Saturday, May 17, 2008

Naked Raygun-Throb Throb LP (Haunted Town)

Throb Throb is one of the top 10 best 80s USHC records of all time, and it's absolutely the best Naked Raygun record in my opinion. I have a CD version of this that that was sort of a rush job done in the 90s, which is what I've always listened to. There was NO mastering, it was like they just plugged in the record to a DAT and cut out some pops. The tinny, thin production lent something to the recording, it made it sound dated and, in some ways, even more "hardcore", but it wasn't the way this record was meant to be heard. Haunted Town has done a great job putting this version of the record together. The artwork is perfectly re-created and there's a complete lack of over-sized label logos and contact info (which is sadly almost the norm now in high-profile reissues). The mastering job is huge. When you drop the needle and "Rat Patrol" comes in with just the one guitar, it's a long few seconds waiting to really hear how it's going to sound, and when the band kicks into full gear, the sound is all over the place and it's just so huge and pummeling and you know that this is what Naked Raygun, in their infinite punk-wisdom, were going for.

Of course, there's almost no point in talking about the record because you either know it or you don't and if you don't, you probably do know that there's something missing in your life. Everything from the sing-alongs in "Rat Patrol" to the slow, driving beat of "Roller Queen" to the too-short-notice "No" (bonus track not included on the original) is to-the-point and, above all, strictly Naked Raygun. Raygun were never ones to bullshit or beat around the bush, and they never recorded a track they didn't absolutely need to, which is what makes their material so vital. They were one of the few bands in the 80s that managed to carve out their own niche in hardcore punk and create a sound that was like nobody else in the world. This album is essential.

There are 800 of these on gold vinyl and 550 on oxblood. I've got the oxblood version, which is like a dark purple with a black haze, and looks awesome.

Buy It on Interpunk

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