by Pat Prince — Back when I was a young, impressionable metalhead in the ’80s, I purchased just about anything that came close to being classified as heavy metal. Most of that stuff is long gone by now. But I did manage to keep some vinyl that I considered worthwhile. For instance, one record that I still cherish to this day is Queensryche’s self-titled EP, released on the band’s own 206 Records back in 1983. The 4-track EP was actually a recording of the band’s demo tape, and the 206 pressing is before it was re-released on EMI.
Besides this item being a rarity, it’s music is quite excellent. It was released at a time when many of us in the metal community were waiting for another Judas Priest to come along. Not the Judas Priest of the commercial Tom Allom days, but the classic Priest circa 1977. With the release of this EP, Queensryche presented the promise of carrying on the Priest legacy. Of course, Queensryche went on to be a more progressive, experimental group, never truly taking hold of the “classic Priest” flame. Nonetheless, the EP stirred a lot of excitement for a short period of time
The EP is available on eBay. In fact, there is one listed in “NM/NM condition” (photo above) for $80, a Buy Now, marked down from $100. The seller, slcd.com, looks very reputable, with thousands of sales and 100% feedback. SLCD claims that their grading system is “extremely strict” and that they “know how to grade.” It looks like a real good investment.
However, if I were the buyer, I would go with the autographed copy of the self-titled Queensryche EP. I own this one as well. I didn’t get this one at a record store. It’s even more rare. I bought this beauty directly from the Queesnryche fan club around — I believe — the end of 1983. Listed on eBay is one for $199.95. It’s in only VG condition (see below). Described as having “some light marks and cover has some fairly heavy shelf/corner wear, some light staining on top of cover, some writing on top cover, however the autographs done in black marker actually still look very good yet today.”
This is strange because the one I own has the autographs in gold marker and on the front cover (see below). A nicer touch. Why the difference? Was there a second or third autograph session? Is this item on eBay authentic? Is it the fan club edition? I also don’t like the fact that there is writing on the front cover. If it’s not an autograph, it shouldn’t be there.
In the end, however, the autographed EP is preferable. Wait for another one to pop up on eBay or any other auction site. I would almost recommend buying it no matter what condition it’s in but that might be a bit much for some collectors.
My copy? I never played it. But it does have the frayed edges on the corners and some shelf wear. Apart from that, it’s a good feeling, knowing that a piece of vinyl that you saved all these years is worth a decent amount of money.
I’ll never part with my copy, but on eBay, this rare find can be had, for the right price.
Turn to the Goldmine Standard Catalog of American Records, 1950-1975, 6th Edition for complete vinyl values and identification guide for Lionel Richie and thousands of other acts.
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