PRETTY THINGS S.F. Sorrow. Rare original 1968 UK 13-track stereo vinyl LP on the blue & black Columbia label, recorded at Abbey Road and one of Britain’s very first rock concept albums, telling the story of Sebastian F. Sorrow from cradle to grave. The gatefold picture sleeve is laminated on the outside with inner flipbacks and album lyrics across the inner spread.
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DAVID BOWIE David Bowie. Rare 1969 UK black & silver label 9-track stereo vinyl LP, generally regarded as the first Bowie album proper, featuring Space Oddity & the early masterpiece Cygnet Committee, gatefold matte picture sleeve.
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Led Zeppelin “Led Zeppelin II” released 50 years ago today, October 22nd, 1969. Led Zeppelin II was the band’s first LP to reach #1 – in both the US and the UK, though they only released one single from the album (and that was outside the UK; weirdly not a single Zeppelin single was ever released in their home country): “Whole Lotta Love” which hit #4 on the US Billboard chart. It’s been ranked among the top greatest songs of all time (most especially for its guitar riff) but it was not without controversy. Parts of the track were a direct lift from Wille Dixon’s “You Need Love” (recorded by Earl Hooker and Muddy Waters in 1962 for Chess Records) but Dixon was uncredited. That led to a lawsuit which resulted in Dixon winning credit and royalties (1985).
I’ve blogged about Led Zeppelin II before so I’m going to quote myself here:
Allmusic says “Led Zeppelin II provided the blueprint for all the heavy metal bands that followed it… the overall sound of the album is heavy and hard, brutal and direct. While Led Zeppelin II doesn’t have the eclecticism of the group’s debut, it’s arguably more influential. After all, nearly every one of the hundreds of Zeppelin imitators used this record, with its lack of dynamics and its pummeling riffs, as a blueprint.”
As I’ve noted in earlier posts, I was, relatively speaking, late to Zeppelin (weird subculture “rules” being what they were, 80′s punks – at least in my town- did not listen to Zeppelin, that was for the grits/heshers/dirts/headbangers) so I didn’t listen to any Zeppelin, including Zeppelin II, until I got to college. Now I love it. “Whole Lotta Love” has one of the most excellent and recognizable lead chords on any album ever, the groove of “What Is and What Should Never Be” is utterly addictive and Zeppelin’s spin on traditional blues in “The Lemon Song” is epic, sexy as hell if not very subtle (“Squeeze me baby, ‘till the juice runs down my leg/The way you squeeze my lemon I’m gonna fall right out of bed”). That’s just Side 1! Side 2′s bass riff on “Heartbreaker” is so slinky, Bonham’s drum solo on “Moby Dick” is insane and II has one of my all-time favorite tracks: “Ramble On.” I was on a serious Tolkien kick during my freshman year at college (I had read The Lord of the Rings as a kid but got it into my head to re-read the entire trilogy over Christmas break that year) so I found the lyrics amazing. Now they kinda make me giggle but I still love “Ramble On” intensely.
TRAVELING WILBURYS Volume One. Mega rare original 1988 Japanese Warner Bros issue 10-track vinyl LP with picture A-side label, picture sleeve complete with glossy 4-page Japanese text biography/lyric insert and matching title obi-strip. Thid example is in an amazing jaw-dropping near as new condition, you will not find a better copy!
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PINK FLOYD Free Four. Extremely Rare 1972 Japanese Special Promotional-Only vinyl 7", one of the rarest limited edition promo-only Pink Floyd 45s from Japan. Also features ‘Absolutely Curtains’ on the b-side. The Odeon labels are customblack on white with ‘Promotional Copy For DJ Use Only’ print to the right, manufactured by Toshiba Musical Industries Ltd, complete with a stunning & unique flipback picture sleeve with all-over silk finish. The sleeve appears Excellent – onclose inspection, there are some very faint crease marks with age & the occasional small cosmetic tape mark on the back. A natural spot of colour fade is noticeable along the spine & top edge of no concern. There are no tears or writing. This is simply a stunning example & an amazing find. Better still, the labels appear Mint & the vinyl is Near Mint with an incredible deep sheen both sides & only the very lightest few signs of play. So hard to find & surely a crown jewel in any serious PF collection.
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Wandering through New York City the other day,I passed this spot—the corner. 3rd and Sullivan in Greenwich Village. The unique iron fence gives it away that this is where the cover to Neil Young’s After The Gold Rush album was shot.
QUEEN Teo Toriatte (Let Us Cling Together). 1977 Japanese-only wide centred 7" single, also featuring Good Old Fashioned Lover Boy, housed in a die-cut company sleeve complete with a superb & unique picture insert with lyrics on the back. Theinsert displays minimal wear with some light foxing, whilst the vinyl shows just a few light signs of play.
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RED HOUSE PAINTERS Red House Painters. Very rare 1993 UK 14-track double vinyl LP, single pocket picture sleeve with picture inners. This self-titled release is also known as ‘Rollercoaster’ due to the sleeve image, it’s another batch of classic introspective songs subsequently dubbed as ‘slowcore’ by the critics. The sleeve and inners show very little sign of wear, with just a little creasing to the opening lip and the vinyl has just a few light hairlines / scuffs, which have little or no impact on sound quality – a great copy of an elusive gem.
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JIMMY PAGE & THE BLACK CROWES Live At The Greek. 2019 UK Limited 20th Anniversary Audiophile Edition 20-track remastered triple 180gram White Vinyl LP issue of the 2000 live album recorded on 18th & 19th October 1999 and saw Jimmy Pageteam up with the Black Crowes for a two-night performance of material from the Led Zeppelin catalogue as well as old blues & rock standards. All three discs are BRAND NEW & unplayed housed in the tri-fold picture sleeve which remains sealed within its custom-stickered shrinkwrap.
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