Austin Record Convention purchase report, Oct. 27

Anytime I go to the Austin Record Convention, I end up buying something — even if I’m going just to see what’s there. Last year, I had a strange hankering to find Turn Back the Clock by Johnny Hates Jazz. Yeah, I can’t explain it either.

I have yet to listen to Nena’s second US album, which I bought on vinyl about three years back. Yes, Nena of 99 Luftballons fame. That was purely an impulse purchase.

The record convention usually happens twice a year, but the spring show was canceled because the Crockett Events Center was under going renovations. (Not sure, really, what was renovated.) I usually try to limit my attendance to one per year anyway. This time, I actually made a mental list of things I wanted to find:

  • Throwing Muses, House Tornado I bought this album back in high school, and I didn’t get it. So I sold it. I listened to it again recently (via the Evil Sharing Networks) and discovered it was an album for adult ears. The unconventional songwriting makes more sense to me at 35 than it did at 17.
  • Whatever Sibelius albums I downloaded from eMusic. At least anything with Tapiola and the Symphonies Nos. 6 and 7.

Here’s what I ended up getting:

  • Throwing Muses, University After The Real Ramona, Kristen Hersh’s songwriting became more accessible but didn’t lose its atmosphere.
  • Bruce Brubaker, Inner Cities I would have preferred Glass Cage or even the new one, Hope Street Tunnel Blues.
  • Nico Muhly, Speaks Volumes I saw Nico Muhly linked from aworks and The Standing Room. This album was selling for $4, although the top right corner of the packaging is severely clipped, indicating a previous life as a promotional item.
  • Manhattan Transfer, Extensions The very first album I begged my parents to buy, because of that strange radio disco hit "Twilight Zone". I was 7 years old — what did I know? Oh good Lord, the costumes they’re wearing for the cover art is so très ’80s. Don’t believe me?
  • Dawn Upshaw, The Girl with the Orange Lips Dawn Upshaw shows up a lot in my music collection, although not on albums billed under her name.

Yup, I struck out on Sibelius, but I’m not disappointed. The Waterloo Records storewide sale is next weekend.