I’m either getting old or conventional, ‘cos I bought something I said I would never have enough time or space for: a turntable. I won’t forsake my beloved MP3s, but there are somethings you just can’t get electronically. One of them being the 1981 Stampfel & Weber album “Going Nowhere Fast”, which I snagged from Etsy from a west coast seller.
I bought an elderly Technics from Ring Audio, and set it up with a USB phono preamp from Phonopreamps.com. It sounds good, I guess. It certainly sounds different from MP3s, but better …? Dunno. My two cynical
theories hypotheses of vinyl snobbery are:
- The more you have invested in your system, the more confirmation bias tells you it sounds better.
- Vinyl is the record industry’s last-gasp attempt attempt at relevancy, because you can’t home-cut your own discs. As there’s always analogue loss in ripping from vinyl, it’s self-policed rights management by the sound quality snobs. Imagine that: DRM conditioned into the listeners themselves!
I have not got a lot of records:
- Going Nowhere Fast — Stampfel & Weber
- The Holy Modal Rounders
- The Holy Modal Rounders 2 (are you sensing a pattern here?)
- Acedia — Black Walls
- The Television Tells Us / Freeing Song by Reindeer — The Music Tapes (Julian sent me this in 1998, and I think this is the first time I’ve played it. For a few days, it was the only record I had, and it was merciful that Catherine was away, as she only has a normal human tolerance for this sort of thing)
- Ghetto Kitty Island Split 7″ – featuring Chicken on a Raft, Of Montreal, Bart Davenport and The Minders.
Speaking of which, I understand that the latter EP is not exactly widely known, is totes OOP, and completists might dig Of Montreal‘s ”Epistle to a Pathological Creep (demo)”, so here it is ripped for your listening pleasure:
arecord -D 'hw:CARD=CODEC,DEV=0' -V stereo -c 2 -f dat -d 900 ghettokittyisland.wav
which records 900 seconds of audio at DAT quality to the file ghettokittyisland.wav, while showing a simple text meter on the screen.