A Record Collector's Guide

Rocket from the Crypt - Albums and EPs

Paint as a Fragrance

Headhunter HED-003, released February 1991

Rocket's debut album, released on Headhunter. There are several editions of this record: the first two pressings were both on black vinyl. You can recognize the actual first pressing by the sleeve, trail-off wax matrix codes (see below), and vinyl. All of the later sleeves were on a standard glossy cardboard, whereas the first pressing sleeve is on a flat matte cardboard. Also, the Headhunter logo on the back is different (see below). The first press vinyl is lighter than the later ones, and actually appears as semi-translucent brown when held up to the light. All of the pressings were made from the same masters, but earlier versions have extra codes etched into the stamper. 

  • First pressing: Translucent black vinyl, matte cardboard sleeve with old Headhunter logo. Matrix codes: HED - 003 - A kdisc JG 29542 L-36999 and HED - 003 - B kdisc JG 29543 L-36999X. 

  • Second pressing: Black vinyl, glossy cardboard sleeve, standard Headhunter logo. The second pressing inserts were clearly copied from the first pressing inserts, and as a result, the black ink in them shows up as a little more grey than on the earlier versions.  Matrix codes: HED - 003 - A kdisc JG 29763 L-36999 and HED - 003 - B kdisc JG 29764 L-36999X. The 29763 and 29764 are upside-down.

  • There was then a solid yellow vinyl pressing, but that one came much later on (late-'90s). The yellow version has a gold "Limited Edition Color Vinyl" sticker on the front of the sleeve (on the outer plastic). The yellow one is generally more expensive than the black one because people love their colored vinyl. Matrix codes: HED - 003 - A kdisc JG L-36999 and HED - 003 - B kdisc JG L-36999X.

  • Then, in 2011, another color surfaced - a rusty brown marble version. This was a new pressing. Cargo Records told me that they re-press these things whenever they run out, usually on a new color. I don't know if it is quite that simple, since we went more than a decade between new colors. Matrix codes: HED - 003 - A kdisc JG L-36999 and HED - 003 - B kdisc JG L-36999X.

  • In 2012, a purple marble version appeared. It would not surprise me if more were to surface... Matrix codes: HED - 003 - A kdisc JG L-36999 and HED - 003 - B kdisc JG L-36999X.

Version Value ($) Scarcity Price Trending
HED-003 1st Press Black w/ insert 15-20 Down
HED-003 2nd Press Black w/ insert 12-15 Down
HED-003 Yellow Marble 20-30 Stable
HED-003 3rd Press Black 10-12 Stable
HED-003 2011 Press Brown Marble 12-15 Stable
HED-003 2012 Press Purple Marble 12-15 Stable
1st Headhunter Logo
2nd Headhunter Logo
Test Pressing
Test Pressing Black vinyl, RTI labels with typewritten info

This page was last updated on February 8, 2013.

Circa: Now!

Headhuter HED-015 LP/CD, released November 1992

Interscope 7 92273-2 CD, released 1993

Swami SWA 125 CD, released 2004

One of the band's greatest efforts. The vinyl showed up on a couple of colors, some rarer than others. Other than black, the yellow marble one is the most common version. The blue and purple are rarer, and the orange is the rarest. The purple one...well, there is a true maroon-purple one, and then there is a blue one with bits of purple in it. The blue ones seem to surface more often than the straight purple ones. I have no idea about exact quantities. This summary is just based on experience. The yellow version (as with Paint as a Fragrance) was a much later pressing (late-'90s). All colors have the same matrix codes in their respective trail-off waxes.

The early sleeves have tiny "Printed in Canada" marks on the backs of the sleeves. The later ones do not. The yellow version has a gold "Limited Edition Color Vinyl" sticker on the front of the sleeve (on the outer plastic).

Circa: Now! was re-released a couple of times, but not on vinyl. First, Interscope picked it up and released it again in CD form in 1993. Years later, another CD version came out on Swami. This one had four never-before-released bonus tracks from the original recording sessions. Very good stuff. No new vinyl variations have surfaced recently the way they have for Paint as a Fragrance. Since Interscope picked it up, I would bet that they acquired the rights, the ownership of which would have gone back to the band after they were unceremoniously dropped from the label. Either way, it would appear that Headhunter no longer has the rights, and therefore, there are no new vinyl variants. The original test pressing came in a sleeve designed by Mike Stobbe.

