The Scrounger's Report
Feb. 03, 2002
The Happy Birthday to Me Scrounger's Report
Well, as of Monday I'll be the ripe old age of 36. Closer to 40 than 30...
which scares me: the law states that once you hit 40 you must give away all
your hard rock and metal CDs. All you're allowed to listen to is Lawrence
Welk, Slim Whitman, Pat Boone, and Willie Nelson. It's crazy, but it's the law.
I decided to celebrate by, you guessed it, going out scrounging. It's been
a month since I went on an excursion (Oh the humanity!!), so I was due. I
decided to head back to Lafayette, IN for the third time in 2 months,
primarily because of the "frequent buyer" club terms of the biggest store
there: On your birthday (or within a week...I called first :), $1.00 off
all discs $7.99 and above, in addition to regular club discounts. Suchadeal.
The first 2 times I'd visited Lafayette it was over winter break, so
getting around town was pleasant (Purdue University is in Lafayette). This
time however, served to reinforce one of the immutable truths of nature:
with respect to driving and pedestrian skills, college students are truly
fucked. Living in a university town, I know to avoid the campus like the
plague when classes are in session; apparently this not just true of the
University of Illinois. Purdue sucks as well. I nearly had myself a new
hood ornament on several occasions.
I picked up a new gizmo on this excursion. While I'd seen/heard about these
CD "scratch remover" devices, I always was a bit skeptical, and never
bothered to research them much. I've tried the home-grown approach of
either car wax or toothpaste, but with only middling results and it's a
much bigger pain in the ass than it's worth. Well, at one of the stores
today, I was expressing some trepidation about a disc I was interested in,
as it was pretty badly scuffed, and the counter guy snagged the disc, put
it in this "Skip Doctor" contraption, sprayed some water on it, and started
cranking away on the disc. 2 minutes later he handed me back the disc.
While you could definitely tell that some sort of resurfacing/polishing had
been done, all traces of any scratches were gone. I was quite intrigued, so
I figured I'd gamble and spend a few bucks on one. I got it home, and
immediately tossed in my copy of Glory - Danger in This Game, a fairly rare
disc that I had picked up a while back. I had tried both car wax and
toothpaste on various occasions, but to no avail; track 7 was totally
hosed. Since I had a virtual coaster anyway, I figured I had nothing to
lose. 2 minutes later, for the first time I was able to listen to track 7
in its entirety, no skips at all. I'm sold. The cranking gets old REAL
fast, but there is a motorized model that you can pick up on Ebay for about
$45.00 Sounds expensive, but if you can salvage even a few rare/semirare
discs, it's well worthwhile.
Ok, on to today's finds.
First, a disc I picked up for sale/Ebay. A moderately tough find:
Roughhouse - S/T. 1988. Columbia Records.
Excellent hard-edged hard rock (bordering on melodic metal). Slightly
sleazy edge to it, but not heavy. I've always loved the track "Love Is
Pain" off the album; killer tune! I plan to use this track as my "Song of
the Week" this week, so people can get a feel for their sound. This is a
flawless gem mint copy; both disc and artwork are pristine. Email me
offlist if interested.
Next, I picked up a slew of volumes of "The Album Network Rock Tuneup"
promo series from the early '90s. I already had a few, and may have
inadvertently picked up ones I already had, but at $1 per disc, I don't
really care. These are *excellent* music compilations, which I guess were
sent out to radio stations. (Clarification?) All sorts of labels are
featured on these comps, and there are paragraphs of promo copy and
information for each artist. The alternative line blows chunks, but the
volumes in the "Rock Tuneup" series have some good stuff in them. I'm not
going to list all of the ones I picked up (19 volumes all told), but I'll
give the track listings on a couple just so you get an idea of what kind of
compilations they are:
Volume 77. February 3, 1992.
1. Mitch Malloy - Anything at All
2. Britny Fox - Over and Out
3. Sarah McLachlan - Into the Fire
4. Drivin' 'n Cryin' - Around the Block Again
5. Texas - Why Believe in You
6. Phish - Chalkdust Torture
7. Social Distortion - Bad Luck
8. The Four Horsemen - Tired Wings
9. Yngwie Malmsteen - Teaser
10. Rebel Train - All Around the World
11. Tall Stories - Chain of Love
12. Altered State - Ghost Beside My Bed
13. Matthew Sweet - Girlfriend
14. Spin Doctors - Two Princes
15. The Chieftains with Roger Daltrey - Behind Blue Eyes
Volume 89. October 12, 1992.
