Record Collectors

Record Collector: Josh Torpen, aka jtorpen

A husband and father of three boys, Josh Torpen is a factory worker from a "very very small town" in Wisconsin. In other words, he's just a normal guy who happens to love and collect hardcore music. That latter fact is what lands Josh a spot in our Record Collector series.

How long have you been collecting records?

I've been collecting records for probably about 13 years or so. I didn't really get into the hobby till about 10 years ago though. I used to work at Hot Topic and would pick up stuff I though was cool at the time and it grew from there. I will probably lose some cool points for having worked at Hot Topic [laughs].


Here it is!!!! Unity - You Are One... (Blue/70-100) #joshsrecords #wishingwellrecords #unity #finally

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Where do you usually find your records these days?

For me, it's pretty much all online. Having really weird work hours and a family makes it hard to drive like two hours to a record store. I have one that is closer but it doesn't have much of what I'm looking for. I mainly use Discogs, Instagram, and any of the millions of Facebook groups that are out there.


Chain Of Strength - What Holds Us Apart (Chain Crew/41 of 100) #joshsrecords #chainofstrength #finally

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What is the most you've ever paid for a single record, what was it, and how did you go about obtaining it?

The most I paid was $200 and it was a long time ago when American Nightmare stuff was still going for a bit. I ended up getting the Friends Press of Background Music. The best part of the whole thing was the guy I got it from took a long time to ship it, so he threw in some free stuff. I got an Ambitions test press and a tour press of Soul Control Involution.


American Nightmare - S/T (Friends Press/94 of 100) #joshsrecords #bridge9records #americannightmare

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What is your most cherished record?

I have a bunch of gems—as I call them—in my collection. The one that means the most to me would have to be my 1/1 copy of Instilled Unfinished Business. I used to talk to Dave Campbell all the time and ended up snagging a test from him for the same release. As an added bonus because he knew I loved the band he made the Super Fan Edition just for me. It was expected but it was much appreciated. 

What frustrates you about the current record collecting scene?

The only thing that really gets to me in people who buy something with the only intention to flip it. I get it but it just bugs me. But what can you do?


Release - No Longer (Wolverine Cover/50) So amazed to have this in my collection. #joshsrecords #release

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What are some records you've had a tough time tracking down?

There are only a couple records that I'm trying to get my hands on right now:

  • Turning Point, S/T on red
  • Underdog, S/T on blue 
  • Bold, Looking Back on purple

And a new release I want to keep on top of Substance Hardpoint record release cover with yellow writing.


Follow Josh on Instagram.

Tagged: record collector