not only the layout of the gatefold sleeve is the closest to the original pressings (same cover artwork, different inner gatefold and back) but the actual vinyl is so lovely. in the pre-order process i was a bit disappointed because the mock-ups looked just like the marble variant i have for "destroy erase improve".
but when i held the actual vinyl in hands i discovered the gold in the mix as well as some different coloured streaks like green. a real beauty in my eyes. this is what they call vinyl porn, i guess. musically "koloss" is a masterpiece, i can think of no other word to describe it. 300 copies pressed. nuclear blast. 2012/2019.

Samstag, 13. April 2019

meshuggah - obzen

the sixth studio album of meshuggah called "obzen" was originally released in 2008 via nuclear blast and was one of the few pre-2010 meshuggah releases that saw an initial vinyl pressing. back on black pressed a grey double lp set for the european market and the american nuclear blast off-shoot pressed a clear red double lp set for the north american market. understandably over ten years after release date those copies now cost quite some pennies.
another proof that this re-issue series by nuclear blast was long overdue. in this case the new artwork looks pretty good, maybe even better than the original. i snagged the most limited edition of the european run. a nice white with red splatter version. funnily the b- and d-side are almost none splattered. just one or two spots. amittedly the u.s.-version looks a bit nicer with its pink and oxblood merge pattern. anyway, love this edition limited to 300 copies. nuclear blast. 2019.

Mittwoch, 10. April 2019

meshuggah - catch thirtythree

next up in the meshuggah re-issue series is the band's fifth full length from 2005 going by the name "catch thirtythree". it was the only record of the haul that was delivered with a huge corner ding. as none of the other records were damaged and even the cardboard mailer didn't show any sign of bad delivery, the record must have been damaged before it was packed.
things like this can happen but i feared that i had to return the record to get a new one. so what's the problem? well, the limited colour way was already sold out in pre-order stage, so there was no way the label could send me another copy of the marble pressing. that is why i asked if they had spare sleeves and thank god, it was no problem to send me an unharmed gatefold cover as replacement.
of all the re-imagined cover artworks, this is the one i like the least. the original one is not much of a looker as well but still way better than the new art. furthermore i was a bit disappointed that nb chose the same colour way as they did for the "chaosphere" re-issue. lame idea... anyway, the album is a cracker indeed and i feel lucky to have this beast on vinyl after all. 300 copies pressed. nuclear blast. 2019.

Montag, 8. April 2019

meshuggah - nothing

when the second batch of meshuggah re-issues rolled in for pre-order, it was out of the question that i wanted them all. i put in a massive order at nuclear blast and they were kind enough to send me the already available "none" e.p. a bit earlier. two weeks later the box with the four remaining records was delivered to my house and i happily unwrapped the goods. the first of the pile was "nothing" from 2002.
back then nuclear blast didn't feel the urge to produce a vinyl version of the album. it took five years before the metal world world was to receive "nothing" in the ultimate format. infamous italian label night of the vinyl dead pressed a run of 333 copies, all on black vinyl. i don't have to mention that copies fetched insane prices on second hand markets by now. seventeen years after its initial release, nuclear blast finally crafted a re-issue.
the re-imagined artwork is pretty cool this time. still, i think the original looks better but i like the new one almost as much. the vinyl colour pattern is great as well and works really good with the art. the inside gatefold is made in the fashion as all the re-issues are, pictures of the respective times, arranged in this special way. 300 copies made, sounding and looking great. nuclear blast. 2019.

Sonntag, 7. April 2019

jeff rosenstock - post- (tape)

since i really fell in love with rosenstock's second full length "we cool?" and was also able to add the superb "worry." to the collection, i had to make a serious move towards his latest effort "post-" from 2018. the record was released on first of january of the bygone year, so when i began looking for it, it was already over one year old and therefore all fancy colour vinyl was sold out at the german distros.
so when i was browsing the rev hq tape section, i was delighted to see that they still had the cassette version in stock. so via coretex records from berlin i was able to order that album without ugly oversea shipping rates. the tape looks lovely. a silver-lined clear blue shell and a nice j-card with all lyrics and production credits on the inside. musically you won't be disappointed if you liked the predecessors. melodic and snotty indie punk rock with fantastic lyrics. polyvinyl records. 2018.

Dienstag, 2. April 2019

terror - total retaliation (tape)

i probably said it before and still my interest in new hardcore stuff is, let's say limited. i don't care much for new albums of old bands and even less for new albums of new bands. usually the only thing that awakens my interest are re-pressings of old stuff which i still need for the collection. same problem with the latest terror record. to me their fifth full length "keepers of the faith was their musical climax. the successors "live by the code" and "the twenty fifth hour" are good blasts of hardcore but couldn't come close and thus didn't get much play time on my turntable in the past.
so when their 2018 record "total retaliation" was announced and ready for pre-order, i shrugged my shoulders and moved on. fast forward a few months and i was in search for a tape of an album i will write about in the next post. the best way for to get it with reasonable shipping costs, was to use the rev hq service from coretex records from berlin and order stuff from the revelation webshop through this fine record store.
browsing through the tape section of rev, i came across the cassette version of terror's new album. the price was the half of the vinyl version and so i thought it was a good idea to add it to the order. i don't regret that move at all. "total retaliation" is another proof that old hardcore dudes don't lose a bit of their fury with advancing age. we'll see if it stands the test of time and gets more air time than the last two records. i read somewhere this version is limited to 100 copies but i am not sure about that. pure noise records. 2018.

Sonntag, 31. März 2019

meshuggah - none

when the first batch of meshuggah re-pressings were unleashed by nuclear blast in late 2018, i left out the e.p.'s and just went for the full lengths. it felt like i didn't really need those half-baked ideas of a proper album and thus i walked away. when the second and final batch was up for pre-orders and the e.p.'s were still available in the limited colour variants, i began to reconsider my opinion.
in the end, i gave in and ordered at least one of the mini-lp's. i went for the 1994 release called "none". i don't know why, it was simply the most appealing to me. musically this is the logical link between the full lengths "contradictions collapse" from 1991 and the follow-up "destroy erase improve" from 1995 and it is highly enjoyable too.
like all the other re-issues "none" also got a re-vised artwork by artist luminokaya. can't say i like it more than the original though. the inner gatefold shows some funny pictures of the band back in the day. ah yes, the nineties... the colour-way, clear red with black smoke, is rad as well. 300 copies made. nuclear blast. 2018.