Sunday, May 30, 2010

EDGE The Movie


I just watched this. It's a very interesting and well made documentary of Straight-Edge in all its aspects. Where a lot of info is given by interviews with very influential people out of all three decades of straight-edge:
  • Ian Mackaye
  • Ray Cappo
  • Karl Buechner
  • Pat flynn
  • ...
The makers made interviews with the most influential people in the field of straight-edge. And show what they have to say in short fragments of the interviews. These fragments are fittingly added to the aspects of SXE they are discussing in a chronological way.

SxE evolved in a way where the action field has grown larger by the years. So they build up the documentary starting from the most basic convictions introduced by Ian McKaye (MINOR THREAT) and later on in the 80's made popular by Ray Cappo and YOUTH OF TODAY.

The field of Straight-edge in the nineties expanded to political issues like Animal Rights, environmentalism and anti-consumerism. In the light of all this many straight-edgers became vegan or vegetarian also. So not only drugs were avoided. The best example of this expansion was the band led by Karl Buechner; EARTH CRISIS.

Also criticism towards straight-edge and hardcore itself arose. The machismo, militance and
violence were criticized especially by women, so also feminism is a part of straight-edge.

I need to say that it is very professionally done. The pre-order version DVD is numbered out of 500 and came with a poster, sticker and pin. Yes, that's very limited. But you can still buy the DVD in a more common version, the one with the black cover.

http://www.edgesyndicate.com/

There's also a site of all this that can be found here:

http://www.edgethemovie.com

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

1917 Records #04: GUNS UP! (DRA)

guns up! 7 inch all this is color collection green brown white orange vinyl dra 1917 recordsProbably because these 7"s needed to be "imported" from Europe - it is actually Demons Run Amok from Germany who pressed these -there was a time when these 7"s were totally hot on ebay. They were, and probably to some extent still are very rare in the USA, hence the prices paid for every color. It was only the green who was available with 1917 Records, and the rest from DRA Germany.

Nonetheless a good real hardcore record totally influenced by the NY-style. When I first heard this I was overwhelmed with the rich and flourishing sound that was hard hitting and to the point. Probably one of the better and more real bands out there in the first decade of the 21st century, staying true to the classical NY sound and culturally also very oldschool style. Gangvocals, breakdowns and lyrically about interpersonal observations, like betrayal, rivalry and comparison flowing out of all this. In short words real HARDCORE true to the rules of the game!!

The pressing info page can be found here. I'm telling this because there is a lot of inconsistency regarding the number made of the several colors and covers by sellers.

FIRST PRESS:

50 Brown with special friends cover
120 Brown
330 Green
525 Orange

SECOND PRESS:

525 White

The friendspress was sold on one show in Germany, but some already made it to the States also. I've seen one for sale on ebay, but I missed out of the thing because I was to bummed out at the moment.
Damn, I hate it when someone sell all the 1917 Records that I'm missing (tourcovers, friendspresses, release show covers, festival covers, testpresses, ...) when I am bummed out. Because it actually happened; a follower of this blog did it and I was only able to buy three. It is not that I'm unhappy with the three records I did get to buy, but this was my chance. Financial hardship, it happens to every punk collector I think!! But I try to look at it this way, I saw the several special releases and so learned what there was made and how they looked. And that's already very important!
Another fact is that it wouldn't be very challenging for me, if I had unlimited money and got to buy all these in one stroke. That wouldn't be much of collecting I think, time will bring me these and will be able to have a complete 1917 records collection. They are out there, hahaha !

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Mini-Store and Trading: now on Limited Pressing

For a few months now there was a 'recordlist' & 'tradelist' link above right on my blog. But because I do not get much response on the initiative, I have decided to move my trading and selling activities to LIMITED PRESSING.
I already told you about the main functions of Limited Pressing and working with LIMITED PRESSING goes smooth and it is innovative.

Recently I uploaded my entire collection to the site and have also opened a mini-store up there. Because as of today I will be selling some records coming from my private collection. The records in the store are with fixed prices and I will be adding some that you have to offer on in the trading section of limited pressing soon.

