Monday, 17 June 2013

Anne - Mixtape II

Along with the split with Whirr, Anne also released this; Mixtape Two. Before "Dream Punx", Anne released their 2010 demo as well as Mixtape I, although this is the first release by the band to actually be on tape. Sadly, this was also delayed along with the split with Whirr, but it did eventually see the light of day and was definitely worth it.
This release is a little different from the previous work from Anne. There are seven songs in total, but only four are new. The remaining three comprise of remixes of "Punk Bike", "Thrush" and "Virginal Plight" from Dream Punx. All are very different from the original mix, but Thrush may as well be a completely different song, there is almost nothing resembling the original version.
The other four tracks are previously unheard, which was definitely more exciting. My favourite of the two are "Worship", which is very similar to the work on the Whirr split, and a surprising cover of Bruce Springsteen's "Atlantic City".
The packaging is relatively basic on this release. I would have loved to see a teal tape matching the artwork, but what can you do?

This was released by Run For Cover records once again, and was limited to 200 copies. From what I can see it is all sold out now. Not all is lost though, you can still stream the tape for free down below.

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Drive OST - 2X 12"

Here is something a little different, my first post about a move soundtrack. Usually I don't get into movie soundtracks so much, but as soon as I saw Drive back in 2011 . The movie was just excellent, but more importantly for this blog, so was the soundtrack. I originally didn't have a physical copy of the album, but a little while ago I decided I wanted to get my hands on one. The first release I saw was like this, which I was almost set on getting when I spotted these versions. The artwork was just so much better that I had to get one of these instead. Of course by that time they were all sold out from mondotees, so I had to resort to Ebay once again. They were all a bit more pricey than if I'd been able to get one originally, but not too bad in the scheme of things. For the regular black version anyway....
Although the soundtrack is really great, this record is really about the packaging. But first I will make a bit of a complaint, it may seem quite minor but it is something that has annoyed me on several occasions. This record came shrink-wrapped, which in some circumstances is a good thing, except it came with a sticker on the outside! Of course I wanted to keep the sticker, but as this is a gatefold LP I didn't want to leave it shrink-wrapped and be forever tormented by what gems lay on the inside of the cover. To keep the sticker I had to carefully cut it out of the shrink wrap and glue it onto the front of my own plastic sleeve. I can see the point to shrink-wrapping, but why do so many people instead on placing stickers on the outside of them?
But enough complaints, lets get back to the good stuff. The artwork is really well designed, and features each of the main characters in the film (well except Standard). The whole thing has a pink and purple thing which is continued throughout the inside and back of the cover. The rear even features Ryan Gosling wearing the stunt-double mask he wears when he murders Nino.
As I eluded earlier, there are two colour versions of this record; black and pink. Most of the records are on black wax, but a randomly selected few are on a wonderful looking hot-pink. I think that is quite a cool deal, you would certainly be pleasantly surprised to get a pink copy. Of course that has really "driven" up the price of the second-hand pink copies. I think when I was looking they were going for around $200, which was considerably out of my price range. I could have gotten pink vinyl with the more standard version of the cover, but I think it was worth trading in vinyl colour to get this far superior packaging.
This is a relatively long soundtrack, and such this a double LP release. Each of the four sides draws on the theme of driving, with the centre labels featuring a speedo, tachometer, fuel gauge and a battery gauge.
Inside the sleeve there is a very clean looking white insert. On the front is more fantastic Drive artwork, and on the back is information about the five songs not composed by Cliff Martinez.

Sunday, 9 June 2013

ILSA / SSOS split 7"

Alongside the latest Ides of Gemini EP, this was another Record Store Day release that I was very excited about. This was released by A389 and was sold solely at various record stores around the world. Unfortunately my local record store wouldn't be getting any copies for sale, so I had to rely on other methods to get my hands on this. Ebay turned out to be the place to go, with several copies up for sale by various flippers. Most were in the higher price range that you would expect from these people, but one copy was still at a reasonable price with a buy now so I did not hesitate.
The split features two new tracks; one from each band. Interestingly, both are cover songs, with Seven Sisters of Sleep covering "Messiah" by Hellhammer and Ilsa covering IVth Crusade by Bolt Thrower. Both are excellent cover versions of already great songs, but I think the SSOS track just has a very slight edge over the Ilsa one.
The record is on red vinyl, and is limited to 666 copies. Shortly after RSD, A389 did also release a glow in the dark version for mailorder which would have been cool to get my hands on too. I'm pretty sure that was just limited to 1000 copies and had already sold out by the time I found out about it.
The rest of the packaging is up to the usual A389 standard, with awesome artwork designed by Szymon Siech, that draws on various 70s horror films.The inside of the cover also draws on the same influences.
As an extra bonus the record also includes an incredibly massive "movie" poster of the cover artwork.
The entire split is available to stream online just in case you missed out on getting your copy.

Wednesday, 5 June 2013

Kill Life - Snake Kills Whole Family 7"

Alongside Pale Creation's split with Hessian and the self titled release by I Am Heresy, I previously wrote a small review about a much more peculiar EP by none other than Kill Life. They were released as digital releases as a set of three, but sadly only two managed to emerge as records at the expected time. I believe there were issues with the arrival of the records at Magic Bullet HQ, so it took a while for this to actually surface.

There was then another delay in me getting this, USPS putting up their shipping prices to international destinations, which caused Magic Bullet to revamp their webstore. After some time I saw here that they were up again and selling the 7" alongside the same themed T-Shirt. I wasn't too keen for the shirt, what with how expensive it would be to ship now so I left it. Little did I realise this could easily be ordered through Cobraside Distribution (as I did with the Ides of Gemini 7"), so I turned to Ebay. There were a few copies from UK sellers which were still pretty cheap, so this time I didn't hesitate on getting a copy.
It may have taken a while but it was worth waiting to get, the digital tracks have got a great vinyl treatment. The record sleeve has a photo either side, depicting two of the songs. On the front is the same child with a snake around his neck as we saw from my previous post for "Snake Kills Whole Family". On the reverse is a picture for "Shark Invades Land".
Magic Bullet put out four different versions of the vinyl; green, grey, purple and red. My copy is supposedly the red version, although it is really more of a maroon colour than anything. There are also a few black-ish swirls mixed in there too.