A must listen from François K.
A must listen from François K.
How to properly file your vinyl collection
BY ALAN CROSS GLOBAL NEWS
Posted May 10, 2020 10:00 am
If you jumped into the vinyl resurrection over the past few years, I’d say there’s a 50-50 chance that you have a pile of records somewhere on the floor that isn’t organized in any coherent manner. “I’ll get to filing/ordering them when I have the time,” you say to yourself. With the pandemic lockdown, that time is now.
Judging from the number of emails I’ve received on the subject of the care and feeding of vinyl collections recently, a lot of people have finally decided to get things sorted. But there are some recurring questions about how to do things properly.
Getting your library in shape requires a little bit of planning and thought. But you don’t have to go this far. (Note the tiny bit of NSFW language here.)
I’d admit that organizing records according to your personal autobiography is intriguing, but it only works if you have a good memory. Plus, anyone else who wants to look through your collection would be completely lost.
Chronological ordering is a more manageable method but requires that you’re up on your music history. It can also be tedious to search labels, liner notes, and Wikipedia pages for release dates.
Me? I prefer the old-fashioned and (apparently) highly non-hipster way of filing my records: alphabetically. But you need to know more than just your ABCs in order to do this right — at least according to me.
Before you start…
We can’t just to into this willy-nilly. Here are some things to know before you begin.
Vinyl is heavy, so you’ll need some sturdy shelving, preferable a cabinet with a back so records don’t fall irretrievably off the back.
Vinyl should be kept off the floor (water, kids, pets) and should always be stacked vertically.
Vinyl gets dusty. It wouldn’t hurt to gently vacuum them as they sit on the shelf. Gently.
Do NOT pack them too close together because that could cause damage. Give them room to breathe. I like to be able to stick a finger between any two albums on the shelf.
If you’re really serious about your collection, look into buying some proper clear storage sleeves made of non-biodegradable plastic. The thicker the better, if you ask me.
And if you’re really intent on making your vinyl last, consider encasing the record itself in new inner sleeves. Some of the original sleeve packaging from back in the day eventually breaks down and merges with the vinyl itself, sometimes damaging it beyond repair. Paper sleeves can also be bad, especially if any humidity gets inside the jacket. They break down, leaving bits of paper goo within the grooves of the record.
Separate 12-inch releases from 7-inch ones.
Seven-inch singles are the heart and soul of rock’n’roll, so they deserve their own dedicated shelf space. File them alphabetically by artist name.
You Don’t Begin with the Letter “A”
If we’re going to be academically correct about the way we organize our records (do NOT call them “vinyls”; there is no such word!), we need to begin with artists whose names consist of numbers or typographical symbols. Some say that a group like “The 1975” or !!! (pronounced Chk-Chk-Chk) should be filed under “N” and “C” respectively. Instead, they should be at the very beginning of your library, ordered by rising numbers, so Joe Strummer’s The 101’ers comes before The 1975.
Typographical symbol bands come at the end of this section following the order as they appear when you shift-up numbers on a standard keyboard (!, @, #, $, etc.) In the above example, !!! comes immediately after the last number-named band.
However, note that Nine Inch Nails and Twenty One Pilots should be filed under “N” and “T” respectively because the numbers are spelled out.
Getting Granular with the Alphabet
If you have multiple releases by the same artist, they should be filed together in chronological order. That means The Clash’s London Calling (1979) comes before Combat Rock (1983).
If you have some Cure, Depeche Mode, New Order, or Pet Shop Boys albums, chances are you also have some of their 12-inch singles. Those singles should also be filed in chronological order immediately following the album on which the original appears. If we’re looking at Depeche Mode, the Violator album would be adjacent to all Personal Jesus remixes (in the order in which they were released) followed by the remixes of Enjoy the Silence, then Policy of Truth, then World in My Eyes, all chronologically.