Version Value ($) Scarcity Price Trending
HED-015 Black 15-20 Stable
HED-015 Blue 25-35 Stable
HED-015 Purple 30-40 Stable
HED-015 Orange 25-35 Stable
HED-015 Yellow Marble 20-25 Stable
Test Pressing Sleeve
Test Pressing
Test Pressing Black vinyl, white Cargo labels, writing in black marker
Credits RAB: Test pressing images
Wegi: info on the blue vinyl version

This page was last updated on February 8, 2013.


All Systems Go

Toy's Factory 8804-P CD, released 1993

Headhunter HED-023 LP/CD/CS, released 1993

Sympathy for the Record Industry SFTRI 558 CD, released 1998

This release started as a 1993 Japanese CD release named "All Systems Go!" It was a compilation of rare material, mostly from the band's early singles. I hesitated to lump this in with the U.S. release, since the track listings are so different, but decided that they fit together. All Systems Go was released in the U.S. later the same year. The vinyl was black - there have been occasional rumors of a color version of this record, but no concrete evidence has ever surfaced.

The Japanese version contained 15 tracks, while the U.S. one had 19. They overlap a lot, but not completely. 11 of the tracks on the Japanese release were on the U.S. version. The ones that were not were "10 Forward," "Call It a Complex," "Ballot Fire," and "Gold." Two of those tracks appeared later on All Systems Go 2, but this was the only CD release for "Gold" and "Call It a Complex." The only other release on which you can find "Call It a Complex" is the Rocket Queen bootleg 7".

All versions of All Systems Go were fairly difficult to track down for a while there, until the CD was re-released in the late '90s. The Japanese CD sold for somewhere in the $30 range for a long time, but came down a bit in price once eBay really got going. The vinyl price has stayed pretty stable over the years.

Version Value ($) Scarcity Price Trending
HED-023 Black 15-20 Stable
Toy's Factory 8804-P CD 15-25 Stable
Test Pressing
Test Pressing Black vinyl, generic white Cargo labels
Rumors Color vinyl version

This page was last updated on February 8, 2013.

The State of Art Is on Fire 10"

Sympathy for the Record Industry SFTRI-320, released April 1995

This record actually caught fire and melted my last turntable.  The tracks from this one made frequent appearances in the band's live sets. They would regularly play at least the first three songs from this record in order. Most of these were on black vinyl, but there were also a few on blue marble vinyl and a small number on pink marble vinyl. There were some pressing numbers making the rounds that turned out to be false. Long Gone John of Sympathy for the Record Industry estimates that there were between 100 and 200 blue copies and around 100 pink copies. The pink one is a very tough find, but a few have turned up in the last couple of years. As a result, the prices have been all over the place - up above $150, down below $'s hard to say how it will go at any given point.

Version Value ($) Scarcity Price Trending
SFTRI-320 Blue Marble 30-40 Down
SFTRI-320 Pink Marble 80-100 Volatile
SFTRI-320 Black 8-10 Down
Test Pressing
Test Pressing Black vinyl, white labels
Credits RAB: Test pressing image

This page was last updated on February 8, 2013.

Hot Charity

Perfect Sound WOS 001 (U.S.), released August 1995

Elemental ELM27LP (UK)

I have never seen the bottom drop out of the value of a record the way it did for Hot Charity. Limited to an overall press run of 5000-7500 (I have heard both numbers), this record was highly sought in the collecting community for many years. It was not released in CD form for the first few years, and so, in order to get most of these tracks, you had to track down the vinyl. Well, I should clarify - between the Japanese and Australian CD versions of the Scream, Dracula, Scream! album, all of the tracks on Hot Charity were made available on CD, but the full album was not released on CD until 2002. In that seven-year gap, Hot Charity's value skyrocketed. I watched it sell anywhere from $80-$125. Once the CD came out, the value of the vinyl plummeted. It was something to behold. As I mentioned, the total number pressed appears to have been between 5000 and 7500. I have heard 500 or 1000 for the number of red vinyl copies (1000 is the number I have heard most often). There was also a UK version released on Elemental - all on black vinyl - I have no idea how many of those there were.

