Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Vinyl Vednesday 9/1/2010

[Vinyl Vednesday is a weekly feature about three favorite vinyl finds. It’s not meant to be a dick-measuring contest, but it usually turns out that way. This week’s installment is metal-themed because… eh, just because. E-mail with your own big finds!]

Records: Black Sabbath’s Master of Reality (1971) on black, Black Tusk’s Taste the Sin (2010) on black, and Tool’s Lateralus (2001) on picture disc.

Place of Purchase: Master of Reality came from Siren Records in Doylestown. Taste the Sin was picked up during my last trip to Shore Things in Ocean City, N.J. Lateralus came from Repo Records in Philadelphia.

Thoughts: Master of Reality is probably my favorite Sabbath record. It’s the one I come back to most frequently (along with Mob Rules), and it was actually the first one I picked up on vinyl. Yeah, yeah, my love stems from John Darnielle’s book about the album, but it really is a great, focused heavy metal/hard rock record. It’s only 34 minutes long! It opens with one of my all-time favorite Sabbath songs, “Sweet Leaf.” It’s a love song about pot, but man is it catchy/rocking. Tony Iommi’s riff is so primal/kickass. “Children of the Grave” is another knockout, although this time the star contribution comes from drummer Bill Ward, who turns out a tribal rhythm, which is rare for Black Sabbath. This song is basically proto-Kylesa.

Black Tusk’s new album has steadily grown on me this year. I’ve fallen in love with Savannah metal this year, and Taste the Sin keeps rotating into my CD player ever other week. I’ve been trying not to double up on vinyl as much as I used to – I’m running out of room – but when I saw this on vinyl at Shore Things, I had to pick it up. Relapse puts a lot of effort into their vinyl, and Sin came on 180 grams with high quality printing and a download card (not that I need it). This record just kicks rump from start to finish, and right now it’s a lock for my top five albums of the year.

Tool was at one point my favorite band. I got into them before I fell in love with punk rock, and while I’ve only just recently started coming back around to more metal music, I’ve always loved them. Maynard James Keenan’s voice can go from a bark to a croon on a whim, drummer Danny Carey pounds out some sick fills, and the duo of Adam Jones (guitar) and Justin Chancellor (bass) is consistently raw. These are pretty awesome songs about alienation and anger. Lateralus was my introduction to Tool, and it remains my favorite album by them. The picture disc is pretty neat-o/gross too. My only problem with this record is that, nearly a decade later, the group has yet to top it.

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