11183_JKTWe’re delighted to announce that our friends at the excellent Burger Records are releasing a cassette version of The Red Rippers album Over There … and Over Here, a moving and brutal new wave/country-boogie chronicle of songwriter and singer Ed Bankston‘s experiences in Vietnam and back home, which we originally reissued in January 2013. The cassette edition (including a link for immediate MP3 download) will be available for shipping starting on July 30, but you can order now. Pick up your copy here for just $6:

Ed originally released the album on both vinyl and cassette, so this is a natural development. Listen to a couple tracks below, and check out what folks have to say about this first-ever reissue:

“Many ‘lost’ and ‘collector’s’ recordings never live up to the hype, but this nine-song collection is the real deal… These are not run-of-the-mill protest songs. These are songs by an outsider who sees all sides. A meld of raw ’70s boogie, outlaw country-rock, psychedelic guitar, and excellent D.I.Y. production, they poetically yet directly offer a view of the returning soldier’s mind from the inside. ‘Vietnam Blues’ is the only blues song you ever need to hear about that war. Bankston’s songs move far past the limits of Vietnam in reflecting the combat veteran’s experience. As thousands of servicemen and women return from battlefields in Iraq and Afghanistan, these songs offer an unmatched musical empathy. Over There … and Over Here is a singular document, a rock & roll protest record born from actual spilled blood, sweat, tears, and alienation but which refuses to surrender.”

– Thom Jurek, Allmusic

The Paradise of Bachelors imprint has turned up an absolutely fascinating record here, a 1983 D.I.Y. concept album that across its nine songs charts the experience of former Navy fighter pilot Ed Bankston and his fellow comrades in Vietnam ten years earlier… I must say it’s a truly singular and compelling listening experience, never shying away from describing the vagaries of war… It’s hard to emphasize how viscerally and unflinchingly he puts across his impressions and stories from a decade earlier. Strange to think that an album that comes on like some strange amalgamation of Waylon Jennings and the Meat Puppets could so successfully impart such a multi-sided impression of the physical and psychological impact of the war experience, and yet it does. Over There… and Over Here, I don’t think there has ever been another record quite like this — and in all honestly I hope there never will be.

– Michael Klausman, Other Music

“Now something of a mythological collectors item, the ever-diligent Paradise of Bachelors have restored the Red Rippers LP as an essential Vietnam War statement from those who fought it, then got spat out by their country… This is worlds apart from righteous anti-war chest-beating but, chillingly, still sounds relevant.”

– Kris Needs, Record Collector Magazine

Over There … and Over Here is a fascinating piece of folklore… [The songs] give glimpses into everyday life and death in the major conflict of the Cold War era.”

– The Times of London 

“Strangely compelling reissue of a 1983 LP originally releases on a small Florida label by Vietnam vet Ed Bankston. Most Viet vet LPs are in the bar-boogie vein and refer to overseas experiences only in small ways. Over Here, however, is a suite of songs Bankston wrote from `72 on, and most of them refer quite specifically to his war experiences… The tunes themselves are pretty explicit lyrically, and that’s the stuff that’s really compelling. “Firefight,” “Vietnam Blues,” “Body Bag,” and the like are their titles, and the thing’s been stuck to the turntable for a few days now. Excellent liner notes as well.” 

– Thurston Moore and Byron Coley, Arthur Magazine

Over There…and Over Here is, like Rodriguez’s Cold Fact, Val Stoecklin’s Grey Life and Bobb Trimble’s Harvest Of Dreams, the rare album that transcends its status as a tantalizing obscurity. It is a record of prescience, beauty, and wisdom, a would-be hellraiser’s dispatch from the furthest reaches of hell. If you got any closer, you’d be dodging mortar fire… Merits a place at the top of a short list of crucial reissues of 2013.”

– James Jackson Toth, Aquarium Drunkard

“Recorded by Vietnam veteran Edwin Dale Bankston while he was stationed in Pensacola, Fla., the album pairs chooglin that out-toughs anything produced by CCR with bleak but up-tempo ragers that encapsulate the fear and rage felt by many soldiers during the war.”

– Jordan Lawrence, Blurt

“About as obscure as it gets. Bankston wrote these songs as a sort of purge, telling the stories of his old Nam mates and working off a lot of bitterness over the way vets were treated when they came home from the war. You haven’t heard anything quite like it, and it deserves to be heard.”

– Bill Meyer, Signal to Noise

“The album’s a treat. It’s not often that a choogling ode to mercenaries gets penned, or sung so convincingly. Authentic diatribes against “lying motherfucker” reporters, Jane Fonda, and the U.S. government are woven into woozy/bloozy tapestries that betray the deep introspection of an artist sent into the heart of darkness.”

– Alex Stimmel, Ugly Things