1. Roxus - Where Are You Now?
2. Arc Angels - Too Many Ways to Fall
3. Neil Young - War of Men
4. Denaro - It's Alright
5. Jeffrey Gaines - Headmaster of Mine
6. Heavy Bones - Turn it On
7. Social Distortion - Born to Lose
8. Kik Tracee - Field Trip
9. Joe Satriani - Friends
10. Screaming Trees - Nearly Lost You
11. Pantera - Walk
12. Widowmaker - The Widowmaker
13. - When She Cries
14. Hardline - Can't Find My Way
15. Nils Lofgren - Drunken Driver
Volume 106. October 25, 1993.
1. Buffalo Tom - Sodajerk (EDIT)
2. Open Skyz - Every Day of My Life (EDIT)
3. Guns 'n Roses - Estranged
4. Fight - Little Crazy
5. The Afghan Wigs - Debonair
6. Gary Hoey - Drive
7. Concrete Blonde - Heal it Up (EDIT)
8. Paw - Couldn't Know
9. My Sister's Machine - Enemy
10. Baby Animals - Stoopid
11. Lillian Axe - Moonlight in Your Blood
12. Tidal Force - Station to Station
13. Randy Jackson's China Rain - You're Only Lonely Today (EDIT)
A CD single:
Digital Audio Disc Promo Sampler. 1988. Warner/Elektra/Atlantic.
Not sure what exactly this was a promo for. It's a 3-inch CD single in
a cardboard sleeve. 4 tracks: INXS - New Sensation, White Lion - Wait,
AC/DC - Heat Seeker, Mike Oldfield - Magic Touch.
The full-length discs; some pretty interesting stuff today:
Desultory - Bitterness. 1994. Metal Blade.
I've always seen "Swallow the Snake" around, but never this one.
Interesting blend of death/thrash metal.
Mordred - Fool's Game. 1989. Noise Records.
Some pretty cool technical thrash. How do their other albums compare?
Various Artists - Smoke on the Water: A Tribute. 1994. Shrapnel Records.
I haven't listened to it yet, but it reads like a "Who's Who" of the
hard rock world: Glenn Hughes, Joe Lynn Turner, Paul Gilbert, Don Dokken,
Richie Kotzen, Kip Winger, Reb Beach, Yngwie Malmsteen, Jens Johansson,
John Norum, Tony MacAlpine, Vinnie Moore, Kelly Keeling, Russ Parrish, Tony
Harnell, Robert Mason, and Jeff Scott Soto.
Danny Wilde - S/T. 1989. Geffen Records.
Fairly solid melodic rock, with just a tinge of the dreaded "Bruce
Cougar Mellensteen" effect. Not earth-shattering, but decent.
Krokus - Round 13. 1999. Angel Air (United Kingdom).
Finally found this damned thing. I was curious to hear how the new
vocalist sounded, and truthfully he sounds pretty decent. I'm not sure
what's going on with the whole Indian chant thing, but at first listen it
seems like a decent album.
Sledgehammer Ledge - S/T. 1994. Boomtown Records.
Indie melodic metal. Methinks that if they had gotten a real cover
artist, this album would have done better. My first instinct upon seeing
the cover was to just dismiss the CD outright (the cover is a hand
drawn/colored picture reminiscent of a lot of covers from very BAD early
death metal bands). Musically pretty good.
Air Supply - Love and Other Bruises. 1977. CBS Records (Australia).
I'll eventually own all of Air Supply's works. I'd not heard this album
before, and I think there's a reason. The arrangements are fairly primitive
on this album and the production suffers.
Air Supply - S/T. 1985. Arista Records (Japan).
Ahhh... MUCH better! Very good stuff. Also, I guess I really *did* just
fall off the turnip truck yesterday. I had no clue that Celine Dion's
multigazillion platinum hit "The Power of Love" was a cover. The Air Supply
rendition is different, but quite good in its own right. Doing some
research now, it appears that Jennifer Rush and Laura Branigan also
recorded this song.
Monty Python Sings. 1989. Virgin Records.
I had to buy it. This is a collection of all the famous Monty Python
songs: Always Look on the Bright Side of Life, Sit on My Face, Lumberjack
Song, Penis Song, Oliver Cromwell, Money Song, Accountancy Shanty, Finland,
Medical Love Song, I'm so Worried, Every Sperm Is Sacred, Never Be Rude to
an Arab, I Like Chinese, Eric the Half a Bee, Brian Song, Bruce's
Philosophers Song, Meaning of Life, Knights of the Round Table, All Things
Dull and Ugly, Decomposing Composers, Henry Kissinger, I've Got Two Legs,
Christmas in Heaven, Galaxy Song, Spam Song. How can you go wrong???
