Buying Round-Up – June 2013

Welcome to month 6 of the HMO Challenge 2013. I had a relatively generous £60 to play with this month and after spending just £34 in May I was feeling remarkably confident about coming well in under budget this month. Unfortunately, there were quite a few high profile new releases hitting the shelves in June and many tempting albums still to consider from previous months. So let’s see how I got on.

Hard to take a good photo due to the pesky lenticular cover.
Hard to take a good photo due to the pesky lenticular cover.

Megadeth – Super Collider (Ltd. Edition with bonus tracks) (£13 – HMV in Ayr)

This was my real must-buy of the month despite its mixed reception. It’s a tough one to talk about. As a listener and fan I enjoyed it a lot, it’s got a spark and freshness to it that (previous album) Th1rt3en lacked. There are some great hooks and riffs and some excellent tracks (highlights are Blackest Crow, Kingmaker and the excellent cover of Thin Lizzy’s Cold Sweat). If I listen with my critic’s hat on though, there is some irritatingly lazy songwriting and a couple of filler tracks mid-album. On the whole it reminds me of Youthanasia but without the depth. I listened to this constantly for a couple of weeks but I’m not convinced this is going to have the enduring appeal of albums like Endgame.

Including shite poster
Now with shite poster

KISS – Monster (International Tour Edition) (£10 HMV in Glasgow)

An expensive purchase for 1 bonus track (the previously iTunes-only Right Here, Right Now) but I wanted a CD copy of this because I was a bit disappointed with the spartan packaging of the vinyl edition I bought last year. Unfortunately, this digipak CD edition is much the same (no lyrics or booklet – just a shite poster), but I enjoyed listening to it all the same and the bonus track is a worthy addition.

Lovely packaging. Lovely music. Lovely.
Lovely packaging. Lovely music. Lovely.

Anathema – Falling Deeper (£6 HMV in Manchester)

Found this in the HMV clearance sale while down in Manchester for Danzig. This is one of the few Anathema albums that I’m missing and, although I’ve only had one listen so far, it sounds fantastic.

Ulver – Shadows of the Sun (£4 Monorail Glasgow)

Found this pristine copy in the second-hand bins in Monorail. Again, I’ve only had one listen which is totally insufficient for comment but it’s got a cool cover and CD label!

None shall pass.
None shall pass.

The Meads of Asphodel – Exhuming the Grave of Yeshua (£6 Amazon Marketplace)

The Meads’ Jihad (purchased last month) is one of the best things I’ve heard in ages so another Meads album was on the cards. This is more of the same but not quite as convincing. It’s a fun mash-up of styles but the actual Metal is fairly stock in a sub-Venom kind of way. The highlight of the album is the ambiguous, repeated mantra: “God is fucking with you.”

Comes pre-rated to save you the effort.
Comes pre-rated to save you the effort.

Cheap Trick – The Complete Epic Albums Collection (£8 Love Music Glasgow)

I’ve been after this for a while (it only just received a UK release in May but had already been available as an import since 2012). Unlike the BÖC set I purchased in February, this one has little in the way of extras and nothing I don’t have already. I’m a massive Cheap Trick fan, however, and I wanted a couple of the remastered CDs here to add to my vinyl copies. Not wanting to spend more than I had to, I was delighted to find a copy for just £33 in Glasgow’s Love Music. This price was cheaper than most online sellers and I had the extra advantage of being able to take in some old CDs and exchange them. So, in the end, this only cost me £8 and cleared a bit of cupboard space into the bargain!

A Ton of Trick
A Ton of Trick

And that’s the lot! £47 spent which brings me in £13 under my monthly budget. No Black Sabbath, Alice in Chains (or either of the Queensryche’s!) made it in this month so feel free to leave a comment and let me know what I’m missing out on. I spent more than I had intended to this month but I still came in safely under budget and there’s a wealth of great music to be getting on with here.

JUNE 2013 TOTALS

Amount spent on purchases: £47

Amount budgeted: £60

Amount over/under budget: £13 Under!

