The death of vinyl and the rise of glitch

technics 1210Several years ago I decided to move to the other side of the planet. Before I departed my biggest issue was what I would do with my sizable record collection. Luckily for me I have a very generous friend (Steve, thank you) who is taking care of my collection while am I away. I recorded and compressed some of my records, allowing me to bring parts of my collection with me. The lack of record shops in South East Asia and the sweltering heat hampers lugging around 20 kilos of Technics, so it was a ‘no brainer’ to go fully digital, or so I thought.

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e-waste - the cost of progress

Over the past 2 decades a whole range of new hardware and software has been readily available to the audiophile, with ever-increasing features at even more affordable prices. All these shiny boxes with flashing lights and inbuilt wizardry would make our lives easier, music production better. Some even make you a cup of coffee. A far cry from the days of 2 turntables and a simple 2 channel mixer. It is now, as I stare at an Ableton recovery prompt, last night it was a locked up Torq session, constant “driver issues”, incompatible formats and corrupted files, I fondly remember my vinyl collection.

What I miss most about my Vinyl collection

Obviously I miss listening and mixing on a trusty pair of Technics 1210s, but I miss the artwork and other details too. Inspecting the cover, the colorful and sometimes crazy artwork. Staring at the patterns of the ‘cut’, and of course reviewing the center stickers. Most importantly, scanning the inner bleed meticulously, searching for a message from the cutting engineer. The higher quality pressing have a tiny scrawl, not a blemish, an import mark in the run out, ‘NILZ – THE EXCHANGE’. After seeing this a smile of reassurance is sure to follow. The cutting engineers handle the delicate stages of vinyl production, from cutting voltages, bass responses and much more. Recently I was sad to read that Nilesh Patel passed away in late Decemeber 2011. Nilz was one of the finest cutting engineers ever, may he rest in peace.

Macs Technics ‘just work’

All this reminiscing brings me to my second favorite past-time of all, having a go at Apple users. Apple users often make idiotic statements such as ‘I use a Mac because they just work’. Sorry, but Technics owners got there before you. A record player doesn’t have to ‘boot’, there are no ‘updates’ to run, no hard-drive failures and no proprietary connectors. Technics just work, and I miss them a lot. Instead of spending hours chatting about and listening to music in the local independent record shops, I find my time consumed by endless searches of forums for bug fixes, driver updates and the nightmare of connecting equipment to firewire and USB ports in a convoluted sequence. But I guess that’s the price of progress.

You can enjoy all our Invisible Agent vinyl releases here on your new fangled digital device. Good luck ;)


6 responses to “The death of vinyl and the rise of glitch”

  1. Ebauche says:

    Admittedly, I’m a digital whore, so I’m bound to ask this question – what about a section dedicated to the downsides of using vinyl. Scratched records, stolen records, the amount of gear required, the storage space necessary etc.

    Obviously this stuff can still occur with digital, but it’s easier to mitigate the potential issues.

    Still, shame to hear you’ve been having issues with the Torq and drivers etc. Perhaps it would work better on a mac ;)

  2. warren daly says:

    Yes, indeed – there were those free parties where a few grains of sand
    would wreck entire collections. My excuse, they were not designed to be portable.

    My blog entry was also going to discuss how entire living rooms would be taken over by the vinyl monster…. maybe I’ll keep that for a future blog entry. I’m off to the iStore to get my iPad3.11, it’s an iPad 3 running Windows 3.11 – stable as.
    Caio and thanks for the comment.

  3. steve says:

    no bother, warren. they’re all tucked up cozy in their boxes.

    i’ve been living in stasis of sorts for the last 5 years now, so my own records are kinda boxed. i do have my original 2 technics in my room, but i dont’ have a mixer here, and both of these decks need work (they are 14 years old now), but i have 4 more i use for gigs.

    i used to like the mystery. used to go shopping for records, and you’d take a chance and buy stuff that just looked interesting even if you couldn’t preview it.

    once i actually get out of this long-term but temporary living phase, i’ll set myself up again properly and blow the dust off them. looking forward to it.

  4. warren daly says:

    Hey Steve, great to hear my beauties are kept safe. Thanks again.
    Glad to hear your rig is still in action. I’ll see you in June my friend, very much looking forward to seeing and talking to you.

  5. steve says:

    oh you’re coming home? deadly! i’d heard you had a problem with flights or money or something… great stuff, looking forward to seeing you man.

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