CD Scavenger Hunt – May update

In keeping with the tradition of not posting the Hunts at the end of the proper months, here is another big update, this time for this past May…..

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Fozzy – Happenstance (2002) – $4 used
High Noon – No Turning Back (2009) – $6 used
Lance King – A Moment In Chiros (2011) – $6 used
Heaven’s Edge – s/t (1990) – $12 used
Rush – Moving Pictures (1980) – $2.50
Rush – Signals (1982) – $2.50
Deep Purple – Now What?! (2013, Deluxe Edition) – $16
Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats – Mind Control (2013) – $12
Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats – Blood Lust (2012) – $15
Queensryche – Frequency Unknown (2013) – $10
Stratovarius – Nemesis (2013) – $10
Avantasia – The Mystery Of Time (2013) – $10
Amaranthe – The Nexus (2013) – $10
Free Fall – Power & Volume (2013) – $10
Ugly Kid Joe – Stairway To Hell E.P. (2012) – $6

Poison – Sexyback (promo CD single) (2007) – $7 used
Arch Enemy – Black Earth (1996) – $7 used
Arch Enemy – Burning Bridges (1999) – $7 used
Arch Enemy – Wages Of Sin (2001) – $7 used
Arch Enemy – Dead Eyes See No Future E.P. (2004) – $7 used
Shok Paris – Go For The Throat (1984) – $7 used
Shok Paris – Steel & Starlight (1987) – $11 used
Shok Paris – Concrete Killers (1989) – $11 used
Trixter – New Audio Machine (2012) – $12
Waysted – Save Your Prayers (1986/2013 reissue) – $10
Jorn – Symphonic (2013) – $11
Torch – Electrikiss (1985) – $14 used
Airbourne – Black Dog Barking (Special Edition) (2013) – $22.50
Armored Saint – March Of The Saint (1984) – $9.25 used
Armored Saint – Delirious Nomad (1985) – $9.25 used

May was a really good month but I kind of stayed away from the record stores and did more online. I’m torn right now because technology is providing me a means to compare prices on Amazon and Ebay while I’m in the record store and I’m making decisions based on price. I’ve always been a record store rat and I always will be but, I buy and devour so much music yearly, that I need to save as much money as possible. I support local record stores but it’s hard to when Amazon offers the same CD cheaper than the record store sale prices and no sales tax. No shipping for me because I’m an Amazon Prime member and the membership has already paid for itself. Let’s move on to the treasures I found…..

My first outing of the month was a quiet one. I hadn’t planned to go to Newbury Comics but I was driving through Warwick, RI and decided to stop in. I picked up the Fozzy, High Noon, Lance King and Heaven’s Edge CDs all in the used bin for some really great prices. The Lance King CD replaces the promo digital download that Lance’s label, Nightmare Records, sent me to review but the gem was the original pressing of the self-titled Heaven’s Edge album. It’s a highly bootlegged CD and there have been some shoddy reissues so I was cool spending $12 for a used CD. I checked Ebay while I was in the store and original pressings were listed for $25+ so I feel like I got a bargain. After the record shop, I went across the street to Best Buy so I could burn a $5 off coupon that was expiring the next day. Best Buy doesn’t have much of a selection and they aren’t big on organization so it can be a crap shoot finding a gem. I knew what I wanted…..Rush! I’ve been filling the holes in my Rush CD collection with Best Buy purchases because they are all $5 each so I grabbed Moving Pictures (1980) and Signals (1982). Take that $5 coupon off the $10 total and I got both for $2.50! My last trip out before I went online shopping was to my usual Newbury Comics location in North Attleboro, MA to grab the new Deep Purple album special edition. I wanted the CD/DVD edition so I paid a little extra than the regular CD. While I was there the store was playing the new Uncle Acid & The Deadbeats record, Mind Control, so I added that in on sale and caved in to buy their 2012 release Blood Lust also.

