Some people have bigger record collections than most of us. We have recently been digging a little in the collections of major collectors in "A Dive …" and our next target is Alan Averill aka A.A. Nemtheanga from Primordial.

Do you prefer vinyl, CD or digital files?

I prefer vinyl of course, is anyone really going to say they prefer digital files? If you do then music must mean nothing to you, only convenience. Of course I started collecting music in the 80s so vinyl is the most important to me.

Do you have a record player? If so – do you use it?

Of course, actually the most expensive thing I own. I work right beside it so it’s on all the time. I don’t have a tapedeck anymore that’s the one modern trend I just can’t comprehend.


Do you remember the very first record you bought or stole?

The first album I owned was one of those Hits or Now compilations, perhaps Hits 1 or 2, and strangely enough the soundtrack for 2001 which is a really odd record for a child. The first album I bought with my own money was AC/DC "For those about to rock" I think.

What is the rarest album you’ve got?

I have some Primordial test pressings which must exist in only 2 or 3 possibly even 1 here and there. A few other test pressings by other bands and some limited 7"s to 50 and 100, neo folk stuff and that kind of thing. In truth modern albums pressed in 3-500 are far rarer then vinyls pressed in 100 000s from the 70s and 80s.

Does Alan’s record collection consist of metal only? What else can one find that Alan highly appreciates?

I must be honest I mainly have metal vinyls, my music collection extends to loads of stuff but the vinyl is 90%+ metal. I have some vinyls of Johnny Cash, Joy Division, Fields of the Nephilim, The Cure, Gary Numan, Human League, Tangerine Dream, Klaus Schulze, Dead Can Dance, that kind of thing….


Do you go to many record fairs and second hand stores and stuff?

Definitely although the joy is kind of gone out of it now as Discogs and Ebay accumulators have kinda ruined finding something rare no one knows about. At Most record fairs the metal stuff is always 50% more expensive or more than it should be as someone has looked at the last Ebay bid and thinks an old thrash album is worth 30euro when it should be about 5-10. I go to what I can but they usually aren’t up to much in Ireland.

Do you spend a lot of time surfing websites / auction sites like Discogs and Ebay?

Sometimes but not that much, I’m a collector but not an obsessive, I like to find something special or surprising but I don’t want to or have any interest in paying out 250euro for a black metal 7".

How do you preserve your collection? Is it categorized or is it just helter skelter?

It used to be once upon a time but since I’ve moved house its kind all over the place really. I forget I have some things sometimes so it’s a nice surprise to find "Nuns have no fun" or something and play it!


Favorite albums and bands can be a challenge to pick for some of us. You mentioned Holy Terror "Mind Wars" prior to this interview. What is it about this album that melts your metal heart?

It just has everything for me; it’s dark at the very heart, dark and complex. It’s serious in its tone, not just throwaway dumbness for the sake of it. The vocals are peerless, the riffs are like razors, the drumming is incredible, the tone is distinct and the artwork and the lyrics like I said have meaning to them. Dark, melodic, musical, individual speed/thrash/heavy metal with killer vocals, what more do you want?

Do you remember the first time you heard "Mind Wars" and when did you realize that this was a truly great album?

Yeah when it came out back in 88

Some people have several or even all different versions of their favorite album. Like me, I have 18 different vinyl and CD versions of mine and we had a guy here in this series a couple of months ago who had 46. What about you? Do you have all or just a single version of the album?

Nah I’m not really into that, I remember some visitor in our old house wondering why we had the Deathspell Omega poster from the vinyl on the wall in the toilet….what he meant was, that I had opened it and played it. Of course, they are for enjoying not sealing hermetically away for Ebay pay day. I have a few die hards and maybe for example 4/5 copies of "Sign of the Hammer" or "Blood Fire Death", pic disc/cassette/cd/pressings from us/Europe/South America but I don’t go crazy. I mean I have the Decapitated Records version of "Stillbirth Machine….I’d pick up the Wild Rags version if I saw it but I’m not paying 120euro for it ya know.


