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Monday, May 14, 2007

And it stoned me

Hardly played a CD all weekend. Pretty much all vinyl. Don't know how long this enthusiasm will last but for the moment I can't believe just how much kinder vinyl is to your ears. Dug out the old copy of Van Morrison's "Moondance" that I bought in 1970 after hearing John Peel play "Into The Mystic" (probably the sum total of its UK airplay at the time) and just stood there looking out of the window at the garden through the whole first side. Felt transported, which doesn't often happen.


  1. How strange – I've been doing exactly the same recently. I got Zuma for my birthday and have been sitting in my house on weeknights having a cup of tea and enjoying the crackle.

  2. Agree Moondance is a great album on vinyl. Side one is the best stuff he's ever done in my opinion. Side two trails off a bit, but for some reason it has always sounded better on vinyl than CD.

  3. I've always wondered what exactly constitues "drug store Lovin'" and why Otis thinks it's not up to the mark.

  4. Hmmm... 'audio atavism', eh? Well, as I wait to discover what's on this here 6.8KB per second download ['I than' yo']I presume to mention my own retrograde steps in this direction: I don't even listen to vinyl anymore - not quite sure of the deeper psychology, but given the previously obscure stuff that can so readily be acquired au Web, I now merely listen to music via these ultra low fi PC speakers. I suspect it's the novelty of the ersatz teenage 'record player' sound [as opposed to Hi Fi system] these things create. From Nick ['We are not worthy,' Oh yes you are] Drake obscurities to ancient, 'before the fall' Blue Oyster Cult live tracks, they all sound fine minus certain heretofore essential frequencies - rendered nostalgically, tinnily benign.
    No casual visual defenestration [uh huh, uh huh - I'm not sure about that one either] here though - oh for such a blithe distraction as an English garden.
    Download's still going on...
    I won't.

    Good wishes.

  5. md, yet again3:02 pm

    Err.. is it impertinent to ask - what's that last track? Some kind of celeste style keyboard and faintly Eagles meets Wilson [Carl, rather than Brian]kind of sound on the vcls?
    I Googled via lyric clues and came up with not much other than Bryn Haworth -??
    Only familiar with Bryn Haworth via Fleur De Lys...

    PS - after hearing Blunstone I'm formally obliged to recommend one Eric Matthews to the discriminating music fan - breathy Blunstone vcl style, Baroque Pop, Wilson, Left Banke influences: a 'great artist' - his first 2 albums [the more recent offerings ain't so hot] on Sub Pop from the 90s are 'must hear classics' doncha know.
    You will thank me.
    Ho ho.

  6. It's Bryn Haworth's "Let The Days Go By" from his Island album of the same name. I have Eric Matthews somewhere. Will dig out.

  7. Hi - don't feel obliged to post this - it's just a thanks for the track info - if you have the Matthews album 'It's Heavy In Here', don't mess around, just hit the track 'Fanfare' immediately. If you have 'Lateness Of The Hour' similarly hit 'No Gnashing Teeth' immediately: after those, Matthews mania should surely follow. As for his 'Six Kinds Of Passion' album or the last one, I'm less inclined to faux proselytism.

  8. Hi David, am loving your re-discovery of your vinyl collection! any chance of a full track listing of the two mixes you've posted so far? Keep up the enthusiasm.

  9. I own Ivo Watts Russell's old copy of Astral Weeks (for reasons too arcane to go into) and it's a thing of real beauty. Madly thick cardboard, crisp paper bag, heavy, beautifully cared for vinyl. And the music's not bad, is it?

  10. This is getting a good response, isn't it? Proves everyone still likes listening to vinyl & also likes downloading your previously unheard and obscure-ish album tracks.

    There's a potentially profitable new business model here:

    Record the tracks from your old records, then re-sell them online as downloads... (but they're not really digital of course, they've got the original vinyl sound, see?).
    This extra, "genuine vinyl download" being a USP not available anywhere else on itunes, Napster, etc, is going to cream the mature market. Imagine all those ipods crackling & popping with 1970's album tracks, the owners feeling vilified that they are somehow still keeping the faith.

    Has to be worth £1 a track to cover labour costs.

    All there is to do now is think of a name for it and set up the offshore account. Then there's the merchandising...

  11. thommo1:03 pm

    "StyliTunes", perhaps?

  12. thommo1:07 pm

    And I still maintain that there is an untapped vinyl groundswell out there, if only someone grasped the nettle and showed people, possibly in some sort of music based periodical (ahem)the twin prongs of: 1. where to get vinyl and record players in this d & a, and 2. how to use them and get them onto pc/mp3 for portabilities sake.

    Won't somebody think of the children?

  13. Old blog topics never die. Not when there's people like me to keep them going.
    Didn't know where else to put this.
    I haven't bought a piece of vinyl for many years - apart from second-hand finds, of course. Then I heard this;

    From the cheekily-named Beyond The Wizards Sleeve team, (whose work I can sort of admire, because they choose to re-edit stuff like 'King Midas In Reverse & 'Roscoe' by Midlake - but in the end, the originals are just better), this Small Faces edit (Bubble Burst)is staggeringly good. I've had it on repeat for about 20 minutes now.

    Why did I post it here? Because I've got to buy it on a bloody vinyl 12" for £9.99, along with three other edits. You can't download it. Do I really want vinyl anymore? No.

    This'll be the only new record I've bought for years.
    It's probably the most exciting thing I've heard for a long time.
    I almost feel like dancing. Problem is, I never danced.

  14. Oh dear. The link above actually meant to take you

  15. Have to agree about how vinyl is kinder on the ears. 'The Good, The Bad & The Queen' is an example of an album that sounds rather compressed on CD but on vinyl, while still not perfect, is so much more enjoyable.
    You can tell that Wilco love their vinyl. Once again they've produced a beautiful packaged for the 180g pressing of 'Sky Blue Sky'. The only quibble I have is that prices remain slightly too high for new stuff, but then I can't help thinking it's probably worth it to still be able to buy it.