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Record Store Day Picks

Abbie Doyle, Editorial Director

David Bowie/Tom Verlaine - Kingdom Come [Rhino, RSD 2015]

I must admit, despite the sad size of my checking/savings account, that Tom Verlaine and David Bowie split 7" is a very tempting item. Both of these guys are incredibly important musicians; their contributions to modern rock 'n' roll are impossible to ignore and this split is a great example of their respective styles. David Bowie's take on Tom Verlaine's "Kingdom Come" is honorary and exploratory-- he maintains the integrity of the original while simultaneously adding his own, very distinctive, Bowie flair. I'll always be a bigger Verlaine fan than a Bowie fan, so one side would likely be spun more than the other, but there's still a choice. Do I feel like morosely rocking out, or glamorously rocking out? With this 7" I can do both!

Marlena Scott, Features Editor

J. Dilla - Fuck The Police, Love [Pay Jay, RSD 2015]

So, scrolling through this list didn't go much further than seeing J. Dilla's name. The legendary hip-hop producer is rising from the dead to bring us a classic single "Fuck The Police" on a really elaborate picture disk in the shape of a police badge, and "Love," a 7" featuring unreleased material from the deceased artist.

J. Dilla has produced some of the most catchy, memorable beats and socially conscious rhymes on hip-hop tracks and in a way, this release allows Dilla to release some commentary on police brutality and injustices from the grave. I'm excited to see what kinds of unique sounds have been locked up over the years.

Megan Fair, General Manager

Makthaverksan - Witness 7" [Run For Cover, RSD 2015], Run The Jewels - Record Store Day Release [Mass Appeal, RSD 2015]

There are two Record Store Day releases I'm very much hyped on, and they are on very different ends of the musical spectrum. The first of these two is Sweden's own Makthaverskan with its 7" of the ominous single "Witness," a huge and driving track that is complimented by vocalist Maja Milner's wails. I'm a really big fan of Run For Cover in general, so it will be cool to (hopefully) support them this RSD. As much as I'm excited for Makthaverskan, I'm absolutely drooling over Run The Jewels' release featuring "Love Again (Akinyele Back) [ft. Gangsta Boo]," unreleased track "Bust No Moves [ft. SL Jones]," "Pew Pew Pew" from the European release of Run the Jewels and RTJ2 bonus track and "Blockbuster Night Pt. 2." I am anxious to hear the unreleased tracks, and "Love Again" will be so fun to blast at innapropriate levels during the day. This RTJ release just feels like a perfect record to own and play at social gatherings.

Eric Perzanowski, Contributor

Mastodon – Atlanta [Warner Bros., RSD 2015]

This single from one of my favorite bands originally premiered as a part of the Adult Swim Singles series this past year, and is now getting a 12” picture disc release for Record Store Day. The track itself is pretty cool and a departure from the type of music Mastodon currently makes. It returns to the group’s original gritty, sludgy sound. In addition, Gibby Haynes from Butthole Surfers shows up and makes for an interesting collaboration. Plus, it’s Mastodon! Even though they had an amazing album come out last year, there’s a possibility of another EP for this year and this song has been streaming since September, the idea of more music by Mastodon is always appealing. I’ll certainly be on the lookout for this come April 18.

Jordan Matthiass, Contributor

Red House Painters - Box Set [4AD, RSD 2015]

Red House Painters were, without a doubt, the greatest slowcore band of all time. The San Francisco group, founded by Mark Kozelek (now of Sun Kil Moon infamy), created a plodding, melancholic sound that reverberates still in bands of today. In the early nineties, when vinyl production was at an all-time low, the Painters released a rapid-fire collection of four albums that are absolutely indispensable to both the slowcore scene and the decade which they inhabit. These essentials are, from newest to oldest (and left to right), Ocean Beach (1995), Red House Painters [Bridge] (1993), Red House Painters [Rollercoaster] (1993), and Down Colorful Hill (1992).

These albums are all works of perfection in their own right, but they have all been almost impossible to find on vinyl. Each album only received one press and each was very limited. The cheapest selling price for one of these that I’ve ever seen was just over $160, and that was for a battered copy of [Bridge], considered by many the weakest link in this string of masterpieces.

Now, for the first time in 20 years, 4AD is giving die-hard fans a unique and one-time-only opportunity to collect all four. The records are going to be pressed on heavyweight bronze vinyl and packed into a beautifully-designed box, hand numbered through 1500. It’s not going to be easy to find this one, but consider it a godsend if you happen to do so. And hey, if you’re not into depressingly beautiful singer-songwriter slowcore, pick me up a copy and I’ll get you back. Plus a finder’s fee, of course. C’mon. I need it.

Kory Kasler, Former Promotions Director

There are quite a few releases I’m looking forward to this year:

Braid - “Kids Get Grids” [Topshelf, RSD 2015]

While I’m not expecting them to be “What A Wonderful Puddle” quality jams, I’m still down with new Braid tracks.

Brand New - “Deja Entendu” [Triple Crown, RSD 2015]

Mostly for teenage nostalgia.

RPM - Turntable Baseball [Microfiche Records, RSD 2015]

I’m as excited for this as I am for the music releases. Baseball’s a huge part of my life, so this will be neat to have and mess around with.

Those Darlins/Diarrhea Planet - “Live at Pickathon” [Easy Sound Recording Co., RSD 2015]

The Nashville music scene has been producing a lot of my favorite bands, and this one’s going to be really cool. Can’t really go wrong with a split release of live recordings from a couple great Nashville bands.

Pujol/Meth Dad - “Relive at Queen Ave” [Bartertown, RSD 2015]

Speaking of split live recordings of Nashville bands, this one will be rad too. Give Pujol a spin if you haven’t already.

Various Artists - “Here and Nowhere Remixed” [Northern Spy, RSD 2015]

A variety of bands taking on Cloud NothingsHere and Nowhere Else. I’m interested to see how this one goes, but I think it’s going to be pretty great.

For the full list of Record Store Day releases, click here.

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