In my last post ‘DIR EN GREY – How They Changed My View on Music’. I made a promise to write about how I started collecting Vinyl Records.
The part of me getting my first Vinyl Record is a separate post with a link to it at the end of this one.
I just want it to be easier to find.
Also, I have a little too much to say and the posts tend to get too long otherwise.
How I Fell in Love With Vinyl Records
We all possibly have someone in our lives with a collection of Vinyl Records. In my case, it is my grandma and mom. Being little I did not put any value on them, I just thought that they looked old and cool. The collection in our family mainly consisted of cheap ‘Melodia’ records. It is just what you were able to buy in the soviet times. Currently, these go for as low as a few euros on the Facebook market.
But to collectors, they have a nostalgic value.
Perhaps I just have a weak spot for anything retro
We have over 100 records at my mom’s home. I remember decorating my room, when I was about 14-15, with some of them. In the same way as all of my grandma’s old kitchenware is kept for me, I asked my mom to hold onto the vinyl records.
The turntable, that my mom is still very proud of. Was broken by her friends’ kids. So sadly enough, I never really listened to any of the records I would snatch because of the cover art. I remember just sitting on the floor of our “second house” that was used to store various items and going through them all. The turntable itself is also from the Soviet era and kept in that house. Believe it is the ‘Estonia’ one, just like the speakers. I remember looking at it and thinking how pretty it is, dreaming that one day I will have my own.
But to this day, the records and CDs that I have are mostly kept as decoration.
It is Not That I Don’t Want To Listen To Them
I wanted some of my records for so long that am almost paranoid about ruining them. Financially I was not able to afford them for so long that I keep them as if they were my babes now. Talk about obsessed, right. Some of them are bought from vinyl stores or second-hand on Discogs. Because the limited editions had been sold out on the artists’ official stores by the time I was able to get them. However, whenever possible I order them from the artists’ official stores.
I don’t have a turntable yet.
Not that am not able to buy one now. I have other priorities at the moment. The AT-LPX by Audio-Technica is the one I am eyeing currently. It costs 450 euros. I don’t want to spend that much on myself at the moment. And I haven’t even chosen the monitors/speakers yet.
Because it is not the final decision on the turntable. I might also need a preamp. A part of me wants to buy a fully manual, belt-driven and with no prebuilt amplifier for the retro part. But I know that the one I have chosen and linked to here is the more “sensible one”. Still, firstly we need a home to call ours before I splurge and make a final decision.
One day I want to have the soviet-era turntable and speakers as a show-off piece. Don’t think I would use it even. I just think it looks cool.
Why Are My CDs Kept as a Decoration
The first album I bought was played to the point that you can see through the CD.
I will have a separate post about it and link it here when it is ready. Or you can subscribe to my mail list and get notifications whenever a new post pops up. It is automated to send an email every day by 4 o’clock by Estonian time if there is a new post by then.
Back to the CDs
I do have the means to listen to CDs. It is just that even if I like the retro feel of our old stereo systems. I don’t want to put a 40-70 EUR limited edition/pre-ordered album into a player, that fails to eject, skips, etc. And before you say “clean or service” our AIWA is more than 15 years old. My SONY one, that I keep in my storage closet. I got it for my 16th birthday. Adore these two but… I really might sound paranoid: I don’t want to ruin my albums.
The AIWA is a rescue from my other half’s parents, it has seen better days and I will keep it. Maybe I can have it looked at one day by a professional. I like it, also because it is old.
When I had an Xbox one, I used that but I had to sell it during the Corona. The reason is that I was working as a cook at the time and they shut the restaurants. So at home or on the go, I use TIDAL to stream at the moment.
I Have a Wild Dream
It might sound silly or so but I dream of having my own room. In a house that I share with my other half. A room just for me, with all my vinyl records and wine. I imagine myself sipping on wine, jotting away at poetry, spinning a deathcore album on a turntable, and avoiding people with class and style. Am pretty sure at this point that if anyone came in there I would hiss at them like a feral cat.
On the way to my dreams I have a pact with my dearest. I will continue drowning us in Vinyl Records before we buy a home.
“This girl thrives in darkness.”
Why Vinyl Records
I do use a streaming service to listen to music. I know that a lot of collectors swear on the fact that vinyl records just sound better. But I wouldn’t know that. Also I think it depends on what piece of gear you are listening. Not the vinyl itself so much. I might be wrong, because I just stare at mine like a maiden in love. I am a little weird maybe. Because I put so much value into something bought with money.
And it is not so much about owning the music. At least I don’t consider it at the top of the reasons why. Even if I only buy albums that I have already come to love and certainly would spin on one day.
What Even Are They?
It is just a piece of vinyl with nooks and crannies of waves craved on it. But it is a part of history. To me, it is magic. When you think that this physical element is “translated” into something you can hear.
Did you know? That the first known recording of music was not playable? in 1860 Édouard-Léon Scott de Martinville captured a folk song as a “phonoautograph”. To put it simply, it was the waves that you could see and study – the physics of sound. It was way later (1877 I believe), that it was found that these “drawings” can be played when craved into a plate and having a stylus read it.
In a way, a turntable reverses the recording process.
So Why, If You Don’t Listen To Them
The endless variety in colors of the vinyl records. I have blue and orange, red and gold, etc. I think that they look much more artistic than the CD’s counterparts even in plain black. And it is “retro”. Something I seem to be obsessed with.
It is also the sleeve of the record.
The cover art is big and I can see every detail. One can truly understand how much effort has gone into designing them. The inside has the lyrics printed in big letters. It feels as if you are handling a huge book that has drawings in every nook and cranny, but no pages.
Let me paint a picture for you: every time I receive a new record in the mail. My eyes light up like on a kid. As I sit on our double bed and just stare at the art in awe. Even my significant other, couldn’t understand why I wanted vinyl records so much. When the third one arrived, and I showed it to him, he was like: “Oooo, that does look really-really nice.”.
I do want to support my favorite artists as much as I can but that can be done in other ways too. Like CDs. I was often told if you want to collect something, CDs are the way to go. It is just that the vinyl records do it for me. For some reason, I think of them as a piece of art that can also hold sounds – music. Something else I love.
the Continuation Post
I am also listening to the album while writing this post.
DIR EN GREY – DUM SPIRO SPERO