You’re the lucky reader of the 27th edition of the Punknews.org Vinyl File. This column aims to keep you informed with upcoming releases as well as spotlighting interesting releases, your favorite bands’ own collections and labels with a history of vinyl releases worth talking about. As always, Vinyl File is brought to you by Ben Conoley.
This week’s Vinyl File is the first of a two-part interview with two members of Paint it Black, who have a new album, The New Lexicon ,dropping in early February. This week we talk to vocalist Dan Yemin. Next week we talk with Andy Nelson, the group’s bass player. We’ve also got news of upcoming vinyl releases from a whole bunch of bands you’ll want to know about, including Converge, Death Cab for Cutie and Murder by Death.
Click Read More for the scoop.
THE VINYL FILE SPOTLIGHT
Are you enjoying some time off before you start pushing The New Lexicon?
This is time on. It’s more time off when I am touring. I can only play about six weeks a year. We play weekends and stuff, but by American standards I take a shit load of time off. We will go out the weekend after the record comes out we will play Friday, Saturday and Sunday, go back to work, go play some shows with Strike Anywhere, go home.
I saw you play with Municipal Waste at The Fest and it was a pretty wild show.
The Fest has become a no miss thing for me, I make sure I go every year.
The New Lexicon is coming up pretty fast. You recently had some record release shows for it and gave everyone who went a free 7", which is something people seemed to get excited about. You’ve also done it with other projects, is it something you make an effort to do?
Part of it was, I think it’s cool to do stuff like that and as a special thing to do for people for shows. Andy wanted to create a situation that encourages people to trade records from one scene to another, say someone in California couldn’t make it so they had to connect with someone in Philly and make it happen. That’s what’s special about punk and hardcore, it’s a subculture with little things like records and building bridges and connecting people. Real collectors, it’s like there’s a real honor about it. If you do right , people will do right by you. Andy has some great stories about randomly starting to trade with people in Japan. I have never been an obsessive collector or trader. I used to mail order, but I just love vinyl. I don’t obsessively collect anything in particular.
As far as I know, nearly everything you’ve released in any of your bands has been available on vinyl. How important is that to you?
I would never do something that didn’t come out on vinyl. I love vinyl and I still think it’s the ideal format in music. Anyone that can be real honest with themselves and has a good set of ears on them knows that it has a dynamic range and is definitely superior to CDS. If you have a good turntable and a good stereo, vinyl just sound better. I’m an old schooler, so it’s still a normal format. The art’s all shrunk down on CD – it’s like a mini cover. Although I do own a lot of CDs, had to succumb to that. The turntable in my car skips and I do most of my music while commuting, so I have a lot of CDs but I still think of CDs as the exception rather than the rule and they are going to die out. Tower and a whole bunch of similar stores have died out. It’s kind of ironic because people have allegedly been singing the death nail for vinyl for a long time, but look what is going on. CD sales have been declining dramatically.
One of the reasons we are doing vinyl through Rivalry is that Jade Tree is not really invested in doing vinyl. It’s where they’ve been losing money, but it seems like vinyl is becoming even more of a stable thing to sell. I mean I understand why they are moving away, because for them it means making a commitment to keep it in print indefinitely. They always made 2,000 and sold them, and then it slows down but you can’t press less than 500, so then you’re committed to keeping it in print. You don’t get terms at the vinyl pressing plant. At the CD plant you get six months to pay, but with vinyl you pay up front. They pay three grand up front to press it and at some point it sells really slowly and then they are taking on this pretty large financial burden to do something.
It seems that Jade Tree hasn’t kept Kid Dynamite or Lifetime stuff in print, though That’s interesting. At some point I had a whole box of Hello Bastards that I was just trying to donate to people who were having flea markets that were benefits and I couldn’t get rid of them. For a few years I had a whole box of them.
Do you still collect records personally? Yeah. I got a huge pile of records last week. I actually buy vinyl faster than I can keep up with listening to it. What did I just buy? The hip-hop record store in town is going out of business and they are having a 50% off sale. I got an Ultimate Force record, a Ghostface 12." I got the second Organized Confusion record, an MC from Staten Island that was kind of with Wu Tang when they first came out, I got his album. What else did I get? I found the Deep Wounds full length, which was the hardcore band that the Dinosaur Jr. guys were in ’83, but it’s probably a bootleg. I love old girl groups, like Motown stuff. I am always just looking in record stores, flea markets and shows. I have been buying records since the ’70s.
Some of the hardcore stuff I have got recently is the drummer from Government Warning does No Way Records and his stuff is consistently awesome. They had a 12" from a group called Double Negative, which is fucking, amazing. Destroy LA is another one that I got recently that is really good. There’s a lot of stuff that I got lately that I never had a chance to listen to. I pulled out my Ink and Dagger 7"s the other day. When my wife moved in two years ago – she’s an old punk – our record collection got about 90% cooler. She had all the riot girl stuff that I didn’t have and garage stuff and every version of everything Los Crudos ever did. I haven’t even looked at everything she brought to the house.