Where to put related bands, offshoots, and solo albums
This can be a controversial point. Should Noel and Liam Gallagher’s solo albums be filed among Oasis records? Or should they be filed under “G”? Should Perry Farrell’s Porno for Pyros go with Jane’s Addiction or under “P”? And what about all the post-Beatles work of John, Paul, Ringo, and George? And where should you put The Traveling Wilburys, which featured George Harrison AND Tom Petty AND Jeff Lynne AND Roy Orbison AND Bob Dylan?
Some people will insist on grouping related albums together, which, I’ll admit, does have its appeal. My personal hard rule is that while these releases are related to the parent band, they must go under “G.” It’s just easier that way.
Filing “The” Bands
Ignore the “the” in names like The Beatles, The Cars, and The Rolling Stones. Those artists should be filed under the letter corresponding to their root name: Beatles under “B,” Cars under “C,” Stones under “R,” and so on. There is only one legitimate “the” band that gets filed under “T”: Matt Johnson’s brilliant group, The The.
There are two choices here. You can file them under V for “Various” or, as I do, in their own separate section after the letter “Z.” I file mine alphabetically using the title of the compilation as my yardstick. It can be helpful if you separate your comps by genre (punk, metal, ska, etc,) but only if you have a lot of these records.
They must definitely be given their own section. Order them alphabetically by title.
Vinyl box sets are too pretty, too big, and come in too many weird shapes and sizes to fit well on a record shelf. Find a different spot for them, arranging them in the most aesthetically pleasing manner you can.
Taking records off the shelf to enjoy is one thing. Re-filing them can be a real drag. Before you know it, you’ll have another unruly pile on the floor because you were too lazy to put them away. Believe me, I speak from experience.
You may have come across this interesting article about The Electric Recording Co. in the New York Times this week. We portrayed Pete for Passion For Vinyl Part II and visited the company back in 2017, one quote from Pete in PFV Part II which says it all… “People recognise that what we do is a true labour of love, mixed with a healthy dose of obsession.”
We’ve been pressing vinyl for The Electric Recording Co. and Peacefrog for many years now, and it’s a real pleasure working with Pete and his team.
NY Times article: Link
Love this video from 1979 from the Old Grey Whistle Test, ENJOY.
Pese a que el vinilo es uno de los formatos más venerados por la humanidad, nuestro amado vinilo tiene propensión a atraer el polvo y la suciedad. Expuesto a sesiones a altas horas de la madrugada, largos fines de semana siendo nuestro más fiel compañero y viajes de ida y vuelta al trabajo. Vinilos que un día estaban nuevos y relucientes pueden comenzar a tener un aspecto más desgastado de lo que nos gustaría. Y eso sin mencionar esas gemas para coleccionistas encontradas en mercados de segunda mano y ferias de discos que puede que no hayan sido limpiadas jamás.
Huellas, polvo, electricidad estática, arañazos… todos estos elementos crean ruido no deseado en el que se supone que es el formato audiófilo por excelencia. Los chasquidos y pequeños saltos (cracks and pops) que a veces consideramos entrañables e inherentes al vinilo, pueden llegar a convertir su escucha en dificultosa e incluso inaudible en los peores casos. Además, incluso elementos como la grasa y suciedad presente en nuestras manos pueden comerse lentamente la superficie del vinilo, devaluándolo seriamente. Y todo esto sin tener en cuenta las agujas desgastadas. Por suerte, la solución es más sencilla de lo que pueda parecer. Sigue estos sencillos pasos para limpiar tus vinilos y no tendrás que preocuparte más del polvo y las huellas nunca más.
Una vez que hayas aplicado el líquido limpiador a la superficie del disco, asegúrate de limpiar aplicando presión y movimientos circulares con el paño de microfibra. Gracias a esto, podrás eliminar las manchas. Asegúrate de evitar la galleta a toda costa, ya que el líquido podría dañarla.
