In rotation: 11/26/19

Dubai, UAE | Dubai’s only independent record store has banned influencers. Here’s why: Founder of The Flip Side has declared a no-photos policy for Dubai influencers. Shadi Megallaa is Dubai’s best-loved music maverick. The Egyptian-born owner of The Flip Side in Alserkal Avenue has been purveying rare Arabic records and Japanese pressings, among other musical curiosities, to a growing number of Dubai DJs and denizens since 2017. As well as being the first independent record store in the emirate, it’s also become a creative space for production seminars, documentary screenings and live DJ sets from local luminaries. However, Shadi’s noticed a pervasive insurgence among the crate diggers in the past two years. “We have lots of people coming in and taking anything from ten to twenty pictures of themselves posing,” he wrote in a Facebook announcement. Addressing influencers visiting for the photo opportunities, he clarifies, “The Flip Side is not here to be your personal backdrop for your Instagram stories. If you happen to be an influencer, kindly take your ‘influence’ somewhere else. Please respect our space like we respect yours.”

Jacksonville, FL | Amid height of vinyl revival, Tiger Records opens in Jacksonville’s Riverside: As vinyl rides a new wave of popularity, Tiger Records — out of Riverside — marks the latest record store to open in Jacksonville. …Tiger Records marks the city’s second new record shop to open this year. In July, Eraser Records opened in Murray Hill on Edgewood Avenue. Both shops join older spots including DJ’s in Westside, Yesterday and Today in San Marco, Wolfson Equipment and Records on University Boulevard and Young, Loud, and Snotty in Mayport. “I just want to be the record store that everybody wants,” Siboni said. “I’ve got a lot of indie rock and punk, but if the only thing selling here is Lady Gaga, then I’ll sell only Lady Gaga.” Records range in price from $1 — with about eight bargain bins chock-full of everything from Lou Reed to Manilow — to $1,000… Right now on the floor, Siboni says there are roughly 5,000 records and 75 percent of them are secondhand. “I think it’s cooler,” he said. “I love going through boxes of old records.”

Virginia Beach, VA | Lengthy corporate career leads to indie book and record store in Virginia Beach: John Brittell spent a career opening stores across the country for someone else and learning all he could about what made their customers tick. Then he cashed in on that experience to open his own place. Before opening AFK Books and Records on Valentines Day in 2011, he was the vice president of e-commerce and direct marketing for video game retailer GameStop. It was the result of 23 years in the video game business that started at the Lynnhaven Mall with a job at Games ‘n’ Gadgets, a store owned by Electronics Boutique – the brand later gobbled up by Gamestop. Throwing corporate analytics and measurements to the wind, for the most part, his customer service strategy has been simple: focus on being joyful and kind. “It was really easy to get distracted by those numbers,” he said. Now, he knows he might need to recalibrate if a week goes by when he doesn’t hear someone say “oh man, this is the best store ever.”

Meet the man who restores old music to its original glory: Pete Hutchison’s Electric Recording Co. uses era-specific gear to reissue records the way they were meant to be heard. Listening to records was a reverent act in Pete Hutchison’s childhood home. Whenever his parents played their beloved Ravel and Debussy works, they enforced one rule: “You weren’t allowed to talk,” he says. Though Hutchison favored rock and jazz when he started his own collection as a teen in the 1970s, he returned to classical upon inheriting his father’s LPs. His interest in the genre eventually grew so deep that he spent $12,000 on a pristine copy of ­Mozart a Paris, a rare seven-disc set released in France in 1956. Hutchison now makes what many music aficionados consider the finest records on Earth. He meticulously crafts reissues of jazz and classical titles (including his prized Mozart) from the 1950s and ’60s—wrapped in letter­pressed sleeves—that sell for $350 or more. Most labels churn out vinyl by the thousands with modern equipment, but Hutchison’s outfit, the Electric ­Recording Co., mints no more than 300 copies of each ­album. “Some of these very famous studios take the ­original master, and put it onto a digital system to play around with it and process it,” he says. “I don’t know why they’re ­bothering. They’re just degrading the sound.”

Technics takes on high-res with wireless speakers: Vinyl isn’t the only form of high-res sound you can get, and with its return to Australia, Technics is playing the digital game for the modern audiophile market. With the return of Technics to the Australian market, there are more record players for locals to look at. You can choose between models made for the DJ and models for the audiophile already, and Technics’ arrival merely adds to that, but that’s not all the company is pushing out as it lands on our shores once more. Simply put, there’s more to high resolution audio than the high quality that a vinyl record can provide, because there’s also the hi-res digital world, too. Large audio files with little in the way of compression encoded in jargon-filled files like FLAC, ALAC, AIFF, and DSD make up the high-res audio landscape, and while they can be a little problematic to find locally, if you know where to look, you can build a collection.

Nine Inch Nails Announce 2005’s With Teeth Is Getting a Vinyl Reissue: Nine Inch Nails have announced the new vinyl reissue of their 2005 album With Teeth which is pressed on 180-gram vinyl and features remastered audio. The 2xLP was “meticulously prepared” by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross alongside Nine Inch Nails art director John Crawford, “with lots of detail attended to that you may never notice but we care about.” Reznor and Ross have also announced that their score for the Netflix film Bird Box, which features two hours of music will be included in the 4XLP box set. Both vinyl releases are available now via the NIN webstore. Reznor and Ross scored the David Fincher films The Social Network (2010), The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo (2011), and Gone Girl (2014), winning the Academy Award for Best Original Score for The Social Network and the Grammy Award for Best Score Soundtrack for Visual Media for The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo. In 1997, Reznor appeared in Time’s list of the year’s most influential people, and Spin magazine described him as “the most vital artist in music.”

Stryper warns fans of bootleg vinyl singles sold through fake record company: Stryper have checked in with the following message to their fans: “BOOTLEG ALERT! In 2017 a bogus ‘record company’ called JDC Records released several Stryper vinyl singles. Some of the titles they put out are Together As One, Honestly, and Free / Calling On You. These releases are bootlegs. Stryper never released anything through this label. Before you purchase a Stryper vinyl, make sure that this is NOT the vinyl label.”

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