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Technology’s lost art: The ancient magic of the record label
02:44 pm


Record label art

In our race to embrace new technologies much has been lost. During the 50s and 60s General Electric spokesman Ronald Reagan appeared regularly on American television declaring with godlike certainty “that progress is our most important product.” And we bought it. And we’re buying it still.

Until their recent resurgence, vinyl records were a thing of the past. Now it’s compact discs that are being phased out. DVDs and Blu-rays are next. The powers that be want us streaming data through the ether without the hassle or production costs of actually making something you can hold in your hand and own, not just store in a cloud somewhere. In our embrace of the new, faster, most convenient thing, we’ve lost a substantial amount of what we love about the things we love, the things that make our lives more beautiful. My Sonos streaming device is an ugly block of white plastic. My turntable, a Thorens with a beautiful wooden plinth, is a masterpiece of design and function, gorgeous to look at, soulful, unique. My record collection is not just, to my ears, a superior way to listen to music, it is a wonderland of marvelous sleeve art, label design and picture discs. All of which I can hold in my hands, all responding to gravity and easily handed off to a friend to appreciate as much as I do. No one ever comes into my home and asks to see my set lists on Deezer or flips through my Amazon cloud collection.

The phasing out of vinyl, CD, DVD, celluloid, happened so fast that a lot of people were caught by surprise. I own a vintage audio store and people are coming in on a regular basis to buy CD players because the local big box stores don’t sell them anymore. You might be able to find a shitty player that will shuffle dozens of CDs or some crappy all-in-one system. But a good single tray player with a decent digital audio chip is getting harder to find unless you move into expensive audiophile gear territory. If you told me even five years ago that CD players and CDs themselves would become collectible I would have laughed and said you were nuts. Guess what? Anyone want to buy a Suicide Commandos’ CD for $400. I got one.

The return of vinyl is wonderful for many of us. But the big three music corporations hate it. They’ve had to shift back to making stuff. And they have to pay a lot of people to make it. The new records sold in my store put scores of people to work, from the guys who make my record bins, to workers pressing the vinyl to the artists designing record jackets again. Add to that the truckers who move the vinyl, the folks in my store who sell it and homegrown turntable manufacturers like U-Turn who can’t keep up with production demands. All those people making livings thanks to vinyl. Not to mention, the musicians who now have more control over their product and profit when they produce their own records. Yes, a record costs much more than a CD to make or an MP3 to stream. But a record is something special to a bands’ fans. It is an artifact, a totem, something you hold close to your heart knowing that not everyone owns one of these slabs of black magic. With demand so high and current production so limited, every record made today is almost instantly collectible. You may be fine listening to iTunes or Amazon cloud, but vinyl is something you want to own. It is precious. It is art.

So that’s my vinyl rant. It was all leading up to sharing these beautiful 78rpm record labels produced in Britain between the years of 1898 and 1926. Enjoy them. And be happy that we may be seeing their like again, if not already.


More after the jump…

Posted by Marc Campbell | Leave a comment
Holy Moly! The BIGGEST pile of vinyl records you’re ever going to see
01:45 pm

Pop Culture


What you’re looking at isn’t a hoarder’s home, but a neglected record warehouse photographed by Frédéric Thiphagne back in 2009.

Thiphagne was sworn to secrecy as to the warehouse’s location in order to take these jaw-dropping shots. Unfortunately, the warehouse and its contents were destroyed two weeks after the photos were taken. Bummer.

Thiphagne writes on his blog:

“Those pictures, which are the only one existing from that place, should be seen as the illustration of that dream, of the biggest fantasy of every record digger.”

Indeed. Why were all of these beautiful pop culture artifacts just destroyed?



See more amazing photographs at Thisphagne’s blog Les Mains Noires.

Previously on Dangerous Minds:

‘Hoarder House’: What a small home with over 250,000 records in it looks like

h/t WFMU

Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
Sh*t People Say At Record Stores
11:49 am



I’ve never worked at a record store, but had plenty of friends who have. And this video pretty much mirrors a lot of the complaints I’d hear from my buddies. Especially the constant “Are you hiring?” question.


Posted by Tara McGinley | Leave a comment
John Peel’s Record Collection: Online from tomorrow, May 1st

John Peel’s Record Collection will go online tomorrow, 1st May. The John Peel Center for Creative Arts will start uploading details of the DJ’s famed collection. Each week 100 discs will be made available, covering every genre of music, and unveiling 2,600 albums over the coming 6 months.

Tom Barker, Director of the John Peel Center for Creative Arts explains:

Each of these releases of 100 records will be accompanied by one mini documentary video of a featured artiste for that week. These are pretty special, as the artistes have been chosen by Sheila, John’s wife, and their children - so they are all artistes who meant something to John and his family.

