My Strange Addiction: Vinyl Records

Zach. Talks. Back.

November 29, 2017

         Zach Prados

Not too many people listen to vinyl records anymore.

There’s only a small – but growing – group of audiophiles who trade their iTunes account for a record player.

My addiction for vinyl became full blown 12 months ago.

A friend helped the band, Justice, in the studio and landed a credit in the liner notes of their album. Liner notes are the credits and song titles inside compact disc cases and record sleeves.

My friend snapped a photo of his name and sent it to me. Seeing his name on the vinyl’s sleeve made me wonder what else other than the music was I was missing.

What other features were included in albums that didn’t come with a digital download?

Turns out, a lot more.

Vinyl records give me that physical connection with music that no other medium offers.

The larger albums feature artwork, liner notes and a richer sound – none of which can be obtained from Pandora or Spotify.

For example, LCD Soundsystem’s album, This is Happening, features photos of the band throughout their entire career.

For music addicts, this connection to the band goes beyond a digital file.

The joy of breaking the seal on a new album is also lost with digital streaming.

Vinyl usually comes in plastic wrap with some kind of sticker telling you what you’re getting.

You get to have the joy of opening something and getting hit with the smell of new vinyl. That smell of cardboard and plastic is the stuff dreams are made of.

It’s fantastic the way vinyl makes me feel.

I’ll never forget the day I received in the mail my big package from DFA Records.

I had a terrible day at school – unexpected test, nasty lunch, little to no sleep the night before – just a really bad day.

So, I get home and resting on the front porch was a package from the DFA: four records in total.

The perfect mix of indie rock and electronica to take all of my worries away.

I bolted inside, popped the first of the four records on the turntable and as the sound coursed through my veins, I just sat back and relaxed.

The real world melted into the experimental soundscape of the Black Dice, a techno duo, which one of the four albums I received that day. Pure bliss.

One of my personal favorite records is From Deewee by Soulwax. The music is a master class in how to make an electronic album.

From the interior liner notes to the article about the creation of the album to the black and white colored vinyl, it’s a package that you can’t download.

I can go on and on about all of the elements that are contained on the inside of this album. Someone who only listens to digital music doesn’t understand.

Another one of my other favorites include David Bowie’s Legacy, a wonderful trip through the eclectic discography of David Bowie.

I also own a great sampler of the French Touch era of the 2000s – which is the best electronica from France.

The subculture of vinyl, filled with some of the most interesting people around, is another factor that makes collecting vinyl worth the time and money.

I went to Park Ave CDs in Orlando last weekend, and everybody that worked there is passionate about what they are doing.

This isn’t just a store. It’s a community.

It doesn’t matter who you are or what you look like. In that moment, you are a member of an elite group.

That is what is magical about the vinyl community – there is only one requirement to be accepted: Love music, whether it’s Drake, Bowie, Bieber or Metallica.

If you love music, you’re in.

We’ll accept you because you care about music just like we do.

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