Category Archives: A morning mix of news for the vinyl inclined

In rotation: 2/23/17

The world’s best record shops #057: Bhang Records, Bandung: A record collector since his high school days, Rekti Yoewono of the Indonesian rock band The Sigit established Bhang Records in 2011. Like a vinyl fairy tale, Rekti set about acquiring large quantities of second records and simply opened up shop in his living room. After a few years of trading, he could afford to rent a retail premise and relocated. Then this year the shop moved to a bigger home, which includes a rehearsal, a recording studio and café. “It’s a very creative environment where young bands, DJs, and enthusiasts gather,” says Rekti. “We usually play music on the deck all day long so it’s a pretty awesome place for those who like to listen to music all day long.”

Vinyl Lovers Rejoice! Wax Bodega Opening This Weekend In Lakewood, Madison is on the move! Wax Bodega specializes in vinyl records catering to the indie and punk scene. The grand opening is this Saturday: Kyle and Lauren Roeger have been busy the past several weeks preparing the space at 13339 Madison Ave. in Lakewood for the area’s newest vinyl record store — Wax Bodega. In fact, if you’ve walked down Madison Avenue recently, you may have seen them hard at work with their dog Cali running around the store and their daughter, Dylan, waving at passersby from inside her Pack ‘n Play perched in the storefront window.

Joint Custody Is Open for Business in Occupied D.C.: It’s a shitty, gray day in January, made infinitely shittier due to it being Inauguration Day in Washington D.C., and it takes a couple hours of texting to find Gene Melkisethian, co-owner of Joint Custody, a local record shop and vintage clothing store. The cars on the Metro leading into the city from Arlington, Va., are almost completely empty, save for a couple twitchy-looking folks in MAGA hats, and the main cluster of train stations downtown are closed, but once you do make your way toward the National Mall, there’s still no crowds — just swaths of people looking for where to go.

Earache Records closes chapter on “loudness war” with full dynamic range vinyl reissues: Famed for pioneering the underdog genre of extreme music in the late ’80s and ’90s, Earache Records over the course of the last 30 years has issued some 600+ releases and helped to provide careers for genre-leading names such as Napalm Death, Morbid Angel, Carcass, Entombed, Sleep, At The Gates, Bolt Thrower, The Dillinger Escape Plan, Bring Me The Horizon and countless others. The concept of extreme music isn’t the only facet to Earache Records that it has pioneered however… the concept of FDR (Full Dynamic Range) vinyl pressings has revolutionized the way music fans can enjoy their favorite metal albums.

Oxford, MS Retailer The End Of All Music To Release Benefit Record For The Southern Poverty Law Center: Oxford, MS record store The End of All Music has announced the release of a four-track benefit record to support the SOUTHERN POVERTY LAW CENTER on MAY 5th, featuring new songs from DRIVE-BY TRUCKERS’ PATTERSON HOOD, BONNIE “PRINCE” BILLY, WILLIAM TYLER and ADAM TORRES. The record’s artwork is composed of photographs taken from MAUDE SCHUYLER CLAY’s book, “MISSISSIPPI History,” which was published by STEIDL in 2015. The record will contain four tracks on the A-side and a “Resist Fear. Assist Love” etching by artist NATHANIEL RUSSELL as the B-side, and is being pressed in a limited edition of 1,000 copies — with the first 500 copies on colored vinyl. It will only be available for purchase through THE END OF ALL MUSIC website and at the brick and mortar store in Oxford.

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In rotation: 2/22/17

This Utah record store just cracked a ‘must-visit’ list: The Travel Channel this week named Randy’s Record Shop in Salt Lake City as one of the top “must visit American record stores” in the country. According to the Travel Channel, vinyl records are under something of a resurgence in recent years, with album-seekers on the hunt for rare and popular old records. Randy’s Record Shop, 157 E. 900 South, made the list. “Walking inside Randy’s is like taking a time machine back to how a vintage used record store used to look in the 20th century and what’s not to like about that?”

‘Traditional’ record shop opens its doors, Customers have said a new record shop in Town is a blast from the past and a suitable replacement for old high-street hubs: Located in Fountain Street, the store was formerly a pop-up shop selling leftover LPs to raise money for Headway Guernsey. Now, however, it has opened as a full-time music hub selling a huge range of records and CDs. Collectors will also be welcome to come and sell their own items or buy, or have their collections valued. Vaughan Davies, the owner of Vinyl Vaughan’s Record Boutique, said the shop had totally evolved from when it was totally dedicated to raising money for charity.