What other records would you say are good competitors to "My favorite album" title?

Bathory "Blood Fire Death", Exodus "Bonded by Blood", Slayer "Hell Awaits", Megadeth "Peace Sells",  Mercyful Fate "Melissa", Candlemass "Epicus Doomicus Metallicus", Rotting Christ "Triarchy of the Lost Lovers", Dissection "Storm of the Light’s Bane"… loads of albums

What about your favorite band? Is it Holy Terror or are there some other strong contenders for that title?

Hard to say really, could be AC/DC, could be Motörhead….some days it’s Iron Maiden. "Mind Wars" is my fave album but band? Not sure.

What about your own bands? Do you try to collect as many of the releases as possible?

Ah, I used to and I still like to have everything if I can but I don’t have all the cassette issues or vinyl bootlegs. I try and keep a copy of most things though.


You are home after a long day’s work and want to relax with some music. What do you, most likely, want to listen to?

Bohren und der Club of Gore is the best…..

What was the last record your purchase?

I got at a market some old Status Quo albums from the 70s and the second Tank album which I didn’t have from before.

What purchases are you most pleased with?

Mainly stuff from the late 80s and early 90s before the internet kinda fucked everything and like I said everyone decided any old thrash album was worth 50 euro. I remember getting about 5 old Saint Vitus albums for 10 old pounds somewhere around 90, old Venom 7"s for £3 in 88 and that kind of thing.

I just have to ask about this too; which purchases are you least satisfied with?

Not much really, I was always a really pedantic kid and quite picky even at 13/14 so you won’t find any mid 90s Nuclear Blast keyboard fluff in my collection or Dam, Acid Reign or Slammer vinyls lurking……

What’s in or on your player right now?

Popol Vuh at the moment, the "Herzog" box set thing…..


Where do you stand when it comes to original albums? Do you want a first press or are you pleased with re-mastered re-publications?

Ah depends, sometimes I like the original press but I’m not always that bothered, I mean back in the day I had "Fallen Angel of Doom" on cassette like you sometimes did, I have the Nuclear War Now edition but not the original vinyl…..if I saw it for a reasonable price I might pick it up but it doesn’t bother me that much

There are split opinions about live albums. Where do you stand and what’s your ultimate live album? What’s so special about this record?

Hmmm, well like many people "Live after Death" had a massive impact on me, the artwork, live pics, just pouring over the images and information and dreamt about touring. I guess for all those reasons that is the ultimate live album, although "Live and Dangerous", "If you want Blood" and definitely "Strangers in the Night" by UFO have to be up there as well, not something that modern band really do anymore. Back in the day they were a staple after 2/3/4 studio albums to recap, almost like a best of.

What about the gender distribution in your collection; how is that coming along?

Gender? Ha ha badly I would say. I’ve never been much for female vocals or female singer songwriters, of course my mother played Joan Baez and Joni Mitchell growing up and you’ll find mid period Fleetwod Mac if you look and some Siouxsie lurking around but I have to admit it doesn’t look great!

The vinyl tax collector is standing at your doorstep and demanding one – 1 – vinyl record as an instant charge. What record do you choose to give away?

I suppose those are the early black metal 7"s right? Stuff like Emperor, Immortal, Samael, Dimmu, Beherit and all those kinds of things. I already sold my "Deathcrush" cassette 🙂


Are there any specific albums you are looking for that you absolutely must have in your collection before you die?

Hmmm the original Nemesis "Day of Retribution" above all, "Yellow Goat" would be nice but only for 6euro from a charity shop in the swedish countryside :), Varathron "One Step Beyond Dreams", Masters Hammer "Klavierfstuck", Samael "Medieval Prophecy" and a few picture discs….

Who is the lucky one who takes over the treasure when Alan’s gone? Or will you have an extra-large chest and bring the gold with you into eternity?

Good point….who knows, right now I’m up for a convenient marriage to any cute, funny and generous vinyl loving woman just keep your ulterior motive to yourself!


Previous dives….