Now we get to the dilemma…..online vs. record stores. I had been watching a few new releases at the record stores and passed on them because I either thought the sale price was too high or I was skeptical about the material therein. The releases in question were the new albums from Geoff Tate’s version of Queensryche, Stratovarius, Avantasia, Amaranthe and Free Fall.  The Queensryche record has gotten terrible reviews so I was holding out for a used copy and I was actually shopping for the new Stratovarius online for the special ecition with three bonus tracks and those two were well stocked at the sale price. Also, I wasn’t in the mood for another concept record so I passed on Avantasia on sale and I really wanted to try out Amaranthe and Free Fall but those CDs were available at regular price. I finally caved in towards the end of the month and checked the prices on Ebay and Amazon and decided that the best value was to order through Amazon. I got all five CDs for $10 each ($50 total) with free shipping (I have Prime) and no sales tax, had I bought in the record store, with sale prices, the total would have been $68. So I actually saved $18 for the same exact items on Amazon vs. my favorite Newbury Comics…..that’s 1 or 2 CDs! If the Queensryche, Stratovarius and Avantasia albums were bought in store at their respective regular prices ($17 each regular price) then my total in store would have jumped to $80. And those figures in store don’t include state sales tax! The savings is obvious and I guess that’s why record stores are having a hard time competing. As a bonus for saving all that money, I also ordered a hard copy of the Ugly Kid Joe E.P. that I bought digitally back in 2012. The actual CD was $6 so it wasn’t a large add on.

Ebay was extremely lucrative in May. There were a few CDs I paid a little extra for and there were some good bargains. I had to have Poison’s cover of Justin Timberlake’s ‘Sexyback’ but I didn’t want the entire Poison’d covers album so I found the CD single for a cheap $4 + $3 shipping. As soon as that CD was taken off the want list, I focused on Shok Paris. I found a copy of Go For The Throat from a seller who was also selling a four CD lot of Arch Enemy CDs I needed so I went for both auctions and won for a grand total of $35. So I’m averaging $7 per CD on Ebay but the rest of the month was higher. I finished the Shok Paris discography (Steel & Starlight and Concrete Killers) for $11 each, grabbed the latest Trixter record from 2012 for a cheap $12 (replacing the promo download I was sent), the Waysted – Save Your Prayers 2013 reissue from Cherry Red Records and Jorn Lande’s Symphonic album for $11. I grabbed a CD copy of Torch – Electrikiss even though I already own the vinyl…..I’ve never seen a CD version so I grabbed it for $11 + $3 shipping and it’s in mint condition. The CD says Metal Blade for a label and I checked all Metal Blade releases through 2002 (through the anniversary box set) and didn’t see it listed. I think it was a Metal Blade Europe release and it’s a real silver pressed, factory made CD…..I’m still researching it. I had to have the new Airbourne album but I wanted the 2 disc special edition so that cost me a total of $22.50 and the seller who sold me the Arch Enemy lot had both Armored Saint CDs listed in one lot so I grabbed that for $18.50.

Total = $284

Total (year) = $1106.80

Average Price (per item) = $11.07

Total CDs (year) = 91

Total DVDs & BluRays (year) = 3

Total LPs (year) = 1

Total Box Sets (year) =5

CD Scavenger Hunt – update 5/11/10

It’s almost been a month and I am still active buying CDs in person and online but I’m not really doing the volume I used. I’m still out there buying new releases but I’m also re-exploring my own collection. One of the things that is a daily challenge for me is what to listen to, I always have some new releases ready to go but there are so many classic albums that I own that I haven’t played in a long time. So here’s the update on the last few weeks, I picked up a few interesting albums and some definite bargains.

Record Stores

Ratt – Infestation (2010) – $13: This was a complete no-brainer! Aside from the new Scorpions record, the new Ratt record was one of my most anticipated release of the year. I grew up with Ratt, I remember when ‘Round And Round’ was a “world premiere video” on MTV back in 1984, and I have been waiting for a reunion with Stephen Pearcy since…..well, their last reunion in 1999! I was buying this anyway but I was able to get access to the album ahead of time so I knew just how good it was when I dropped my $13 on the counter. Saved $4.

Cathedral – Guessing Game (2010) – $8: There was no way that I was going to pass up the new Cathedral album at such a great sale price. I didn’t realize that it was a double disc set either! That tells me that the Doom across 13 tracks are long and full of sludge. The problem was that this came out the same day as Ratt and I got to the record store late so they sold out of their two copies that were in stock. I ended up having them call the other stores in the chain and hold one for me at a location 20 minutes away. When I got to the other store it turned out that I had the last copy on hold and a few like-minded metalheads had come in looking for a copy. Saved $8.

