Numero Group: By The Numbers

Numero’s Class of 2013 (subscribe or die)
November 26, 2012, 3:55 pm
Filed under: Dynamic, Eccentric Soul 45s, Medusa, Newsworthy, Subscription

(Seasons) Greetings Numerophiles!

Another year in the books and we are no wiser, wealthier, or healthier. Such is the life of running “the world’s greatest reissue label” (Spin Magazine said it, but who can disagree?)—a title we aim to hold onto in 2013 by upping the ante from custom 45 boxes and gold embossed velvet to four alternate LP covers and a playable board game. 2013 marks our tenth year in business, a headboard notch we’ll scratch in elaborate fashion over the coming year. We hope you can join us on this journey.

We’re very aware that the last two titles of 2012 Vinyl Subscriptions have yet to ship. If we had it our way, both Medusa: First Step Beyond LP and Eccentric Soul: The Bandit Label 3LP would be in our warehouse and awaiting placement in a custom mailer. But alas, delays at the manufacturer have made these impossible to ship before the 10th of January. Oddly enough, however, the first three subscription items for 2013 are already in house and will be on your doorstep before the menorah is stowed for 2014. Part One is a mixed bag of soul, garage, hard rock, funk, and gospel, split across ten LPs and six 45s. As always we’ll be offering a bonus 45 and a 15% discount on our entire catalog. On deck:

NUM701 Pretty: Mustache In Your Face+3 2×7″

Recorded in an actual cave in western Missouri, the quartet formerly known as the Fabulous Four emerged from the depths in 1969 with an album’s worth of wasted psychedelia. Helmed by the Electric Prunes’ Michael Quint, the session produced one promo-only 45, bearing the truly un-pretty Squeakie label—a madman’s face in red-on-white, howling out of the spindle hole. The songs blend backwards guitar lines, Flamenco runs, triple tracked  vocals, heavy distortion, handclaps, key vamps, a Stones rip, and extremely absurd lyrical content. “Mustache In Your Face” and its flip have been paired with two other magical numbers, their five business card story, and stuffed into a cherry gatefold sleeve.

NUM702 Wicked Lester: You Are Doomed+3 2×7″

No, not the first incarnation of Kiss, just three wasted kids from Cleveland, Ohio, infatuated with the new wave of british heavy metal. Kick-started in Cleveland in 1979, girls, drugs, sports, and jock rivalry fueled Wicked Lester’s aggressive “fuck the draft” sound. Minted at Boddie in 1981, Wicked Lester’s lone single paired “Here Comes My Girlfriend” with the lovesick, late-Pink Floyd moves of “Say Your Prayers,” recorded on the same ominous day that John Hinckley Jr. shot President Ronald Reagan. We’ve added two unreleased tracks, thrown all four sides into a beautiful gatefold 7” sleeve, and added a couple thousand words about their near-meaningless existence.

NUM703 Cave Dwellers: Run Around+3 2×7″

Recorded in 1967 at Chicago’s Universal Studios and laboriously laden with Buckinghams-style horns and strings, the Cave Dwellers thought they’d locked their first hit down. Given just a few minutes to produce a b-side, the quintet unleashed their primitive and theretofore-unheard power. “Run Around” ended up a punk precursor that took contemporary rock to its tough, angry, and logical conclusions, scorching past anything the radio ran in its day. Intending only to tear off something fast and easy, the Dwellers had achieved one of Chicago garage rock’s most ferocious moments. That original Jim-Ko single has been reproduced alongside two previously unissued rockers and housed in a glorious gatefold sleeve with copious notes and quotes from a confused newsman about the “longhair” invasion.

NUM043 Eccentric Soul: The Dynamic Label 2LP

Born out of the largesse created from Rene & Rene’s Hot 100 Tejano tornado “Angelito,” Dynamic Records was but one of half a dozen labels run by San Antonio music and real estate mogul Abe Epstein. His flag ship group, the Commands, took their AFB circuit-honed chops up to the middle of the charts in 1966 with “No Time For You,” paving the way for 20 other soulful singles over Dynamic’s impressive two and a half year run. Epstein’s open door policy led to a diverse cross section of the population converging inside his studio on General McMullan Drive, as whites, blacks, and Latinos were swapped in and out of groups as needed. That melting pot mentality is well represented by the Tonettes, Little Jr. Jesse & the Tear Drops, Don & the Doves, Willie Cooper & the Webs, Bobby Blackmon & his Soul Express, and Doc & Sal. Compiled here are 28 of Dynamic’s most intriguing sides, representing the first layer of a treasure trove of San Antonio soul we’ll be unleashing over the coming year.<p>

