Fruition,
The TVD First Date

“Vinyl is life. But I don’t mean that in an obsessed, looking-down-my-nose, ‘vinyl is life’ bumper-sticker type of way. I mean that vinyl has life. It’s a living embodiment of recorded sounds. It breathes. It’s got a body with physical weight and it relies on gravity like you and me. It’s got a language of its own that must be meticulously translated on the fly by a skilled interpreter. It’s literally got music cut into it’s skin like an elaborate sleeve tattoo. My vinyl records are more human than some humans I know. They’re some of my closest friends.”

“I was infatuated with records as a kid. But not because we always had them playing around the house or anything—we didn’t even have a working turntable. I saw DJs on the TV and in movies spinning records, scratching samples, and making these otherworldly incredible sounds. I heard turntablists on hip hop records do their thing and thought it was pure magic. I still do.

I remember going to my friend Omar’s house in grade school, his parents had a turntable in the living room and they used it from time to time. I remember just absolutely DYING to scratch a record; even to just lay my hand on the vinyl while it spun around on the platter. I didn’t ask, I just went for it, unable to control my desire, consumed by this idea that I would immediately sound like the next DJ Qbert.

Nope. I put my hand on it and immediately the needle skipped off of the record, the tonearm swung wildly to and fro, the lights flickered on and off, the sky darkened and the earth split open. I may not be remembering that all perfectly, but it was definitely dramatic. I was immediately scolded for putting my paws on that wax. I was told that was how you RUIN records, and that ‘DJ’s’ who scratch their records obviously have no respect for them and no problem ruining them.

So I grew up fully believing the myth that all those cats out there were deliberately destroying their records in the name of hip hop and dance music. Such sacrifice! Such delicious disrespect for established norms. How could they afford it? The mysteries and magic of vinyl grew stronger in my heart. It would be another decade before I learned the difference between a belt-driven turntable and a direct-drive turntable. That there is very minimal damage done to the record or the stylus when you run a record back to listen to the beat drop one more time. That when I scratched on Omar’s parents old turntable, I was actually damaging the turntable’s belt, not the record or the needle.

Now, another decade after that, I’m a week away from holding a test-pressing of my band’s latest record—a concept album of two EPs, with one EP on each side of the record—in my hands. A week away from dropping the needle on the smooth peripheral edge of the record and watching while it works it’s way toward the center. This will be the sixth offering that we have released with a vinyl counterpart. It’s always my favorite part of the album-making process. It always feels like I’ve really, like really, actually made something that will withstand the test of time.

And who knows, maybe I’ll scratch it too.”
Kellen Asebroek

Wild As the Night, Broken at the Break of Day, the new release from Fruition, is in stores now—on vinyl.

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PHOTO: JAY BLAKESBERG

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