The Vinyl Collector: Collection for Collectors

By Alex Mosier

Nothing excites a collector of any sort more than anticipation.  Finding out a shop downtown has an album you have been hunting for only moments after they have closed can drive one crazy with worry that they might miss it – and with eagerness for grasping it themselves.  This mixture comes together neatly with the release of limited edition sets that are sold separately. 

In October 2012, My Chemical Romance started such a mini-collection with their Conventional Weapons series.  Once a month for five months, My Chemical Romance released a double-A sided single album of a different colored vinyl encased in a dust jacket depicting a different common weapon.  Upon their release, each album was selling for $4.99 a piece online.  They were only singles, after all.  Even some of the most diehard fans passed up paying $2.50 a song, even if it was pressed into a fancy color.

Every month I patiently waited for the next 7-inch album of the series to find its way to my doorstep, just for the 8 minutes of fresh sound it provided me with.  Then, at the start of February 2013, I opened my door to find a slightly larger package laying there.  With the release of the fifth and final installment in the compilation album, the kind folks at Reprise records provided you with a collector’s box for all five albums and a limited edition poster.

To many fans’ dismay, the band broke up the following month.  But, to those of us who waited for almost half of a year picking up the tattered remains of this not quite finished final album, it came a pleasant surprise.  The albums that we had getting for $5 a pop had rocketed in price. Some websites are asking for as much $89 dollars just for the first album in the set, so ingeniously entitled Number One.

After seeing that launch in value, I can’t help but spend my time and money waiting around for as many little mini-collections I can.  As logical as it may seem that the whole would be more valuable than its parts, every time I find a little set I have to weight its potential.