As past years have proven, Record Store Day is about celebrating the old while embracing the new, and this iteration is no different. Veteran ‘stachers, editor-in-chief Becca James, live editor Ciara Shook and contributor David B. Anthony, are joined by Pop ‘stache’s new reviews editor Hannah Lorenz to discuss this year’s must haves.
Also new is the gang’s decision to forgo Permanent Records‘ midnight opening (Looks like they’re doing the same with only a 7 a.m. opening) in favor of being first in line at Reckless Records on Broadway. Will sitting on a cold sidewalk at an ungodly hour sipping Intelligentsia coffee after a Clarke’s Diner breakfast be worth it? We have a list of seven records that says it will be. Additionally, we suggest stopping at Dave’s Records to see a true Record Store Day veteran handing out the goods in his vinyl only store, Saki to snag anything you missed earlier in the day and Record Breakers to close with a celebratory drink at Reggie’s.
Botch – American Nervoso
This release takes us back to Botch’s debut album, and although it has long been in the shadow of the band’s follow-up, the impeccable We Are The Romans, Nervoso is every bit as essential as the band’s later works. It’s a shining example of what many consider to be the start of metalcore, but with the key difference being it’s not absolutely abhorrent. DBA
Cheap Trick/Velvet Revolver – “Surrender”
Joining the ranks of many candy greats (AirHeads, Dum Dum Pops, etc.) Record Store Day is releasing a mystery flavor this year. Part of the stellar Side by Side series, which never disappoints, the only information given about this 7-inch Mystery Release single is what it looks like. A heavy blue splatter with red transparent color will be shipped in an opaque sleeve to conceal the identity of the artists and song waiting within. However, closer inspection of the sleeve, via the official Record Store Day website, has clearly revealed its contents. A ’45 insert depicting a palm tree laden coast of some sort, lies beneath a white flag aflame. That fire flag is a clear reference to Cheap Trick’s first hit single, “Surrender” and what can be considered the band’s comeback single “The Flame.” Paired with what is obviously a snap shot from the coast of Rancho Santa Margarita, Calif., birth place of Velvet Revolver, and the opaque sleeve has cleared. However, if this isn’t really the case it’s probably “This Must Be the Place (Naive Melody),” because who hasn’t covered that? BJ
The Flaming Lips – Zaireeka boxed set
The Flaming Lips are never ones to shortchange the fans on Record Store Day. Last year the band released a vinyl album of new material that featured everything from pop starlets (Ke$ha) to veteran crooners (Nick Cave), which quickly sold out, and some unlucky fans (yours truly) had to wait until the CD version was released that summer. Will the same mania befall Zaireeka? Probably, despite the 7,200 copies poised for Saturday’s purchases. This year The Flaming Lips are taking this music lover holiday a step further with the vinyl release of this 1997 precursor to The Soft Bulletin. The revamped Zaireeka will be released on a four-disc boxed set of 12-inch 45-RPM records. According to Zaireeka’s details on RecordStoreDay.com, the boxed set will have unique art specific to this release, and each disc will have unique colors. If that wasn’t enough, The Flaming Lips also enclosed a 12-page booklet. CS
Kate Nash – “Free My Pussy”
It’s all about girl power this Record Store Day. This heart-shaped vinyl includes “Free My Pussy” from Nash’s album Girl Talk, released last month, and “Free Pussy Riot Now! (feat. The Thin Kids).” The title track is hilarious, and gets better with each listen. Nash sings, “Free my pussy” oh-so-sweetly over a cloud of heavenly “ooooh”s. Then, over that same beautiful backdrop, a repeating chorus of, “Meow meow meow meow” has been known to induce spastic laughter. The juxtaposition of the subject and the pleasing melody makes the track great. Though Nash obviously lathered on the irony, it’s not bitter–just fun. The Thin Kids is a rather unmelodious band, but its previous collaboration with Nash produced an accessible sound, and “Free Pussy Riot Now!” seems promising. Nash has been an outspoken advocate for the Free Pussy Riot movement. Most likely, this track will be spoken word, politically charged, but with a spoonful of humor stirred in. So get excited for this release, because what’s better than two “pussy” tracks on a heart-shaped vinyl? Absolutely nothing. HL
Misfits/The Lemonheads – “Skulls”
What’s better than Glenn Danzig howling his desire—nay, need—to possess everyone’s skulls? An additional rocker on the flipside of the record also in dire need of said skulls. As part of Warner Bros.’ Side by side series (original-recording-paired-with-nifty-cover on a slick 7-inch record), The Lemonheads have immortalized a subdued version of an often covered, but never duplicated classic by Misfits. For the horror punk with a migraine, Lemonheads vocalist Evan Dando removes the intravenous guitar and drum combo from the rocker’s arm, and instead croons his desire for skulls over soft vocals and an acoustic guitar. The result is a lulled listener handing Dando the scalpel. Still, in a bar fight or battle of the bands, Danzig will always be the one using the scalpel. This will be available on Saturday on 7-inch picture disc. CS
Tegan and Sara – “Closer” Remixed
“Closer,” from this year’s Heartthrob, is an instantly lovable, energetic track that harnesses Tegan and Sara’s power to seamlessly blend mainstream house music with indie charm. It’s been the poster child for the duo’s newest release, and the song was even covered on Glee (but don’t blame Tegan and Sara for that. We’ve all gotta make money.) As if one listen weren’t enough to get it stuck in your head, “Closer” has gone through eight remixes for this Record Store Day release. Now, a “Closer” Remixed EP was released in March, but that only included six remixes, mostly collaborations with electronic artists that made the track even more club-ready. The real standout was the Yeasayer remix, a more mellow interpretation that layered the vocals over trippy, psychedelic beats. It sounds like Tegan and Sara took “Closer” into outer space. Whether the 12-inch record contains eight actual new mixes or just two tacked on to the existing list is unclear, but hopefully Tegan and Sara experimented with a wider range of artists to push this already great track to its limit. HL
There / They’re / Their – There / They’re / Their
For those looking to educate themselves while staying atop the bevy of new releases, I heartily recommend There / They’re / Their’s self-titled EP. On the other side of Record Store Day’s nostalgia releases is Their / They’re / There, a group formed by Evan Weiss of Into It. Over It., Mike Kinsella of Cap’n Jazz, American Football, and many more, and Matt Frank of Loose Lips Sink Ships. The band’s debut EP is coming out on Polyvinyl Records and it is an intricate and inspired piece of indie-rock that remains hook-laden even when crossing genres. It’s given music writers a real challenge to summarize – Rolling Stone called it “ska-metal” – but I swear to you it’s not whatever that would actually be. DBA