I won't be conducting many record-swaps because that is an indistinct way of obtaining records. It will be selling some to buy some. And ebay is totally history now, because I can run auctions over there also.

http://limitedpressing.com/users/2754


My blog will keep on running as it always has. It was and still is the thing I like the most. But I want to expand my hardcore activities with more selling.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

VITALITY: Respect Is Everything (ODK - H8000)

Time for H8000 content again. The band I will be introducing is VITALITY. They belonged to the H8000 crew but are in a way apart from it. As the scene in ODK was something on its own. Every band member skated and was involved in the ODK Posse. All the band members have the same ODK tattoo in Gothic font. Connected through the ink, as they call it. And for those who don't know it; ODK is short for 'Oostduinkerke' and this is a small town at the Belgian Coast
The musical side of the ODK scene was at its peak in the mid to late nineties, with two active bands; VITALITY and ODK Crew. These bands are the most close to me, because I lived in Oostduinkerke and knew many of the members, hanged out with them and learned from them. "Chief" Steve and Bob were like grandfathers for me and my friends. There was a great unity in town, everybody who listened to Hardcore or skated accepted each other. There never were internal fights except for those who entered the scene and didn't show respect, they got kicked out!


Their first release is called Bloodline, everybody of the band was SxE in this period and most were veggie to. This reflects in some lyrics, they are dark and apocalyptic what is familiar to the H8000. Some show the inner fight of Steve, the vocalist. Musically this very influenced by the Clevo bands, so this can certainly be labeled as Edge-metal.
They totally radiate a clean and purifying attitude with their sound and appearance. Everybody really looked up to them.






As they grew older they lost their SxE ideals. They released their second release, no longer on Sober Mind Records but on a French label called Overcome Records (Overcome Records is also the label that released the French Hardcore compilation "In This Other Land"). The band became befriended with the French KDS crew bands like Stormcore, Underground Society and A.W.O.L. With this album they kind of left the H8000 style for a less dark and more though guy sound. The sound is less clean and there is a higher ambience or fun level.




Also remarkable is that VITALITY never changed the line-up, all the members stayed true and dedicated to each other and the band. Another remarkable fact is that "Alien" King also played in RISE AND FALL when they just started. On the R&F demo they refer to him as AK.
Nowadays it is only Forced Hate and ODK Crew that exists. But the ODK skate shop is still open and the new generation of ODK kids are still looking up the ODK posse and riding their skateboard on the dike and the many skate spots Oostduinkerke has. The friendship is still as strong as always.
This is definitely worth checking out and these two CD's are still available for low prices at hardcore.gl ! Here's the link if you are interested:
https://www.hardcore.gl/en/products/music/bands/vitality.htm




Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Obscure AMENRA side-projects

For several years now there is in Belgium an amazing band called AMENRA. The style they play is described as 'sludge' or 'doom' or 'trance', indefinable actually. They did several legendary shows on different locations including theaters. They already toured the United States but what many readers probably aren't aware of is the fact that band members are also active in many side-projects. I will discuss three of them in this post.

The most famous side-project on global scale, is the Belgian HOLY TERROR band on Dwid Integ's obscure label 'Holy Terror Records'. You already know what I'm talking about; the mighty BLIND TO FAITH. The link of this band with AmenRa is Colin who plays bass. Blind To Faith is not only connected with AmenRa but also with Rise And Fall (Vince) and Reproach (Stijn).

The record beneath is the material result of the project:

blind to faith LP clear vinyl pre order holy terror records limited
Later this year A389 Records will release a split 7" of this band with GEHENNA.

http://www.myspace.com/blindtofaith

The second side-project is this totally obscure band called 'KINGDOM'. They also have a record out, it is available on LP and CD. The label that released this is Genet Recordings (The label that's also responsible for releasing many H8000 classics back in the days, but also vegan straight-edge releases were done and many compilations).
This aside, check out their myspace to hear and learn more of them:
http://www.myspace.com/kingdomcomes
The links between AmenRa and Kingdom are Colin and Mathieu. I have the LP and you can check this here:

kingdom st s/t lp black vinyl genet records limited

Exists on white vinyl also; handnumbered out of 112:

kingdom st s/t lp genet records color colored vinyl white vinyl limited 112

Unfortunately both formats are totally sold out.

