Well my friends, as well as the staggering list of RSD16 EXCLUSIVES that have already been announced, we here at musicmuso have received information about a further ten items that are being released in VERY limited quantities (we believe just 50), read on as we explain each item in graphic detail and make sure you get down to your local independent record shop on the morning of April 16th to get in line and spend all of your money on some lovely records, mmmm, lovely shiny vinyl!
'WEIRD' AL YANKOVIC - "EAT IT" (EDIBLE 7" VINYL)
'Weird' Al is perhaps the godfather of the parody song genre. In this cut from his 1984 LP 'Weird Al Yankovic in 3D', he takes on the Michael Jackson classic 'Beat It', removing the 'B' and skewing the lyrics to turn it into a demand for the listener to consume food instead. And that's exactly what you can do with the record after listening to it (should you feel the need) as this extra-special Record Store Day pressing of Yankovic's hit single comes as a one-sided EDIBLE record! Available in two formats - a specially made liquorice or chocolate record - the 7" plays exactly like a traditional record, with the added appeal that it can be chewed or nibbled on after hearing it. Special mention has to be made of the chocolate record, which obviously should not be allowed to melt lest it ruin the 'grooves' of the record. And of course, partially eaten records can no longer be played. But for sheer novelty, this is perhaps the tastiest RSD release ever.
THE HUMAN LEAGUE - "EMPIRE STATE HUMAN" ('GROW YOUR OWN' 12")
Continuing the novelty vinyl theme, the Human League's ode to an ordinary human acquiring enormous growth is given a RSD release on 12" vinyl that may seem fairly diminutive when first purchased. Retailing in a minute square PVC sleeve, the 1" record is removed from it's protective sachet and placed inside a large bowl of water for seven days. As the water soaks into the record, it expands until you can dry off and hold the 'fully grown' 12" single in your hands, playing it on a regular turntable. Thankfully, there's a fold-out 12" sleeve contained in the miniature package to house the larger record.
U2 - "I STILL HAVEN'T FOUND WHAT I'M LOOKING FOR" (INVISIBLE 12")
In a bumper year for re-issues of previous singles, U2 wade into RSD by surprisingly not forcing new material onto people's iTunes accounts, or manipulating their Spotify feeds to play their new single without fail after every four songs. Instead, they've opted to work with scientists at the Dublin City University to release what could be 'the hardest-to-find record ever released' - literally! Using innovative and cutting-edge light-refraction 'prismoscopy' technology, the team (headed up by lead physicist Dr. Marlon O'Hare) have created what has been codenamed 'Nonesuch', a completely invisible material that can replicate the qualities of any substance known to man. While this has infinite potential for industries such as national defence (producing spy planes and even clothing to make the wearer invisible) the team working with U2 decided to put out a highly collectible 'invisible record', the first of its kind anywhere in the world, to be used both as a tangible prototype and the ultimate collector's item for fans. "The 12" will play just as a regular record does" explains Dr. O'Hare, "but the way in which Nonesuch is made will mean that it is completely invisible to the naked eye. This makes it even more important for the owner to place the record back in the sleeve, or remember exactly where they left it!". Asked whether the band would consider recording a new song for the world's first invisible record, they scoffed and revealed they already had the perfect track. Guitarist The Edge explained: "We thought that re-issuing 'Still Haven't Found What I'm Looking For' would be a great tongue-in-cheek choice for the A-side, especially on an invisible 12" single." The band were persuaded to contribute new material for the B-side, however, and kept with the single's theme by recording a cover of Queen's 'The Invisible Man'. "Lots of people don't realise it, but I actually wrote that song" claimed U2 vocalist Bono. "I just felt particularly generous that day and had a sense of being exquisitely alive so I did... I sent it over to the Queen lads, to be sure, and told them to record it, so I did. I wish I hadn't now, because it was a bloody popular song, so it was".