FM - Live Acoustical Intercourse. 1992. Alfa Brunette (Japan).
I thought this looked familiar. It's the same as "No Electricity
Required", but is only a single disc. Not sure if I want to keep it or
sell/trade it. Mint condition with OBI. Email me if interested.
Various Artists - Hot Metal V, Screaming Truth. 1993. Intense Records.
Yet another CCM compilation I didn't know existed. 7 music tracks, plus
interview clips with artists. Artists are Deliverance, Saviour Machine,
Rose, Die Happy, Mortification, Mortal, Tourniquet.
Matthew Ward - Fade to White. 1988. Live Oak Records.
Wow! This is the first time I've ever seen an original pressing of
this. I already had the album as part of a 2-CD reissue, but ever the
completist I had to snag this. Melodic "lite" Christian rock from this
member of 2nd Chapter of Acts. The message is a bit heavy-handed, but the
musicianship is solid.
Rumbledog - S/T. 1993. Mirror Records.
It's Dirty Looks. No it's not. Yes it is. No it's not. Whatever.
"Featuring Henrik Ostergaard from Dirty Looks, with special guests: Robin
Crosby formerly of Ratt, Cary Devore from Dirty Looks, Jim Harris from
Dirty Looks, Paul Lidel from Dirty Looks, Paul Monroe formerly of XYZ, Dave
Naro, Brian Parry from Dirty Looks, and special mystery guest." Regardless
of who or what you want to call this collaboration, it's pretty decent
bar-rock. Nothing polished, just straight ahead rock 'n roll.
Def Leppard - Adrenalize. 1992. Bludgeon Riffola (United Kingdom).
Mmmmkay. This was filed as a CD single, and I purchased it as such.
It's a fold-out digipak. I got it home only to realize that what I had
purchased was not a CD single, but the full-length CD... and then some. It
has 12 tracks instead of the 10 found on the regular release of the CD. The
cover art is completely different; no "eyeball" on the cover. Any idea what
the heck this is?
Farrenheit - S/T. 1987. Warner Brothers.
Another fairly tough find. Was still sealed. Solid, if not overly
memorable pop AOR. I was a little disappointed by it, given the hype I'd
heard about it.
Various Artists - East Coast Metal. 1988. Regency Music.
And even more CCM. 9-track compilation with tracks from Apostle,
Arenal, Believer, Rage of Angels, Second Chance, Taker, and The Lead.
Various Artists - Metal Queens, Vol. 2: Women in Love. 1991. BMG/RCA (Germany).
Is it just me, or is the title one would expect to see on a porn flick?
A 15-track compilation of female-fronted hard rock acts, quite a few of
which I've never heard of before:
1. Lita Ford - Lisa
2. Saraya - St. Christopher Medal
3. Pat Benatar - Don't Let it Show
4. Alannah Myles - Who Loves You
5. Robin Beck - The First Time
6. Laos - Higher Ground
7. Doro - I'll Be Holding On
8. Vixen - Love Is a Killer
9. Roxette - Listen to Your Heart
10. Sahara - I Won't Be Lonely
11. Joanna Dean - Once Is Enough
12. Gianna Nannini - Profumo
13. Warlock - Make Time for Love
14. Velvet Viper - World Behind the World
15. Mother's Finest - Strawberry Fields Forever
Don Airey - K2 - Tales of Triumph and Tragedy. 1988. MCA (Germany).
Eh? Kind of a rock opera/concept album based around the ill-fated
expeditions to conquer the mountain known as K2 back in the mid-1980s.
Written and produced by Don Airey. Keyboards: Don Airey. Guitars: Gary
Moore, Keith Airey. Bass: Laurence Cottle. Drums: Cozy Powell, Niki Alan.
Vocals: Chris Thompson, Colin Blunstone, Genki Hitomi, Mel Galley. Unusual
Whitesnake - The Best of Whitesnake. 1982. Carrere Records (France).
??? Whitesnake had a greatest hits package this early on? I can't find
any reference to it online anywhere.
1. Walking in the Shadow of the Blues
3. Lie Down (A Modern Love Song)
4. Sweet Talker
5. Love Hunter
6. Don't Break My Heart Again
7. Ain't No Love in the Heart of the City
8. Fool For Your Loving
9. Take Me With You
10. We Wish You Well
11. Here I Go Again
12. Crying in the Rain
13. Victim of Love
14. Saints and Sinners
15. Rock 'n Roll Angels
Anyway, that's it for today. An expensive day, but some really cool stuff.
Till next time, keep rockin!