Version Value ($) Scarcity Price Trending
WOS 001 Red 25-40 Down
WOS 001 Black 10-15 Down
ELM27LP Black 10-15 Down
Test Pressing
WOS 001
WOS 001
Test Pressing Black vinyl, generic white Specialty labels

This page was last updated on February 10, 2013.


Scream, Dracula, Scream!

Headhunter HED-054, released 1995

Elemental ELMDMM34, released 2008

This album is important. It means something. Rocket's real major label debut (though the vinyl was released on Headhunter). This was the record that really extended the reach of Rocket from the Crypt and made the band the global force that it became. The brief spell of Rocket-mania that spread across the UK was sparked by the singles from the album.  "On a Rope" ended up being the most successful of those.

The pressing situation is essentially easy. I say essentially because...well, while all copies that have made public appearances have been on black vinyl, rumor has it that there were 10 (TEN! Why do they do this to us?) pressed on black & white swirled vinyl. I have never seen one, nor do I know of anyone who has seen one. I'm not fully convinced that these are for real, despite the in-the-know source of the rumor. In 2008, Elemental re-released this album as a direct metal master on 200g vinyl. Then, they put a huge price tag on it. It's out there, though, and limited to 500 numbered copies. Actually, it may be much more affordable now than it was when it came out, but it has become much harder to find.

Version Value ($) Scarcity Price Trending
HED-054 Black 20-40 Stable
ELMDMM34 Black 30-45 Stable
Rumors Black & White swirled vinyl version. If you have one, please let me know.

This page was last updated on February 8, 2013.


Sympathy for the Record Industry SFTRI-548 (U.S.), released June 1998

Elemental ELM50LP (UK)

Elemental ELMDMM50 2xLP (UK), released 2008

Sympathy had the U.S. vinyl for this album, but Interscope had the overall lead. In theory, there were 500 of these pressed on orange vinyl. I have a hard time believing that figure, though...the orange version has always been readily available. The black one has always been the tougher find. Neither has ever been particularly difficult, but this record has started to get rarer and slightly more expensive. It comes with a nice booklet as an insert. There was also a black vinyl UK version on Elemental. Then, in 2008, there was another version...Elemental re-released it as a two-disc direct metal master on 200g vinyl. It carried a hefty retail price tag, but can now be found for less than the original face value. It is limited to 500 numbered copies.

Version Value ($) Scarcity Price Trending
SFTRI-548 Orange 20-30 Up
SFTRI-548 Black 25-30 Up
ELM50LP Black 20-30 Up
ELMDMM50 Black 25-30 Down
Insert Booklet
Test Pressing
Test Pressing Black vinyl, plain white labels

This page was last updated on February 10, 2013.

All Systems Go II 2xLP

Swami SWA2001, released October 1999

...And from the pit of blackness emerges the Swami with a slab of greatness. This collection followed in the footsteps of the first All Systems Go. It is another collection of b-sides and lost tracks. The majority of the material on here had been released elsewhere, but there were a few exclusive tracks. I love this record. As far as the vinyl goes...most of these are on black vinyl. There are some on red, though not a lot. It took me some time to get ahold of the red vinyl version, as the price rose rapidly for a couple of years. The average auction price came down some time ago, though, and seems to have stabilized at the lower level.

Version Value ($) Scarcity Price Trending
SWAMI 2001 Red 25-40 Stable
SWAMI 2001 Black 10-15 Stable
Test Pressing Side A
Test Pressing Side C

This page was last updated on February 8, 2013.

Cut Carefully and Play Loud

Flapping Jet FJ-010, released November 1999

A fun record (or annoying, depending on how cool you are), on which a label affixed to the sleeve is attached to the record, so that you actually have to cut it out in order to get to the vinyl. Originally a pressing of 3000, with 100 on clear blue vinyl. Later re-pressed. The later pressings look no different from the originals, so it is tough to know which you have unless you bought it when it came out. The blue ones are extremely difficult to find and have gotten fairly expensive. In fact, if you are unloading a blue copy, please ...I have been after that one for some time. The tracks from this record were lumped in with Hot Charity for the CD release of that album to create a supernatural digital weapon that has since rendered several civilizations extinct.

Version Value ($) Scarcity Price Trending
FJ-010 Blue (100) 150-200 Up
FJ-010 Black 10-15 Stable
Credits RAB: Blue vinyl image

This page was last updated on February 8, 2013.