THE FEELING - "THE FEELING" (COLOUR-CHANGING 'EMOTIONAL' VINYL)
Released with somewhat of a twist, the new album from The Feeling (the band's fifth) comes as a coloured vinyl LP. Nothing new about that, we hear you cry - bands have been releasing 12" slabs of vinyl in every shade since the Middle Ages. But wait - this is a different kettle of coloured vinyl altogether. When purchased, the vinyl is a vibrant - almost glowing - red. If the album is then placed on a shelf and not played for a while, the colour begins to change as it starts to feel 'unloved'. Changing to a faded red, then green, blue, purple and finally ordinary black, the only way to restore the album to its former glory is by playing the LP more, hence making it 'happier'. A clever way to ensure the album is kept on repeat, although only time will tell if this neat colour changing element will mean Feeling fans don't fall out of love with their new LP.
DAVID BOWIE - 'THE MODERN DAY' BOX SET (TWELVE UNRELEASED ALBUMS)
Bowie certainly surprised many life-long fans with the release of his LP 'The New Day' back in 2013, and followed this up in 2016 with the curious 'Blackstar' the album that will, sadly, be remembered as the one released so soon before his death. But what many fans were not expecting was the news that Bowie was more prolific in his final months than anyone realised, recording nearly thirteen hours' of material from which 'Blackstar' was compiled. Released as a 12 x LP box set complete with collector's items like rare photograpsh, a complete lyrics book, a fridge magnet, a 'Dancing in the Street' mirror and razor blade "shaving set", set of Bowie Christmas crackers, commemorative cheese knife, a DIY Bowie face-paint kitand bottle of 'Thin White Duke' slimming pills, these (mostly untitled) tracks now see the light of day, in what is practically a tsunami of Bowie and will keep those who love his music happy for months. The LPs are a diverse bunch, featuring an eclectic and sometimes schizophrenic mix of styles; Disc 3's hour-long soundscape of jungle, drum 'n' bass and trip-hop merged with backwards vocals and an unexplained appearance from his Tin Machine bandmates is particularly jarring, as is Disc 7's 'elevator muzak suite', including an 11-minute ambient piece entitled 'Up/Down'. Disc 9 features experiments with flute, synthesiser and lap-steel, and it is credit to Bowie's enormous talent that he manages to make this sound palatable. Disc 12 rounds off the set in bizarre style as the musical icon reads a selection of unfinished lyrics through a vocoder, while the audio alternates between a field recording of the M25 in the early hours of June 2015 and someone apparently having sex with a drumkit. Weird yet captivating stuff from the man who may have sold the world, but never sold out.
SNOOP DOGG - 'DOGGYSTYLE' (23RD ANNIVERSARY LIMITED EDITION 'CANNABIS LEAF' SHAPED PICTURE DISC)
A somewhat untimely anniversary edition of Snoop Dogg's debut studio album from 1993 is released for RSD in the form of a picture disc LP shaped like...the leaf of a cannabis plant. Featuring the big hit single 'Gin & Juice', collectors will have a hard time finding this release however, after it was rumoured that the shaped vinyl discs, upon being dried in a pottery kiln for five days, could then be crushed up, placed inside a king sized Rizla and smoked, enabling listeners to get high on the music in a way the record label never intended. The rumours were confirmed after music journalists with access to early promo copies of the release posted the effects of smoking Snoop Dogg's anniversary present to the world on Reddit ("its like having Snoop's creativity inside you" revealed one anonymous writer). Acting swiftly, Snoop's record company vetoed the release, but it is estimated around 50 copies escaped the industrial crushers. Quite whether record stores will stock this particular LP knowing it is highly illegal is not known, but it will most likely depend on their moral fibre. With a copy recently spotted on eBay for $1200, this LP will surely drop with a hefty price tag, and possibly a visit from the boys in blue.
