(Think of it like Shark Week—but with more teeth.)
In January of this year, CAKE released the long-awaited and self-produced, Showroom of Compassion, which debuted at number one on the Billboard Top 200 Album Chart. A successful tour followed and in fact, it was CAKE’s date at the 9:30 Club this past April that was the basis for our Record Store Day 2011 Vinyl Giveaway Finale where we paired the vinyl edition of Showroom of Compassion, with tickets to see the band the very night of Record Store Day.
One would assume the release of the record and the following tour would be it for Showroom—but not so. This week CAKE release a Limited Edition (5,000 only) six disc 7″ vinyl box set of Showroom with two bonus tracks not available on the original release. (Take a look—smashing, hm?)
…and you should see this too:
It seems that the band is our type of fetishists—the vinyl variety. The rerelease of Showroom in this set, with its varying vinyl colors, the unique sleeve and packaging, and two new tracks points to the fact that there’s not just artistry in the music alone, but it lives and breathes with team of fabricators and designers, and artists who assembled this gem.
With this shared mindset, we invited CAKE to hang out with us this entire week—to talk vinyl, music, record stores, the industry, and whatever else they may have on their minds. And of course, you’ll have an opportunity come tomorrow to win one of the 7″ box sets.
We kick off our week with with vocalist John McCrea and trumpeter, Vince DiFiore. It’s CAKE Week at TVD…
John McCrea: When I was ten my dad made me sell all my comic books and record albums. I guess he thought they were too colorful and distracting. Included was a rare orange vinyl X-mas album by the Beatles. The guy at the record store gave me one dollar for it. It was worth more than that then, but worth hundreds now.
I still collect vinyl. I find amazing records at the few record stores that still remain in my town. Also—thrift stores and estate sales.
I am always worried that manufacturers will stop making needles and replacement parts for my turntable. I guess that might be less likely now than it was ten years ago, but the fear lingers on. Having a lot of records makes me not want to ever move, and I am sure that I’ve stayed in more and a few bad living situations way longer than I should have simply because the thought of moving is always just too painful.
My wife wants me to get the records out of the living room. I really don’t know where else to put them. She won’t force me to, but I know she’d be happier without the monster. Maybe we just need better shelving solutions?
Vince DiFiore: Every action up to the point where you are actually listening to the music from a vinyl record is so deliberate. You are on a mission right from the moment you pick up the album cover and the decision has been made to dive in. Placing the stylus on the disc is a delicate and thoughtful process, almost like a Japanese tea ceremony.
Cake – Long Time
A college friend of mine owned an anti-static gun which he squeezed the trigger of, as he pointed it at the record, just before swinging the stylus arm on to the LP. It was as though it were one last spell from a magic wand before the listening pleasure began.
When I was a very young boy, I believed that the musical group was actually inside the record. Little miniature versions of the musicians rocking out within the confines of the medium itself. As crazy as that sounds, it jibes with the physical nature of the analog process; a needle actually brushing against a microscopic vinyl canyon of bumps and ripples.
The music is being re-created in real time. I love that about vinyl.