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RECORD COLLECTOR CORNER: Greg Benedetto, Toronto

Guitarist of S.H.I.T and one half of the powerhouse duo that coordinate Not Dead Yet Fest, alongside Sardé Hardie, in Toronto. This year it was on October 11-14th.

Top records of 2018 so far: Tozcos - Sueños Deceptivos - Incredibly catchy, one of the best bands I've had the pleasure of seeing in the past year. Special Interest - Spiraling - This thing is different than most of what's going on in punk / hc these days, but is acidic and urgent in all the right ways. Waste Management - Tried and True - They said it would never happen, but it has. Often imitated, never duplicated. Tomb Mold - Manor of Infinite Forms - A serious effort from Toronto heads. One of the best DM records of the year, but also a thing I'm proud to say is from my hometown. Constant Mongrel - Living in Excellence - a driving post-punk thing. Came out of nowhere, wasn't what I expected and then blew me away. Idiota Civilizzato - Self Titled - Coulda been a lost 80s Italian HC LP. File next to Wretched, Indigesti et al. Itchy Bugger - Done One - Probably my favourite of the year. A disjointed, bedroom pop mess from Josh of Diat & The Love Triangle. Put it on and get lost. Bran Ner Hela Skiten Comp - I tripped over the Gothenburg DIY scene late last year and what's going on there just connected with me. A mess of hidden gems - neo folk, ambient, pop - all of it brilliant nonsense. Hank Wood & The Hammerheads - LP3 - New York City still on top. Still among the best at what they do by a whole fuckin mile. Profoss - Self Titled 7" - when you wanna mangel, you can depend on the Swedes to do it best. Blew me away at K-Town this year too.

Fave records that you own and why: I love records that have a story attached to them. The copy of "Can't Close My Eyes" I have, has Ray's CT address scrawled on the inside of it. That's one of the first that comes to mind, but the ones I get myself are far more special to me. I get a bit bummed if I get a record in the mail from someone and there's no note. I also love trading for random shit that others have created but otherwise won't sell. Things that subvert the capitalist tropes of "record collecting." I've received some of my most special records in the mail from people who just wanted to trade for something.

Your top want ever: Negative Approach 7" cause I still don't have one and DUH.

What's the best thing about vinyl? For me, it's by far the physical experience of it. The CRASS RECORDS stuff is the best example of this - just notes and essays and thoughts beyond the lyrical content. I love it when bands push the overall package of their release. The detail in the art, the liner notes, all of that. There's nothing better than putting on a record and pouring over the artwork, whatever it may be.

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