When you come to the website you will see John Peel’s home studio, from which you will be able to access the contents of the record collection as it is added each week, as well as other videos added each week, photos, peel sessions and radio shows. Once in the collection you will be able to move up and down the shelves of the record collection, picking out certain choice records and going through the first 100 as though you were standing in front of the shelves in John’s studio.

You will be able to see the hand-typed cards that John diligently typed for every album in the collection, the record sleeves, as well as listening to tracks via spotify and itunes where available.

And because we know that John meant a great deal to many people, we will be helping you to connect with other music lovers and Peel fans through our John Peel Archive social media accounts. Look out for never-before seen material, like letters to John, being exclusively released via social media. This will also be a great way to stay up to date with new material being released each week - so please do ‘follow’, ‘like’ and say hello - we want to hear from you and your stories of John.

In our heads throughout the planning process, has been making sure that we do John (and his fans) proud and ensure that the legacy of this legendary man lives on.

We hope you like the John Peel Archive - and that John would have done too.

Check the site from tomorrow on to see what goodies will be uploaded.

Updates will be tweeted on the John Peel Archive .

John Peel on Facebook, G Plus and Pinterest

Now here’s a John Peel Day Mix made by ttfb.

01. “Itchy Cut” - Cowcube
02. “New Rose”  - The Damned
03. “The Voice Of John Peel” - Delia Derbyshire
04. “O Superman” - Dan The Drummer
05. “Hard Row” - The Black Keys
06. “Cuntry Music” - Listen With Sarah
07. “Diddy Wah Diddy” - The Magic Band
08. “Shotgun Funeral” - Party Of One
09. “High Resolution” - Dj Rupture
10. “Two Sevens Clash” - Culture
11. “Death Letter” - Son House
12. “The Classical” - Pavement
13. “Groovin’ With Mr Bloe” / “Green Eyed Loco Man” - The Fall
14. “YMCA” - Galactic Symposium
15. “The Light At The End Of The Tunnel (Is The Light Of An Oncoming Train)” - Half Man Half Biscuit
16. “My Radio Sounds Different In The Dark”  - The Would Bes
17. “The Kill” - Napalm Death
18. “Live At Maida Vale” (Excerpt) - Jeff Mills
19. “Abridged Too Far” - People Like Us
20. “Speed” - Pico
21. “Roy Walker” - Belle And Sebastian
22. “Doctor ?” / “Chime” - Orbital
23. “Dr Dre Buys A Pint Of Milk” - Grandmaster Gareth
24. “Tokyo Registration Office” - Hyper Kinako
25. “Dracula Mountain” - Lightning Bolt
26. “The Nation Needs You” - The Cuban Boys
27. “John Peel Is Not Enough” - Clsm

John Peel Day mix by Ttfb on Mixcloud


Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Sex Pistols: Recording of ‘God Save the Queen’ goes on sale for $16,000

According to editors at Record Collector magazine a rare recording of The Sex Pistols’ “God Save the Queen” has gone on sale for $16,000 (£10,000).

It is said the A&M recording of the song is the most valuable piece of vinyl in the world, because the band was dropped by the label before the track’s release, and the bulk of copies were destroyed. The disc is on sale at, where it is described as:

“SEX PISTOLS God Save The Queen (Well, this certainly shouldn’t need any introduction. Quite simply, a MINT unplayed copy of the legendary withdrawn 1977 UK original A&M 7” b/w No Feelings, in the A&M company sleeve. Obtained from an ex-industry source with impeccable credentials, this is not only one of the rarest records in existence but is certainly the most sought after and no serious record collection is complete without it, regardless of your thoughts on the band or indeed the music itself. A period piece of punk/musical/social/history. I hope this goes to someone who will love and cherish it as much as i would. Be quick before the original reluctant seller wants to buy it back…).”

Check here for more details.

Selling a record for such a large sum of money may go against the popular notion of Punk Rock, but this is nothing compared to last month’s report on The Sex Pistols’ graffiti, at an apartment in Denmark Street, London, which academics, Dr John Schofield and Dr Paul Graves-Brown said Johhny Rotten’s doodles usurped the discovery of Tutankhamun’s tomb.


Such hyperbole only confirms The Sex Pistols’ relevance is long gone.

Never mind the bollocks, here’s Motörhead.

Via Louder Than War

Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment
Cutting a new disc
11:44 am


Pop Culture
Alvaro Arteaga

45 rpm Deli byAlvaro Arteaga.
Via Bitchville


Posted by Paul Gallagher | Leave a comment