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PLEDGE DRIVE: Keep this website alive by making a donation to ThisIsBooksMusic.com

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It is that time of the year where I have to bring this up one more time, but it is that time that I have to renew my web domain once more, and I am asking for your help.

What I am placing is a “tip cup” of sorts. If you enjoy the type of coverage that I feature here at ThisIsBooksMusic.com and would like for it to continue, I am looking for your donation to continue the website for another year, if not more. If you are able to “give a tip” to ThisIsBooksMusic.com, you can do so via PayPal by clicking here. Your private information is secure when you donate via PayPal, and you are also able to make a donation even if you are not a PayPal member. The deadline is September 30th.

While it would be nice for me to run advertising on my website, ThisIsBooksMusic.com is ad-free for a reason, and I’d like to keep it that way. The music I cover is the music I would like for you to listen to and discover for yourself, and pass the information along to those who you think would be interested. This website is about the music I like, support, and listen to on a regular basis, within as many genres as possible. I don’t pick and choose just to make random choices, these are my musical habits, and I share that on a regular basis. If the website is unable to be renewed, all donations will be refunded, no questions asked. If you are able to make a donation, I would be very appreciative.

RECORD CRACK: Judas Priest get the audiophile treatment

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One of the biggest heavy metal bands to this day is getting the audiophile treatment from Mobile Fidelity Sound Lab not once, but three times.

  • 1982′s mammoth album Screaming For Vengeance will be mailed out from some stores today (Wednesday, July 23rd) so it’s your chance to hear the clarity of “Hellion/Electric Eye”, “Devil’s Child”, and of course “You’ve Got Another Thing Coming” better than you ever have. While Judas Priest did find themselves getting rotated in the early days of MTV with previous works like “Breaking The Law”, “Heading On To The Highway” and “Don’t Go”, it was with Screaming For Vengeance that brought them to a much wider audience.
  • 1978 gave Judas Priest not just one album, but two. Stained Glass featured such anthems as “Beyond The Realms Of Death”, “Exciter”, “Better By You, Better Than Me”, and “Saints In Hell”, songs that have stood the test of time over the years.
  • Then came Killing Machine, the album we Americans know as Hell Bent For Leather because the original title seemed too suggestive. This is the one that gave the world “Delivering The Goods”, “Rock Forever”, “Evil Fantasies”, “Killing Machine”, “Hell Bent For Leather” and their awesome cover of Fleetwood Mac’s “The Green Manalishi (With the Two-Pronged Crown)”.

    Personally, I would have loved an MFSL pressing of Judas Priest’s Point Of Entry album, but no luck, perhaps in the next round.

  • BOOK’S JOOK: Beastie Boys’ “Hey Ladies”/”Shake Your Rump”

  • Book’s Jook is a column dedicated to placing a record within my dream jukebox, if I were to have one. The Seeburg jukebox shown below is similar to the one I have wanted since I was a kid. To read more on why I started this column, click here.

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    By the time I bought this 45 in August 1989, I had already fallen in love with Paul’s Boutique. I bought the cassingle of the Love American Style EP first before I picked up the 12″ for it, so “Hey Ladies” was something that was well known not only from what I had, but also from the video, which had a significant amount of airplay on MTV and BET. This was the follow-up to Licensed To Ill and it confused people because: the Beastie Boys went disco and the image in the video just seemed too weird for fans and viewers. Did this lead to millions of fans say “I’ve had it with these guys, they’re has-beens, I’m done”? Maybe, but it did keep a number of people interested because they liked what was perceived as weird. One of those people was me.

    “Hey Ladies” seemed odd to find on 45 because by 1989, most singles were either purchased as 12″ singles or cassette singles. The 45rpm single was still around, I had my copies of records by Tone Loc and Young MC in the format but other than that, it was becoming more difficult to find the hits on 45, even if they were made. The cassingle was king, and the rise in the CD single along with the growing dominance of the compact disc pretty much made those records a dated format, despite the fact people wanted it. Yet it was cool to have and cool to find when I was up at a record store in Spokane. I should’ve bought three copies, if not five, but one copy was what I could buy, and I did. It came in a generic Capitol sleeve, with the B-side being “Shake Your Rump”, just like the Love American Style EP. I drove home and it was cool to hear on 45. Paul’s Boutique is an album perfect for vinyl, and yet I bought it on LP a number of times, plus the CD and cassette. For me, it didn’t matter, but the 45 was a cherished item to have because I didn’t know if I would ever see it again, definitely not in the town I lived in.