HMO CHALLENGE 2013 TOTALS

Amount spent on purchases: £386

Amount budgeted: £360

Amount over/under budget: £26 Over

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34 thoughts on “Buying Round-Up – June 2013”

      1. I’ll check them out I can’t get enough space rock, especially if there are whooshy noises!

        I’ve been pretty disciplined this month, a really good ambient LP by a guy called Greg Haines and The Rezillos first LP (from Glasgow weren’t they?). That’s been my lot.

        Still unsure whether to get the new Sabbath.

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      2. I’ve heard of The Rezillos but don’t know much about them. Not really up on Glasgow bands!

        Have you heard much of the Sabbath album? I’ve only heard a few songs and they’re not bad. Just not particularly exciting either.

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      3. I’m with you exactly on that, it was a straight choice between 13 and a British Lions top a couple of weeks ago.

        If Bill Ward had been in too, different story I think.

        I am jealous of your £8 box set, I’ve only got Budokan & Dream Police.

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      4. It’s a great value set if you don’t have much Cheap Trick stuff. I traded in quite a pile of cds for it but they were all doublers so no harm done. I could have got more for selling them online but that’s just too much hassle.

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  1. I haven’t bought the Kiss yet. I do have the iTunes version, but you know how I feel about physical editions. I always prefer to have an original CD. But I’ll wait until I can get it for cheap or free or something.

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      1. Hard to say yet….but after a couple times it was growing on me….have to grade it as incomplete for now

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  2. For what it is worth, I love the new Sabbath, I mean like really love it. That said, my enjoyment is greatly boosted by the fact that my kids have been excited to listen to it over and over again with me in preparation for the Sabs early August show for which they have tickets, so I may have lost objectivity. I’m really liking Super Collider but am still in exploration mode with it.

    So, what’s the judgement on the Cheap Trick remastering? I’ve got the bulk of those albums on CD already, but for a great band like the Trick, I can sometimes be a sucker for remasters that live up to the “much improved sound” hype.

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    1. That’s great, I’m glad your enjoying the new Sabbath. The prospect of going to see them does add a lot to the excitement! That’s cool you’re getting your kids into them too.

      From what I’ve listened to so far, the remastering sounds good but I don’t have previous CDs to compare to. All the albums up to One On One are the same editions that are currently available (the ones with bonus tracks). It’s only the later albums that have been given new remasters. I have an older remaster of Next Position Please and the box set is a slight improvement on that… a bit warmer sounding.

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    1. Cheers Rich! You’ve had that Cheap Trick box set for a good while now, any thoughts on the remastering on that one? Mr. Victim was asking but I’ve not had it long enough to be able to offer much opinion.

      I’ve been really enjoying the Anathema disc. Did you ever get round to getting any of their older stuff?

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      1. I only listened to the Cheap Trick box once through. It was the first time I owned most of those middle-period albums (One On One through Busted), since I lost interest by ’81 after All Shook Up (which I loved). I had heard each of those albums at least once but I wasn’t an expert on the sound quality of the originals, so I can’t really comment on the mastering…other than the fact that everything sounded excellent to me. Sorry I can’t be more detailed than that.

        I only have the 2-3 most recent Anathema CDs, but I plan on slowly working my way back through their catalog. I love everything I’ve heard so far. Did you know that Daniel Cavanagh of Anathema has a new project coming out shortly called Leafblade? I only heard it once so I can’t give an informed review, but I liked it immediately.

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      2. Fair enough! They certainly sound good to me so far. As long as they aren’t way too loud/compressed I’m generally happy and these certainly don’t sound like that. Outside of a few songs the period after All Shook Up and up to Woke Up With A Monster is the least familar era to me too.

        I remember you asking about the older Anathema albums so i was wondering if you’d got round to them yet. If you like the newer stuff then you are definitely in for a treat as you work your way back. I’ve not heard of Leafblade, thanks for the heads up! I’ll check that out.

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  3. I’m loving the photos and commentary beneath them!

    Megadeth! I had read that this was an album with a bit of experimentation to it. But then I thought, “this is Megadeth, how different could it possibly be?” Now I know a bit more, cheers.

    KISS! Man, those guys sell alot of copies of their albums. All to you guys! 😉 Sorry the poster is shite.

