Last week, Record Store Day was postponed from April 18 until June 20 … for now. For music lovers, this was roughly akin to telling your kids on Thanksgiving that Christmas was being postponed to Presidents’ Day. If you’re like me, you’d already made a list and checked it twice.
These are the 10 RSD releases that were on my list to pick up in a couple of weeks that I will now have to wait until June to purchase. (That is, unless they postpone it still further.) They’re not the 10 best releases, or the 10 most noteworthy releases, or the 10 releases most likely to appreciate in value. They’re the 10 releases I wanted to add to my collection.
No Miles? I’m more “Kind of Blue” than “Bitches Brew.” No Dead? I’ll tell you where you can jam your Dead. Don’t like my list? Make your own.
Mind you, waiting a couple of extra months to spend discretionary income on vinyl is the least of our worries at the moment. That doesn’t mean it still doesn’t suck out loud. So with that, here’s the list, in no particular order:
Goblin — Greatest Hits Vol. 1 (1975-1979)
AMS, 2xLP, 180gm red vinyl w/gatefold cover, limited run of 1500 worldwide (750 US)
Goblin made its name as director Dario Argento’s go-to band, scoring many of his most famous works, including “Suspiria,” “Profondo Rosso” (aka “Deep Red”) and “Zombi” (Argento’s international edit of George Romero’s “Dawn of the Dead”). This album includes tracks from those three films, along with additional prog rock cuts that earned them European acclaim.
Elton John — Elton John
UME, 2xLP, translucent purple vinyl w/gatefold cover, run of 7000
John’s eponymous 1970 album marked his US debut, but it was actually his second release in the UK, where “Empty Sky” had been released to an indifferent British public 10 months earlier. This is the one that broke him on both sides of the pond, thanks to opening track “Your Song.” Includes a second LP worth of demos, including two not previously released.
The Who — A Quick Live One
Monterey International Pop Festival Foundation, red/white/blue striped vinyl, run of 6500
Sure, this material has been bootlegged a thousand times over, and who even knows how legitimate THIS release is, copyright laws governing 50-plus-year-old unreleased recordings being what they are. Pretty packaging job, though, and it’s a record of a seminal moment in the band’s long history.
Roxy Music — Roxy Music (The Steven Wilson Stereo Mix)
UME, 180gm clear vinyl, run of 4000
The comprehensive box set of Roxy Music’s 1973 debut album released in 2018 was widely hailed by fans and critics alike, with particular praise for the remastered 5.1 mix Steven Wilson created of the album. The one criticism: Why no remastered stereo mix? Well, if they’d done that, you couldn’t spend another $25 to buy it this year.
Lennon/Ono with the Plastic Ono Band — Instant Karma! (2020 Ultimate Mixes)
UME, 7” single, run of 7000
John Lennon wrote, recorded and released this, his second non-Beatles single, in a span of only ten days, and scored a big hit in the process, cracking the Top 5 in both the US and UK charts. It would also be the last Beatle release, group or solo, before the band’s bust-up (see next entry). This 50th anniversary release features a replica of the original sleeve and new mix.
Paul McCartney — McCartney
UME, half-speed master, run of 7000
McCartney’s eponymous 1970 solo debut would mark the end of The Beatles, as he released it over the protestations of the other band members, who feared it would cut into sales of the upcoming “Let It Be” album. Critically lambasted upon release, it today stands as an early example of low-fi DIY recording still aped today by industrious indie musicians worldwide.
The Rolling Stones — Let It Bleed
ABKCO, handcrafted multicolor pressing, limited hand-numbered run of 900
I already bought the 50th anniversary box set. I already bought the Vinyl Me, Please coke-bottle green pressing (two, in fact). So why the hell do I need this? I don’t need this. I want this. But there’s only 900, so that might be tough. And now I have to wait two more months. “You can’t always get what you want,” indeed. My RSD white whale this year.
Philip Glass — Koyaanisqatsi OST
Orange Mountain Music, 2xLP, gatefold cover, run of 1500
In a movie with no words, only images, Philip Glass’ dramatic score helped drive the narrative of “life out of balance” conveyed by Ron Fricke’s cinematography and Godfrey Reggio’s rapid-fire compiling of images. Released in a single-LP format at the time of the film’s release, this is the first full presentation of the original 1982 soundtrack on vinyl.
Philip Glass — The Essential
Classical Music on Vinyl, 4xLP, 180gm, foil embossed box set, run of 1500
More Glass? More Glass. Music on Vinyl will be releasing a series of Glass albums this year and next, and this box set is designed as a sort of sampler of their upcoming releases. Prominently featured are tracks from his three operas — “Einstein on the Beach,” “Satyagraha” and “Akhnaten” — as well as his “Songs From Liquid Days” collaborations with contemporary singer-songwriters.
OST — The Hitch-Hiker’s Guide To The Galaxy: The Original Albums
Demon (UK), 3xLP, 180gm translucent green, blue and purple vinyl,
Finally, one that’s not a US release, but a UK release. These aren’t the original radio broadcasts, but studio recordings with the original cast made after the fact for release. (The original BBC broadcasts wouldn’t be released for sale until 1988.) This 42nd anniversary reissue (get it?) comes in Vogon Green, Magrathean Blue and Pangalactic Purple vinyl.
So yeah, this year’s list is a little more meat and potatoes than past years’ lists — way heavy on the classic rock, very little that could be called adventurous listening. There didn’t seem to be as much out there this year in the way of mono reissues or private press unearthings or obscure psych/garage repressings. So maybe it’s them, not me.
In any case, I have a stack of albums here that I still haven’t listened to, including a couple I bought in the Black Friday sale, so I guess I should quit complaining and get to listening. That’s probably sound advice for all of us right about now. What were you looking forward to getting?