Just a handful of the ludicrous “Record Store Day exclusives” on sale this year, most if not all courtesy of the big three major record labels.
In other words: Bono & A-ha picture discs are why you can’t press a 12″ record right now.
A-ha: Take On Me
What better way to celebrate vinyl than with the special “30th Anniversary” edition of a song famous for its music video? The original 45 single of “Take On Me” – which presumably would have more value to collectors, if one can believe there’s a “collector’s market” for A-ha – is available right now for thirty cents.
Citizen Dick: Touch Me I’m Dick
This is a fictional band from a bad romantic comedy singing a fake song that’s essentially a four minute toilet joke. Yet it says something that the pun on Mudhoney’s “Touch Me I’m Sick” by the Matt Dillon-fronted band from Cameron Crowe’s ’90s grungesploitation vehicle Singles is still more interesting than the rest of this junk, at least to the strange tribe of Pearl Jam fanatics. All of these records are more or less aimed squarely at the main engines of the vinyl economy these days – collectors, hoarders and resellers – but this one especially so.
The Doors: Strange Days
Strange Days has sold millions of copies and has been continually in print since 1967. But following the lead of the Beatles (who figured out that you really can get nostalgic boomers to pay for anything), this is the “remastered mono edition” (let that sink in for a minute) for collectors only who want to re-live the glorious era of, uh, four or five years before stereo took over the world. You don’t even need to pretend you have something new to sell dad rock to dads.
What used to be a chintzy marketing tchotchke given away in grocery stores to promote the new fall lineup is now a “Record Store Day Exclusive” too. There are no less than four TV show soundtracks on this year’s list of official RSD exclusives, including hits for the kids from Orange Is The New Black, Sons of Anarchy and The Walking Dead.
Live! Because They Can’t Find Anything Else!
Some of my favorite records are live albums, but the very notion of a “live 7 inch” is baffling. The estates of many stars (not surprisingly, most of these artists are dead) have licensed crates and crates of these bizarre 45 rpm live recordings for “Record Store Day Exclusives,” from Hendrix to The Kinks and, yep, even A-ha.
U2: Songs of Innocence
You can’t go on a hate jag for this long before eventually coming to Bono. There really is no better symbol of RSD garbage at high mark-ups than the vinyl edition of an album which people objected to as a free download. From what I understand, however, 1% of your purchase price on this record goes toward Bono’s charitable institute which is even now researching more ways to annoy you.