Nis Hansen is a 36-year-old music fan who was born and raised in Northern Germany. Currently based out of Berlin, he works as a portfolio manager for a UK-based company. It also happens that Nis is a big-time music fan and loves vinyl, so join me in welcoming him to the Record Collector series.
How long have you been collecting records?
The first record I bought was acutally a CD by a German punk band, Die Ärzte, back in 1993, when I was 12-years-old. I continued buying CDs from that day on. Over the years, I grew more and more into extreme metal. At the age of 17 I discovered bands like Isis, Cave In, the Dillinger Escape Plan, and Converge. Actually, I was introduced to them by close friends that where very active in Germany's hardcore scene back then. I really liked the fusion of metal and hardcore that the aforementioned bands basically did to perfection. From that time on I started to buy vinyl records since I pretty much liked the idea of colored/limited edition vinyl that wasn't very common in the metal scene at that time. Especially labels like Equal Vision, Hydra Head, No Idea, and Tortuga did a damn good job on that. Of course, today labels like Relapse also do a great job on limited editons, but it was a different game like 20 years ago.
Where/how do you usually find your records these days?
I'm subscribe to a shitload of newsletters in order to not miss the latest relevant pre-orders. For specific records, Discogs and/or eBay are my main sources. Back when trading boards like vivalavinyl.org where still active, I did a lot of trading, but it seems like this "scene" somehow went extinct.
What is the most you paid for a single record, where/how did you obtain it, and what was it?
I think this would be the first press of Obscuritatem Advoco Amplectère Me by Abruptum (Deathlike Silence Productions). I had quite a hard time finding that one, but I eventually traded some other records for it a couple of years ago. If I recall it correctly, it was around $300 or something...
If you had to pick one record label you feel had/has the best track record of quality releases, who would that be and what are some key titles you love?
This is an easy one: Hydra Head Records! Aaron's work with Hydra Head Records was groundbreaking, and helped influence the current hardcore and metal vinyl-collecting scene. Not only did he sign a lot of damn good bands, but also the quality of his releases, the creativity for limited editions, packagings and colors was (and still is) outstanding. For me, the most important records would be: Botch's We Are the Romans, Cave In's Until Your Heart Stops, and Isis' Celestial. Even though I still listen more to death and black metal stuff, Hydra Head will always be #1 when it comes to this.
Of everything in your current collection, what is your most prized record and why?
I can not break it down to one record, but this would be my top three I'd say:
- Carcass, Heartwork (2002 reissue, white vinyl)
- Isis, Celestial (blue/light blue, tour edition, limited to 100)
- Type O Negative, October Rust (first press, black 180g vinyl)
Every record is connected to a relevant period of my personal life and they are still on heavy rotation. Some of them I acquired at live shows. As a matter of fact, I would name those three bands also the top 3 bands I listen to. I mean, you basically can't go wrong with any record of Carcass, Isis, or Type O Negative (ok, Reek of Putrefaction might me a tough one, but still...).
Is there anything that frustrates you about the current record collecting scene?
Well, like most of the collectors: flipping records. It just sucks, missing a pre-order and seeing the same record on eBay like 10 minutes after it sold out on there for like 5 to 10 times the price. This is pretty much the same game that goes on in the art collecting "scene" (besides records I'm also into collecting art prints — Aaron Horkey, Ken Taylor, Olly Moss, Jeremy Geddes, Roamcouch — just to name a few artists). But it is what it is and even though it makes it harder to get the records you want, you feel even better if you have successfully checked out and placed your order [laughs].
Which records are still on your want list that you've had a tough time tracking down through the years?
- Type O Negative's box set (I've heard rumors, that this might be re-released soon, and I'm really looking forward to it since the prices for the box set absolutely escalated after the death of Pete Steele)
- Day of Suffering, The Eternal Jihad (the white vinyl variant which I haven't found for a reasonable price yet)
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Tagged: record collector