As everyday goes by I am amused at how more and more retro trends are making a comeback. First it was the return of ’70s fashions, then it was the ’70s and ’80s kitschy grooves in the emergence of EDM. Now add to all this the return of the Long Playing (LP) vinyl record. I grew up in the ’80s, which had seen the birth of the audio cassette, so I never knew the joy of pulling a shiny back disc out of its sleeve, setting it to the turntable, putting the needle in the groove and waiting for the static to catch the sound. Rather, I would shake the cassette out of the box, slap it into the player, punch play and sit back.
Cut to the present and the age of digital downloads sees the return of the good old gramaphone. More and more artistes have begun to put out their latest releases in LP format. Last year, LP sales surpassed CD sales by a huge margin. From The Gorillaz to Adele, Radiohead to The Foo Fighters, many new artistes are now available on vinyl.
So why this comeback? Well the sonic and aural purists firmly believe that the audio compression used to sharpen sound on CDs tends to eliminate most of the warmth that comes with an analogue sound. Thus, though the sound gets sharper and crisper, it also raises the frequency tolerance of our ears causing immense aural fatigue. So now with technology being able to enhance and remaster most analogue recordings, why not put them out in the format they were meant to be heard in, hence the return of vinyl.
I have always had a great affinity for the vinyl, with over 300 LPs in my kitty. Listening to music on a vinyl completely transports you to a studio. So if your dad-mom,grand-dad or mom has a stash of LP records in the loft, get them down, get a turntable, and put on some records and get down in the groove…if I may say so.