There was a good three to four year period, from about age 18-21, where Turning Point was probably my favorite hardcore band. Don’t get me wrong, I never thought they were the most important or influential hardcore band of all time or anything, but I mean they were the band I enjoyed listening to the most during that period. I think what I love so much about Turning Point is that they satisfied all three hardcore “sides” of me – the straight forward youth crew-ish side, the side of me that has a total weakness for bouncy NYHC wigger mosh (that’s right, I said it!), and of course, my total weiner emotional side, haha. And, who can deny the sweetness of all that slap bass!! haha, I know, what the fuck is up with that, right? But it fits, and it sounds cool! Oh, and all of those divebombs they do on guitar – it seems like they’re doing divebombs and pick slides every four bars or something. I love that divebomb shit! Anyway – TP was great for me because I could throw on the Hi-Impact 7″ if I wanted some straight up hardcore with some bounce, the “It’s Always Darkest Before The Dawn” LP if I wanted kind of a combo of straight up hardcore with more personal lyrics, or the split 7″ with No Escape or those comp songs that are like a completely different band – melodic and emotional stuff that really makes you feel. Or, better yet, when Jade Tree released the Turning Point discography in the early 2000’s, you could throw that on and listen from front to back – or actually back to front, since the discography works its way backwards from emotional stuff, all the way back to the demo and some live tracks. I loved Turning Point so much during this period of time that my band, The Damage Done, would sometimes cover “Face Up” off the “It’s Always Darkest” LP. We even did limited covers for our first 7″ that were rip-off covers of the Turning Point – Hi-Impact 7″! Yeah, I was digging that shit.
This 7″ would technically be a “self-titled” 7″ I guess, but most people refer to it as the “Hi-Impact” 7″, since that is the name of the record label that released it. This 7″ cover is probably my favorite 7″ cover art of all time! It’s just such a cool take on the “straight edge hoodie guy” thing, and I don’t know, it just looks powerful – like that X is just bursting out from behind this kid like he’s a super hero or something, haha. Like I said above, I liked this 7″ cover so much that my band’s first 7″ had a limited rip-off cover of it. This 7″ has four pressings (or so it seems). The 1st pressing is very easy to identify – it has blue labels, two big fold-out inserts, and a stamped number out of 1,000. Mine is #29, a cool early number. The 2nd pressing was 200 on red vinyl, and 800 black vinyl. The labels changed to silver labels with black text, and the insert changed to a smaller insert with a close-up photo that is mostly black and bleeds all the way off the page. The 3rd pressing was 100 on gold vinyl, 900 on black. The record labels are the exact same as the 2nd pressing, so the only way to compare 2nd press black vinyl vs. 3rd press black vinyl is the 3rd pressing insert has a different photo centered on the page, with band name above and below. The 4th pressing is supposedly only 500 on black vinyl. Yet again, it has the same silver labels as 2nd and 3rd pressing, but this time there is no photo at all on the insert. It is just a one-sided insert with text on one side and the back is absolutely blank.
Also on the inside cover is a stamp with the band’s address. It’s cool how things were so much more personal back then. People legitimately used to write bands letters in the mail, just to say they liked the 7″!
This compares the inserts of the 2nd through 4th press. The insert on top is the 2nd press insert that came with the 200 red, 800 black. The bottom left is the 3rd press insert that came with the 100 gold, 900 black. The bottom right is the 4th press. It actually has a completely blank back-side, so instead I showed the lyrics side. The lyrics side is actually identical on all of the inserts shown above, but the other two copies are just showing only their back cover. Remember, this 4th press insert has a completely blank back-side, so that is how you can determine a 4th pressing black vinyl copy.
This LP is a classic to me, though it doesn’t get as much notoriety as a lot of other records out there. It’s got the song “Growing Stronger”, which the Teamwork Records comp was named after, as well as “Face Up”, a song that my band covered a ton of times. The blank label copy in the bottom right hand corner is an original 1st pressing test pressing. It does not come with a cover, nor is anything written on the labels.The first pressing came on clear vinyl and black vinyl (not pictured), with tan colored labels. The insert had a blue hand print. The jacket has a really light colored navy blue stripe down the middle, but it’s very hard to see – it makes the jacket look almost all black. The 2nd pressing had the same dark blue stripe down the cover, but the labels changed to white labels, and the handprint on the insert changed to red. Later pressings had the blue stripe on the jacket fixed, now a very bright royal blue. The insert changed to a different folded insert design, with only black and white printing.
The split with No Escape has the more emotional TP stuff on it, with two of their best songs ever – “Thursday” and “Behind This Wall”. It sounds like it’s a completely different band, but that is rad that they were willing to take that leap. It was totally worth it, and it’s too bad they weren’t able to stick together and make more music as Turning Point. I believe this split was 200 on gold vinyl and 800 on black, but I’m not 100% sure. Also shown is an original test pressing of the first pressing. I scored this test on eBay for $35, I was definitely pleased with that score. Who knows, maybe it isn’t worth a bunch more than that, but I was very happy to pay $35 for it.