Lo ideal será que utilices un spray con agua o, si eres todo un ninja con las manos, puedes hacerlo en la pila de la cocina a chorro. Asegúrate de eliminar cualquier resto de líquido limpiador que pueda quedar en la superficie. Después, seca el disco utilizando un paño limpio, diferente del que utilices para limpiar las manchas. En este punto del proceso, tendrás que evitar volver a marcar nuevas huellas en el vinilo. Coge siempre el vinilo por los ejes o por la galleta para obtener el mejor resultado posible.
Como norma general, asegúrate de que todos tus vinilos tengan una funda interior y de tratarlos con delicadeza cada vez que los saques de su funda. Y eso es todo, cuidar apropiadamente de tus vinilos te garantizará poder disfrutarlos por mucho más tiempo. Si quieres leer más sobre este tema, puedes hacerlo aquí.
Nota final: Para todos aquellos que tengáis que limpiar una gran cantidad de discos, podéis plantearos comprar una aspiradora automática para vinilo o una máquina limpiadora. Estas máquinas reducirán considerablemente el tiempo de limpieza. Eso sí, tened en cuenta que son una inversión importante dirigida fundamentalmente a profesionales del sector o grandes coleccionistas.
The Official Top 40 biggest vinyl albums of 2020 so far:
|1||BACK TO BLACK||AMY WINEHOUSE|
|4||THE SLOW RUSH||TAME IMPALA|
|5||MORE. AGAIN. FOREVER.||COURTEENERS|
|6||DIVINELY UNINSPIRED TO A HELLISH EXTENT||LEWIS CAPALDI|
|7||WHEN WE ALL FALL ASLEEP WHERE DO WE GO||BILLIE EILISH|
|8||FINE LINE||HARRY STYLES|
|9||FOOLISH LOVING SPACES||BLOSSOMS|
|10||EVERYTHING ELSE HAS GONE WRONG||BOMBAY BICYCLE CLUB|
|11||FATHER OF ALL…||GREEN DAY|
|15||WHY ME WHY NOT||LIAM GALLAGHER|
|17||WHAT’S THE STORY MORNING GLORY||OASIS|
|18||ORDINARY MAN||OZZY OSBOURNE|
|19||THE DARK SIDE OF THE MOON||PINK FLOYD|
|20||WHITE LADDER||DAVID GRAY|
|22||JUNK FOOD||EASY LIFE|
|23||UNKNOWN PLEASURES||JOY DIVISION|
|25||LUNGS||FLORENCE & THE MACHINE|
|27||HOTSPOT||PET SHOP BOYS|
|29||BRIDGE OVER TROUBLED WATER||SIMON & GARFUNKEL|
|31||HEAVY IS THE HEAD||STORMZY|
|32||MAN ALIVE||KING KRULE|
|35||NEVER MIND THE BOLLOCKS||SEX PISTOLS|
|36||HYPERSONIC MISSILES||SAM FENDER|
|38||STRAIGHT OUTTA COMPTON||NWA|
|39||SGT PEPPER’S LONELY HEARTS CLUB BAND||BEATLES|
|40||THE STONE ROSES||STONE ROSES|
©2020 Official Charts Company. All rights reserved.
The event is currently slated to take place on June 20, but that date remains uncertain as the British government continues to impose restrictions on every day life.
In an attempt to combat the loss of revenue that independent record stores will suffer due to the postponement, Record Store Day UK have launched an online initiative called ‘Fill The Gap’, encouraging fans to buy online.
“Today would have been Record Store Day and although we can’t celebrate in stores with you, independent record shops are still selling on line,” Record Store Day said on Twitter.
“If you can, please support your local this weekend and pick up the record that is missing from your collection.”
A number of fans, record stores and bands have started spreading the hashtag, showing off new purchases and old favourites alike, as well as throwbacks to Record Store Days past.
“It will impact us massively,” said Rough Trade East store worker, Elliott Oggers. “It’s the biggest day in the record store world. Postponing may ease any losses but it depends if it gets pushed back any further or cancelled permanently. We just don’t know.”
