The Smiths: Hand In Glove

Hand In Glove - front cover

Hand In Glove – front cover (click for larger image)

On 13 May 1983, The Smiths released Hand In Glove on 7″ vinyl – the band’s first record. Only 6000 copies were pressed initially, and they sold out pretty quickly as The Smiths grew in popularity. The purpose of this post is to provide details of the first pressing, known as the Manchester version – because a Manchester contact address was printed on the back of the cover. Later versions published a London contact address, or no contact details at all.
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Dental Denial by Beth Israel: review

Dental Denial by Beth Israel

Dental Denial by Beth Israel (click for larger image)

Dental Denial, by Beth Israel, oozes darkness and mystery. It is gloriously left field. If you hold disdain for the commonplace, this is for you. If you long to be taken somewhere otherworldly, enjoy.
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Sound It Out: film review

Tom Butchart outside Sound It Out Records

Owner Tom Butchart outside Sound It Out Records (click for larger image). Photograph by Jeanie Finlay.

It’s at this time of year, with Record Store Day only a week away, that my interest in vinyl ramps up a notch or two. In preparation for the big day, I’ve been watching favourites from my collection of music documentaries, including Sound It Out, a film directed by Jeanie Finlay about the last remaining independent record store in Stockton-On-Tees in the North-East of England.
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Good Vibrations: film review

Good Vibrations - film poster

Good Vibrations – film poster

Highly acclaimed independent film Good Vibrations tells the true story of Terri Hooley, the self-styled “Godfather of Ulster Punk”, who opened a record shop on the most bombed street in Belfast during the height of the Troubles in the 1970s.
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Vinyl revival – why the turnaround?

Chvrches Recover EP

Recover EP by Chvrches on transparent tangerine vinyl

According to the Official Chart Company, UK sales of vinyl records in the first quarter of 2013 rose 78%, compared with 2012. In 1993, only 300,000 vinyl records were sold in the United States. In 2012, according to Nielsen SoundScan, 4.6 million vinyl records were sold across the US. What the hell happened? Vinyl was supposed to be dead. Why such a remarkable comeback?
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Record Store Day 2013 at Banquet Records

Interior of Banquet Records on Record Store Day 2013

Interior of Banquet Records on Record Store Day 2013 (click for larger image). Photo by James Perou, courtesy of Banquet Records.

Saturday 20 April 2013 was Record Store Day. If you didn’t visit and support you nearest vinyl emporium, shame on you. My 15-year-old son, Harry, and I had the most glorious time at Banquet Records, Kingston upon Thames, London. We bought some very special vinyl.
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Jack White promotes Record Store Day 2013

This year Jack White is the official ambassador for Record Store Day, which takes place on 20 April 2013.

A promotional video made for Record Store Day features Jack White on location at United Record Pressing in Nashville, the pressing plant that creates vinyl for his Third Man Records label.

Record Store Day supports independent record shops around the world. Buy vinyl. You know it makes sense.

Last Shop Standing – review

Five stars

Based on the successful book of the same name by Graham Jones, Last Shop Standing: The Rise, Fall and Rebirth of the Independent Record Shop is a charming 50 minute warts-and-all documentary about the history of independent record shops in the UK. (Read more…)

The crushing of music

Pro-Ject Debut Carbon Turntable

Pro-Ject Debut Carbon Turntable

If you read my last blog post, you’ll know that lately I’ve been listening to “Cortez the killer” (by Neil Young with Crazy Horse) a lot. Writing about that track reminded me why I don’t own an iPod, or other portable digital music player. Read more…