In the early 2000’s, Jade Tree released the Turning Point discogrpahy on CD. I remember being stoked on the CD because it was a really clean layout – just a very bright orange CD with a really small clean typeset in white. The cover art was an arty mirror photo with a strong orange hue, and I thought everything matched really nicely. It was quite a few years later when Thinkfast Records released a 2xLP version of this LP. I was happy they kept the same layout, and used orange labels on the vinyl to mimic the CD. The first pressing had some issues, so there is a rejected test pressing – mine is #1/14. Then they did another set, and I have accepted test pressing #11/14. The first pressing was 200 on clear, 300 on white, and 525 on black. Later they repressed the vinyl at a new pressing plant, so they re-made test pressings. There are only 5 of the 2nd press test pressings, mine is #4/5. The 2nd press was 500 copies on orange vinyl, with the labels switched to white labels.
The 2xLP was packaged in a gatefold cover with little folder flaps on either side, kind of like a folder you used in elementary school, haha. It was a neat way to package it, and it looked nice, but it’s printed on very thin stock and bends very easily with the weight of the two LP’s housed in it. Other than that, it’s a nice little package.
The “Rebuilding” comp was originally released by Temperance Records only on 7″. It featured the last of the “emotional” Turning Point songs – “Broken”, along with songs by Burn, Gorilla Biscuits, and No Escape. Later Temperance released an LP format which had the 4 songs from the Rebuilding 7″ comp, a TP and Burn song from the “Forever” comp, and the Turning Point / No Escape split EP.
Rebuilding on yellow out of 100, the only colored vinyl available for this release. See the attached note that comes with the black vinyl copies, explaining that you can only get the yellow vinyl by trading some cool videos or t-shirts.
V/A – “Words To Live By, Words To Die For” 7″ Compilation“Words To Live By…” 7″ compilation featuring Mouthpiece, Turning Point, Outspoken, Undertow, Drift Again, Counter Punch. New Age Records stylee.
My Turning Point collection, at its peak:
- Turning Point – s/t Hi Impact 7″ (BLACK, 1st press, both inserts, #29/1000)
- Turning Point – s/t Hi Impact 7″ (RED, 2nd press, black insert with live photo, out of 200)
- Turning Point – s/t Hi Impact 7″ (BLACK, 2nd press, black insert with live photo, out of 800)
- Turning Point – s/t Hi Impact 7″ (GOLD, 3rd press, actually has a 2nd press black insert, out of 100)
- Turning Point – s/t Hi Impact 7″ (BLACK, 3rd press, insert with small centered photo of band playing at the Fall Brawl, out of 900)
- Turning Point – s/t Hi Impact 7″ (BLACK, 4th press, one-sided insert with only lyric side, no photo, out of 500)
- Turning Point / No Escape – Split (TEST PRESS, ouf of 8)
- Turning Point / No Escape – Split (GOLD, out of 200)
- Turning Point / No Escape – Split (BLACK, out of 800)
- Turning Point – It’s Always Darkest Before The Dawn (TEST PRESS)
- Turning Point – It’s Always Darkest Before The Dawn (CLEAR, 1st press, TAN labels, BLUE handprint, out of 100)
- Turning Point – It’s Always Darkest Before The Dawn (BLACK, 2nd press, WHITE labels, RED handprint, DARK BLUE stripe on cover, entire cover looks almost black)
- Turning Point – It’s Always Darkest Before The Dawn (BLACK, 3rd press?, LIGHT BLUE stripe on cover, smaller glossy insert with no hand print color)
- Turning Point – 1988-1991 Discography 2xLP (REJECTED TEST PRESS #1/14, 1st pressing)
- Turning Point – 1988-1991 Discography 2xLP (ACCEPTED TEST PRESS #11/14, 1st pressing)
- Turning Point – 1988-1991 Discography 2xLP (TEST PRESS #4/5, 2nd pressing. Think Fast re-pressed the LP at a new plant and had to make new tests)
- Turning Point – 1988-1991 Discography 2xLP (CLEAR, out of 200)
- Turning Point – 1988-1991 Discography 2xLP (WHITE, out of 300)
- Turning Point – 1988-1991 Discography 2xLP (BLACK, out of 525)
- Turning Point – 1988-1991 Discography 2xLP (ORANGE, 2nd press, out of 500)
- V/A – Rebuilding 7″ (GOLD, out of 100, Turning Point, Burn, Gorilla Biscuits, No Escape)
- V/A – Rebuilding 7″ (BLACK, Turning Point, Burn, Gorilla Biscuits, No Escape)
- V/A – Rebuilding LP (GOLD, out of 200, Gorilla Biscuits, Turning Point, Burn, No Escape)
- V/A – Words To Live By, Words To Die For (CLEAR, Mouthpiece, TP, Undertow, Outspoken, etc)