Armored Saint – Symbol Of Salvation (3 CD Special Edition) (2003) – $12: I already own the original pressing of SYMBOL OF SALVATION but I have been watching this particular reissue for a few years now. It’s always in stock, it’s always around $20 and I always pass it up! On this particular visit to the record store I looked at it again and noticed the new regular price…..$8 cheaper! SOLD! You get the original album plus two bonus videos on Disc 1, the demos and part 1 of an interview on Disc 2 and part 2 of the interview on Disc 3 all enclosed in a nice slipcase. Saved $8.

Jon Oliva’s Pain – Festival (2010) – $12: Pricey imports be damned!I knew that if I waited patiently that this album would eventually get an official North American release. I picked up the first two JOP albums right away because of my love for Savatage but I never got around to buying 2008’s GLOBAL WARNING. Not sure why I never bought it but I didn’t want to make the same mistake with FESTIVAL. I always forget about Jon Oliva’s Pain even though I’m a big Savatage fan and I kept seeing ads, reviews, and JOP stuff everywhere online…..a sign perhaps? Saved $4.

Triptykon – Eparistera Daimones (2010) – 10: I picked up the new Triptykon based on two things: my new love of Celtic Frost and the preview I got of a few Triptykon songs on the Ye Olde Metal Shoppe podcast. I started listening to the podcast a couple months ago and I heard the Triptykon stuff and I was hooked! Take a look at that album cover too! If this album was in the record store 25 years ago when I used to tread the aisles of Record Town and Good Vibrations I would have bought it based on the cover alone. Sale price helped too, saved $6.

Possessed – Seven Churches (1985) – $15: So I’m sitting around reading Sound Of The Beast (by Ian Christe) and I get to the part about Possessed and i decide to give SEVEN CHURCHES a fresh listen. I go upstairs to the collection and I can’t find it. So I go down to the cellar and I check the old cassettes…..nothing. Now I’m freaking out because I think I’ve lost an album! In one of my Rubbermaid containers are a bunch of CDRs that were burned for me and there’s SEVEN CHURCHES! I got to listen to the album again but I had to get this at the top of my list. I ended up buying the 1999 reissue at regular price…..saved $0.

Bullet For My Valentine – Fever (2010) – $9: I have successfully avoided Bullet For My Valentine for two albums but I keep getting recommendations from people that this is a great Metal band. I’m usually skeptical of any band that is featured so prominently on the t-shirts of the kids at my daughter’s elementary school…..same thing goes with Avenged Sevenfold and Killswitch Engage. I figured I’d finally give the band a try with FEVER, if it sucks then I’m only out $9 but if it’s good then I saved $7.

Ebay
(prices include shipping)

Bad Moon Rising – Full Moon Collection (3 CD set) (2005) – $15: I love Doug Aldrich’s playing and I am trying to collect all of the bands he’s played in (Burning Rain, Bad Moon Rising, Lion, etc.). I’ve had FULL MOON COLLECTION on the radar for a while but the price has never been right until now. The 3 CD set includes all three of BMR’s albums (1991’s BAD MOON RISING, 1993’s BLOOD, 1995’s OPIUM FOR THE MASSES) with all the bonus tracks from their Japanese E.P.s…..basically, I have all the studio recordings in one package. Unfortunately, there is a song missing titled ‘Union’ that was replaced with ‘Free’ on the OPIUM FOR THE MASSES disc. So I have everything minus one song! Great deal though because this set can go up past $50 sometimes.

Metal Massacre Vol.1 (1982) – $5: I’ve been on a Metal Blade kick lately from reading Sound Of The Beast (by Ian Christe) so I pulled out all my Metal Massacre CDs and my Metal Blade 20th Anniversary box set and I noticed a glaring omission…..I’m missing the first Metal Massacre! Thanks to Ebay, you can grab a cheap sealed copy, with the price tag from Hot Topic still on it for $7, and save $2! Of course, there are two versions of Vol.1, this is version #2. The original version on vinyl has Ratt’s ‘Tell the World’, Steeler’s ‘Cold Day In Hell’ and the original version of Metallica’s ‘Hit The Lights’ (with Lloyd Grant on lead guitar). I’m on the search for the vinyl now…..

Helix – Get Up! (2007) – $15: I’ve been looking for this CD for almost three years now and I finally have it! GET UP! is a self-financed CD from Brian Vollmer of helix that showcases seven songs that would later show up on THE POWER OF ROCK ‘N’ ROLL (2007) on Perris Records. GET UP! was basically a teaser CD that fans could buy and Brian would autograph it. This CD has been out of print since it came out basically so it’s a rarity and the completist in me had to have it.

