The rebirth of vinyl

A few years ago the idea of ​​buying (and even more so to produce) records on vinyl seemed hopelessly outdated.

However, today blamed - the popular media, the presence of which in the case-stores (for example, in our Audiomanii) perceived something taken for granted - on vinyl release of the album artists of various genres, from reprinting Creedence Clearwater Revival to Taylor Swift <. br>
How are things in the industry tselomDeystvitelno, "second birth" is now the vinyl industry is experiencing what critics call: replacing cassettes and CD-disks plates come again. Some observers believe that the active revival of the old format began in 2007, when it was established by the so-called Day of Music Store (third Saturday of April, 2016 will have the holiday of April 16).

On this day around the world in the shops selling "records", goes on sale the new album (to this day there is about 400-500 releases). To maintain the ambassador of the festival of popular musicians annually appointed by audience interest ( "ambassadors" were such as Iggy Pop and Jack White, whose album Lazaretto has become one of the best selling vinyl records since 1991).

Statistics confirms that the hype around the vinyl there a reason: According to the Nielsen report, in the period from January to March 2015 vinyl sales were 53% higher than in the same period of 2014 (and for the entire 2014 sales in the US amounted to 9, 2 million records - despite the fact that in 2007 in the United States has sold a million records on vinyl)

. In fairness it should be noted that the amount of vinyl sales compared to other carriers remain insignificant. But in general, from 2009 sales of plates grew by 260% - a serious indicator, given that the vinyl in the late nineties seemed yesterday

. Note the increased demand for vinyl LPs and Russian retailers, including Audiomaniya:

We started selling vinyl records and it has paid off, now there are a million turnover - not according to the number of copies sold, and revenue. Demand is growing all the time, do not have time to buy

plate - Timothy Shikolenko, director of marketing and business development in AudiomaniiKto produces vinilMark Fayderb, Universal Music manager, called the day of the music store "the best thing that ever happened" with independent music stores. However, the benefit from this festival not only shops, but also indie labels that produce many of the releases that fall on that day, as well as a factory for the production of the plates themselves.

Creating smaller companies for the production of vinyl in the same United States now - a pretty good business: the demand for vinyl far exceeds supply. Labels and artists who want to release their record on vinyl, forced to stand in line for production - manufacturing companies sometimes made party records with a delay of 2-3 months, some at the same time sacrificing product quality - and still do not fit within the terms
It would seem that with such a steady growth of interest from the public, the niche of Vinyl Manufacturers have been filled fairly quickly - but it is hampered by several factors

. The first of them - is that in the 90 years of the vinyl industry has almost "got up" and therefore the plants that produce machines for the production of vinyl and metal matrices (negatives, from which "stamped" plate) closed en masse. Because of this competition in the market is almost no press manufacturers, and new machines are fabulous money: in the new press releases States in recent years only the company Record Products of America

. Two hand press from this manufacturer will cost $ 130 000 - to cover such expenses, a small plant for the production of plates would have to increase the price for their goods at least four times

. In this regard, companies that manufacture vinyl records in both the US and Europe (only about 40 such plants operating in the world), forced to run older machines 70s or even 60s, who were for a long time in the preservation. The exception is, perhaps, United Record Pressing in Nashville, USA - this relatively large company can afford to buy a new press, but even they have to go to various tricks to seize the machines for the production of master discs - the last of them, the company, according to management, acquired at the Church of Scientology (Ron Hubbard followers while recording his statement on vinyl).

The price of the new machine is "unsupportable" entrance barrier to all who wish to engage in the release of records, the number of used and ready to work presses too small - all this does not allow the industry for the production of vinyl to gain momentum as quickly as we would like labels
Another problem - the lack of qualified personnel in the workplace. "It is difficult to find a qualified Extruders. This kind of craft, - says Mark Rein, owner of Cascade Record Pressing plant in the United States. - Demand for Extruders should push more young people to learn this profession, because it has already experienced Extruders retire »

. However, the vinyl production gradually comes to life. Even using the old machines, independent producers vinyl release about thirty or forty thousand records per month. For larger plants, this figure is twice as much - an American manufacturer Gotta Groove Records stamps 80 thousand records per month. A vinyl giants like Czech GZ Media released a month and a half million records, thus not using all the available media of the plant - and, apparently, is not going to stop there

to lose than it is now vinilStoit note. that a new wave of interest in vinyl "cheered" and producers turntable. Timothy Shikolenko in an episode of the podcast "Sound" actively discussed topic of myths about vinyl and including players touched upon:

It should be understood that those players who are at the grandparents have served his own. Technology far ahead, and those players are not household - they were basically designed to play a good tale. It's not like that now goes mainstream - vinyl release for those who are very fond of music.

"It's like the music," the player "3.2.3 Electronics" will not work, because the quality of play is appropriate. This is the lowest level of domestic player, it is suitable for museum

- Timothy ShikolenkovI if manufacturers produce vinyl LPs mostly on older hardware, the factories for the production of all the players is arranged with the latest technology. For example, the plant Clearaudio, which specializes in the turntable, machine tools, which need to manage by hand, are used only for prototyping and training newcomers (engaged in the production of modern CNC machines).

