Chris Voss (Necrolytic Goat Converter)

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This time around we feature the vinyl collection of musician Chris Voss, the man behind Necrolytic Goat Converter.

The first record I ever bought with my own money was…

We gotta split this in two. The first record I EVER bought with my own money was Fates Warning’s Awaken the Guardian back in the 80s when I was a kid and record players came built on top of those sweet little combo units that also had a radio and twin (TWIN!) cassette decks with the nifty 5-band EQ. I remember the cover standing out in the record shop in the local mall. Sadly I gave away all my records when that unit finally went to the great gig in the sky and compact discs were all the rage. I still tear up thinking about it… When I got back into vinyl about a year ago, the first record I bought was Fun House by the Stooges because, you know…priorities.

The record that made me want to make music was…

Again, we’re gonna split this into two (sorry, Ken!). The first record that really made me want to make music, any kind of music, was Iron Maiden’s Live After Death. Still one of my favorite live albums of all time, and I vividly recall standing in front of my mirror as a kid, flag pole doubling as a really long guitar, black light on rocking and singing very note of that album until my mother would pound on the door to turn it down. That was probably the spark, but the album that actually made me think, “Hey, this music speaks to me in such as a way that I think I can do something to make it my own” was Darkthrone’s Transylvanian Hunger. That album and song more than anything else led directly to Necrolytic Goat Converter.

The record I’ve played more than any other is…

Lately it’s been a toss-up between two extremes: a week hasn’t gone by where I haven’t spun either Can’s Tago Mago or the new remaster of Metallica’s …And Justice For All multiple times. I got back into vinyl for the tactile thrill of the sleeves and the vinyl, but it wasn’t;t until hearing Tago Mago that I really noticed how the earth of playing something on a turntable can bring out nuances and shades I never knew existed before. And I’ve started my case elsewhere that …And Justice For All is my favorite Metallica album, and frankly the remaster sounds INSANE. I’ve never been one of the advocates for “And Justice For Jason” – this was the album I remember buying and devouring as a kid, with the clarity and intensity blown up tenfold on the new reissue.

The record that always makes me feel good is…

Oh man, where to start? Elvis Costello’s My Aim Is True always puts me in a good mood. Devo’s Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo! is another. Anything from The Ramones. I feel bad not putting more metal in this Q&A…let’s see: a month or two back my local used record shop got a boat load of classics from my youth, so I snagged the first three Def Leppard albums and AC/DC’s Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap – all of those records put an enormous shit-eating grin on my face. My son has fallen in love with Judas Priest, so we’re blasting British Steel quite a bit. Also can’t forget Twisted Sister’s Under the Blade – we truly are the “Bad Boys (of Rock-n-Roll)!

The record I turn to when I’m feeling down is…

When I hit that dark place, listening to metal usually makes it worse so I tend to turn toward quite, more reflective music. This year I discovered the amazing Kikagaku Moyo, a Japanese psych rock band. Their latest album Masana Temple is gorgeous, kind of a shimmering blanket of jams and musical ideas that I can sink into, so it’s a great way to push out the bad thoughts and energies and relax. Jazz does the same thing for me, so I’ll turn to some of my favorites likes Coltrane’s A Love Supreme and Miles Davis’s In A Silent Way. Oh man…and Bill Withers. Got to have some “Ain’t No Sunshine” playing…maybe it’s a little too on the nose but I love falling into the forlorn grief of that song.

The record with my favorite cover art is…

Oh man…I don’t know. I love seeing the William Roger Dean art for Yes blown up on the vinyl covers; Tales From Topographic Oceans in particular is stunning. But I also love how staged the cover to Kiss Alive! is…as a kid I used to dream about seeing that show and having it play out like a movie (a better one than Kiss Meets The Phantom of the Park, lol). For pure boot-stomping outrageous fun the cover to Nightseeker’s 3069: A Space Rock Sex Odyssey is certainly hard to beat. As a kid though it was those classic images that stay with me the most: the Awaken the Guardian cover; everything Derek Riggs did for Iron Maiden; that first Danzig album…those were the album that brought me into metal, and in truth are the cover I adore the most for the memories they bring.

Side Note: When I was a teenager I loved Helloween’s Keeper of the Seven Keys so much I made it the centerpiece of my acid washed denim jacket. So put that one in there, too.

The strangest LP I own is…

Honestly, it’s probably that Nightseeker album. Although I just remembered that due to a mix-up at Amazon what was supposed to be Opeth’s Pale Communion was, once I opened the box, the Proclaimers’ Sunshine on Leith. You know, the one with “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)”? So maybe that one.

The rarest LP I own is…

Well, according to Discogs and based purely on what people have paid for it, it’s a mono version of the Beatles’ Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. I don’t know – rarity isn’t something I care about too much. I’ve only just started to andrea little more about pressings because I got fudged on a copy of Duke Ellington’s Money Jungle (folks: beware 180g “audiophile” recordings from Wax Time, as they sound like crap and are mastered from CDs), but not the whole I just want music I love that sounds great and plays great. Don’t much care if it’s a first pressing or even if it’s colored (although I am still tickled whenever I get colored vinyl).

The last LP I bought was…

The perfect opportunity to once again extol the virtues of the great Kikagaku Moyo. I ordered the reissue of their 2014 album Forest of Lost Children on tri-colored vinyl. It’s looks like a cookie and will sound just as sweet. But since that hasn’t actually arrived yet I’ll throw in Lo-Pan’s Subtle. No other band is better executing that luscious 90s hard rock vibe mixed with Torche and Only Living Witness like those guys are.

When he’s not writing reviews and producing podcasts for Nine Circles, Chris is toiling away on his second full length as Necrolytic Goat Converter. It’ll get done once of these days. In the meantime you can get all his other releases as Pay What You Want here.

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