MUSE 'UNRELEASED COVERS EP' (DOUBLE 7" 'JIGSAW' SINGLE PACK)
With Devon's finest currently on tour promoting their 'Drones' concept album, fans have the chance to own four exclusive recordings made while the band were rehearsing their monolithic stage show in London. But to own the double 7" set, fans will have to do a fair bit of leg work first. Muse revealed that revisiting the band's 1999 album 'Showbiz' and playing it backwards will unearth the names of eight record stores in the Devon area hidden across the record. Visiting these four stores and giving the password 'Teignmouth' will entitle that person to purchase a piece of 7" jigsaw, which along with the remaining seven pieces, fit together to form two clear vinyl 7" singles, enabling the tracks to be played. The actual songs available across the two records is a closely guarded secret, but we're told they were originally recorded by "Daft Punk, Russ Abbott, Donna Summer and Tammy Wynette". Sounds mega.
KRAFTWERK - "RADIOACTIVITY" (DEPLETED URANIUM 12" SINGLE)
A rare release from the Teutonic electro-pioneers, as their 1975 track 'Radioactivity' gets a RSD release on clear 12" which contains actual pieces of depleted uranium pressed into the record itself, in a strictly limited run of 100 records. Quite how safe this record is remains to be seen, but to be fair the 12" does come in it's own lead-lined plastic sleeve with a fluorescent warning label advising that the single will be completely safe to play in 2116, as well as a precautionary leaflet on radiation sickness and its symptoms. As well as the original 1975 album version, the track is backed with the 1991 re-recording from the band's 'greatest hits' album of sorts, 'The Mix', and a live rendition from their 2004 world tour, so this is sure to have pulses racing (and if you're particularly unlucky, skin glowing in the dark) amongst Kraftwerk fans.
VARIOUS ARTISTS 'THE HATEFUL EIGHT' ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK (BLOOD-FILLED 2xLP/FAKE BLOOD 'SQUIB' PACKAGING)
The soundtrack to Quentin Tarantino's latest blood and gunfire filled outing has already been released as a special edition box set, issued in a metal tin with a series of 7" records, a replica 'Lincoln Letter' and other gubbins, but that was prohibitively expensive and only available from Third Man Records outlets in the USA. This RSD re-issue sees all the music from the original score by legendary composer Ennio Morricone contained on two clear vinyl LPs that - get this - are filled with a blood-like red liquid that sloshes around inside the record as it plays! The actual gatefold LP packaging is also reported to be packed with 'squibs' - small packages of fake blood that ooze when punctured. So if you've ever wanted to know what the LP soundtrack would look like if it were left inside Minnie's Haberdashery during the out and out massacre that takes place during the climax of 'The Hateful Eight', then imagine no further. Puncturing the four blood squibs on the sleeve will render the sleeve a bloody mess, but thankfully one that will wash out. A neat little piece of packaging for a neat soundtrack album, we think.
THE FALL - 'INDUSTRIAL ESTATE' (REMIXES/COVER VERSIONS - DISSOLVING 12" SINGLE)
Courtesy of everyone's favourite miserable Mancunian Mark E. Smith comes a mixture of forty-three remixes, versions and covers of 'Industrial Estate', an early track by post-punk group The Fall. With remixers ranging from former Blur producer Stephen Street to Mark Ronson, and artists such as Matt Berry, The Pogues and Lionel Blair contrbuting cover versions, the lure of this extremely unique (and limited - there's only 50 being pressed) 12" single is that each track is contained on a separate 'layer' of the vinyl. Opening the sealed sleeve permits oxygen to enter and begin 'eroding' the infinitely thin layers the music is contained upon. Approximately a week after playing, the first layer peels away like a snake's skin, revealing thesecond track and so on. Longevity is certainly the name of the game here, with the last song only available nearly seven months after the 12" single is opened. After the week-long period the final track is available, the record 'dies', and becomes nothing but a withered husk of vinyl, but on the plus side, can be used as a conventional dinner plate
We hope you enjoyed reading about these lovely looking additional exclusives, as I said before, make sure you get down to your local record shop nice and early on RSD16, we'll be in Totnes covering the action at the DRIFT Record Shop at the top of the High Street from about 8am, no doubt there'll be people there from around 3am (as I did many years ago), if you're heading down that way, we'll see you in the queue....