Waxing Poetic is a column where we explore the wonderful world of music collecting (vinyl, cassettes, whatever else strikes our fancy).
Trip-pop pioneers Portishead recently announced a long-awaited reissue of their stunning debut “Dummy” after a long period of the album being commercially unavailable on the format except on the secondary market. Surprisingly, not every iconic album is available on vinyl. Some have never been pressed, while others have been released, but in quantities far too short to meet the demand. As a result of the scarcity and high demand, these records can go for hundreds of dollars on eBay and Discogs. Here are 20 such albums that urgently need a reissue, and we hope our prayers are soon answered.
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Waxing Poetic: Twelve Albums We Wish Were on Vinyl
1-7. Beck – “Mellow Gold” / “Odelay” / “Mutations” / “Midnite Vultures” / “Sea Change” / “The Information” / “Modern Guilt”
For Record Store Day’s Black Friday event in 2012, Mobile Fidelity issued a very limited edition of “Sea Change” on pink vinyl, and it quickly sold out. Despite being the third pressing of the album, it averages around $200 on Discogs and eBay. In fact, it’s not just “Sea Change,” it’s most of Beck’s albums that are scarce on vinyl. Why are Beck’s records in such short supply? It’s baffling considering his continued popularity and major label backing, but collecting Beck’s vinyl album discography will cost a fan well over a thousand dollars.
The price of owning the original score to Tron: Legacy on vinyl? Around $300. Sounds hefty for an album that isn’t even four years old, but it’s Daft Punk.
Due to copyright issues with samples that appear on “Exmilitary,” pressing for the debut mixtape of Death Grips stopped with only a few hundred copies in existence.
“Dear consumers, We ‘Dare’ you to find Gorillaz’ second album on vinyl for under $200.” – Signed, Feel Bad, Inc.
Median Discogs price: $101.60? More like Kings of INconvenience, eh?
Peacefrog Records had the right idea when they reissued Swedish electro soul quartet Little Dragon’s debut album on clear vinyl two years ago. Unfortunately, they only made 300 copies, which did nothing to lower the original pressing’s $300+ secondhand market value.
Despite the shoegaze revival of recent years, the discography of Lush has yet to receive the reissue treatment.
Expect to be buried in debt if you can find this hand-numbered collection of Massive Attack remixes anywhere.
My Bloody Valentine’s game-changing shoegaze masterwork “Loveless” has not been pressed on vinyl since 2003, and frontman Kevin Shields denounced it as an unapproved, low quality release ripped straight from a CD. Despite a two-year reunion tour and a surprise new album last year, a better reissue has yet to surface, with or without sanction from the notoriously perfectionist Shields.
Especially treasured among the cult following of sadcore outfit Red House Painters is the long out-of-print release of “Ocean Beach” on double 10″ vinyl.
“Takk…” is when Sigur Rós went from playing theatres to the Hollywood Bowl and the main stage of Coachella, but despite its breakthrough status, the short-pressed album currently goes for $250 for the original issue and $350 for the equally limited direct metal mastering version.
The Tool army is so desperate to own the metal band’s second album on vinyl that the market has been flooded with multiple bootleg releases. Despite the unauthorized copies floating around, the real deal maintains mythic status and value.