Every where you look the resurgence in vinyl sales is growing and reaching a new audience. The figures and the number of stores on the high street continue to grow, both new and second hand.
With the convenience of MP3, streaming services and the decline in CD sales, why should the black 12″ long playing record be making a comeback?
Even, the younger generations are getting in on the act, with Millennials providing a new and developing audience. Some of them it appears haven’t even seen a record player, so why?
I honestly thought, as a member of the 50+ brigade I might actually have something that the youngsters would just see as quirky, unnecessary and just ‘old’. How wrong! Even my 24 year old son has a deck and a rapidly growing collection of black frisbees, that I myself may like to get my hands on.
Does vinyl sound better, is that it? Well you could argue that there is a certain clarity to the music, a certain warmth that CD’s loose. It is certainly better than ‘streaming’. Yet, the sound is very much a matter of opinion.
So how about something more fundamental, more human. Something tangible and real. Something, you hold and do something with. Something that requires care too.
Or is that tangibility more do to with an object like a book. Sleeve notes are always welcome, the gatefold a source of interest, a box set more so and album art that evokes another reaction entirely.
Or is it about the ritual?
The selection of the album from the collection, the careful removal of the record from the sleeve and the process of cleaning prior to play. All culminating in the careful placement of the stylus over the run-in groove. The switch to side two at half time coupled with a quick clean of the stylus.
Then there is the collecting. The research, the comparison and the condition of something old and no longer available ‘new’. The fact that little has changed in the last 50 years old and still sounds so good. OK we may have more options with the weight of the vinyl, but have things changed so much? Perhaps that’s it…
Whatever it is, I guess doesn’t matter if quite simply it is a pleasure. Long may this nostalgic revival continue, I’m lovin’ it!!!