Tuesday, March 14, 2017

I´m sorry for not updating this page regularly. A lot has happened since the last update.
First of all, we gave a troubled birth to a great split 7" from 1983: SHOCKIN´ TV / TIRATURA LIMITATA - Milano 1983.
What was so troublesome about it?
Well, that split 7" is one of the longest records (if not the longest) in the history of Punk music. The whole 7” clocks in at 18:45 minutes. Usually, a 7” at 33 rpm would last up to 14 minutes and here we have a total of almost 5 extra minutes! This is both good and bad, and you´ll soon find out why.
As mentioned above, 7” records generally last under 14 minutes, with 7 minutes or less per side. When longer duration is needed, this goes at the expense of the sound. The longer the record has to be, the lower the quality of the sound will be and the record will play quieter. The space between the grooves becomes much narrower which allows for much smaller dynamic range on the records and if you play the record with a worn needle you could damage the record itself.
So far, only bad news, right? But here´s the positive side to it.
Several years ago someone in northern Europe had the idea of bootleging this record. They put the songs on a tape and sent them to the factory, but when the factory heard how long the two sides were supposed to be, they refused to press the record. So the record was saved from bootlegging by - its length!
But back in the day, when this record was pressed, the two bands just wanted to get their songs out of vinyl. They didn´t think much of how long a side should be. And the legend says that they pressed the 7” in a factory that pressed vinyl records for talking dolls produced by toy companies. Why? Because they had a “connection”, as a friend worked there and they didn´t know anywhere else to press a record (back in 1983 only a few self-released HC/Punk records already existed in Italy: the first CCM 7”, EU´s Arse 7”, Wretched / Indigesti 7”, and a handful of others).
Of the original lacquers for the two sides, one of them survived. Shockin´ TV managed to preserve the original lacquers for all these years and we pressed their side of this record using those original metal plates dating 1983. You can tell this by the etched matrix number: STV 01.
However, Tiratura Limitata lacquers got lost with time. Who knows which basement hides the original master plates for TL side, if they haven´t been thrown in the garbage altogether.
This meant that we had to reproduce Tiratura Limitata side from scratch. We had to find the songs, do a bit of the “cleaning” process in the studio and wait to see if our fate will be the same of that northern European bootlegger who got turned down by the pressing plant. Luckily, our pressing plant agreed to produce new lacquers and press the record... But here comes the catch.
If you understood what was written above about the compromise between the length of the record and its sound, then the following will sound as no surprise. If you have a new needle, no matter how great or how shitty your turntable is, this record will sound fine. The grooves are very narrow but a good needle will make this record sound exactly like the original.
However, if your needle is worn, you may hear the sound becoming “thinner”, especially during the first song on B side - “Cheyenne”. If that´s the case, you better replace the needle in order not to damage this or other records you have. Luckily, this record served to detect that your needle is worn and needs replacing.
So if you are ever wondering whether your needle is still good, just put the B side of this record on the turntable and you will know for sure.
The first pressing of  200 copies on black and 50 on lime was released in September 2016 and waited for the band´s approval. Once we got the green light from the band that they were happy with the sound, we pressed an additional 100 copies on black. Somehow, the labels of the second press are white, while the ones on the first pressing are yellowed, which is how you can tell the difference.
So there´s a total of 300 copies on black and 50 on lime vinyl around. Get a copy while they last. Write to: commonguy@libero.it

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