The last side-project is HIVE DESTRUCTION. This is a strong effort done by KJM, an ex-member of Amen Ra and Matthias from LIAR. They have brought out a demo CD in two versions, call them first and second press if you want. I have both and here they are:

FIRST PRESS out of 65:



hive destruction cd liar h8000 matthias halsberghe demo first press

SECOND PRESS:



Their first, one and only T-shirt:



I like it a lot, otherwise I wouldn't have all their stuff. This music is not for the feint of heart, check them out here:

http://www.myspace.com/hivedestruction

As to finish up this post I'd like to say that Colin -who's starring in the most bands here- also played in SPINELESS, an old but still legendary H8000 hardcore band.

I also made a visualization of these interconnected Belgian bands by linking the bandmembers to the several bands they played in and putting all this in a diagram (which is funny but interesting):

bandmembers belgian scene amenra rise and fall spineless blind to faith reproach hive destruction spineless syndrome kingdom colin lennart kjm vincent mathieu mathias stijn



If you haven't heard of AmenRa, do it now by checking their myspace:

http://www.myspace.com/amenra


This is what's big in Belgium people!!

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Introducing LIMITED PRESSING In Europe



Limited Pressing is an American based project created to support the DIY movement of Hardcore and Punk. They offer fairly priced stores for bands, labels, distros, and show organizers. In addition to stores, there's also a ton of other interesting sections to the site.

What differs this project from imitators is that it makes trading on the internet more transparent and vivid. But also safer and reliable.

I will discuss the most important technical features that accomplish the secure and innovative properties of LIMITED PRESSING:

• The Deal Making System (in the section called "Trading") keeps record of all your conversations having to do with a deal, in order to track them.
• You can leave feedback for a private deal made in the Trading section.
• Private deals can also be more guided by generating invoices and getting receipts.
• Underground Music News sites and blogs are aggregated into one section called the Hoverboard. So that you get a more bundled and personally selected view of what's happening in the underground Music scene.
• Any user has got a personal dashboard where you can "friend" these news sources.
• You can also "Friend" stores. This is ideal for keeping up to date with the news and what is or sale on the same page.
• Also when you "Friend" another user you can keep track of what they click on the Hoverboard, it shows up in your own personal news feed inside your dashboard.
• The auctions you can create on LIMITED PRESSING are totally free of charge and you can leave comments about them.
• The online stores are specifically designed for bands, labels and distro's. Stores you run can have music players embedded.
• Stores for selling tickets are also specifically designed, and no fees are charged on tickets sold. Something that no one has ever done before.
I fully support the non-profit and self-made trading environment, because I see it's useful and allows users to build a reputation with feedback.

This weekend they will introduce the Euro currency to the store section. This will make it possible for Europe to access it easily. The fact that they introduce the euro on LIMITED PRESSING shows that they embrace Europe and realize that we're a force in underground music.

I met with these two congenial people that founded this new and almost indefinable project. The two hardworking American dudes are involved in Hardcore and Punk since the beginning of the nineties. They always wanted to be part of an industry changing project. They don't do this for a living but are fully enjoying what they are doing on a professional level.

As to my role in this project; I don't profit in doing this except that I like doing it and wanted to represent and introduce Europe to this project. And I always wanted to meet up with awesome American dudes who care about the Hardcore and Punk community and accept me. I am not doing this for a living either because I have my job as a lifeguard. But have been passionate by collecting records for a long time now and wanted to break out of the routine of trading and selling, and doing something else and taking it to the next level.

If you are interested in checking this site out the url is: http://www.limitedpressing.com

If you have any questions about LIMITED PRESSING; mail them:

support@limitedpressing.com

Sunday, May 2, 2010

THE ICEMEN: 2 7" Titles (rare NYHC)

The Icemen were founded in 1982 by singer and songwriter Marco Abularach. Noah Evans from BAD BRAINS and Mackie Jayson from THE CRO-MAGS joined him. The band was mostly active on shows and didn't put out official records until in 1991, Blackout Records released an ep counting 4 tracks wich was available on CD and tape, also a limited 7" on Blue or Red was made:

The Icemen rest in peace the harsh truth 7 inch red vinyl color nyhc blackout! records

As a total surprise REAPER RECORDS released more than 15 years after the bands demise (1992) two previously unreleased tracks. These were recorded over night in 1984 at Nola Studios and engineered by Noah himself. The tape of these recordings were mastered and mixed at Shadowmusic Studios in 2008.
If you ever get this record in your hands you can read the full story of this on the insert, it is an exciting one. It is not that difficult to obtain this, because you can still buy it at Reaper or distro's.

the icemen the iceman it'll be your grave 7 inch reaper records blue black haze vinyl limited NYHC

But the one you see beneath -with the black haze- is very hard to get because there are maximum 100 copies made. I missed out on the pre-order but was lucky to know a dude who was really into the Icemen and bought several copies. Badly he ebayed all of his copies, but lucky for me. I really wanted this and lost two times while bidding but the third time I won...

