Nico "Live At The Library Theatre '80" (2023 Record Store Day LP)

For Record Store Day 2023, a limited edition LP was issued featuring a 1980 live recording by Nico, the late German chanteuse who was best known for singing on the first Velvet Underground album in 1967. Live At The Library Theatre '80 was limited to 2,000 copies, and pressed in translucent light-blue vinyl. The LP documents a concert performed by Nico (aka Christa Päffgen) in the small theatre beneath the Manchester Library in England. The sound is very understated, suitably scaled for such a tiny venue, as Nico sings in her eerie, unmelodic voice accompanied mostly by low-volume harmonium. Notably, the recording quality is remarkably clear, in contrast to two other recent Record Store Day live Nico releases . Besides renditions of two of the Velvet Underground songs she was known for (an acappella "All Tomorrows Parties" and a cocktail lounge piano version of "Femme Fatale"), the set list is otherwise drawn from Nico's solo albums from many years earlie

Ivy "Apartment Life Demos" (2023 Record Store Day LP)

For Record Store Day 2023, an alternate version of Ivy's 1997 album Apartment Life was issued, limited to 2,500 LP copies and pressed in very translucent "Coke Bottle Clear" vinyl. Apartment Life Demos contained the track-for-track demo recordings of the album's 13 songs, including the Japanese-only bonus track "Sleeping Late" (which is also included on the recent 25th Anniversary Edition issued by Bar/None Records), with inner-sleeve liner notes by Andy Chase which describe each song's creative development. Ivy was an alternative pop trio based in New York, consisting of the late Adam Schlesinger (also of Fountains Of Wayne and Tinted Windows), fellow multi-instrumentalist Adam Chase, and French-born singer Dominique Durand. Ivy received critical acclaim for the six albums they recorded between 1995 and 2011, but met with little commercial success. To wit: Apartment Life was their second full-length album overall, but was the only one released on A

Third Man Records vinyl exclusives, Part 55: White Stripes “Elephant XX” (2023)

The 55th set of exclusive vinyl items offered to members of Third Man Records’ Vault service was mailed out to the members in April of 2023. For those who are unaware, Third Man Records is the label owned by Jack White, who is the leader of the White Stripes, the Raconteurs, and the Dead Weather, and is now a solo artist. The Vault service promises to deliver exclusive vinyl-only records (usually one full-length album and one 7” single) to its members every three months. The 55th Vault package featured a 20th anniversary edition of the White Stripes’ Elephant album from 2003, consisting of two LP’s with new mono mixes of the album's 14 tracks, as well as a 7-inch single containing demo versions of two of the songs, a DVD featuring bonus video material, and a picture book full of related visual memorabilia. The 2003 Elephant album was a major breakthrough on all fronts for the Detroit-based indie-rock duo, charting in the Top 10 in the U.S. and several other countries, and go

"Rare Birds - 'A Flock Of Seagulls' B-Sides, Edits and Alternate Mixes" (2023 Record Store Day LP)

For Record Store Day 2023, the BMG label is issuing a B-sides and rarities compilation LP from A Flock Of Seagulls, in a limited edition of 1,025 copies. Rare Birds - 'A Flock Of Seagulls' B-Sides, Edits and Alternate Mixes will be pressed on transparent vinyl, with a reworking of the original cover art from the English new wave band's self-titled 1982 debut album A Flock Of Seagulls , one of the true landmark recordings of the early-'80's new wave genre. The tracks on this LP are not as "rare" now as they were before 2023, because all twelve of the tracks were reissued on the 2023 U.K. Deluxe Edition of the debut album, which is available digitally. To be exact, the first 12 tracks on the second CD of the Deluxe Edition are the ones included on this limited edition vinyl release. The LP mainly consists of B-sides and single edits from the singles which were released to promote the debut album, as well as the band's non-album debut single "(I

Rossington Collins Band "Anytime, Anyplace, Anywhere" (1980)

Earlier this month, the world lost the last surviving member of Lynyrd Skynyrd. Gary Rossington, the man who played the slide guitar on "Free Bird" and co-wrote "Sweet Home Alabama", died at the age of 71 on March 5, 2023. Rossington survived the tragic 1977 plane crash that killed band members Ronnie Van Zant and Steve Gaines, as well as backup singer Cassie Gaines (Steve Gaines’ sister) and a road manager, just three days after the release of the album Street Survivors . Rossington suffered from many health troubles in the 45 years in between, but he was the one constant member of Lynyrd Skynyrd, having rejoined the newer version of the band which formed in 1987, and participating in every subsequent lineup. The only time Rossington was not a member of Skynyrd was during the time when there was no Skynyrd. During the time between the band's 1977 breakup and 1987 reformation, Rossington co-founded the Rossington Collins Band with his fellow surviving Skynyrd

About that unreleased Vai / Ozzy album...

Well...Steve Vai inadvertently caused a bit of a hullabaloo in heavy metal circles this past week. In an interview published by Eonmusic in the U.K., Vai discussed his newly released Vai/Gash album, a previously unreleased collaboration with the late Johnny ‘Gash’ Sombrotto recorded in the early 1990's. Vai happened to mention that he also recorded another unreleased collaborative album in the '90's -- with none other than Ozzy Osbourne. Wait... what?!? Here is what Vai told Eonmusic about this: "I'm sitting on a whole Ozzy record, and it's like the Gash record - not 'like' the Gash record - but it's a project that I recorded that's sitting on the shelf. I don't have any control over it or rights to it, obviously, but we did record some pretty good stuff. The interesting thing about that stuff we recorded from a guitar perspective is all of my rhythm guitar parts, I use an octave divider [guitar effect], and that record doesn't

The Black Keys "Live at Beachland Tavern March 31, 2002" (2022)

For Record Store Day 2023, the Black Keys will issue a limited edition vinyl EP documenting their first concert from 2002. Live at Beachland Tavern March 31, 2002 will be limited to 5,000 copies, and pressed on tangerine-colored vinyl. The EP was previously available as an exclusive item from the duo's webstore in November 2022, and was limited to 1,500 black vinyl copies. This record captures the very first live performance by the duo of Dan Auerbach (guitar, vocals) and Patrick Carney (drums), which took place in Cleveland, Ohio two months before the release of their indie debut album The Big Come Up . This set does not exactly have the same type of dirty blues sound of that basement-recorded debut album. The venue may have been small, but the Akron-based duo sounded very much above ground. If you're expecting a White Stripes-like garage-rock sound, you may be surprised by the relative sophistication of the short set, which features disciplined playing that is not drench

Jerry Blavat Presents Guess What? (1966)

Jerry Blavat, the legendary disc jockey known by such nicknames as "The Geator with the Heater" and "The Boss with the Hot Sauce", died at age 82 on January 20, 2023. Blavat was regarded as one of the early rock and roll DJ's, and is often credited with (blamed for?) the creation of the "oldies" radio format. Blavat first gained fame in the 1950's as a teenage dancer on (American) Bandstand , during the TV show's early, pre-Dick Clark days when it was based in Blavat's hometown of Philadelphia. Blavat later hosted his own dance show called The Discophonic Scene , as well as a syndicated radio show in the '60's which specialized in "oldies" -- which, at that time, often meant that the songs were approximately five years old, and were no longer heard on format-based radio stations. Blavat helped many performers achieve fame, including the Four Seasons, the Isley Brothers, and Dionne Warwick (who spoke at Blavat's funeral