What has the mailperson left for me on the front porch?
Yippee! After a two-month delay, the new Circus Devils record has finally arrived in a super-limited, super-deluxe, 2-LP, heavy-duty gatefold edition. It is a thing of beauty.
First, a quick once-over on the Nitty-Gritty record cleaning machine.
Yes, I vacuum-clean even brand new records. Why? Because even a brand new LP has all kinds of dust, bits of paper, and mold-release compounds all over it which will be permanently ground into the delicate surface by the stylus if they are not immediately removed. In addition, the Nitty-Gritty will eliminate any static-electricity that has built up in the manufacturing and shrink-wrapping processes (which is substantial). Of course, I will not return the freshly cleaned LP into its original, contaminated inner-sleeve. No, it will live from now on in a Mobile Fidelity anti-static, quasi-rice paper sleeve. Yes, I am obsessed.
Now, let's have a listen:
I've been really digging the CD edition (available on Ipecac) for a while now and have come to the conclusion that this is perhaps one of the best records Robert Pollard has ever made (certainly since the demise of Guided By Voices, anyway). I also believe that Pollard's albums are best experienced on vinyl. This is especially true with a sprawling, 32-track epic like Sgt. Disco. Pollard is especially gifted at sequencing an album; each side has a real beginning, middle, and end and this effect is utterly obliterated by the CD's relentless continuity. I also think the LP sounds better - even though I know it was mastered from the same digital source as the CD. Chalk it up to euphonic distortion, I don't care. This record rocks.
Only 470 of these things are available. Get yours before they're gone forever only from Rockathon.