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Top ten 'Record Store Day' vinyl 2011

It wasn't easy but here are our top ten special vinyl releases on Record Store Day ... and a few disappointments.

By Pat Prince

When it comes down to it, the quality of the special vinyl releases on Record Store Day will be hard to complain about. There's simply no excuse for missing out on Record Store Day on Saturday, April 16. There is truly something for everyone. And there has to be a record store nearby to support (for a list of record stores, by state, go here).

It was hard to whittle down the best vinyl to buy on Record Store Day, but here are our top ten picks ... and a few disappointments (we had to be a little nitpicky).

For the entire list of Record Store Day releases go to record store day's Web site. There are 'early' releases and regional releases as well.


1. Jimi Hendrix
"Fire" b/w "Touch You"
Format: 7" 45
Label: Legacy
Details: This 45 will feature the alternate version of "Fire" from the West Coast Seattle Boy box set as well as "Touch You," a previously unreleased 1967 studio recording made by the original Experience during sessions for what would later become Electric Ladyland.
Tracks: "Fire" b/w "Touch You"(previously unreleased).
Comments: How can you pass on any unreleased recording by the original Experience? This is also available in CD format.


2. Pink Floyd
London 66/67
Format: Vinyl
Label: Snapper Music
Details: Limited Edition 180gm Heavyweight White Vinyl from Snapper Music. The classic Syd Barrett-era Floyd at their most adventurous and exploratory, 'London 1966/1967' features two rare performances, including an explosive 17 minute version of 'Interstellar Overdrive', recorded at the legendary Sound Techniques studio in early 1967. These first ever studio recordings from the classic 1960’s Pink Floyd line-up are now available on a limited edition 180 gram white vinyl version in a gatefold cover, with printed inner sleeve.
Tracks: "Intersteller Overdrive" "Nick's Boogie"
Comments: Some of us would even wait in-line for this kind of Floyd! And a 17 minute version of "Interstellar Overdrive."


3. Roy Orbison
Only The Lonely (mono)/Oh, Pretty Woman (live from Holland)
Format: 7" 45
Label: Legacy
Details: Format: 7" 45
Label: Legacy
Release type: RSD Commercial Release Limited Edition 7" featuring mono mix of "Only The Lonely" & unreleased live version of "Oh Pretty Woman."
Comments: This is worth the unreleased live version of "Oh Pretty Woman" alone. BTW, check out our Goldmine Giveaway this month. We are giving away Orbison Monument Singles box sets this month!


4. Derek & The Dominos
Got To Get Better In A Little While/Layla [7” Vinyl]
Format: 7" 45
Label: UMe
Release type: RSD Commercial Release
Details: Got To Get Better In A Little While is track recorded for the Layla sessions but previously unreleased.
Tracks: "Got To Get Better In A Little While"/"Layla"
Comments: An unreleased track from the Layla sessions? What's not to like?


5. 13th Floor Elevators
Wait For My Love
Format: 7" 45
Label: Snapper Music
Details: Limited edition green vinyl 7". The lost 6th single - Originally planned as a single in 1968 but never released as 7" with "May The Circle Remain Unbroken" Remixed by 'Sonic Boom' (Pete Kember of Spacemen Three & producer of MGMT) Packaged in an 'International Artists Records' House Bag.
Tracks: "Wait For My Love" b/w "May The Circle Remain Unbroken"
Comments: Alright Snapper music! A work of art in all its simplistic glory.


6. R.E.M.
R.E.M. THREE: First Three Singles from Collapse Into Now
Format: 7" 45
Label: WBR
Details: Package will be Exclusive to RSD. Three b-side tracks never before issued in any form.
Tracks: Mine Smell Like Honey/Supernatural Superserious, Oh My Heart/Harborcoat, Uberlin/What's The Frequency, Kenneth? (Live In Oslo, Norway)
Comments: Now, this is a perfect example of what a RSD exclusive should be: three songs never before issued in any form.


7. Built To Spill
Format: 7" 45
Label: WBR
Details: Limited, collectors edition picture disc that features only one track--a cover of the Grateful Dead's "Ripple", previously unreleased and recorded live October 11, 2010 in Charlotte, NC.
Comments: "Ripple," as a cover song, has had a good track record. Anyone remember Jane's Addiction's version of the song? It was fantastic. This one should do "Ripple" justice as well..


