At the beginning of this year, my good friend Harry approached me with the idea of doing a record swap. The basic premise was that two times in the year (tentatively May and November) we would buy a record for one another and post it off to it's new owner. The basic rule set was that it should be an LP, it should be by a band that the other person has likely not heard of or owns any music from; and there had to be some kind of assumption that the other person would be in to it. So in May I sent him an album by the band Monsterland. Given his love of Gin Blossoms and other 90's radio rock/ borderline grunge kind of stuff I thought it'd be a good shout. He seemed in to it and I awaited my arrival.
Fast forward being 4 months (fashionably late I would assume?) and this mysteriously arrives at the door! I have a vague eye for Harry's handwriting and so I eagerly opened it.
The Lounge Lizards - Self Titled - Editions EG. / Polydor - 1st Press (UK) - Black /?
Harry just about hit it perfect with this one. From a design perspective there's plenty to talk about; it's also from an artist I haven't heard (although I have heard of them - from his enthusiastic account of his debut listen to this record). I had a small feeling that this album was going to end up in my possession as a result of this friendship!
The back cover contains all the credits and their is no insert, so here is all the information you need as a guess! Three cool things to point out:
1. The cover has this small bronze strip that wraps around the front and back cover which looks really great.
2. On the first photo, at the centre of the top of the sleeve you can see a small white plastic or wax tab that wraps over slightly. I have no clue if this is part of the cover art, or whether it was put there from a previous owner to cover a seam split. Either way, the sleeve was designed my Peter Saville (most famous for his work with Joy Division/ New Order and all things Factory Records related. An inexplicable white tab on a sleeve would seem perfectly feasible in his world.
Number 3 requires a little zooming and maybe a little imagination. The sleeve is textured. Not the first time a Peter Saville design came with a textured sleeve. I'm assuming this may be a Garrod & Lofthouse product. It's anyones guess at this point though!
Finally, here is a note containing all the ins and outs as to why Harry picked this record. Normally, I like to keep these things to myself as a personal note remains personal for a reason. However, the reasoning behind me ending up with this album has some incredibly sound logic. I've been longing to get in to jazz for quite some time, and hearing that this was a gateway record gives me some kind of hope that I'm ready to finally delve in to that world.
I've caught up with the last few episodes of Twin Peaks: The Return. I have watched Audrey dance and so the rest of my Sunday afternoon will be taking a journey in to something new. My next post will be a more familiar realm I'm sure, but I'm glad that this post is here as it has a story to tell for sure.
I already have the record I'm sending in November, and much in the same way I'll make sure to write to Harry and let him know why that record should be in his possession. I'm incredibly thankful for friends like Harry, allowing me to push the boundaries of recommendation, and for trusting me with an aspect of life that often remains so intrapersonal. As it's my birthday in a few days too, this just about qualifies as an early birthday gift!