Ofcourse you can look into this record deeper on Double Cross Webzine:
http://doublecrosswebzine.blogspot.com/2008/12/icemens-new-record.html
And if you feel like a good read, check these interviews with Marco on Double Cross:
http://doublecrosswebzine.blogspot.com/2008/06/marco-icemen.html
http://doublecrosswebzine.blogspot.com/2008/06/marco-icemen-part-ii.html
http://doublecrosswebzine.blogspot.com/2008/10/marco-icemen-part-iii.html

NYHC: Striving For Togetherness Records

Originally this wasn't planned to become a post, but while flipping through my record-boxes I realized this is certainly worth one. Don't expect grand things because I don't know that much about SFT Records but this post will do I guess... If you wanted to share some things about this, feel free to comment!

The label was founded in 1990 and released some NYHC during the nineties. Very underground label with records that have become very hard to find, especially those I will show and discuss now.

The first one is the DISTRICT 9 7", released in 1995 and called 'Schoolahardknox'. It is the only vinyl release they have but it is a very good one. It exists on three colors, CLEAR, RED & BLACK. The record opens with saying that this is not real New York hardcore but actually hardcore from the Bronx. You are probably familiar with the climate of the Bronx or heard stories from the hard life and insecurity in that part of New York. This ep is a mirror of all this, a no frilled, factual hardcore reality of living on the streets. Broaching topics like murder, payback and suicide this is very though. Expect no love songs or emotions here.

district 9 schoolahardknox original 7 inch striving for togetherness records clear and red vinyl color
The only pressing info I have is that there was a mailorder version and that it was Clear vinyl out of 500, the black must have had 1500 -2000 copies. I never found any info on the red version.
There was a time when STRIVING FOR TOGETHERNESS had a discography page online but now the domain is taken over by another company and I can seem to find anything no more. I should have written down the information before the site was purged.
Another thing that needs to be said is that this ep along with other (live-) songs is available on CD or downloadable from iTunes also. A must have...

vision of disorder nyhc still 7 inch original striving for togetherness blue green color vinyl

The next is the second release of a Long Island NY band called VISION OF DISORDER. It is called 'Still'. I have it on two colors from which the Solid Blue is the most rare one, less than 500 are made. I've seen the Green in several variations, mine is more transparent than opaque actually.
The lyrics are dark, struggling and plain aggressive. The vocals of Tim Williams are also very aggressive, powerfull but also melodic sometimes. Accompanied by powerful and moshy music, this is truly a gem for any kid and grownup who likes hatefull 90's newschool hardcore.
They still play but make a more metal sound than actually hardcore. They have become known outside the hardcore scene by singing on a huge label like Roadrunner Records and releasing a DVD on Koch Records. Although I don't dislike them for that, the song 'Suffer' of the s/t album is a still a killer.

Finally the first release of the band 25 TA LIFE from New Jersey. It was released in 1994 after the 1993 demo. Anyone knows this band for good or for bad. Some still love them but many hate them.

25 ta life 7 inch vinyl striving for togetherness records nyhc debut release
Typical though guy lyrics and down tempo riffs, a band with a high cult-level. They did good live shows in Europe on their tour with Morning Again, I attended one. The kids were all over the stage and singing along. So they were popular in the 90's here in Belgium. But now there's much hate, I don't now why exactly...

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Record Collection Outtake: Colored Revelation Classics

Those who read my record list critically should have noticed that the NYHC section isn't that rich in content nor in collectors items. So I took it to the bay and boosted it because I was able to buy the following records in one deal and all in Near Mint to Mint condition while paying only once for shipping:
  • JUDGE "New York Crew" second pressing on Revelation
  • JUDGE "The Storm" black
  • ICEMEN "Rest In Peace" red vinyl
Only with these, the arrears of my NYHC collection are way made up. But I also got some COLORED Revelation Record classics, that dropped in perfect condition last week. Not a single ding or bent caused by shipping and the vinyl looks pretty much unplayed. So these were very, very welcome in my collection and since I have them nothing is the same.