Dep Downie, co-owner at Monorail Music in Glasgow said: “Record shops rely on Record Store Day now as part of their yearly turnover and you become reliant on it because it’s the most important day of the year.
Unfortunately there is no way around it anymore, Corona Virus is impacting the whole world, including the music industry. Although we try to continue our business ‘as usual’, there may be some delays caused by different reasons.
At the moment we can still handle our complete production with the team we have in place now, hoping there will not be more people who have to stay at home for health reasons or governement orders. As soon as we have to reduce capacity and output which might influence the shipping date of your order, we will inform you in time.
Another reason which is out of our hands, is how shipping companies will deal with this crisis. At the moment we have no idea yet if the product will be picked-up on a daily basis, like how we were used to.
And if we ship records, it is of course very important the records can also be accepted by the receiver and handled by the distributor.
If you want to stop or delay a specific title, please let us know so we can see if we can stop printing the parts. To avoid blocking our supply chain, we cannot cancel an order once parts are already printed. And please inform us IN TIME if you suspect a distribution company will have to close down or if there will not be anyone present at the delivery address, so an alternative address can be used. We do not have capacity to stock pressed and packed records.
At the office some of us work from home, some are in the office. You can reach us via our mobile phonenumber which can be found in our signature or at the normal office number. But preferably send an email and let us know if you would like us to contact you by phone and we will do so asap.
Hopefully within a few weeks the Corona tempest has settled down, but untill than stay safe and take care of yourself and your loved ones.
“Devastating” Manufacturing Plant Fire Threatens Worldwide Vinyl Record Supply
Vinyl Record Production in Peril After Fire at California Plant
Vinyl Record Industry Fears ‘Vinylgeddon’ After Fire Burns Down Apollo Masters Plant
These are just a few of the headlines of articles covering the disastrous fire which happened at Apollo Masters in Banning, USA. Unfortunately their entire production facility has gone up in flames, and so has their stock of lacquers and styli as far as we know.
Many concerned customers contacted us to ask if Record Industry will be affected by this as well. As there are only two companies in the world which produce lacquers, it will ultimately have consequences for the availability of lacquers and perhaps also vinyl production in general. Some cutting rooms that rely on Apollo lacquers will not be able to provide cuts to pressing plants in the long run unless they can purchase MDC lacquers. It remains to be seen how MDC will deal with the increased demand and whether they can meet this. Little is known about their capacity.
No consequences for Record Industry for now, we still have enough lacquers on stock. We have been working for years with both MDC and Apollo lacquers which we purchase from suppliers with whom we have built up long time relationships, we are not worried about not being able to get enough MDC lacquers supplied. We cut a significant part of our production on copper, DMM, which we produce in-house. No matter what happens, our production will continue to operate. We do not expect longer production times or any other delays caused by this disastrous fire.
Whether new initiatives are emerging or perhaps Apollo will restart, time will tell but of course we hope so. We wish our friends from Apollo lots of strength and courage to overcome this disaster.
At the Rough Trade East record shop in London’s Brick Lane, a man dressed as a giant hot dog is on stage introducing a song.
“Put your hands up if you’re afraid of spiders,” says frontman Murray Matravers of fast-rising band Easy Life, before launching into one of their typically quirky compositions.
Easy Life’s in-store live appearance has attracted a throng of enthusiastic teenage fans, all clutching newly purchased copies of their new album, Junk Food. The majority of the audience pre-ordered the album online and admission to the gig is included in the price.
Perhaps you thought young people didn’t buy records and CDs? Or that streaming is killing the physical album? Well, welcome to the new reality of music retail.
“The idea that physical and digital are incompatible, I think, is outdated,” says the shop’s assistant manager, Alex Bailey. “We’re selling more records now than we ever have.”
Rather than seeing digital music as the enemy, Rough Trade embraces podcasts and playlists, keeps a keen eye out for new talent and promotes its stores as community hubs.