Can you tell us what is in store for Paint it Black or your other bands as far as vinyl goes?
My game plan for Paint it Black is to just do 7"s from here on out. I love doing albums and I take myself seriously as a songwriter, maybe too seriously. I was always saving my really good songs for the next album. But now I am like, "we’re a hardcore band and we have done three full-lengths. How many hardcore bands have done three good records?" 7"s are great and are the ideal format for hardcore. There are a lot of record labels that I have talked to that would be into it. I would like to do three 7"s with three different labels.
On the No Idea website, they have Lifetime’s self-titled album as slated for a 2008 release. Are they re-releasing it on vinyl?
Yeah, we wanted to license it to them. The label that did that record, I think they could give a shit about vinyl. Once we kind of realized that, I was pretty unhappy with the way that came out the first time. It was late and didn’t have an insert and we were furious. We said, "we need to do an insert and it has to get mailed to all the people that ordered it online," but that didn’t happen. No Idea are my friends, they do the Fest every year, they are a great label that really cares about vinyl. The vinyl would be really at home on No Idea and we were really pushing Var to make it happen.
Yeah, I remember when that came out. It was supposed to come out at midnight, but it was hours late and they had only 250 red copies that sold out in minutes.
They only did 1,000 of them, which is crazy, but it’s like repress it or license it to someone that will. They just wanted to worry about selling CDs. I was like, alright, I see where this is going. I don’t want to talk shit, but I don’t see why you can’t sell CDs and keep vinyl in print
THE PUNKNEWS.ORG VINYL FILE
The first single from mewithoutYou’s latest album, Brother, Sister should be available soon. The 7" has the song ‘Nice and Blue Part 2′ as well as a demo version of ‘In a Sweater Poorly Knit.’ The Split between Bomb the Music Industry! and O Pioneers!!! has been repressed by Asbestos Records. Pre-orders are being taken here The two new colors will be red/white split and black/white split.
While pre-orders for The Loved Ones upcoming album Build & Burn were expected to launch yesterday, a delay has kept the records from the Fat Wreck Chords offices. Expect pre-orders for the vinyl to go up this week.
Pre-orders for Genghis Tron’s Board Up the House start February 1. The 2xLP will be available on 300 limited "splotch" colored records. Pre-orders, which start February 1 will be entered into a contest to win the original lacquer plate of the record’s laser etching. Those interested can order here.
After a tour-only edition of Hot Water Music’s upcoming collection Til the Wheels Fall Offsold for over $400 on eBay, the folks at No Idea decided to even things out a little by offering a number of the records as "buy-it-now" items on eBay for only $20. Good on ‘em.
Deathwish Inc recently made an announcement that got a number of people excited.
We are proud to announce that Deathwish (under exclusive license from EVR) will reissue the classic "Jane Doe" album on vinyl format. Available or the first time in over 6 years, this 2XLP will be packaged in a Deluxe Gatefold sleeve, and will feature a variety of vinyl color variations, appealing to collectors and audiophiles alike.
Pre-orders for the record should begin sometime this winter.
Another box of records have been "found," something that is becoming increasingly common. Either way, it’s bound to save people bundles of money on eBay and comes courtesy of Sonic Boom Recordings, who recently put up a limited quantity of Death Cab For Cutie’s Transatlanticism. Get ‘em while you can.
Miamante Records have put together a beautiful package for the new Aloha EP Light Works. The record, which ships February 1 contains seven songs on a 12" picture disc which each copy hand-numbered /500.
Belgium has a new record label called Midnight Manhunt Records, who will be releasing the newest EP from Poostew. Misericordia will be pressed as a 10" record and features a silk-screened b-side that comes packaged in what the label describes as a deluxe bag. Only 500 copies have been pressed.
Souvenir’s Young America and City of Ships will be releasing a split LP courtesy of Perpetual Motion Machine. Both a tour-pressing and a 180g black vinyl pressing will be available with a total of 300 copies all silk-screened and hand-numbered.
Trustkill Records has a number of reissues available for pre-order. Throwdown’s Haymaker and Vendetta have been combined in one 2xLP package as have Walls of Jericho’s With Devils Amongst Us All and All Hail the Dead. The third combo release puts together The Opposite Of December and Tear From the Red by Poison the Well.
Bleeding Through’s latest album, The Truth, has been pressed on vinyl by Forsaken Records. It’s limited to 1,000 copies split evenly between clear and white/grey splatter vinyl.
Murder by Death’s Vagrant Records debut Red of Tooth and Claw is set for a vinyl release. The record will be limited to 1,000 copies on 180 gram "midnight blue" vinyl. Pre-orders can be placed here.
If you have anything you’d like to see featured on Vinyl File, email ben (at) punknews (dot) org.