RAD-004–1: the MTX Shards vol. 2 Story

Frank Portman
5 min readJul 23, 2018

Side A: We Are the Future People of Tomorrow / Is There Something I Should Know / Crash / T-Shirt Commercial / Vive la France / Time for Your Medicine / Hello Kitty Menendez / How’d the Date End? Side B: Told You Once / Don’t Go Away Go-Go Girl / Another Yesterday / Gilman Street / I Ain’t Gonna Be History / Look Back and Crack / God Bless Lawrence Livermore / King Dork (Forward ’til Death version)

So, “dibs” for MTX Shards volume 2 began yesterday (Monday, July 23, 2018) and I thought it wouldn’t hurt to mark the occasion with a little update and explanation. (The tl;dr of it, for those who need no explanation, is: go here to call dibs on a copy of the ultra-limited 180 gram cherry red micro-pressing of the second volume of the MTX Shards compilation. But after you’ve done that, come back and read the rest, as there’s stuff toward the end that may interest you. The release date is September 14, 2018; ordering begins August 20.)

Shards is basically an “odds ’n’ sods” compilation, a collection of the songs that were rendered “orphans” when we re-organized the MTX digital catalog to align with the track listing of the original releases. You can find a fuller explication of the concept and the details in my write-up about Shards vol. 1 (RAD-003–01), if you like.

As for “dibs”, it’s a process that allows people to claim a copy of the LP in advance without purchasing. You go to the page and sign up to be on the list to purchase one of the 200 available copies. When the time comes, the first 200 people on the list get an email with a buy link. If you don’t elect to order, we give your spot to the next person on the list. (“Dibs” people also get a 30% discount code for all other items at the Sounds Rad store, which is a good deal. Also, people who purchase both via “dibs” will receive a unique enamel Shards pin only available to “dibs” people.)

As with volume 1, these LPs are strictly limited. Most likely, the 200 dibs copies will be snapped up by the list in advance of release. After that, you’ll need to try to find one of the remaining 200 copies at a participating record store, or one of 50 from me at a show.

But you know you want one. Records are cool.

Together, the two volumes form a set that is intended to be the first step towards a greater restoration, preservation, and re-issue project, though we’re still getting our bearings about the planning and coming to grips with what this will entail. It’s not an easy or simple process. Simply locating and identifying the tapes and their contents has proven quite challenging after all these years.

But the next step is going to be a double LP “best of” compilation with the tentative title MTX FOREVER, basically a Hot Rocks type thing. We plan to solicit input from fans on the track list once we figure out how best to handle the logistics. I did this on my blog many years ago (when I first had the idea of doing such a comp., just as a quick and dirty digital download at the time.) It never ended up happening, but the results of the “survey” were fun and interesting. (More to come on that as we figure it all out, but this is the initial reason for the hunting down, baking, and copying of the old mixed stereo masters that you may have noticed me hinting about recently. We found… most of them.) MTX FOREVER as conceived, will form a “set” with the Shards comps.

Then, the basic idea is to move on to vinyl and digital re-issues of the rest of the catalog. (This will of course leave the some of the singles and their b-sides “orphaned”, so something will have to be done with them as well.) But more on all that as it develops. I’ve got some cool ideas on how to make this stuff interesting and “special” and with any luck I’ll get to make them happen. We’ll see.

It’s a huge project. It’s gonna take years. So we’ll see how far we get, yeah?

But back to Shards. Along with the volume 2 LP, there’s also going to be a cassette of each volume, and a double CD of both volumes (RAD-008–2), along with the aforementioned enamel pin, a sticker, and a limited addition T-shirt. (Design images to come: stay tuned.) The release date for all this stuff is Sept. 14, 2018. But obviously, records are better. Get the records if you can.

I guess that’s all. Once again, “dibs” link is here. Onward.