Artist Spotlight: Hand Drawn’s Crusade To Bring Back Vinyl: We hate to sound like a broken record, but vinyl is back. Last year vinyl album sales grew 10 percent, topping an 11-year streak of positive growth. That’s great news for one North Texas record label that’s hoping to become major player in the resurgence of vinyl. Up in Addison there’s a giant packaging facility – it’s about the size of two Home Depots squished together. It’s filled with rows of boxes stacked floor to ceiling. In one corner sit two brand-spanking-new vinyl record presses, each about the size of a pickup. They’re the first record presses built and installed in the United States in more than 30 years.

Sony Music has installed a record cutting lathe in its Tokyo studio: Sony Music has installed a cutting lathe in its state-of-the-art Tokyo studio, Musicman-Net reports. The industry standard Neumann VMS70 lathe joins the studio’s 12-strong mastering suite and will allow Sony to cut its own lacquers and master discs on site. It has been installed on the same floor as its recording studio, to open the possibility of cutting lacquers from live recordings in real time – a process popularised recently by Jack White’s Third Man Records among others. The move feeds into the country’s already resurgent vinyl industry and marks a major return to the format for one of its most powerful players. According to Musicman-Net, Sony hopes to use its expertise in CD manufacturing to cut a more advanced analogue sound.

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In rotation: 2/21/17

Keeping up the Mojo, Two USF Alums find success in book and record store: At a time when technology is moving so fast, sometimes it’s best to take a step back and appreciate the art forms of yesterday. While many people, if not everyone, currently have both their music and books loaded onto their phones, or some other device, there is still a community of people who believe a book is best read on a page and for the ultimate listening experience for any song, one needs pressed vinyl and a record player. For members of this community who attend USF, or just live in Tampa, Mojo Books and Records might be a frequent stop.

Six months after leaving Adams Morgan, Crooked Beat Records has found a home in Alexandria: Crooked Beat Records owner Bill Daly always planned to open a store in Alexandria, Virginia. He just didn’t expect to do it so soon. “This store was supposed to be our second store,” Daly said. “We were supposed to open one here and still maintain one there. If you had told me a year ago that we would have a store in Alexandria or Arlington, I would have said, ‘No, we’ll have our second store here in Alexandria, but we’ll always be here in D.C.'” The move began last spring, when the store announced it would be shuttering its Adams Morgan location after 12 years in the neighborhood.

Retro resurgence: The unlikely return of cassette tapes in Canadian music: Tyson Wiebe firmly believes the audio cassette hasn’t been played out. Many, many years after most music fans tossed their tapes in the trash, the Lethbridge, Alta., musician got behind the dated format in a big way — by forming an independent record label intent on resurrecting the once-loved cassette. Through production runs of 100 copies, Wiebe hopes to convince more homegrown artists that releasing tapes makes sense in 2017. He sees it as a way for musicians to stand apart in the age of streaming music, and get more people to actually play a full album. “It sounds great to us and it’s a lot more inexpensive than doing something like vinyl,” the founder of Norwegian Blue Records says.

Intersection Sessions: Ed Smith & ReRunz Records: Ed Smith’s record store, ReRunz Records, opened last Summer on West Church street. There are bins full of James Brown 45s- along with other funk, soul, R&B, Jazz and hundreds of other records. The walls are lined with records and concert posters- for the Jackson Five, T Bone Walker, Fats Domino, Run DMC… There’s also a sign advertising Smith’s own group- the After Hour band- which rehearses at the store on weekends. Smith used to have a store in Pine Hills, but he closed it in 2000. He says he couldn’t compete with the big box stores. Last August though, Smith says he decided the time was right to re-open.

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In rotation: 2/17/17

Doncaster town centre record shop closes down due to “personal circumstances”: The Notorious Aardvark in Waterdale shut up shop at the end of last week, announcing its demise via its Facebook page. Store owner Simon Saynor wrote: “So that’s it, give or take an hour. The shop is no more. “We will still be selling on line with over 2000 items listed. Plenty more to add – I’ll have time to do that now. “Thank you to every single person who has shopped at The Notorious Aardvark Record Shop. It’s been emotional xxx”

Why the Family of Late Vinyl Café Host Stuart McLean Asks for Donations for Camp Kanawana: Stuart McLean would be the first person to seek out the upbeat amid the sadness. The beloved host of CBC Radio’s The Vinyl Café — also a bestselling author and award-winning humourist — died yesterday (Feb. 15) at age 68 after a battle with melanoma. Yet in death as in life, McLean brings the happiness. His family requests that, in lieu of flowers, donations be made to the Stuart McLean Camp Kanawana Fund which helps children and teens without the financial means to attend Camp YMCA Kanawana, a community where they learn to care for themselves, each other and the environment.

