Albi & The Wolves,
The TVD First Date

“Hello. My name is Chris but people know me as Albi, I play in a three-piece Americana trio Albi & The Wolves and we come from Auckland, New Zealand.”

“I have read on this site that a lot of people grew up with vinyl in their life and while that makes me happy to hear I was not so fortunate. Vinyl hit me just after I flunked university and moved to the cultural capitol of New Zealand, Wellington. The city was thriving with young people, fantastic coffee, and the best music scene in the country. It has an arty but grimy feel to it, and it was here that I opened my sister’s old record player for the first time.

Sadly that year of my life was not my happiest. Wellington was fantastic but me and my girlfriend at the time were fighting a lot. To make things worse, we lived in a one-room apartment together. The only way we could get a little space from one another was to listen to some music and when I say this, I mean it. That little red record player possibly saved my life. We found common ground on a variety of classic albums, and usually by the time we had listened to one or two, the air cleared and we could come back together.

Luckily for me there was a record store or thrift store with come crates in the back around every corner, so as I got to know the city there were always new places to explore. Money was tight, but after busking at local markets I would take some spare change and I’d go hunting. Even now I can’t believe it but I found The Stranger by Billy Joel for $1 and Rumours by Fleetwood Mac too. The prize of my collection then was a copy of “The White Album” by The Beatles which I purchased for a mere $15.

There was a peculiar store called the David White Gallery, that was my favourite. This funny little shop was clustered and disorganized, but it had a few chance sections for music, books, and other knick knacks too. The owner was always cheerful and whenever I brought him an LP, he’d price it right then and there. Maybe he knew I was down on my luck or maybe he was just happy to part with an article, but either way it was here that I found the best deals in Wellington.

These days I live a fairly transient lifestyle, so I don’t own many things, but I have those classics from my Wellington-era in my collection (plus a few other albums that I adore). I’m so thankful for that record player because it gave me peace in a stressful time of my life, and strengthened my love for listening to full albums. If you haven’t yet, please go out and give this experience a go. It’s like stepping back in time for a moment, and it will change the way that you think about art and life in its current state.

I hate to say it as it sounds so damn hipster, but in a subtle way, vinyl did change my life and that change was for the better.”
Chris Dent

Albi & The Wolves new full length release This is War arrives in stores July 26, 2019.

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