    Anathema. Definitely lovely. And for all you Gaiman/Pratechett fans out there, I totally think this band should have an album called Device.

    Ulver. I do not know what this is. Damn yer eyes, now I gotta learn about ANOTHER band?!?!

    Meads. Run away! Run away! Hahaha.

    That Cheap Trick box is yummy. A great way to have it all in one place. Shame, since they were going to all the work of making the box in the first place, that they didn’t add some new extras, for fans out there who’d want a little more.

    I like your idea of trading in CDs and applying that to your total. That almost warrants its own section in your calculations. And don’t forget, any albums that the shops don’t want, there’s a warm and loving home for them across the pond! 😉

    I’m actually really enjoying the Sabbath. I’m still forming a full review of it in my head, but it’s working for me big-time. The real test is being able to hear it in the car, on the stereo, on the iPod, everywhere and it still kick ass – and this record does that for me. It really is all about Iommi, on this outing. I’d say add it high up on your shopping list for July. I’d be curious to hear what you think.

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    1. Haha glad someone picked up on the Holy Grail reference!

      I wouldn’t say Megadeth was all that experimental, but the last 3 or 4 releases have been Thrashy and now they’ve reintroduced some of the Youthanasia/Cryptic Writings-type Rock. I like those albums so I was quite happy about that. I’d give it a 3.5/5 if I had to rate it.

      Don’t know the Gaiman/Pratchett reference so I’ll take your word for that!

      I’m not hugely up on Ulver either. They were one of the classic Norwegian Black Metal bands but they shifted their style to a more ambient, electronic kind of prog! I like what I’ve heard so far…

      I did trade in a fair few albums for that box but it was a good way to buy it guilt-free! I didn’t take any albums in if I thought they were ones you’d be interested in so there’s still a good pile of stuff here for you!

      I’m tempted to listen online to the Sabbath but… I think if I was genuinely in the mood then I’d have bought it by now. And if I’m not in the mood then I’m probably not going to give it a fair hearing. So I think I’ll probably just leave it for now and see if it finds its way to me at some point in the future. Ozzy has been the main stumbling block of the tracks I’ve heard so far so when I’m feeling more Ozzy-friendly I’ll probably give it a go. I’d love to read your review.

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      1. I’ve seen Holy Grail so many times, it’s a wonder I don’t gibber its dialogue at random moments… more often…

        All I have is the Megadeth hits disc, at this point, but I’ve heard a few of the albums you mentioned, at some point or other. I’d have to line them all up and play them all to get back to it.

        The Gaiman/Pratchett? Only one of my most favouritest novels ever.

        http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Good_Omens

        Ulver… ambient electronic prog metal! To me that just screams “we couldn’t make up our minds!” Hahaha

        I also think it’s awesome you traded some discs in but, if I remember correctly, you don’t usually bu used discs? Man, you’d get a lot more for your budget amounts if you bought used discs too!

        Good idea to let the dust settle, get yerself into an Ozzy mood and see what you think of ’13’ then. I like it a lot, but I don’t have near the context that you guys do. I have the first 5 records, Dehumanizer (which I still haven’t heard all the way through) and have just ordered Mob Rules and Heaven & Hell from Mike’s old store (I don’t know if they’re still in stock yet, have to wait til tomorrow as it’s all closed here today). Even for all that, as you know that’s a small portion of their career, I’ve got a lot to go.

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      2. I don’t buy a lot of used discs but I do buy them here and there. A lot of the ones I see in the shops here really aren’t all that much cheaper than buying new online and aren’t usually in the sort of condition that I like.

        But if I see good bargains in good condition (like The Cult stuff a while back and the Ulver CD this month) then I’ll definitely pick them up. And, obviously with some rare albums, like the Paradise Lost BBC one a few months ago, I don’t have any choice but to buy used.

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  4. You might not say that if you saw how many albums I traded in to get it! But, luckily for me, I always have lots of doublers that I no longer need so it was a good way to get the box set cheap. And it’s a great set.

    Thanks for stopping by, it’s much appreciated. And all the best with the new Witch Cross album! I’ll be keeping an eye out for it.

    Scott (aka HMO)

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