Vinyl makes comeback from near-extinction: Currently, the hottest and best-equipped place in Seoul to listen to vinyl discs is Hyundai Card Music Library in Itaewon. About 150 people daily visit the library, which has a collection of over 10,000 records and music-related books, and the line grows long on weekends when over 500 people come to explore music. The venue has six turntables and visitors can play records available on the shelves. “The Music Library opened in 2015 and it surely contributed to help Itaewon become a music-oriented district,” Hyundai Card’s global PR manager said.

Kindercore Records to Open Vinyl Pressing Plant in Athens: Kindercore co-founder Ryan Lewis teased the news with a series of Facebook posts over the past few days, and today the label posted the graphic seen above with the caption, “Music manufacturing coming to Athens, GA mid-2017.” If the Athens plant becomes a reality, it will join an exclusive club—there are only a few dozen currently-operating pressing plants in the whole world, with about 20 of those in the U.S.—and no doubt enjoy high demand. The resurgence of interest in vinyl over the past decade, paired with a lack of available pressing equipment, has led to massive backlogs at many record-manufacturing facilities.

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In rotation: 2/16/17

6 records shops to satiate your vinyl habit: The vinyl record industry is alive and well. There must be over a 100 vinyl record shops or sellers in Metro Manila alone to feed one’s appetite for records. Not since the 1980s has there been this demand or craze for music in their vinyl format. And it is cool for the music fan to have a lot of choices. By no means is this list the “best of” the lot. Far from it. Each shop has its own share of clientele, charm, and level of collector’s delight. I chose these shops for their ambiance, prices, browse space, selection, friendliness of the staff, and the condition of the records they sell.

Restaurant, record store on tap for new buildings on Near Southside: Ground was broken on Monday for an 18,000-square-foot development in the Near Southside area. The site, will consist of two buildings and parking, separated by an outdoor paseo including a garden and patio. Anchoring the site will be the Magnolia Avenue location of Salsa Limon. Also in the development will be Panther City Vinyl, a new vintage-record store that will also offer new vinyl records. Developers of the project are Hatfield Properties and Dodson Companies. Architects are Studio 97w and the contractor is Crimson Building Co. The project is estimated to be open by the end of 2017.

The Vinyl Revival: Why Music Lovers Are Going Back: Vinyl: a comeback few people saw coming. Many music hobbyists here in the Valley are trading in their newer CDs for older records. It is nostalgia, or does it really sound better? We spoke with collectors, store owners, and an area music engineer to find out what has many listeners dropping the needle. “So Dire Straits, Brothers in Arms album, it was actually recorded on digital tape, said MSUM professor and music engineer Ryan Jackson. “So there’s really no reason on earth that it should sound better on vinyl.” Jackson poured thousands of dollars into his music setup. It’s been a work in progress for many years. He says the sound quality of music has to do with a lot more factors than whether or not it’s on vinyl.

Music lovers across the Midlands buy in to Vinyl: Vinyl records are making a comeback with sales reaching a 25-year high last year. More than 3 million LPs were bought last year, up over 50% on 2015 and the highest number since 1991, when Simply Red topped the charts. David Bowie’s final album Blackstar was the most popular album of 2016. Older albums from artists including Amy Winehouse, Radiohead and Fleetwood Mac, also performed well.

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In rotation: 2/15/17

How I Play Microforum Vinyl Record Pressing: If you’ve ever flipped through a bin used records in Canada, chances are that much what you found was pressed here. Canada’s history vinyl pressing runs deep alongside the medium’s heyday. Though the factories listed on the back your parents’ rock records have long since shuttered, the steady revival vinyl — projected to become a billion dollar industry this year — has made an all-Canadian record pressing process a reality. New plants are slated to open in Ontario and Prince Edward Island, but Toronto’s Microrum Services Group will be the first to usher in a new era Canadian-made wax.

Vinyl record fans flock to fair in Leigh: Crowds flocked to a record fair at West Leigh Primary School in Leigh on Sunday. Vinyl record lovers had a huge choice of music to choose from, including reggae, punk and rock ‘n’ roll. The fairs are held regularly at the school in Ronald Hill Grove. It isn’t just the preserve of artists from a bygone era, however, with more and more new bands releasing their music on vinyl. One of the most anticipated of 2017 is Depeche Mode’s new album, Spirit, which is due to be released in April in all formats, including vinyl.

