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October 2018

Happy Halloween to all of you nutters! xMTim Curry on the set of The Rocky Horror Picture Show, 1974

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seancannon Discogs Q3 2018 Marketplace Analysis and Database Highlights

Today we’re revealing quarterly reporting from three categories within the Discogs Database and Marketplace. We break down the increasing growth of user collections based on new (2017/2018, inclusive of reissues) and catalog releases. We then take a look at the Most Expensive Items Sold via Discogs over the course of the third quarter of 2018. In addition to these traditional reports, we’re unveiling an exciting new view into our Discogs sales data, the Top 20 Best Selling Release Variations, which looks at the distinct release variants that are selling across the Discogs Marketplace. By breaking sales down to a variant level, we’re able to surface other leading releases that aren’t rolled under a singular master release.

View the Discogs Q3 2018 Highlights and Analysis Below:

Number of Submissions

Most Collected Releases

Most Expensive Items Sold

Top 20 Best Selling Release Variations

The post Discogs Q3 2018 Marketplace Analysis and Database Highlights appeared first on Discogs Blog.

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SoLil Random Wax Captures Record Collectors’ Dedication

Igor Leonidovic was born in the USSR and currently lives in Bochum, Germany, where he works freelance as a commercial photographer.  His spare time is spent on photographing record collectors and their collections. He has come across so many interesting stories, that he is currently working on his first exhibition, “Random Wax”, which should take place next year. And he’s always looking for more collections to document!

How long have you been photographing?
I started working as a professional photographer four years ago, but now I’m focused on personal projects like Random Wax, and I’m currently working on the artwork for several music releases.

What do you try to capture with your Random Wax project?
First of all I try to capture the private collection. I want to show the life of the people who really love music and invest a lot of money and time in it. And of course the aesthetics of their record rooms. At my exhibition I’ll show rare records, some of them are private press and were never released, or completely unknown. For example: DJ Scientist has an acetate of an LP by Inge Brandenburg which was never released. I think his copy is the only one that exists. Many of my pictures do not only show the records though, they also tell us something about the person. DJ Hype for example has a huge Star Wars collection.

Test pressings at Random Wax

Why did you choose this subject?
I bought my first records when I was 10 years old, 20 years ago. Since then I’ve had a dream to become a DJ. Some dreams came true: I was a DJ for years and I had a lot of gigs in Russia. But while touring I found out that this was not for me. I love to be at home and just listen to my records, more than I love being on the road. While becoming a photographer, I worked hard on finding my own style. When I work for clients I need to adhere to their requests and don’t always have the chance to create something that I personally like. The look books that I create for the fashion industry for example, are not enough for me, because the industry is characterised by constant change. Once a new collection is there, the old collection and their pictures lose their importance. I wanted to create a project that is always up to date for me personally and never loses its significance.

What camera do you use?
Usually I use medium format camera Phase One XF, but in dark rooms I use Leica equipment.

What is the most special Collection you have encountered during the project and what made it so special?
I think it is DJ Scientist’s collection. I never saw so many records in one room and so many rare records. I was born in USSR and I grew up with Melodia records, but this guy has a huge knowledge about this label.

Random Wax Scientist

DJ Scientist, Germany. Record collector/seller, producer, DJ and owner of various labels (Equinox Records, The Artless Cuckoo, etc.)

How did you find collectors, and what was it like working with them?
Currently I am focused on Germany, because I don’t have any sponsors for my project and I invest my own money in it. But I want to make it a global project in the future. I know most Collectors on my pictures personally from the past, with some of them we had gigs together or we traded records. And I found a lot of great record collectors on instagram.

How do you envision your first exhibition? Will there be any music for example?
I have a different concepts for the exhibition, In Moscow I will do the exhibition in a museum of modern art, I want show the pictures and tell about all that I found in these huge records rooms. In Saint Petersburg I will do an exhibition during vinyl fair and we will definitely play records there and a lot of DJs will support my project a play their music there.

Are you still looking for collections to photograph? If so, how can interested collectors reach out to you?
Yes, I am always looking for collectors. Just write me an email mail@igorleonidovic.com or send me a private message on instagram.com/randomwaxmag.

Check out some of Igor’s photos below:

Random Wax Collection

Roland Schunk (Plattenkreisel), Munich, Germany. DJ, Hi-Fi furniture designer.

Random Wax Public Enemy

Random Wax

DJ Marc Hype, Berlin, Germany (Dusty Donuts, ITF Champion, Phaderheadz). DJ, Producer, record collector, label owner.

Random Wax

Thorsten Haag, Bochum, Germany. Has been collecting underground hip-hop records since early 90s.

Sebo Sellout, Düsseldorf, Germany. Record collector/seller.

All photos by Igor Leonidovic

Header image: Paul G, Bochum, Germany. Collects underground hip-hop, jazz, soundtracks and library records.

Find more of Igor’s work on his instagram account!

The post Random Wax Captures Record Collectors’ Dedication appeared first on Discogs Blog.

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Adventures In Sound And Music with Shane Woolman and Horus Records

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“Freddie Mercury was one of my favorite human beings…He…

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Wire Mix: Gosheven

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CAS Classic Album Sundays with Paloma Faith: Album Inspirations for National Album Day

Check out the full interview from our evening with Paloma Faith at The British Library as she was interviewed by CAS founder Colleen ‘Cosmo’ Murphy ahead of the first ever National Album Day.

Paloma Faith’s powerful pop-soul style and captivating stage presence have brought her a string of platinum and multi-platinum albums, including the most recent, The Architect. An actor and activist as well as singer, Faith’s is refreshingly honest and forthright voice in the music world.

