These poll results never cease to amaze me. Going into this, I had no clue whatsoever that the Turning Point / No Escape split would take the crown. Of course the "It's Always Darkest Before The Dawn" LP came in at a close second, but still, to think that a two song split EP with the band's most unconventional material would win was a complete surprise to me.
My pick was the demo, it's always been my favorite Turning Point release since the day I got it. I'm not going to get into my feelings on this demo again since I did do an entire entry on it last year on here at some point, but I will once again note that it's my favorite demo ever. Flawless straight edge hardcore done to perfection. Doesn't hurt that they came from New Jersey, but that by no means sways my opinion in any drastic direction.
As for the Turning Point / No Escape split EP, when I first heard it, I have to admit that I wasn't quite sure what to make of it. Gone was that Youth Of Today junior sound that I knew and loved and in came a much more melodic, heavily D.C. inspired sound. I will say, the transition between the "It's Always Darkest..." LP and the song "Broken" from the Rebuilding comp definitely gave me a taste of what was to come with the split material, so I shouldn't have been all that surprised. Also, I can distinctly remember hearing Turning Point play "Thursday" live prior to it being released...but still, hearing it recorded for the first time was a whole new thing.
I don't remember exactly when the split EP was released, but I'm pretty sure it wasn't until the band actually broke up. The reason I say that is because I seem to recall being excited to hear Turning Point play "Behind This Wall" and "Thursday" at their 1994 reunion. In those years after the release of the split, those two songs fully grew on me and although they sounded nothing like the band I was introduced to in 1988, I couldn't deny their greatness. Thanks to Jade Tree, I never have to choose which Turning Point release to listen to...it'll be the complete discography every time. -Tim DCXX
I don't have much to add beyond what Tim just wrote, but I did want to comment on one thing here that I don't see discussed much, and that's the fact that out of Turning Point's seven recording sessions, I'm not sure they ever got a bad recording. Pretty much every actual recording sound (I don't mean the band's style/sound) is distinct from the rest, seems to fit the music perfectly, and can still be considered at the very least, a decent recording...and for some records, a perfect recording.
The demo is rough and demo quality, but there is something blistering and raw about it that just seems perfect for a demo of pissed SEHC. The seven inch may in fact be perfect, everything on it is just in your face and crushes...I'm not an engineer or an audiophile, but if I did a recording of hard, pissed of straight edge tunes, I would hand the TP 7" to the dude at the controls. The recording of "Insecurity" to me sounds like a cleaner and beefier version of that seven inch recording, maybe with a little bit more time tweaking some levels and playing with some effects (as well as some better musicianship)...and I think it kills. When Skip yells out "THE PAAAAAINNN!!!" over one of the best transition-into-mosh parts ever written I wanna bash my elbows over someone's head.
I'm already getting carried away here, but even though I don't dig the Words To Live by comp song or the LP recording qualities, I'm not sure you could say these are bad. And the later material really does capture that whole DC/Jane's thing they were going for really well.
These dudes could play their instruments. Vince Spina from Edgewise was recently telling me and Tim that his drum teacher was Jay from TP's drum teacher, and this drum teacher told Vince that Jay was one of the most talented drummers he had ever known (and I'm guessing Jay was maybe 18 years old?). For those unaware, Jay played guitar in TP (and he could play) and on the drums was Ken, who in his own right was/is a GREAT drummer. So yeah, these guys were not short on talent by any means. One of the best...
"Behind This Wall" and "Thursday" from Turning Point / No Escape Split: 109
"It's Always Darkest Before The Dawn" LP: 101
"Broken" from Rebuilding comp: 44
"Insecurity" from Forever comp: 24
"My Turn To Win" from Words To live By comp: 5
Nick with Turning Point at City Gardens, 1990.