8. Foo Fighters
Medium Rare

Format: Vinyl
Label: RCA
Details: A previously unreleased collection of 12 cover songs performed by Foo Fighters on 120 gram 12” vinyl.
Tracks: "Band On The Run", "I Feel Free," "Life of Illusion," "Young Man Blues," "Bad Reputation," "Darling Nikki," "Down In The Park," "Baker Street," "Danny Says," "Have A Cigar," "Never Talking To You Again," "Gas Chamber," "This Will Be Our Year"
Comments: Speaking of cover songs (and we were, above), this ought to be worthwhile purchase. Foo Fighters' leader Dave Grohl is an aficionado of rock music.


9. Mastodon/ ZZ Top
Just Got Paid
Label: WBR
Details: 7" Side By Side Series Exclusive to RSD. One in a series of original artist and cover artist doing a track.
Comments: This is an example of one of several discs in this "Side by Side" series — a great idea — and having ZZ Top and Mastodon side by side is just brilliant. This classic match-up of modern heavy metal and classic southern rock is hard to resist.


10. The Beach Boys
Good Vibrations/Heroes & Villains
Format: 10" LP
Label: Capitol
Details: Limited Edition double 78 RPM vinyl single. 10" single pocket jacket with foil stamp and numbering - black vinyl. Tracks: Disc 1: Side A Good Vibrations Side B Heroes and Villains
; Disc 2: Side A Good Vibrations (Early Take) Side B Heroes and Villains (Alternate Take)
Comments: Check out our review of this specialty item in our April issue.



The Decemberists
Live At Bull Moose
Format: CD
Label: Capitol
Release type: RSD Commercial Release
More Info:
Details: Recorded Live at indie record store Bull Moose.
Tracks: 1. This is why we fight 2. Down by the Water 3. Rox in the box 4. June hymn 5. Rise to me 6. All arise! 7. If I could only win your love.
Comments: This one may be in CD format but nothing captures the spirit of Record Store Day more than a live recording of a show at a record store!



Various Artists
Kill Rock Stars

Format: Vinyl
Label: Kill Rock Stars
Details: Reissue--Exclusive to RSD; Silked screen cover, hand numbered, includes Nirvana track
Comment: One of the Various Artists exclusive discs worth checking out.



1. Death Cab For Cutie
Atlantic Records Presents: Death Cab for Cutie In Living Stereo! (RSD Exclusive)
Format: 7" 45
Label: Atlantic
Details: Tracks repeat on both sides. This is the first place to hear new music from Death Cab, all songs will be on the new record in May.
Tracks: Pieces of new tracks "Home is a Fire", "You Are A Tourist" "Some Boys"
Comments: The 'easy way out' on Record Store Day: selling a sample from an upcoming release. This isn't a special item for the fans. It's nothing more than a promotional piece!! (BTW, The Cars are doing the same thing but it makes more sense to promo new material from a band that has been inactive for almost 24 years)


2. Bruce Springsteen and E Street Band
Gotta Get The Feeling b/w Racing In The Street
Format: 10" LP
Label: Columbia
Details: From the the upcoming live dvd.
Tracks: "Gotta Get The Feeling" b/w "Racing In The Street"
Comments: Nothing speaks "cheapskate" more than selling a preview of an upcoming release (see Death Cab For Cutie, above).


3. AC/DC
Shoot To Thrill b/w War Machine
Format: 7" 45
Label: Columbia
Details: No other plans to release audio from the upcoming live DVD.
Comments: That's it? That's all you got for us? Everything here seems phoned in. For those of us who love AC/DC ... a big disappointment. This is Record Store Day, not Wal*mart!


4. Michael Jackson
Hollywood Tonight b/w Behind The Mask

Format: 7" 45
Label: Epic
Details: Both sides are remixes not album versions, previously unavailable.
Tracks: "Hollywood Tonight" b/w "Behind The Mask"
Comments: Ho hum, a MJ "remix." We know there's more to offer from the Michael Jackson estate than this.


5. Deftones
Format: Vinyl
Label: WBR
Details: LP Exclusive to RSD. Tracks previously available digitally and on import CD singles.
Tracks: The Cars' "Drive", Drive Like Jehu's "Caress", The Smiths' "Please Please Please Let Me Get What I Want", Sade, "No Ordinary Love", Jawbox "Savory", The Cardigans' "Do You Believe", Lynyrd Skynyrds's "Simple Man", Japan's "Ghosts", Duran Duran's "The Chauffeur", Santo and Johnny's "Sleep Walk" and a live cover of The Cure's "If Only Tonight We Could Sleep"
Comments: Great stuff ... no doubt, however, it's all been released before. (See Foo Fighters for an exclusive release) Well, looking on the bright side, at least it's on vinyl now.