In rotation: 4/14/21

Bozeman, MT | Best Record Shops in Montana: Music will never go away, it helps people get excited, pumped up or soothe their soul and the best part there are several different ways to listen to music but the best way is definitely by vinyl. The thing is, finding a great vinyl record store is hard to come by in Montana but great news, the few record stores we have in Montana are fantastic and can get you whatever you need. Here are our Top Six Record Stores in Montana. Cactus Records and Gifts: A icon of downtown Bozeman, Cactus Records has something for every music lover. You want to look through all their new vinyl, you got it! You want to check out their quality used vinyl, they got it too! Cactus Records is a place you could spend a lot of time and a lot of money. Cameron Records: Cameron Records in Billings might not be as popular as some of these other spots but they have a great selection of good vinyl…

UK | Bouncing back? UK businesses’ views mixed as Covid lockdown eases: Banquet Records. …Banquet Records, an independent record shop, sometimes boasts queues of music lovers round the block. But even before the first lockdown, the owners chose to shut its doors. They have not opened since. Jon Tolley, the shop’s co-founder, said they want to wait until all social contact resumes. “Record shops will always be about the charm and the cult of browsing in person. We are not an Argos. We need to be fully immersed in the tactile experience, or not bother doing it at all.” The store’s resilience stems from running a varied business: putting on gigs, selling vinyl over the counter and online, and owning its own record label. Government high street grants and the furlough scheme helped it through during the initial slump. Banquet quickly adapted to online-only sales, which are now double the pre-pandemic levels, and organised virtual gigs. “People have nothing to do apart from sit at home and listen to records,” Tolley said. “The biggest challenge is just not knowing where we are going to be.”

UK | Record shops reopen their doors after lockdown: “We’re back!” Record shops celebrate as they reopen their doors after months of lockdown. After multiple lockdowns over the past year, today (April 12) sees UK record shops along with other non-essential retailers finally reopen their doors to the public. Many record shops have faced an uncertain future over the past 12 months, with many adapting their trading models to survive, offering online ordering and home delivery for the first time. The move has helped keep physical music sales strong in 2021, with all but one of the 15 Number 1s on the Official Albums Chart this year being powered to the top spot by a majority of physical sales. Last week, physical sales accounted for 16.3% of the albums market, according to Official Charts Company data. All of HMV’s 93 shops across England and Wales and most independent record stores are back open for buyers to snap up the latest release or crate dig for hidden gems – though social distancing and other safety measures continue to be in place.

UK | HMV welcomes back ‘regulars’ as stores reopen after lockdown: Store manager Terry Boyle said it had been a ‘tough, challenging time.’ Shoppers have been hunting out hidden nuggets at HMV stores as the retailer welcomed back “all the usual faces” following the easing of lockdown restrictions. The entertainment giant reopened all 93 stores across England and Wales and was expecting to see in-store shopping return to pre-lockdown levels amid strong demand for vinyls and original CDs. One customer took the week off work to make the most of the easing of restrictions, and was looking to add to his vinyl collection at HMV in Manchester’s Arndale Centre on Monday morning. Ben Milner, from Lancashire said: “I just love music, I have got my record collection at home but it’s just not the same going on the internet and ordering stuff, it’s been another thing that I have missed so coming in and having a look around the records and stuff and seeing what I can find, why not.” Store manager Terry Boyle said it had been a “tough, challenging time”, but added: “It has been great this morning to see our regular customer base and all the usual faces back in the store.”

San Francisco, CA | With live shows poised to return, musicians open up about opening up: An indie star, a label owner, a DJ, and an electronic musician share their candid responses to this moment. If someone would have told me at the onset of the coronavirus pandemic lockdown that vinyl record sales would jump up 30 percent during a global health disaster, I would have told them, “OK Boomer, your shrinking Nirvana T-shirt seems to be affecting the blood flow to your brain.” But who knew? While everybody was stuck at home, doom-scrolling on devices, getting bored with Zoom real quick, saving pets from the pound, investigating TikTok and Twitch much closer, and waiting for the weekend Verzuz battle, they snapped up soul, jazz, rock, disco and pop records in droves. Those magical black platters became the time-traveling spaceships for the mind. …Following that lead, since nobody was touring, record releases came flying in double time. With movie schedules being re-arranged like chess pieces, major sports events canceled or significantly postponed, performers, bands, publicists, labels, and digital service platforms all recognized this was the time to bombard people with stay-at-home options.

Middlesborough, UK | A new record pressing plant to open in Middlesborough: The factory plans to make 100,000 records a year. A new record pressing plant in Middlesbrough is hoping to create 30 new jobs in the region by the end of the year. Danny Lowe, David Todd and David Hynes have announced Press On Vinyl, located at Middlesbrough’s Tees Advanced Manufacturing Park (TeesAMP). The trio, who have employed a team of 10 people so far, plan to make 100,000 records every month, and hope to expand their team to 30 employees by the end of the year. As Teesside Live reports, Lowe said, “As three local guys we’re really excited to set up this unique business at TeesAMP.” He continued, “We’re combining our skills from our day jobs in engineering and business management with our extensive knowledge of the music industry to bring the first ever record pressing plant not only to the North, but specifically to Middlesbrough, and we’re really proud of that.” Lowe added, “We hope our business can also help our fantastic local music scene, not many towns or cities across the world have access to their own local vinyl pressing plant, so it’s a real win for the area.”

Someone paid $2,380 for a rare 2002 Japanese vinyl pressing of Daft Punk’s “Discovery.” How much would you pay for a rare Daft Punk vinyl? Let’s be honest—we’re all still licking the wound of Daft Punk’s shocking breakup. In the wake of the robots’ split, one fan made a splash with the purchase of a rare 2002 Japanese vinyl pressing of Discovery, the iconic electronic music duo’s sophomore album. The 2xLP limited edition record sold for $2,380 on Discogs, who recently shared a list of the most expensive items sold on the marketplace in February 2021. The most expensive item was New Horizons, a 1972 album by jazz collective The Sounds Of Liberation that sold for $7,777. Following that LP came Liza Jane by Davie Jones With The King Bees, which sold for $6,944, and a 7″ Single of Magnetics’ Count The Days / When I’m With My Baby that fetched $5,200, respectively.

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