Tim Rule is the owner and operator of Bound by Modern Age Records, a label who has released material by such bands as Servitude, To Ashes, and Realm of Torment. Based in Hamburg, Germany, he's also played in the groups Forward to Eden, The Rule, Castigator, Through Choas & Solitude, and Carnivore Crusher, to name a few.
Obviously the dude is a fellow lifer, so please join me in welcoming Tim to the Record Collector club.
How long have you been collecting records?
Actually, not for that long. I used to have a bunch, mostly old rock records from my dad, very early, like with 12 or 13, but never really was interested in them until I really got into hardcore and metal a few years later. I think I bought my first hardcore records with 17 or 18 and after that a few metal(core) releases as well. But when I adopted the straight edge in 2011, I soon shifted my addiction from drugs and alcohol to vinyl. I suddenly had a lot of extra money and time and therefore really became obsessed with music and collecting, which I'd consider a rather positive and productive thing though (at least in contradiction to smoking pot/drinking alcohol and hanging around).
Where/how do you usually find your records these days?
If you're really looking for something particular, I think that the Internet might be your best shot. Discogs is almost always helpful. But with ebay or certain trade groups (on Facebook for example), you can also be lucky and make a good deal (especially when people don't actually know what they have). I personally preffer physical record stores or distros though, because it gives you a whole other experience and feels more personal. Unfortunately, major record stores are also more expensive and small distros have a very limited product range and only appear on certain occasions, like hardcore shows or other events, which is a really cool thing though, as it supports the scene and also gives you the chance on a lucky shot/chance finding. Nevertheless, if you regularly buy from a record store (and accept that extra dollar), you also ensure it's survival. And a world without record stores is not a world I'd want to live in!
What is the most you paid for a single record, where/how did you obtain it, and what was it?
Hard question... I don't really have any super expensive records, like an original Chung King (Judge) or something like that. I guess it would probably have to be any of my test pressings. I probably paid 40 - 60€ on each of my Repentance 12" test pressings (CTW & LLR Pressing), can't really distinguish because both times it has been a bigger order + postage and currency exchange. I also paid 40 - 50€ for my Vegan Reich 10", if I recall correctly... I don't really keep book of these things, but right now I can't think of anything which I paid more for. I guess I'm kind of a penny pincher [laughs].
If you 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?
If you don't mind, I'd like to mention my own record label, Bound by Modern Age Records, here [laughs]. Only quality records (obviously I stand behind each of them), the best of European '90s metalcore and beyond! But for real, after some hard thinking, I feel like I have to name Hardline Records here. Even though they didn't release that much (only Vegan Reich, Statement, and Raid to be precise), these three build the Holy Trinity of vegan straight edge music for me. All three records essentially helped to shape a music style and a mindset. The Vegan Reich 7", for example, has an inlet and a bunch of flyers and the Hardline Manifesto. Not many newer/recent records come with that sort of extra info!
Also, the Prepare for Battle EP was virtually the first vegan straight edge metal record in history, as Rat (the man behind Statement) was the first one who startet to combine and name veganism and the straight edge lifestyle in one sentence, back in the late '80s, even though he already lived that way and sang about it before he even heard about Minor Threat (the first Statement demo tape, which already featured lyrics adressing both topics, was released in '84). I do not want to glorify or justify everything which the movement Hardline did or let happen/become of it later on, but still I feel like todays hardcore/metal music and the vegan straight edge movement as such wouldn't be the same if it wasn't for Hardline Records.
Of everything in your current collection, what is your most prized record and why?
Tough question again, to which I don't really have an answer, as it is just too many which I can't really rate over the other... Maybe one of the Repentance records (I have a complete collection of everything from them), as it was one of the few recent bands which really blew me away. I toured through europe after them, flew over to the UK just to see them play and stuff like that (which also coincidentally, but obviously to my likeness, resulted in my face decorating a record inlay and 2 live-pic print merch pieces).
Maybe the Statement test press, which I traded with my now good friend Rat a while ago, or even the recently released Decide 7" which I had the honor of singing on. Or maybe one of my early Caliban records (I also have a complete collection here), which basically was the band that introduced me to heavier music and metalcore in particular, back when I was 12/13 years old...and there are so many more which are dear to me and I could talk about for hours! I think I should start some vinyl podcast soon!
Is there anything that frustrates you about the current record collecting scene?
From my perspective, it feel strange to talk about that, keeping in mind I'm only 26-years-old as well, but leaving out the "current scene" thing: I hate these people who buy some new, limited records, just to flip them on eBay the next day. Last year's Fluff, for example, I saw some limited show sleeve with poster and shit on ebay on the same fucking day it was sold! The hardcore scene shouldn't be used to make profit. Tt's based on DIY punk ethics and these should be held above anything else, at least that's my understanding of it... Another kind of person that really annoys me, and I know a couple of these people, are the ones, who hort a bunch of really limited record variants, just to force up the prices. I mean, lets be honest, no one needs (or even should have) 10 identical pre-order versions of the same record. But besides that, I rather favor the recent vinyl hype as I feel like like that also allows better conditions for smaller labels as well.
Which records are still on your want list that you've had a tough time tracking down through the years?
First thing that comes to mind: the first Culture 7" (Shadow Records). Every now and then there is copy on Discogs, but I don't even think that it sounds that great [laughs]. But then, I'd still need it to complete my Culture collection. It's also hella rare and I'm not willing to pay like 50€ minimum for that (which unfortunately seems to be the standart going rate)! It's a catch 22, I guess, [laughs]. Another thing is the Prayer for Cleansing 12" (Seventh Dagger), which just seems to be unable to get! Everytime I see it, even though it usually goes for 40 -50€ (which I would willingly pay, but it's already gone the minute I write the guy). Same with the Vegan Reich tape. I would pay almost any given amount for it, I just don't get the option to!
Also, even though it's like my all-time favorite band, I've never come across a Caliban test press! Other than that, there isn't much I couldn't track down (maybe except for some obscure and limited as fuck demo tapes, like Ecorage, Uprising, Firestone, etc.), but a bunch of stuff which I'm just not willing to pay the current discogs price for. So, I still have to wait and observe...
Follow Tim on Instagram, and head to Bound by Modern Age Records to see what the label has cooking.
Tagged: record collector