CT-102 Mickey & the Soul Generation: Complete Recordings 3LP

For the tenth anniversary of DJ Shadow’s Cali-Tex records’ reissue of Mickey & the Soul Generation’s complete works, Numero has gone back to the scene of the crime and re-canvased for new leads. Expanded liner notes, a previously unissued ballad, and the first ever vinyl issue of the second CD’s contents are included here, alongside half a dozen previously unpublished photographs of this multi-ethnic funk combo from San Antonio, Texas.

NUM040 Good God! Apocryphal Hymns 2LP

The third entry into our Good God! series abandons funk altogether, instead focusing on the esoteric moments found buried deep on private-issue LPs from the the Me Decade. Featuring four unique album covers pulled straight from the pages of the Century stock jacket catalog, Apocryphal Hymns examines a world buried deep on side 2, those lost moments of experimental praise and devotion recorded as an after thought for a listener who needed no turntable.

N44004 King Bullard Version LP

The fourth release in our trad LP-only Numerophon line gathers highlights from James Bullard’s  BOS label. BOS got its start inside Lester Johnson and Bill Branch’s Way Out concern, running the gospel wing of Cleveland’s largest black-owned record company, and picking up a ton of Way Out’s soulful flavor in the process. This single LP features 14 songs, with liner notes by noted gospel historian John Glassburner.

NUM047 Eccentric Soul: The Forte Label 2LP

A king’s ransom of soul and funk from the City of Fountains (Kansas City for the uninformed), all produced under the watchful eye of TV producer Ellis Taylor. Though the label’s star was James Brown Revue castaway Marva Whitney, Taylor’s 15-year yield included singles by the likes of the Fantastiks, Gene Williams, Lee Harris, the Rayons, the Four Darlings, Everyday People, Sharon Revoal, Louis Chachere, Tony Ashley, the Fabulous Rhythm Makers, and Marva’s brother James Whitney.

The compact disc edition of our 2013 subscription surfs the above edges, but is a bit… well… more compact, and cheaper. Our plan is to issue only six titles in our main line next year, though to be fair, one of them is an elaborate double disc. We’re not quite sure what the final disc of 2013 is going to be, but it will be either an entry into our Buttons or Local Customs series. Of course all six will meet or exceed our standard for packaging, notes, research, and over all quality, plus you get the 15% discount and the bonus 45.

NUM043 Eccentric Soul: The Dynamic Label CD

NUM040 Good God! Apocryphal Hymns CD

NUM047 Eccentric Soul: The Forte Label CD

NUM048 Title TBA CD

Hair, Hobbits, and Hard Rock. Let these 15 hard rock blasterpieces from the private ’70s soundtrack to your next D&D or Magic the Gathering night. Dungeon map and 20 sided die included.<p>

NUM050 Title TBA 2CD+Book

In the late 1970s, a peculiar sound was bubbling up from the land of 10,000 lakes. Not known for its abundance of soul nor a sizable African American population, Minneapolis still harbored a tight-knit community of musicians who, between 1976 and 1984, manipulated the dance music of their coastal contemporaries into a brightly lit, multicolored, energetic fusion, taking R&B’s innate danceability and giving it a glam-rock sheen. The most shakeable moments have been compiled onto two discs, with a hardback book packed with photos and stories from this vibrant scene. Lesser royalty? Perhaps. But the blood here runs purple.

Finally, we’re officially launching our 45 subscription. The Eccentric Soul 45 subscription guarantees two 45s every other month, delivered directly to your door. Content will be a mix of previously unissued material and straight-up rare-as-all-get-out 45s from the soul diaspora. All singles are housed in a glorious duotone sleeve and slide perfectly into the Numero 45 box for easy storage. We’re even tossing in the subscriber-only bonus 45 from the CD and LP subscriptions. The first three singles are as follows:

ES-030 Signs Of The Time “Hurts So Bad” b/w “I Think Of You”
ES-031 Notations “That Girl” b/w “I’m For Real”
ES-032 James Dockery “My Faith In You Is All Gone” b/w “Giving You The Love You Need”

Let’s recap:

2013 Vinyl Subscription (Part 1): $150
2013 CD Subscription: $120
2013 Eccentric Soul 45 Subscription: $75

International subscriptions will ship in blocks of two to keep prices low.

