[Vinyl Vednesday is a weekly feature about three favorite vinyl finds. It’s not meant to be a dick-measuring contest, but it kinda is. This week’s installment focuses on spoOoOoky releases, in honor of our Lord Satan and the coming of All Hallow’s Eve. E-mail firstname.lastname@example.org with your own big finds!]
Records: The Cure’s Pornography (1982) on black, The Mountain Goats’ Satanic Messiah double seven-inch (2008) on black, and AFI’s Decemberunderground seven-inch box set (2006) on clear.
Place of Purchase: Pornography was snatched up at Siren Records. Satanic Messiah was a tour-only, self-released record that I picked up when I saw the band play with Kaki King on “The Last Happy Night of Your Life” tour. Decemberunderground was a Hot Topic exclusive.
Quality: All three of these albums have gotten play this month, with special attention given to Pornography. With 13 full-lengths and counting, I can never truly decide what my favorite Cure release is, although Pornography is always near the top. It’s arguably their darkest and most nihilistic release, and it’s an album I generally associate with addiction. Maybe it’s because the first time I heard it was around the time my cousin overdosed. I stayed up one night playing it over and over on a walkman while I sat on my roof, completely freaked out. As the sky burned from black to orange, I finally packed it in, but I’ll always remember that night.
Satanic Messiah, by contrast, has no choice but to carry a happier story. See, I’m a bit of a Mountain Goats fanatic, so when the band followed up their seminal work Heretic Pride with Satanic Messiah just a few months later, I squealed with joy. What’s more, they gave the record away for free, although donations were/are certainly welcome. I was lucky to get a physical release on tour, though, as the record is extremely shiny. SO. SHINY. Like this year’s The Life of the World to Come, Satanic Messiah is an understated piano-based collection. It features four tasty tunes, one of which is about the wonderful coming of the Antichrist, even though you could mistake it for being about Jesus, which is part of the reason why the song is so effective.
Ah, but the most joyful of noises are reserved for Decemberunderground. Oh sure, the lyrics talk about bleeding and suicide and stuff. But the music made the album into a gothic/glam rock/techno party. My roommate Eric and I danced a fit to this record quite thoroughly in 2006. I listened to it again last week in honor of the Morningstar, and I fell in love with it all over again. “Miss Murder” totally cops a feel off of Depeche Mode’s “Personal Jesus,” and I love it all the more for it. Plus, the box set comes with a sweet bonus track, “Fallen Like the Sky,” and a poster.