Ennio Morricone The Thing OST reissue comes with “breakaway ice slip-case”: Last December, Waxwork Records teased a vinyl reissue of John Carpenter and Ennio Morricone’s The Thing and that release has now been officially unveiled. As is to be expected, Waxwork has gone all out on the packaging, with the blue and white vinyl deluxe edition trapped in a “breakaway ice slip-case” that’s in line with the movie’s Antarctica location. The “old-style satin coated gatefold jacket” comes with spot gloss varnish, an 11″x 22″ poster, and 11″ x 11” booklet featuring an exclusive interview with director John Carpenter.

This walnut DJ console is the perfect living room addition: Dutch design company Rik ten Velden has revealed a stunning walnut edition of its flagship DJ console, the Selectors Cabinet. The unit is constructed with a steel frame and modular wooden cabinets that are detachable for transportation. As for speaker placement, there’s an option to add monitor stands to the setup. “Creating a perfect balance between aesthetics and functionality was the main goal,” says Rik ten Velden.

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In rotation: 2/14/17

Tables turn: the vinyl record revival: There’s been a huge resurgence in the sale of vinyl records – last year saw the highest number of LPs sold since 1991. Once it was the domain of collectors looking for second hands. Now big name artists are releasing their music – new and old – on vinyl. We’ve been asking people if they remember their first record

Music lovers pack out popular Cowley Road record store for sixth birthday party: Music lovers packed out Truck Store in Oxford to celebrate the independent music hub’s sixth birthday with live bands, beer and cake. The Cowley Road record store throws a party every year with performances from local acts and this year more than 50 people turned up to join the festivities on Friday. Up and coming band Coldredlight and pop duo Candy Says kept fans entertained in what was a celebration of the Oxfordshire music scene.

Moby Thinks Humans Are Born Knowing Vinyl Is Better: “And I would posit…that the difference between the most highest bit-rate digital and the analog wave of vinyl, like, a bit-rate–we always know that there are steps in there…That’s why I think, when people talk about the warmth of vinyl, we’re so accustomed–because we’re looking for emotional connection. So there’s just something–at least for me–there’s something that’s more authentic about it.”

Microforum hoping new presses for vinyl records will be music to fans’ ears: For Noble Musa, the task of scoping out decades-old record pressing equipment felt like a journey into an old sci-fi movie. So his media manufacturing company decided to take another approach. Toronto-based Microforum — which has been making CDs and DVDs for more than two decades — is the second place in the world to get its hands on modern vinyl pressing machines made in Etobicoke. Microforum has two working presses and an order placed for four more from Viryl Technologies.

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In rotation: 2/13/17

St. Vincent Named Record Store Day 2017 Ambassador in Hilarious New Video: Watch, Annie Clark trains to become the ambassador for a small, nonexistent island named “Recordstorda”: St. Vincent is the ambassador for Record Store Day 2017. Along with today’s announcement, Annie Clark stars in a hilarious video, made by Funny or Die, that involves her training to become the ambassador for a small, nonexistent island called “Recordstorda.” Watch it below. Last year’s RSD ambassador was Metallica, and previous ones include Iggy Pop, Ozzy Osbourne, Jack White, Chuck D, and Dave Grohl. Record Store Day will take place on April 22.

Vinyl records having a renaissance with sales at their highest since the 1990s: Vinyl records are making a comeback with sales reaching a 25-year high last year. More than 3 million LPs were bought last year, up over 50% on 2015 and the highest number since 1991, when Simply Red topped the charts. “In terms of sales and what’s been happening with vinyl, it’s become a very collectible area. So people are finding they can, because of streaming services, they’re freeing up their cash to go and buy items that are probably a bit more desirable.”

Rise in vinyl record popularity may be here to stay: The vinyl record is the antithesis of what streaming represents. Where Spotify essentially offers continuous rentals, vinyl records give the status of ownership. Where Apple Music keeps art-work sequestered to the corner of the screen, vinyl records come in a 31.43 cm square, boasting a large version of the album cover, supplementary artwork and liner notes. Where TIDAL is available through any computer or internet enabled device, vinyl records actually require a physical exchange, which cultivates exterior relationships.

Start the presses! World’s latest innovation in vinyl records now spinning in Addison: Dallas-based Hand Drawn Records began as a label and artist management company in 2011 and eventually expanded into record brokering under the moniker Hand Drawn Pressing to better serve the needs of its bands. Business on the pressing side was booming, which led Hand Drawn co-founder and chief creative officer Dustin Blocker to consider opening his own manufacturing plant. But there was one problem: The equipment necessary to do so was outdated.