Helix – Long Way To Heaven (1985/1999 reissue) – $10: You’ll start to notice a trend here because I’m filling some holes in the Helix collection. This reissue is the one that Helix frontman Brian Vollmer re-pressed and sold through his website – PlanetHelix.com. The CD artwork looks a little blurry and the booklet is your basic lyrics and band picture but it’s official issue from Brian himself (I took the time to research the details of the CD to be sure). I’m not sure if this album ever got a proper CD release but I got the reissue I knew about at a solid price.

Helix – Wild In The Streets (1987/2002 reissue) – $9: This is a great record and the title track is one of my favorite Helix songs. I had this on cassette and I’m finally getting around to buying this one after years! This is another reissue, this time by EMI Canada in 2002. There’s no extras, no bonus tracks or videos, it’s just the regular album. Comparing it to the LONG WAY TO HEAVEN reissue, this CD seems a little more professionally done. Not taking away anything from Brian Vollmer and his reissues, it’s just obvious a major label has a bigger budget for reissues.

Helix – No Rest For The Wicked (1983/2005 reissue) – $8: I’m just replacing all the old Helix cassettes in the CD Scavenger Hunt! I couldn’t pass up such a great price for this album, it’s got ‘heavy Metal Love’ on it! This is the 2005 reissue from Rock Candy Records and they are well known for putting a lot of effort into their reissues. No bonus tracks but the album is remastered and it has an excellent booklet that includes a written note from Brian Vollmer.

Total = $141

Total (year) = $540

Total CDs (year) = 55

Total DVDs (year) = 1

Total LPs (year) = 1

CD Scavenger Hunt – update 4/12/10

This is going to be a good update because I have been picking CDs off Ebay for great prices and the local independent record chain I frequent, Newbury Comics, had their 32 Year Anniversary sale last Tuesday…..one day only, everything in the store 32% off. If the item was on sale then you either got the sale price or the 32% off the regular price depending on which was lower. Can you imagine how much money I spent! I bought a few DVDs for my kids and a Lady Gaga CD for my wife but the rest is all mine!

Newbury Comics

(I will list the price I paid rounded up to the nearest dollar and I will let you know what the original price was for comparison.)

Lynyrd Skynyrd – Gods & Guns (2009) – $16: This album was on the Wanted list in January because I missed out on it in 2009. I was not going to buy anything but the 2 CD special edition with the 6 bonus tracks so, after I missed the sale price when the record was released, I waited because the regular price was $24! I couldn’t pass this CD up on such a great sale so this was the first CD I went for because I knew from my previous week’s adventure that there was only one copy! Saved $8.

Robert Plant & Alison Krauss – Raising Sand (2007) – $7 used: I have put off buying this CD for three years but I finally decided that I would pick this up during this sale. Of course I had my choice between the $15 brand new CD or the $10 used disc…..I went used to maximize my buying power. I haven’t heard any songs from this album but everything I’ve read and everyone I’ve talked to said it’s great. I figured that if Plant was involved then it had to be interesting and high quality. This will be a change of pace album for me, somthing different. Saved $3.

Slash – s/t (2010) – $9: This was on my list of new releases and I was going to head over to Best Buy to pick it up because it was $7.99 advertised but I bought it at Newbury Comics and gave the extra dollar to the independent store. This CD was cheaper on the sale price (reg. $15.99) so it didn’t qualify for the 32% off. I’m very interested in this album because of all the guest vocalists like Ozzy, Lemmy, Iggy Pop, and Chris Cornell…..I thin the track with Fergie is going to suck but I’ll save it for the upcoming review. Saved $7.

Armored Saint – La Raza (2010) – $10: I’ve been an Armored Saint fan since MARCH OF THE SAINT in 1984 so I don’t miss a new record when they decide to put one out. It’s been 10 years since REVELATION (2000) and the NOD TO THE OLD SCHOOL (2001) compilation was just a stop-gap so LA RAZA was at the top of my list for 2010. Regular price was around $14 and the sale price was $11 so I saved a extra dollar…..that’s makes up for giving the store the extra buck for the Slash CD! Saved $4.

