LP: Drastically Reduced by the Reduced
2016 ShakeIt Records SHAKE 1281
Favorite Track: Nervous Little Thing
When the list came out, I considered skipping Record Store Day. Nothing struck me as necessary. Then a record store owner told me Superior Viaduct was re-issuing early Fall singles, which intrigued me but outside of the album art (and I do collect things just for their album art) I didn’t really need another copy of the songs. I became more excited for the Northside Record Fair until I found out that I had to work all day of the fair. But I was busy with my new job, my best friend’s wedding, the NHL playoffs, and various other happenings that was making my life interesting.
Right before Record Store Day, I discovered that Shake It Records was releasing The Reduced, a punk staple house band for the Jockey Club. Many people have told me stories about the Jockey Club, a punk venue that closed down before I moved here, but sounds like it would have been my home. I became curious about this music that seems largely a part of local lore, but also a missing addendum to punk history. I had two other incentives to check out this album: a friend designed the album cover and a co-worker’s brother was in the band. The night before Record Store Day came and I went giddy from some weird anticipation.
My friends and I lined up at Black Plastic this year and were first in line. They found excellent records, but I browsed and decided to save my money. I felt bad not supporting Black Plastic (but I am there almost every week so they sure do get a chunk of my money) but, like I said earlier, the list just didn’t cater to me this year. I knew Shake It also put out a bin of super rare records and I wanted to save my money for that.
The line to Shake It was still long by the time we got there. Once inside, I found the Reduced album and it was only 9.99. Excellent. The new B-side IPA by Rhinegeist was good, but not a stand out. My love for IPAs is dwindling and I find myself loving cheap beer more than craft beers. If I want something tasty, I’ll drink wine or bourbon. The super rare bin was incredible, but I couldn’t afford what I really wanted: a UK pre-release (limited to a 1000 copies I think) of the Sex Pistols’s only album Never Mind the Bollocks with the 7-inch Submission. I could have fainted. Both at such an artifact of history and at the cost. I thought about it the whole time at Shake It, but I couldn’t justify it especially with the other purchases I made, more on them later. Also in the bin: original Nirvana LPs, an 80 dollar Limp Bizkit LP, and some crazy metal LPs.
So what did I purchase: I caved and got the Fall singles. The album art is fantastic, the songs amateur-sounding but delightful, and what are my chances of finding originals? Then I found that Superior Viaduct also re-issued two Suicide singles and the only DNA single. Sound of cash register temporarily overtook my ears. Then I snagged a Nigerian Afrobeat box set titled Wake You Up volume one. It was an expensive chance that was worth it despite the waste of a lot of cardboard for a small but thick booklet. However, the songs are great, fuzzy, steeped in 70’s psychedelic and disco and funk. Plus, it gives me an opportunity to write a little sequel to Nigerian Nights. Then I found two gems: a re-issue of Sonic Youth’s Sister–one of my favorites by them and recently I have been on a huge Sonic Youth kick–and the Tubeway Army’s First Album, an LP I’ve never heard before but really, really enjoy–I’m also been having a resurgence of Gary Numan. The last time I went record shopping I found Replicas and Sonic Youth’s Washing Machine. Synchronicity?
So, the long story is, I thought this year I might skip Record Store Day and then ended up spending the most. Go figure.
Oh yeah. The Reduced rocks. Great guitar riffs that betray a classic rock/country influence over speedy drums and Damned-esque lyrics. Once again, I find myself born too late. But also glad that I am still young.