    The only thing that was bad about the 45 was that the mixes used were taken from the album, not the 12″ mix so you could hear a brief excerpt of the wind from Pink Floyd’s “One Of These Days” as the extreme end of “Shake Your Rump”. I always thought it was odd, considering the 12″ had a proper mix ready made. Otherwise, to have both songs as a 45 was, and still is, very cool.

    I’m making this record a part of my installment of Book’s Jook this week because July 25th is the 25th anniversary of Paul’s Boutique. I’ve been waiting for this day, partly because I had intentions of going to the corner of Rivington and Ludlow in Manhattan, where the cover photo was shot. I wanted to be there to make my pilgrimage. When I was in New York City for the first and only time in my life, I was only 16 minutes away from that corner, but I played it safe. I just went to Tower Records in a taxi, walked to Midnight Records, walked back up to my hotel near Times Square, and that was that. There was little adventure that week other than going to New Music Seminar 11, eating a hot dog and finding Coconut Yoo-Hoo, but I was in the city where rap music was born, that was good enough for me. However, the next time I am in New York City, I have a lot of plans and one of them is to make it to the corner of Rivington and Ludlow, to say thank you in my own way.


  • AUDIO: Valentine Khan’s “In Khan We Trust” (full EP stream)

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    In Khan We Trust is the new EP from newly-signed OWSLA artist Valentino Khan, whose work you may know if you’ve been keeping your ears to the pulse of whatever is pulsing these days, I don’t know. What I may not know, you should know very well, you know? Now he has a new set of music to himself, which you may hear in its entirety at this very second. Press play now and be enthused.

    FREE MP3 DL: Swick’s “USBCLUBTRAX” (EP)


    For the next month, Swick is making his brand new EP USBCLUBTRAX as a free download. You can stream it in full above to get a feel for what it’s about but as you’re listening, go ahead and download it for free via iTunes or Beatport. Get it at it before it’s too late.

    AUDIO: Clockwork & Taylr Renee’s “Signals”


    Dim Mak will be releasing the new single by Clockwork called “Signals”, which will feature Taylr Renee on vocals, doing an awesome job on making a sensual song more sensational. You may pre-order the MP3 below via Amazon.

    AUDIO: Gorgon City featuring Zak Abel’s “Unmissable”


    Gordon City have no relation to Owl City, but they will be releasing what is being called a “debt album”, a mistaken way in the press release for saying “debut album”. Sirens (Priority/Capitol) will be released on October 7th and from it is the single “Unmissable”, featuring the harmonies of Zak Abel. Sirens can be pre-ordered on vinyl and CD directly from VirginEMI.com.

    RECORD CRACK: A look at the vinyl pressings for YOB’s new album


    YOB will be releasing a new album in September called Clearing The Path To Ascend (Relapse), with North America getting it on September 16th, September 15th in the UK and most of the world, and Germany getting it a few days earlier on September 12th. The album will be out in three different color variations, you can take a look here. The song in the video above is “Unmask The Spectre”, from the new album. You can pre-order Clearing The Path To Ascend from Relapse very soon by heading here.

    AUDIO: Otis Brown III featuring BIlal’s “The Thought Of You Pt. 1″


    If you follow your album credits, you may know who Otis Brown III, as he has played with Esperanza Spalding, Terence Blanchard, Joe Lovano, and Oliver Lake. He is now taking control of his own music in his own hands with his own album on Revive/Blue Note called The Thought Of You, to be released on September 23rd. From it is a track that features Bilal called “The Thought Of You Pt. 1″ and if you’re into good, intense jazz, this is just ridiculous. Pre-orders are available now via Amazon below, in the digital/vinyl/CD formats, in that order (as always).

    AUDIO: Alex Metric featuring Stefan Storm’s “Heart Weighs A Ton” (excerpt)


    There was a time when my uzi weighed a ton but even before that, one can say that in certain circumstances, a heart could way just as much, if not more. Alex Metric understands this all too well and his new song relays the same message, with Stefan Storm assisting. Keep in mind that the track above is only a 70 second excerpt, so…

    AUDIO: Ant Coughlin featuring Tragic Hero’s “Thru the Floor”


    If you’re familiar with the works of Wes Pendleton, you may already be familiar with Phiadelphia rapper Ant Coughlin. Coughlin is now branching out on his own with Pendleton handling the production of “Thru The Floor”, featuring Tragic Hero. The song will be on Coughlin’s forthcoming EP, Light Rooms, Dark Halls.