Raven – Walk Through Fire (2010) – $10: After a year since being released in Japan, Raven’s WALK THROUGH FIRE finally gets a U.S. release on Metal Blade Records. I’m a huge fan of the NWOBHM, and I support a lot of that era’s bands when it comes to new music, so this record was on the WANTED list as soon as I saw it was only available as an expensive Japanese import. I read a lot of good reviews on this album so I have been psyched for this album for a year! I found only one copy, at a $14 price. Saved $4.

Charred Walls Of The Damned – s/t (2010) – $11: I know absolutely nothing about this band except that Richard Christy (ex-Iced Earth) is on drums and Tim ‘Ripper’ Owens has the vocal spot. I’ve read a few reviews online and I saw Richard Christy promoting the band/album on a recent episode of VH-1 Classic’s THAT METAL SHOW so I figured I would take a chance on something new. I’m not sure if there is a regular version but the one I picked up has a bonus DVD that shows the behind the scenes making of the album. Regular price was $16, sale price was $12, I got the 32% off for more savings. Saved $5.

Saxon – Destiny (1988/2010 reissue) – $11: I already have an original Japanese pressing of this CD but I couldn’t pass up this reissue, with it’s 6 bonus tracks, at 32% off. Saxon is one of my favorite bands so picking up the latest round of reissues is a priority, there are two other albums reissued: INNOCENCE IS NO EXCUSE (1985) and ROCK THE NATIONS (1986)…..albums I already own on CD. Regular price $16, saved $5.

Saxon – Innocence Is No Excuse (1985/2010 reissue) – $11: I already own an original Japanese pressing of this CD but I couldn’t resist the 7 bonus tracks that EMI tacked on this reissue. 32% off is a good excuse to add expensive, imported reissues to the collection so I bought this and DESTINY (1988). I would have bought ROCK THE NATIONS (1986) too but it wasn’t in stock! Regular price was $16, saved $5.

Gamma Ray – To The Metal! (2010) – $11: I have had a promotional copy of this album for a couple of months now but it had no booklet, artwork or information like a regular CD would so the collector in me wanted an official CD. I saw that there were two versions of this album: the regular CD and the CD/DVD combo that includes the making of the album. I was going to grab the double disc but it was $5 more so I went the cheaper route. Regular price $16, sale price $12, the 32% discount saved $5.

Ebay

Riot – Shine On (1998) – $16: riot is one of my favorite band sand I spent most of the late ’90s collecting every album they released. Missing in action is SHINE ON, the 1998 live record. I had plenty of opportunities to buy this album from 1998 through 2001 at my favorite record store but, when it closed it’s doors, it was the last time I saw the CD. This particular version is the rarer Japanese import released by the Zero Corporation, there is another version on Metal Blade with a different cover.

Heavy Bones – s/t (1992) – $12: About 10 years ago, I could have found multiple copies of this album in used bins and clearance racks across Rhode Island and Massachusetts for $5 – $8. Now I can’t even find one for the price of a regular new CD! I’ve been watching this CD on Ebay for a while but I was not willing to pay more than $10 for it knowing that it’s in a used bin somewhere for half the price! Surprisingly, this CD was commanding high prices in excess of $20+! I happened to get an email in the early morning hours stating that this particular CD was just listed as a BUY IT NOW for $10…..I pulled the trigger immeadiately! Shipping was extremely reasonable at $2. Came with the price tag the seller bought it for…..a dollar!

Mark Free – Long Way From Love (1993/1998 – 2 CD reissue) – $22: Now this CD has been a long time coming! I like King Kobra, so when I got the Internet in 1998, I found out that King Kobra singer Mark Free had released this solo record in 1993. What made this album even better was that Frontiers Records rereleased the CD as a “Special 5th Anniversary Reissue” in 1998 with a second CD added. The second CD has 16 extra songs: a 10 song live set from The Gods Festival 1993 and 6 new studio tracks. I never dropped the $20 for this 2 CD set at the record store and, like the Riot disc above, it was gone after the store ceased operations. I’ve been tracking this set for years but the price always gets high because it is out of print in it’s 2 disc format…..you can still get the single disc version but I didn’t want that one! I’ve seen this reissue sell on Ebay anywhere from $30 to as high as $100 so I was definitely waiting until I found a good deal.  I found this auction 2 weeks ago and I watched it closely, the end time was after 2am so I stayed awake and snatched the CD with a high bid of $25. I ended up paying $19 with $3 shipping.

Total = $146

Total (year) = $399

Total CDs (year) = 42

Total DVDs (year) = 1

Total LPs (year) = 1