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Happenings Fifty Years Time Ago: Jimmy Page Announces “Yardbirds ’68”

yardbirds, jimmy page, led zeppelin

From JimmyPage.com comes news that is sure to interest British Invasion & Led Zeppelin fans alike. The company is taking pre-orders for a package called Yardbirds ’68.  The set is comprised of the group’s April 30, 1968 concert at the Anderson Theater in New York City and what are being described as “studio sketches” from earlier that same month.

Yardbirds ’68 is available exclusively through Page’s website, and can be purchased on CD and/or vinyl. The press release says the packages will include an artbook with liner notes from the band, a double gatefold housed in a slipcase. Lp’s are 180 gram. Remixes are by Mr. Page, and mastering by John Davis, who worked with the guitarist on the most recent Zep remasters. There will also be a deluxe option, which will be signed by Chris Dreja, Jim McCarty and Jimmy Page. All formats are scheduled for is November 5, 2017.
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Diamond Select Toys: “Thor Ragnarok” Marvel Gallery Figures

Marvel, Thor, Ragnarok, diamond select toys

Thor is ready to “ROK” in this DST Marvel Gallery Diorama

No Sleep ’till Hell’s Kitchen…
Well I stayed up all night and binge watched The Defenders straight through. That was fun. At a brisk 8 episodes I think it tied up the plot lines of the Disney/Marvel/Netflix “street level” superhero universe quite nicely. Punisher is waiting in the wings.

Looking toward to the next big screen Marvel outing, we’re headed back into cosmic, mythical and magical territory on November 3, 2017 with Thor: Ragnarok. Trailers so far are looking good. Planet Hulk, Hela, the Fenris Wolf and the fire giant Sutr. I’m in.

Marvel, Thor, Ragnarok, diamond select toys

Tessa Tompson’s Valkyrie, DST Marvel Gallery Figure


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Spilt Milk & Dazed Cookies: Hozac Publishes Sal Maida Memoir

sal maida, hozac records
In the true spirit of “stuff we like, you might too…” here’s a heads-up on a new book any fan of 1970’s Power Pop and Glam Rock will be curious to read. 4 strings, Phony Proof, and 300 45’s is musician Sal Maida’s memoir of life in the heyday of the aforementioned genres. His adventures on both sides of the Atlantic should make a great read for fans of Roxy Music, Sparks, early power punk and the 1970’s New York City Punk Rock scene.

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Hide – Go – Bleak: Mezco Toyz’ Annabelle Scavenger Hunt @ Ripley’s Odditorium

annabelle, ripleys believeit or not, the conjuring, mezco toyz
Dolorous Dollies…
The Mills Brothers once sang “I’d rather have a paper doll to call my own, then a fickle-minded real Iive girl.” They may have had second thoughts had they met Annabelle. Not since The Twilight Zone’s Talky Tina has there been such an unholy host. Introduced to audiences in The Conjuring (2013) the doll has become a pop culture icon warranting a self titled film in 2014. On August 11, 2017 New Line Cinemas and Warner Brothers will reveal the backstory of the menacing muñeca with the release of Annabelle: Creation, directed by David F. Sandberg (Lights Out & the upcoming DCU Shazam).

Finders Weepers…
To celebrate the film’s imminent arrival Mezco Toyz – sole authorized maker of the official Annabelle prop replica – and Ripley’s Believe It Or Not! Times Square – the fine folks who pride themselves on displaying all things weird and wonderful from across the globe – partnered for a special scavenger hunt. On August 4, all intrepid Ripley’s visitors had chance to track down 13 Mezco Annabelle replicas hidden throughout the maze-like Odditorium complex.

Of course Ms. Annabelle was in fine company surrounded by the over 500 unique items on view at the Believe It Or Not! exhibition. The collection of curiosities now known worldwide began in the 1920’s as a newspaper feature created by illustrator Robert Ripley.

annabelle, ripleys believeit or not, the conjuring, mezco toyz

Polk Salad Annie (belle) – Gators got your granny. Chomp! Chomp!


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Big Love: Steven Wilson Remixes Gentle Giant Tracks

entle giant, 3 piece suite, steven wilson, tony visconti

Gentle Giant “3 Piece Suite” offers 5.1 Mixes of classic tracks.

In addition to his solo work and a number “side” projects, Steven Wilson has built quite a reputation in the audiophile and progressive rock fan communities for his 5.1 and stereo remixes of classic albums. His respect for, and love of the genre, has yielded what are currently recognized as definitive versions of career landmarks by Jethro Tull, King Crimson, Yes, and recently XTC.

While the aforementioned surround sound experiences are the main attraction for long time collectors (who may already own several versions of these classic recordings) there is usually a bevy of additional perks that, to my taste, often eclipse the multichannel mix. Packages have included just about every permutation of the source materials, including original masters, new mixes, alternative tracks and contemporaneous live versions. XTC’s Skylarking is a treasure trove.
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