Incidentally, in the Clearaudio office kept a huge family (also the company itself has grown from a family business) music library of vinyl records of classical music:

Photo-excursion on office and factory Clearaudio have here: 1, 2

Vinyl as high art ... So why vinyl rapidly became so popular? Rather, for several reasons. Firstly, the increased popularity of vinyl associated with representations of him as an "elite" media. Elitism in this case can be interpreted in various ways.

It can be considered as synonymous with elitism money if the player was previously a simple almost every home, but now quality records playback apparatus can cost a lot. And that's not to mention the parts, that way player - it is, in fact, one of the interior of the iconic elements, appeared in the room, it should take a "pedestal", and (along with the plates) creates around itself a kind of atmosphere of
Look at how this technique skillfully played out in modern cinema:

truly huge music library - one of the most powerful style "centers of gravity" in the office "the best lawyer in New York" Harvey Specter from the series Suits

And in the film "The Mechanic" with Jason Stethema music library and record player - not just the "heart" of the house of the killer, but also full participants militants (those who watched the movie, just remember, what is at stake) < br>
In both cases, the record player and music library - this is not the only way to decorators express "status" of the owner, but also interesting artistic technique that allows to reveal the nature of the characters. Which brings us to the second embodiment of the interpretation of the concept "elite" vinyl - vinyl as a symbol of elite culture (aristocratic, self-sufficient, in principle closed), implies that the listening process - a kind of religious rite, a special ritual.

According to this view, those who choose vinyl as a music medium, willing to spend time and effort to prepare for drying of (clean, rub, blow off the dust, to take place "in the first row"), and listen to this format is not "that anyhow" but only dear to the heart melodies. This in some ways even deliberate "ritual", incidentally, is well shown in the same "mechanics" - remember how much screen time given there is the process of listening to vinyl

In the case of vinyl contains certain tactile sensations.. It's one thing to download a file, press the button and listen to it, the other - to take from the shelf envelope, took out a plate, carefully wipe the dust brush, put it on the turntable, turn, enjoying the process itself

- Timothy ShikolenkovSovremenny cinema loves to exploit images of vinyl and player as attribute-rich life of the modern intellectual (by the way, in this case, the vinyl in a movie, listen to, as a rule, do not pop and rock, and jazz, and classical music - is another pebble in the garden of a dandy) - of course, these parallels can not attract the audience's attention

... And subkulturaNa other end of the spectrum is a subculture of vinyl fans, just the opposite -. young hipsters, active participants of "party music". For them, the vinyl as a symbol carries a completely different emotional charge and its popularity is formed from the other components.

First, vinyl - a living testimony "era retro" - but within this subculture anything that has some relation to the "vintage of the past" is highly respected

. Second, youth subculture (whether hipsters or other of its typical representatives) appreciate all independent, be it indie labels, independent young artists, young (and, of course, independent) music shops selling the fruits of labor of these same musicians and labels ( great cine image of such a representative vinyl fans from among the youth subculture, completely the opposite way of the rich dandy, embodied on the screen Jesse Eisenberg in "American Ultra").

That is why in the US, for example, the current production of vinyl often gravitates to the center of attraction of modern youth subculture: for example, the company Cascade Record Pressing settled not far from Portland, known for its strong music scene

. And the success of United Record Pressing in Nashville, many attributed to the fact that this city with its historical connection with the country attracts musicians - including popular among young people (in Nashville, for example, recorded the last album by American country music rapper Yelawolf - of course, he left including vinyl)

local community -. mother and pop music. We are not running from the latest technologies. Just it seems that the use of a ribbon microphone or analog tape much more romantic. On the other hand, so to work harder - and that, on the contrary, well, because it adds value to the final result

- Ben Swank, co-founder of Third Man RecordsNe an important role in promoting the vinyl among young people play and "related materials" - already mentioned above Lazaretto Jack White album, for example, came out on vinyl, accompanied by a 40-page booklet, poster and photos. In such a company (vinyl wrap - it is almost always serious work for the designer) the plate becomes an artifact - a symbol rather than a data carrier

. Exactly the same role is carried out, and modern technology in the production of the plate itself - for example, US-based manufacturer of vinyl Gotta Groove 40% of its products are manufactured in the color


PVC granules used for the production of records (in this case, the record appears to be pink). Photos of Mary Robinson to Pitchfork

Employees Gotta Groove note that at the present level "seal" technology, you can record a variety of objects and substances - and the musicians (and their audience) perceive this idea with great enthusiasm. For example, the factory received orders for the establishment of transparent vinyl, the body which performers would put the ashes from the burnt Bible, finely chopped bills and even blood (a large part of such proposals, the company manufacturers of plates, usually refuses).

Naturally, such a bright (and in some cases - and frightening), the object ceases to be perceived as a musical medium - a souvenir, a place which in a frame on the wall (in this case, even the absence of the player - not a hindrance when making purchasing decisions of the plate).

Vinyl today - it is a philosophy, a collectible, the choice of lovers of independent musicians and music media with its own characteristics, advantages and disadvantages. Let us hope that he is with us for the long haul - whatever the reasons were the basis for his return.



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