The Rough Trade Edit podcast, newly launched in the past week, is billed as “your first stop for new music”, featuring staff picks, recommended albums and guest appearances by bands.
Customers who visit Rough Trade shops are also invited to sign up to its Rough Trade Edit playlist on the Apple Music platform.
“We proudly and warmly endorse streaming as an affordable way to discover and enjoy music, it being very much a driver of vinyl sales,” says Rough Trade Retail director Stephen Godfroy. “If someone develops a love for a recording, the best way to cherish that is to follow up the discovery by owning and enjoying it on vinyl.”
Thanks to a mini-tour of Rough Trade shops, including the chain’s outlets in Bristol and Nottingham, Easy Life have sold enough physical albums to earn them a place in the top 10 albums of the week.
And many of the people singing along with the band’s songs at Rough Trade East have travelled specially to London for the performance.
Receptionist Conor Austin and waitress Rebecca Foulger have come up to town for the day from their home town of Sandwich, in Kent.
Conor, 18, explains that he got a record player for Christmas and is keen to expand his vinyl collection, even though he has Spotify on his phone. “I think it sounds different, it’s a different sort of vibe,” he says.
Rebecca, 17, bought the CD to listen to in her car. “I don’t have Spotify Premium, so I get all the ads,” she says. “It’s easier to have just CDs.”
As the runner-up artists in the BBC’s Sound of 2020 poll, Easy Life are still building their fanbase, and Murray Matravers, speaking before donning his hot dog suit, sees Rough Trade as the ideal place to do it.
“People go to Rough Trade just to see what’s happening, and nine times out of 10, they curate a really good record,” he says. “In this shop, there will be at least 20 or 30 people who have no idea who we are and who are hearing us for the first time.”
Stephen Godfroy recalls that when he opened the Rough Trade East store in 2007, many people thought it was “commercial suicide”.
The MP3 and Apple’s iPod were already dealing a decisive blow to physical music formats and many record shops were closing down.
But more than a decade later, business is booming. “I’m pleased to say that Rough Trade is positively thriving, with our like-for-like 2019 UK sales up 25% overall,” says Mr Godfroy.
Vinyl is Rough Trade’s top seller these days, accounting for three-quarters of all sales. “Rough Trade can represent 75% of total release week vinyl sales for a top 10 UK album chart entry, with just four stores and roughtrade.com,” Mr Godfroy adds.
Even so, Rough Trade East’s Alex Bailey says CDs still have their market.
“We’ve got a few customers that will come in without fail every Friday and buy a pile of CDs,” he says. “I notice that more than with people coming in to get vinyl releases. CDs are still a viable product, 100%.”
Rough Trade seems to be riding high at the moment, but can its success last?
Mr Godfroy freely admits that his stores are “not emblematic of wider music retail” and that the chain occupies a “unique position” in a “very cautious, very fragmented, very distorted” retail climate.
But according to music industry observer Graham Jones, of Proper Music, who has written two books about record shops and the vinyl revival, Rough Trade is still the benchmark by which other shops are judged.
After the publication of his book Last Shop Standing, Mr Jones says he was approached by a number of people who wanted to ask him about opening a record shop.
“My advice was always, ‘Go and visit some other shops,'” he says. “But the one I always advised them to visit was Rough Trade. As a model, they’re the best. They’re the ones you should definitely seek out before you open a record shop.”
In Mr Jones’s view, Rough Trade has flourished because “they’ve managed to stay fashionable – they’re an independent brand that music fans like to be associated with”.
But as he recalls, Virgin Records in the 1970s enjoyed similar cachet as a hip place to go before it expanded and lost that insider status.
As long as Rough Trade has its integrity, its place in people’s affections seems assured. But credibility is hard to win and easy to lose – a truth that must surely weigh on Mr Godfroy’s mind as he steers Rough Trade Retail through a changing music industry landscape.