The first one I already have on black wax and with maroon labels. But this version is actually a very rare record and a special one. Rare because it is the rarest color ever pressed (out of 333) and special because it is the final press of this classic, done in April 2001.

judge bringin it down orange repress LP revelation records vinyl final press nyhc
The vinyl is according to me GOLD but when you remove the light from this record it becomes ORANGE. I succeeded in showing this by the pictures from above and below. Another reason I made a close-up of the vinyl is because it has some swirls that make it very interesting.

judge bringin it down lp orange vinyl close up repress revelation records
This record was originally recorded in 1989 in Chung King Studio's but since the band didn't like the recordings they rerecorded it with a different line-up at Normandy Sound. The line-up for this record is:
  • Mike Judge - vocals
  • Porcell - Guitar (YOT)
  • Matt Pincus - bass
  • Sammy Siegler - drums (GB)
The Chung King sessions were pressed on a 110 made white vinyl LP that is now the highly sought-after and ultimate punk record, called 'Chunk King Can Suck It'.

Their blatant, hatefull, in your face straight-edge approach was triggered by the hate sxe had to endure in the late 80's. Porcell and Mike were disillusioned and pissed off by the fact that former straight-edgers now hung out at bars and became drinkers. I like that darker straight-edge thing about JUDGE because sxe isn't always that pretty and bright. This militant straight-edge approach was the spark for many bands to follow especially in the 90's.

The next record is also a youth crew record. But this time with very young people. I think you already know what I'm talking about; the band BOLD and the record is their first on Revelation Records called 'SPEAK OUT'.
The record was released in 1988, after members played in a band called Crippled Youth. This record is recorded at Electric Reels in March-December '87. Alex Brown of Schism Fanzine and Gorilla Biscuits made pictures for this record's layout.
Normally this record has a gatefold sleeve, at least for the first 3 presses. But this press, also the final press, has got a normal sleeve and is for the first time on colored vinyl. It comes on YELLOW vinyl with slight darker yellow swirls. This version was pressed on April 27, 2001. A notably pressing info fact is that for the 4th press a green testpressing was done, just because there was a green wax leftover at the pressing plant.

bold speak out LP yellow vinyl color revelation records repress final
Every song of this LP are true classics. It embodies the spirit of the youth crew straight-edge. A very representative release, defining the bright side of Straight-Edge. And for those who aren't into it, it hurts...

bold speak out final repress close up yellow color vinyl nyhc
A funny side-note is that all these records ended in a span of 24h and that some ended in the middle of the night, but I figured that wasn't a problem because I was off work the next day and so I set my alarm 4am and won these records. Even more funny is that I actually did not need to wake up on that moment because I never got outbid. But on the other hand I kinda liked the dedication.

Other various records I got are the first BLINDFOLD LP "Restrain The Thought" on black wax and the most famous BLACK FLAG LP called "Damaged" also on black wax and it is an old press, which makes it very charming.

Another record I got (from a different seller) is the most essential hardcore record out there. I'm talking about the GORILLA BISCUITS full length 'Start Today'. This is magic all over. My copy comes on RED vinyl but is still sealed so I'm unable to show you it. The proof is that there is a color vinyl sticker on it. And since the first colored copy (purple) didn't come with such a sticker and given the fact that there are only two colors pressed, this is the red out of 310. It is also the final press done on January 04, 2002.



Given the musical context or other bands playing in the scene during the same time, this is a step aside from the pack. They are more original and this striving for difference in sound and attitude is also what defines hardcore and it's attitude.
But why I'm saying that this is the most essential? I think this band has the power to divide the real from the rest. Being real and true is the most essential in hardcore. Staying true to yourself, being sincere is what makes the difference because everybody is unique. Just go by good intentions, working hard, being critical, self-reflection, questioning others and you'll make the difference. I think this is the main message of the record. And don't wait to work on your attitude but start today...

While I'm at it, I also got a skateboard from the Biscuits. I didn't want to ride it, but I couldn't resists, so it has some damage. I ordered this at RevHQ and put on Grind King axes. I think it looks very fine. I usually don't collect toys as much as collect records but I'm still glad I have it. I also like the name of the manufacturer: ROCK ON!! And this is a good message to end with.