In rotation: 11/23/21

Japanese Breakfast, Little Simz, St. Vincent and more get Rough Trade-exclusive vinyl pressings: “Rough Trade record shops have played a huge role in our musical lives,” list-toppers Dry Cleaning said. Indie retailer Rough Trade have announced a new suite of exclusive vinyl pressings, celebrating their recently published list of 2021’s best albums. The full list ranks a total of 100 records, with the top 20 – topped by ‘New Long Leg’ by Dry Cleaning, and rounded out with records like Japanese Breakfast’s ‘Jubilee’, ‘Sometimes I Might Be Introvert’ by Little Simz and ‘Daddy’s Home’ by St. Vincent – all receiving new colourways exclusive to Rough Trade. To celebrate their Number One spot, Dry Cleaning performed a one-off show at the Rainbow Room of New York’s Rockefeller Center, with support from fellow list-makers The Muckers. Tickets were free for those who bought the band’s ‘Tascam Tapes’ vinyl, which was also exclusive to Rough Trade.

Exploring the wonderfully weird world of America’s private pressing phase: …Enter the rise of private pressings whereby people took the matter of making records into their own hands and had their own vinyl made out of hard-earned savings. For better are for worse there are gatekeepers in the art world as there are in every walk of life. The difference is that art is subjective. If you want to be a surgeon, you have to pass a test, if you want to be the next Usain Bolt only your times will tell, however, if you want to be a musician you don’t even have to be able to play an instrument, just ask anyone who knew Johnny Rotten. Private pressing circumnavigated the gatekeepers of the art world and got straight to business. When this new notion of substance over skill combined with the inherent glossy-eyed aspirations of Americans and increasing disposable income, the maddening world of private pressing burst open almost as an inevitability.

Record fare: What’s the deal with eco-vinyl? There are many ways to upcycle an old vinyl record: melt it into a bowl shape for your chips, turn it into a clock, make a funky dreamcatcher, or add a little pedestal and voila! You’ve got a cupcake stand. But in terms of recycling vinyl, it’s a little hairier. PVC (poly vinyl chloride), the plastic from which records are made, isn’t totally environmentally friendly. But some artists are looking for ways to morph the process. The famously eco-aware Coldplay released their Oct ’21 album Music of the Spheres on an alloy dubbed “recycled splatter vinyl,” and Bristol punk-rockers IDLES latest album Crawler is about to land in “eco-mix” vinyl. But artists’ eyes have been on this idea for a while: in 2019 Mercury Prize-nominated singer-songwriter Nick Mulvey released his single In the Anthropocene on a world-first format called “ocean vinyl,” made entirely from recycled plastic gathered from the waters off the UK‘s southern coast.

Record player stands – the smartest ideas to add the X factor to your vinyl collection: These record player stand ideas will add charm to both classic and contemporary rooms. Record player stands are a must if you’ve invested in a high-tech record player and are keen to grow your vinyl library. A simple, stylish way to showcase your passion, the latest record player and hi-fi unit stands are ideal for housing a range of music media including speakers, vinyl, CDs and all the kit that comes with owning a record player. From simple solutions to more complex arrangements, we have ideas to suit both modern and maximalist styles. ‘The most important factor when choosing a record player and hi-fi equipment stand is to ensure the turntable is placed on a sturdy, level surface,’ says Simon Webster sales and Marketing co-ordinator for Rega Research. ‘Ideally, the turntable should be isolated from the floor as much as possible to prevent unwanted resonances travelling into the turntable and damaging the sound quality.’

Grimsby, UK | Music hoarder’s 10,000 items of memorabilia up for auction with original Beatles vinyls, guitars and concert posters: It includes original Beatles records and a Bunny’s Bingo poster. A massive music auction is set to take place in Grimsby next week including thousands of original vinyl records, CDs, cassettes, instruments and even memorabilia from bands that have played at local venues. The lots will go under the hammer at Prestige Auctions over the course of two days, November 24 and November 25. Amongst the impressive collection is some rare memorabilia from local venues like The Winter Gardens and even Bunny’s Bingo. The majority of the pieces come from a single collector from Cleethorpes who sadly passed away recently. His items have been so popular that the listings have been receiving interest from as far away as Australia.

Sedalia, MO | This old record sold at Meyer Bros. is back home on Ohio Street: James Harmon, who owns Jammin’ Nuggets Music with Deana Taylor, likes to say he has the coolest customers. And one of those cool customers turned up last week with some vintage recordings that were sold in the same building on Ohio Street where his store is located. It’s a record that James believes was pressed, or imprinted at the old Meyer Brothers Appliance Store, 115 S. Ohio. Today it’s the home of Jammin’ Nuggets Music. The customer gave James twelve of the records. One of them has a handwritten label indicating the song on the disc is “Mother, The Queen of My Heart” a song recorded by many including Ernest Tubb, Jerry Lee Lewis, and Merle Haggard and the Strangers. The first recording of the song was by Jimmie Rodgers in 1932 according to the Second-Hand Songs website. James and Deana aren’t the only people to get their hands on discs from Meyer Brothers. A search of the Sedalia Memories Facebook page for “Meyer Bros.” turned up a post by Sedalia author and historian Becky Imhauser from October of 2020.

Des Moines, IA | 8 questions to ask if you’re new to buying vinyl this holiday season: Longtime record store owner Nate Niceswanger from Zzz Records in Des Moines has tips for you if you’re shopping for a vinyl lover this year. Record albums supposedly died off by the late 80s as a preferred way to listen to music, so many people are surprised to see records readily available 30 years later. Well, they’re back – and in a big way. Last year during the week of Christmas, U.S. vinyl album sales hit a record high. If you’re shopping for vinyl this holiday season, consider visiting your local record store. IPR Studio One has created a nice record store directory for Iowa that you can find here. You can also currently find albums in some chain stores and online directly from the artists. How do I get started?

San Francisco, CA | Le Fantastique, a New Wine-Focused Restaurant With a Vinyl Soundtrack, Debuts In Hayes Valley: A new wine- and sashimi-driven restaurant from the folks behind Palo Alto’s Bird Dog has just opened its doors at the foot of Franklin Street in Hayes Valley, and it’s called Le Fantastique. As San Francisco slowly returns to its normal self — a place where splashy new restaurants tend to pop open at this time of year and book up fast — we have one new opening to report on in the ground floor of a brand new building at the edge of Hayes Valley. Le Fantastique (22 Franklin Street) is a restaurant and wine bar with a specific and personal point of view, courtesy of Peninsula restaurateurs Robbie and Emily Wilson — and Hoodline reported on its approaching opening back in May. Bird Dog is known for its elegantly plated seafood crudos, Japanese aesthetic, and fine-dining presentations, and Le Fantastique is a restaurant cut from the same cloth.

Wax on, wax off: Unblocking the great vinyl logjam: The rebirth of vinyl, for some at least, seems to be a wonderful licence to print lots of delicious money – except the problem is that no one can print it, or the discs, fast enough. Demand is massively outstripping supply. Everyone knows this. Pressing plants are buckling under the strain and labels are being told to get their orders in at least six – preferably 12 – months in advance. Albums, a bit like the Queen and her birthdays, are getting two release dates: there are the CD/cassette/streaming/download releases to kick off the campaign; and then, as the campaign enters into its final furlongs, there is the vinyl release. There is some encouraging news here in the UK, like the brand new pressing plant opening in Middlesborough before the end of the year, but it’s not going to solve the problem. It will barely touch the sides of the problem. What record labels are being left with is a form of “windowing” that no one wants.

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