Heads up: corporations are people, and like all people except for Jehovah’s Witnesses, they have birthdays. Merge Records’ 25th is next year, so you better get them something nice. Maybe like $125 or something? Hold on, hold on, I know that seems like a lot of dough, but you know Merge, he’ll probably turn right around and give you a box full of treasures for your trouble. You’ll say, “Merge, this is too much, it’s not my birthday, it’s yours, you silly goose,” but he’ll insist, and later you’ll find out he donated the money you gave him to Oxfam America anyway. You’ll smile to yourself at how thoughtful and selfless Merge is. Then you’ll think about it a little longer and you’ll start to wonder if it’s actually possible to be selfless, or if selfishness is just baked in to the human condition. You’ll use that line of thought to justify eating your roommate’s last piece of cheesecake in bed.
While the mashed-together pieces of graham cracker and sinfully decadent cheesecake are careening through your digestive tract, you’ll take a closer look at the box Merge gave you and you’ll be impressed. The box, which Merge calls Or Thousands of Prizes will have a whole of bunch of neat stuff in it, like a magic wand that will grant you first access to special Merge birthday events as well as entry into giveaways throughout 2014, an exclusive t-shirt commemorating Merge’s 25th birthday, a “surprise” 12-inch record, and an e-book called The Merge Records Companion. Best of all, there will be a little note inside that says, “I know how much you wish it was still the 90s, so I made a subscription 7-inch subscription series just for you.” The subscription will consist of 12 7-inches on colored vinyl delivered straight to your door. They’ll mostly be splits between Merge artists, including contributions from Mikal Cronin, Mount Moriah, The Mountain Goats, Destroyer, and not Green Day. Also inside the box will be a special collector’s box for all these 7-inches and digital downloads for all the tracks! It’s a very full box!
As you bask in the warm glow of this inverse-birthday gift, a sound will meet your ears. “What’s that?” you’ll wonder. “Is that… is that Superchunk covering my third favorite Misfits song?” Why yes it is! Celebrating Halloween in one of the many ways they’ve probably figured out throughout their lives, Superchunk have recorded a cover of The Misfits’ classic song “Children in Heat,” and you can stream that sucker below, even if it is November 1. If you give Merge the gift of pre-ordering before November 30, your order will come with a free download of the track. And don’t forget, next year is also when Tiny Mix Tapes finally becomes a man. Shit’s gonna be a Bar Mitzvah for the ages.
• Merge: http://www.mergerecords.com