Group Sounds

Vagrant VR-352, released 2001

Vagrant VR-352, released 2013

Rocket from the Crypt debuted on Vagrant with this hotly-anticipated follow-up full length to RFTC, and it did not disappoint. I was counting down the days until this one was released. That record store in New Orleans was not used to seeing people come in first thing in the morning. Another great record. From the collecting standpoint, this one is vinyl, moderate quantities. It is starting to get harder to find, though...the price has been creeping upward since 2011-12.

The UK and Japan releases of Group Sounds (CD-only) both contained bonus tracks. The UK version had three: "Chariots on Fire," "I Won't Stare," and "Alone." This version of "Chariots on Fire" is different from the one that appeared on the Vagrant sampler (but is the same version that eventually made its way onto All Systems Go III). "Alone." however, is the same version that appears on the next year's Vagrant sampler. "I Won't Stare" was exclusive to this disc. The Japanese version contained one bonus track: "Free Language Demons," from the split 7" with the Get Up Kids.

2013 brought us a rather unexpected reunion of Rocket from the Crypt. While they were busy waging audio war in Europe, Vagrant reissued the band's last two albums for Record Store Day. Group Sounds was reissued on white vinyl with a yellow splatter pattern in it. It was limited to 500 copies, and so instantly became rare.

Version Value ($) Scarcity Price Trending
VR-352 Black 30-45 Up
VR-352 White with Yellow Splatter 30-40 Up

This page was last updated on April 27, 2013.

Live from Camp X-ray

Vagrant VR-377, released 2002

The final non-compilation full-length record from Rocket from the Crypt. This is a very good album, though I think I found it slightly disappointing at the time. The only single from this record, "I'm Not Invisible," came out prior to the album's release, and it was so good that my expectations for the rest of the album were astronomical. I don't think that any of the other tracks on the album quite lived up to that one (this is obviously just my opinion, but...that's true of much of this site, so...whaddaya gonna do?). The vinyl was all black, and was quite easy to find for a long time. However, much as in the case of Group Sounds, it has become slightly more scarce, and the price has correspondingly risen slightly.

Vagrant reissued Live from Camp X-ray for Record Store Day 2013, this time on orange splatter vinyl. The reissue was limited to 500 copies, and was a tough find on Record Store Day.

Version Value ($) Scarcity Price Trending
VR-377 Black 20-25 Up
VR-377 Orange Splatter 30-40 Up

This page was last updated on April 27, 2013.

The Name of the Band is Rocket from the Crypt 10"

Castle Music CMHLP1584, released 2007

This one bothers me. It is the most unnecessary Rocket record in history. It includes the tracks from the State of Art Is on Fire, the Music Machine single, the Boychucker single, and the On the Prowl single. That's it. Same versions. No value added. UK release. Black vinyl. The test pressing is somewhat interesting for this record...they pressed the 10" on 12" vinyl. I'd never seen that before.

Version Value ($) Scarcity Price Trending
CMHLP1584 Black 10-15 Stable
Test Pressing
Test Pressing Black 12" vinyl, white labels.

This page was last updated on February 8, 2013.

All Systems Go III

Vagrant VR508, released 2008

All Systems Go III is a collection of lost tracks from some recording sessions over the last few years of Rocket's existence. It was an unexpected and welcome addition to Rocket lore. As of this moment, it only exists in CD form. In theory, it will eventually be released on vinyl as well, but no concrete plans have been announced. My label would step up and make this happen if the band were to give me the green light. Dead serious. Say the word, Swami.

Version Value ($) Scarcity Price Trending
VR508 CD 12 Stable

This page was last updated on February 8, 2013.

Rocket from the Crypt Index
Rocket from the Crypt Singles
Rocket from the Crypt Compilations
Rocket from the Crypt Bootlegs
Rocket Pack Owner's List

Scarcity Score Definition
10 Near impossible: Fewer than 50 copies or publicly sold every few years
8-9 Very rare: 50-199 copies or publicly sold 1-2 times per year
6-7 Rare: 200-499 copies or publicly sold a few times a year
4-5 Medium: 500-999 copies or publicly sold ~10 times a year
1-3 Common: 1000+ copies, readily available, or publicly sold 20+ times a year

Estimated values are based on recent auction results or online sales. Commercial use of images on this site is not permitted. Non-commercial use of images permitted, with attribution to Pette Discographies. All images copyright their respective owners.

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