Atlas : Empire:
The TVD First Date

“I’ve always loved the warmth, detail, and organic nature of listening to vinyl. It just feels more natural for me to stick on a record rather than a CD or digital download. I’ll still listen to downloads for portability’s sake, but my favourite albums always sound fuller and more complete on vinyl.”

“I was fortunate to have access to my father’s extensive collection of LPs growing up which sparked my passion for music and collecting. I discovered so many great albums raking through my Dad’s records and was turned on to so many bands this way. The first record I ever heard was Return of the Grievous Angel by Gram Parsons. I’ve no memory of this as I was only a few days old at the time ,but I’d like to think this contributed to my love of music and still think of it as an outstanding piece of work. This went on throughout my upbringing uncovering everything from the Beach Boys to the Clash.

With so much vinyl in the house as my collection expanded along with my Dad’s, we decided to create a listening space in our loft, not only down to space issues but the unearthing of my father’s favourite record player, Pioneer PL11D, Roto Amp and Goodman speakers. The sound from that deck was overwhelming, pure, driven and classic.

I spent many hours up in the loft transported through sound, digging in to the sonic landscapes of Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon and Quadrophenia by the Who. If I had the chance to go back to any time period it would be then, to discover amazing albums and hear them fresh, for the first time. The Ramones, Sex Pistols, They Might Be Giants, the Pixies, the Smiths…so many great artists and great records, all centred around one of my favourite eras.

Being musically inclined, my first job was working at One-Up Records in Aberdeen—an independent record store sadly no longer with us. This was an opportunity to expand my collection even further with most of my wages each week being spent on more and more albums.

Working there also broadened my tastes as I embraced different genres such as Hip-Hop and Dance. Discovering De La Soul, Three Feet High and Rising, A Tribe Called Quest, The Low End Theory, and Entroducing by DJ Shadow, along with hundreds of other incredible albums. As I worked my way through various jobs in music retail, the changeover from analogue to digital was growing year on year. I was saddened to see the removal of vinyl from shop windows in most of the major outlets and, as a result, the diminishing access to vinyl on the High Street, although happy at the increased availability online.

I am proud to say that my first musical release was a split 7” single with my band at the time, Nero, and a Canadian band called the Carnations. I loved the fact that we released on this format and was surprised to find it listed as single of the month in Record Collector back in 2001. My collection lay dormant for many years without access to a player and it’s only in the last few years I’ve begun to add to it again whilst, at the same time, re-discovering the records that inspired me to create music.

Atlas : Empire have an album in the works and in true prog style I’d like nothing more than to see it released on double gatefold vinyl! Here’s hoping…”
Dave Stephen, Atlas : Empire

Atlas : Empire’s second EP, “Somnus” will be released on August 12th via Cold War Legacy Records.

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