Amarillo man proud to be longtime music lover, collector: Not sure where George Deahl is on the seven steps of grief — maybe it isn’t any of the seven steps — but just a nostalgic twang every time he looks into his room full of music or passes the empty shells of the stores around town. “Pretty bad, honestly,” said Deahl, 60, of his withdrawal pains. “I’m not happy about it, but there’s nothing I can say or do to bring it back.” The Amarillo Globe-News reports Deahl is a lifelong music collector, mainly the vintage vinyl records and CDs. One of his go-to places was Hastings, the Amarillo-based chain of music, video and books that closed after 48 years in late October.

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In rotation: 2/10/17

Colby Cosh: So farewell then, HMV. Don’t let the door to hell hit you in the bum: After the advent of the compact disc, chain music stores like HMV kept independent and used record stores on the defensive for 30 years or more — but the surviving ones have now prevailed. HMV’s bankruptcy practically makes it official. It is the indie shop’s V-E Day. If you are reading the news this week you are probably running across quotes from the indie owners in your town, counting the revenue from new vinyl releases and trying not to sound too triumphant.

Stephen Butchard: Lorenzo’s record store keeps music in groove: On a cold night in mid-January, LP Records is open after hours. In the daylight, the small record shop off Great Western Road usually has few people in at once. Passers-by wander in to flick through the racks (mostly comprised of new releases), staying for five minutes to make an impulse buy or a bit longer if they chat about tunes with its owner, Lorenzo. Tonight, the shop is crammed for a listening party of RTJ3, the new album by hip-hop duo Run the Jewels.

Uff da: Record store returns to Central Minnesota: Reality is slowly sinking in for Jeff Pederson. And that is both exciting and terrifying. “It’s been my dream job for my whole life,” he said. “And now my dream is coming true.” Last spring, Pederson had taken a job working for one of his lifelong friends, Shaun Hagglund, at a small sports memorabilia store in Crossroads Center. By June, Pederson was diversifying the store’s merchandise through the sale of vinyl. By November, the small collection of records in the Fan HQ Rock N Jock store just outside of Target generated about 50 percent of the store’s business.

Where To Shop Vinyl Records In Singapore (And How To Get Started): Listening to vinyl has always been cool, right? But when new stores keep popping up, EDM acts and the Biebs get in on the movement, and even Gen Z It girls rave about it (watch Stranger Things’ Millie Bobby Brown on Colbert), it’s you-can’t-miss-this cool. We break down what to know to get on the inside track.

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In rotation: 2/9/17

Almost Ready Records offers wide selection: A new record store seeks to spin out enough tunes to meet the local demand for old-school vinyl in Carroll Gardens. Almost Ready Records held its grand opening on Sunday. It offers a stockpile of records ranging from classic rock to 1990s hip-hop, alongside country music and reggae. And the prices are as ranged as the selection. Some records cost just a dollar — rare collectors’ items as much as $600. Co-owner Harry Howes says he also carries albums from his own record label.

Moody Lords rides wave of vinyl’s revival: Andrew Chang, co-owner of Moody Lords Vinyl/Vintage record and clothing store on Portland’s Congress Street, smiles as he hovers over a turntable, carefully lowering an album by its edges and gently setting the needle on it. Surrounded by stands of plastic-encased used albums neatly labeled by genre, he extols the merits of vinyl records, including the social experience of buying them and having a physical item to play in a digital world, crackles and all. The store has the relaxed, ethereal feel of both a library and a museum. It’s the type of experience that’s drawing in more people in Maine and elsewhere.

Edmonton’s indie music stores optimistic despite HMV bankruptcy: With the country’s mightiest music chain limping into oblivion, independent retailers in Edmonton are not ready to sing their swan song just yet. HMV Canada has gone bankrupt. The retailer was hemorrhaging cash, losing $100,000 a day as customers turned towards digital media for their music and videos. Though the timbre of the Canadian music industry has changed, its clear Peter Ferguson hasn’t changed his tune about the future of his own business. Revolver Inc, which has two locations in Edmonton, specializes in hard-to-find and out-of-print DVDs, CDs and vinyl.

Vino & Vinyl wine bar and record store opening a second location on Sugar Land’s City Walk: Vino & Vinyl will open a second location at 15977 City Walk, Sugar Land, this month. Like his original store in Missouri City, owner Paul Killingsworth said the new location will have a wine bar and record store. It will also have community tables for customers, a full kitchen and sell menu items, including sandwiches, pizzas, desserts and meal specials. Vino & Vinyl will also expand its craft beer selection to about 40 varieties at both locations.

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