In rotation: 6/11/20

UK | Record shops in England set to reopen next week: Following business secretary Alok Sharma’s announcement that non-essential shops can reopen from Monday. Yesterday (9th June), business secretary Alok Sharma confirmed that non-essential shops are permitted to reopen in England from Monday 15th June – and some record stores have since announced their plans to do just that. All four of Rough Trade’s stores in the country – Rough Trade East (London), Rough Trade West (London), Rough Trade Bristol and Rough Trade Nottingham – will be reopening from next Tuesday (16th), operating restricted hours between Tuesday to Saturday, from 11am until 5:30pm, for the foreseeable. There will be a limited store capacity with social distancing measures in place, and it’ll be strictly card-only transactions. From Monday, Leeds’ Crash Records will be open daily from 10am until 5pm for collection of pre-ordered records bought online or over the phone. There won’t be any opportunities for browsing, however if something is in stock purchases can be made on the day.

UK | Record Store Day announce new “calendar social distancing” plan: Limited edition vinyl will be dropped over three separate dates. Record Store Day 2020 have revealed a new concept entitled “RSD Drops” to celebrate the annual event this year. The idea was conceived in order to uphold safe social distancing practices while coronavirus restrictions across the nation are slowly eased. RSD Drops will take place over three Saturdays – August 29, September 26 and October 24 – and each release date will hold their own list of limited edition records. According to a statement on Record Store Day’s website, the three drop dates are spaced out in order to help enthusiasts add to their collection “in the safest way possible”. “They will be tailored to suit whatever conditions we need to follow at the time: online, email or phone orders, kerbside pick up, back door pick up, home delivery, in store… whatever the store can do that’s responsible and safe according to our governments,” reads the statement.

New York, NY | When will stores reopen in NYC? In-person shopping is going to look very different: Nonessential retailers are now allowed to offer curbside pickup. …One of the city’s beloved record stores, A-1 Record Shop in the East Village are already planning one way to provide customers with a similar record shop experience in this new normal—whether folks are physically coming inside the store or not this summer. A1 Record Shop veterans Shef and Jeremy, who have manned the shop for over 15 years tell us, “Sifting through inventory in a record store is really what is enjoyable about record shopping for a lot of people. So, we’re wanting to create record starter packs, to keep that element of surprise. It would be, say, 50 disco records for 100 bucks, with packs across all genres. A starter pack for classic soul, another for new wave, golden era hip hop, classic rock and so on. It’s a way you can still buy blindly for a cheap rate, and it gives people a chance to sift through a bag of things they might not already know.”

Best headphones for vinyl 2020: our pick of 8 headphones to bring the best out of your vinyl: Whatever your budget, these are the best headphones for immersing yourself in your vinyl record collection. Listening to music on vinyl is all about escapism, and nothing will help you get lost in the grooves and compliment your collection quite like an excellent pair of headphones. From AKG to Sennheiser and Beyerdynamic, in this guide we’re going to help you find the best headphones for vinyl. Being a vinyl nerd extends beyond the records lovingly compiled on your shelves. It involves a pact with the equipment you select to bring that music to life, from a turntable through to an amplifier, speakers and a pair of headphones. The latter can sometimes fall through the gaps when it comes to considering your home setup, given the prominence that the portability of headphones plays in our commutes, exercise regimes and general day-to-day.

King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard are reissuing some of their albums on ‘eco-friendly’ vinyl: King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard are reissuing some of their albums on ‘eco-friendly’ vinyl. Available from 20th June, ‘The Rancid Rainwater Eco Mix’ editions of the nine albums and one EP the band released via Heavenly from 2014-2017 utilise leftover wax pellets, recycled board, plant-based inks, and recycled brown paper bags. Talking about these very special editions, Stu Mackenzie says: “In 2020, plastic in our oceans, it’s in our soils, it’s in our bodies. The irony of making music that will be pressed on a giant plastic disc is not lost on me. It is a privilege and a responsibility to own this record or any other. Be thoughtful and be kind to Mother Nature. We need her.” …All printed parts are biodegradable and the release has been carbon offset, too.

Seoul, KR | Solo singer Baek Yerin sells 15,000 copies of vinyl record album thanks to young consumer trend: Baek Yerin, a 22-year-old former member of JYP Entertainment’s female duo 15&, has unexpectedly sold about 15,000 copies of her new album in a vinyl album format through a special order thanks to the retro trend among young consumers. The vinyl record, also known as LP (long play) album, is the 12-inch analog sound storage introduced in 1948. The circle-shaped record remained as the standard format for record albums until the early 1990s when compact discs (CDs) were produced. However, LP albums have been favored by audio enthusiasts for distinctive warm and cozy sounds. Blue Vinyl, Baek’s agency, said on Tuesday that about 15,000 LP album copies of “Every letter I sent you,” the singer’s first solo album released in digital and CD formats last year, were sold through a special order event. Previously, well-known artists such as solo female singer IU and indie band Hyukoh have released a limited number of albums in LP formats but it is very unusual for a rookie singer to garner such popularity. Baek’s LP albums were only sold through special orders because the mass production of the vinyl record is a costly and time-taking job, according to Blue vinyl.

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