Your patronage, as always, is appreciated. We couldn’t do this without you.

23 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Weren’t NUM040 and 043 part of LAST year’s subscription package? (or if things were switched around, are there not two more 2012 items left?).

I apologize in advance if I’m misinformed.

Comment by Donovan Friesen

I looked at last year’s list again and I noticed that the Lovo disc wasn’t on it, so that’s one of the two.

I’m assuming I am indeed wrong, what was the other change?

Comment by Donovan Friesen


Many apologies for the confusion. Our numbering has gotten a little more erratic over the last two years as a result of an unexpectedly large acquisition pace. Every year around this time we try to make decisions about what the following year will look like. We generally have a good idea about the first six months and what our year end set is going to be, but there’s always a little bit of guess work. Unfortunately, we are at the mercy of our projects, which despite our best efforts to put deadlines on them, always manage to go over deadline. In the case of 040 (originally slated to be the BOS record) and 043 (originally slated to be Cash), we realized that they were much different in scope than previously anticipated and had to be pushed back as a result. In place of those two missing numbers we sent out 046 (Alfonso Lovo) and WTNG 89.9.

We took a long hard look at the schedule this year and think we have it right. By year’s end you should have 50 Numero titles on your shelf that line up. That said, there’s always a chance that 049 (Cash, which is now a Local Customs record) won’t be finished and instead be subbed in for another single CD.

Comment by numerogroup

I had been under the impression that the WTNG 89.9FM disc was a subscriber bonus, not an actual subscription item. That said, I’m still going to subscribe again. I like buying CDs, but even more so I love getting CDs in the mail. It’s like Christmas every time I get a package.

Comment by Donovan Friesen

Can we order these separately without subscribing?

Comment by Greenfuzz

All of our mainline records will be available on our website. The bonus 45 and early delivery are only available for subscribers.

Comment by numerogroup

The ordering of international subscriptions doesn’t seem to be working as it should be on your website…

Comment by Jan

This has been fixed.

Comment by numerogroup

It is AWESOME that you’re reissuing the Mustache in YOUR FACE 45! Thank You!

Comment by Jesper Eklow

two subscriptions!!!?!??!??!?!? you guys are killing me with love.

Comment by duncan

Does the 45 subscription get you the 15% discount?

Comment by Shawn

It does not.

Comment by numerogroup

hey, most of your cd catalogue is available at other online retailers for $12 to $16, $22 for a 2cd set. if i already own your catalogue and don’t need 15% off, how is 6 cds at $120 with a 45 thrown in worthwhile for me? don’t get me wrong, i love everything you guys do – just having a hard time understanding the economics here …

Comment by blissj

We fully support you buying Numero from other retailers. The subscription service is for folks who want to support Numero, want their records early, and don’t want to have to follow along with our complicated release schedule. These folks have gotten bonus 45s, pins, brownie badges, member cards, and bonus CDs unavailable to re- and e-tailers. I don’t know how this Minneapolis double disc+book is already selling for $22—we haven’t even made it yet.

Comment by numerogroup

i get it – just going by what your past 2 disc sets are selling for on dustygroove.

i’ve subscribed in the past, i’ll do so in the future – just pointing out the divergence in the pricing is pretty large compared to past years.

Comment by blissj

I agree with Donovan, I really was under the impression that WTNG 89.9 was actually a bonus gift, not a subscription item. Also noticed the subscription price has gone up a little – I guess it’s hard times for everyone…
I will renew my suscription though – keep up the good work.

Comment by Jonathan

Is the Medusa album coming out on CD as well? If not, how come you guys make these vinyl only releases?

Comment by Sam Hussain

When we brainstormed the Medusa release, we always envisioned it as a fetishists record. It’s mid-’70s prog-metal with an extremely niche audience. That said, if it exceeds expectations, we’ll make a CD release.

Comment by numerogroup

How can they say that 2013 your subscription is cheaper? The 2012 subscritption was costing USD 100 and had 8 CD and in 2013 will cost USD 120 and has 6 CD.

Comment by CB

THe sixth disc comes with a massive hardbound book.

Comment by numerogroup

is the first 45 set shipping anytime soon?

Comment by Bern Gawd

First two 45s should ship this week. Next four in about six weeks!

Comment by numerogroup

1 month later…are these still delayed?

Comment by Bern Gawd

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