She is also ambassador for the British Phonographic Industry’s first ever National Album Day a week-long series of events and activity around the country – culminating on 13 October – that will celebrate all aspects of the album format on its 70th anniversary.


Classic Album Sundays’ National Album Day Round-Up

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seancannon After 10 Years, The AT-LP120 Is Still The Best Bang For Your Turntable Buck

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By Jeffrey Lee Puckett

Choosing vinyl as a way of life means making a lot of decisions, from which turntable to buy to which pressing of Abbey Road sounds more like 1969. For many, the turntable part is easy: The Audio-Technica LP120.

Even a cursory tour through vinyl-related forums will turn up endless mentions of the LP120, which has become the go-to entry level turntable for people serious enough to get a real taste of what vinyl is all about.

Now in its 10th year of production, the LP120 appeals to casual newbies, gear heads who love to modify, and bedroom DJs learning to mix beats. It has become a sales “juggernaut,” said Bob Peet, AT’s consumer product marketing manager.

Is it perfect? No. But at $300 it’s an ideal plug-and-play gateway drug that offers convenience, versatility, and familiar good looks based on the venerable Technics SL-1200. The looks are no coincidence.

When news began spreading in the late 2000s that Technics was discontinuing the fabled 1200, an iconic piece of gear that launched a million dance parties, vinyl lovers the world over wept. It was the turntable equivalent of John Bonham — powerful, pitch perfect, relentless — and losing it hurt. Audio-Technica was ready to help ease the pain.

Best known for its range of phono cartridges and headphones, Audio-Technica responded to Technics’ news with turntables based on the 1200 and built by Hanpin Electron using an OEM template popular for decades. Of those models, the LP120 has become the company’s sweet spot for an entry-level turntable.

The LP120 is leagues beyond the all-in-one suitcase record players that have become a generation’s ubiquitous introduction to playing records, and while it’s fine in stock form, some industrious owners have taken them to another level with modifications that range from easy to ambitious.

It comes with everything you need to start spinning records in short order. It arrives already equipped with an Audio-Technica AT95E cartridge, which has rightly earned a reputation as a giant-killer at its widely-available price of $50.

Like its iconic inspiration, the 120 has a pop-up light to aid in cueing records, and a pitch control that’s essential if you plan to use the LP120 for bedroom mixing. Its torque is great for the price, but professional DJs shy away from the 120 for club use, still preferring the heftier 1200.

A problematic anti-skate mechanism was upgraded last year and, finally, it comes with a built-in phono preamp and USB output, which makes it easy to transfer your grails to a hard drive. The built-in preamp lets buyers connect the turntable directly to a pair of powered loudspeakers, bypassing the need for additional gear.

That’s all part of the fun, the tweaking, and that’s the good thing about this turntable. You can grow with it.

That’s the set-up that graces tens of thousands of dorm rooms and first apartments worldwide, but what makes the LP120 a juggernaut is its popularity with a demographic of older record collectors as well as newbies.

“It was everything a beginner’s turntable was supposed to be,” said Claude Benshaul, 48, of Israel. “Nothing needed to be purchased [other than] what came in the box. No need to worry about speed issues, fussing with belts and pulleys to change speed, no motor noise and the pleasure of having a dust cover with actual hinges! Everything played correctly and it was even easy to tweak to make it better.”

Here’s the thing about vinyl: It can be a real pain in the ass but it can also be a path to analog bliss. Suitcase players and plastic-fantastic models such as the LP60 will definitely give you the experience of playing records — and that’s more than enough for a crowd content to post photos of their Paramore collections on Reddit. But to get all vinyl offers, you have to spend more and try harder, and the LP120 will work with you.

While you can simply flick a switch and bypass the LP120’s internal phono preamp, that’s not enough for the DIY modifiers. They remove the 120’s preamp altogether, saying that even in bypass mode it pollutes the delicate signal that turns your living room into the Hammersmith Odeon.

The removal requires only a few cuts and splices, but that’s more cuts and splices than most collectors have made in their life. Plenty of YouTube videos show the process step by step and take some of the mystery/anxiety away.

Reviews of the mod differ. Some call it profound, others say it’s more subtle. Seattle collector Jamil MacConnell paid a technician to remove the preamps in both of his 120s and said it’s the best $150 he’s ever spent.

“The improvement was somewhat startling, and I would not at all call it a minor change,” he said. “It was a night and day difference especially in the higher frequencies. What sounded very good before just became mind-blowing.”

Simpler upgrades include replacing the felt mat with one made of rubber, cork, or even leather if you’re a Priest fan! Rubber O-rings, normally used as gaskets in pipes, cost only a few bucks and can be slipped onto the tonearm to dampen resonances — they also look kind of “Beyond Thunderdome.”

You can also upgrade the headshell to something more substantial, although that could conceivably add so much weight at the cartridge end that you’d need to add AT’s heavier counterweight to compensate. And since you have a new headshell, why not think about a new cartridge. Oh, and then…

You can see where this is going.

“To me, it’s a great learning ‘table, because each step I’ve done I’ve noticed things,” said Dan Wonsowski, who has removed the preamp on his LP120, upgraded the cartridge and taught himself to align cartridges. “That’s all part of the fun, the tweaking, and that’s the good thing about this turntable. You can grow with it.”

The post After 10 Years, The AT-LP120 Is Still The Best Bang For Your Turntable Buck appeared first on Discogs Blog.

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Goldmine1 New Peter Noone

Peter Noone, lead singer of the British Invasion’s Herman’s Hermits, remains creative by collaborating with musicians from a younger generation.

The post New Peter Noone appeared first on Goldmine Magazine.

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