La llegada de los formatos de audio digitales hace ya unas décadas, las descargas de MP3 y el streaming, auguraba la extinción de los formatos físicos de audio. Como ocurre con el DVD y el Blu-ray en el ámbito de la imagen. Pero nunca digas nunca jamás. El formato físico vuelve con fuerza en la música. El streaming sigue creciendo sin parar, pero los vinilos y los CDs se niegan a morir. La víctima puede ser las descargas digitales de música.
Ya el año pasado nos llamó la atención un dato curioso: los CDs y los vinilos vendieron más en 2018 que las descargas digitales de música. Es decir, comprar la música canción por canción en servicios tipo iTunes para descargarla en el móvil o el PC.
Esta semana la Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA), la asociación de la industria musical americana, ha comunicado que por primera vez desde 1986, los vinilos han vendido más que los CDs en 2019, culminando un crecimiento que no ha dejado de aumentar en los últimos 15 años. Es una noticia que nos llega vía TICbeat.
Solo en la primera mitad de 2019, la venta de vinilos creció un 12,9% con respecto al año anterior. En Estados Unidos se vendieron más de 10 millones de vinilos, nueve veces más que en 2010. En el Reino Unido se superaron los 4,3 millones, con 12 años seguidos de crecimiento en ventas.
Y ojo, que no solo el vinilo vive una segunda juventud. En el Reino Unido también se vendieron más de 89.000 copias de música en cinta de casette.
¿Por qué esta imprevisible vuelta de un formato con casi 70 años de antigüedad? Hay un componente de rebelión ante lo intagible y superficial que suponen los formatos digitales. Mucha gente tiene la sensación de que pagar por el streaming es pagar por humo, no lo sientes como algo tuyo, que lo has comprado. El streaming también representa la cultura de usar y tirar: pagas muy poco por millones de temas musicales o miles de películas y series, y acabas consumiendo sin parar. Ves o escuchas algo y a la semana siguiente ni te acuerdas de lo que era.
Pero no es una simple cuestión de añoranza del formato físico. Si así fuese, los melómanos volverían al CD. Sin embargo, las ventas de CDs siguen cayendo año tras año, también en 2019, la más baja de las últimas décadas.
La vuelta del vinilo tiene un componente nostálgico indudable, pero también es una vuelta a lo analógico. El streaming ha empeorado la calidad musical con sus codecs de compresión para que los ficheros musicales ocupen poco. El sonido analógico que proporciona la aguja del tocadiscos raspando suavemente el disco de vinilo suena diferente, más auténtico y profundo para muchas personas, y por eso las ventas de vinilos no dejan de crecer.
Pero los árboles no deben impedirnos ver el bosque. Los vinilos crecen, es cierto, pero la suma de las ventas de vinilos, CDs, y descargas musicales apenas llegan al 20% de los ingresos de la industria musical. El 80% corresponde al streaming, que se ha convertido en el gran monopolizador de la industria musical, creciendo un 5% con respecto al año anterior.
For this one off special we’ve asked Legowelt and Nadia Struiwigh to perform live at the Artone Studio located in the Record Industry pressing plant in Haarlem. Both will bring their hardware setups for the performance and it will be cut straight from the studio floor onto lacquer. A very limited run of the record will be produced and available at the Clone Pop-up Store located at Westergasterrein that same weekend!
The Artone studio has a live room and a mastering space designed for live performances. A state of the art, high fidelity, live recording space utilizing high-quality modern and vintage analog recording and mastering techniques and equipment.
There will be room for a small audience to witness this process live. A must see for the true vinyl afficionado! Please note that this is an invite only event, but will be streamed live here for everyone to see!
Location: Artone Studio at Record Industry on Nijverheidsweg 36, Haarlem.
Clone Pop-upstore Amsterdam is located at Pazzanistraat 3 and open from Wednesday 16 October till Sunday 20 October from 12.00-18.00.