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  • Crosley Vinyl Cleaner (On Sale) 2 COLORS AVAILABLE Crosley Vinyl Cleaner (On Sale) On Sale Quick View

    $69.99 $59.99 Save $10.00 (14%)

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    Crosley Vinyl Cleaner (On Sale)


    Have a question about this product? Please email our audio advisor or call 1-877-929-8729 with any questions or concerns regarding your equipment purchase.


    Clean up your act with Crosley's vinyl cleaner, using our own Vinyl Shine solution. Pop any size record into the cradle and spin it gently by hand, letting the double-sided microfiber brush cleanse your precious vinyl to keep it looking and sounding beautiful for years.



    Crosley
    $69.99 $59.99 Save $10.00 (14%)
    Vinyl Cleaner - 2 Colors Available
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  • In Between Dreams (Awaiting Repress) In Between Dreams (Awaiting Repress) Quick View

    $24.99
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    In Between Dreams (Awaiting Repress)

    Better Together
    Never Know
    Banana Pancakes
    Good People
    No Other Way
    Sitting, Waiting, Wishing
    Staple It Together
    Situations
    Crying Shame
    If I Could
    Breakdown
    Belle
    Do You Remember
    Constellations
    Jack Johnson
    $24.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
  • AudioQuest Conductive Record Brush AudioQuest Conductive Record Brush Quick View

    $19.99
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    AudioQuest Conductive Record Brush


    Have a question about this product? Please email our audio advisor or call 1-877-929-8729 with any questions or concerns regarding your equipment purchase.


    Back in 1973, I became a dedicated user of the Decca Carbon Fiber Record Brush. The British Decca Brush was so wonderfully more effective than any of the wet-cloth-pad cleaners that smeared dirt around on one's records.


    As often happens to truly superior products, the Decca Brush was mostly ignored - the overall record-cleaning market was dominated by cleaning pads attached to wood handles - not because they worked well, but because many hi-fi stores preferred to sell a cleaner that forced customers to come back to buy "special" fluid, again and again.


    After creating AudioQuest in 1980, and with the wild success of the AQ 404 phono cartridge in 1982, and because I personally used a Carbon Fiber record brush every single day - AudioQuest began making the AQ Carbon Fiber Record Brush - now a 35-year old success story, and maybe the world's favorite way to respect and care for LPs.


    Except - we eventually learned that the AQ Record Brush (and every other brand of carbon Fiber brush), doesn't have a good electrical path between the fibers and the handle, and that the print-protecting coating on the metal handle prevents a proper electrical connection to the user's hand. The user is the "ground" for static electricity, so having a good electrical contact from fibers-to-hand is a big deal!


    In creating AQ's new Conductive Carbon Fiber Brush, AudioQuest created new tooling for every part of our new design. AQ's reborn Brush has ideal conductivity from the Carbon Fibers, through the internal parts of the brush, to the conductive Gold Contacts placed right where your fingers need them.


    We also reinvestigated what is possible with Carbon Fibers, finally choosing for our new Brush a far greater quantity of new smaller fibers in order to more effectively sweep away micro-dirt, not just the less relevant visible dust.


    To everyone who has an AQ Record Brush (thank you), or any brand of Carbon Fiber brush, and to everyone who hasn't yet discovered how simple it is to keep records clean:


    We invite you to experience the reborn AudioQuest Conductive Record Brush.


    Your records will thank you!


    • Safe, fast, and effective tool for removing dust and debris from vinyl records
    • Conductive carbon fiber bristles and conductive gold contacts remove microscopic dust before it becomes embedded in the vinyl
    • Keeps records sounding like new
    • Also perfect for computer keyboards and much more


    AudioQuest
    $19.99
    Record Cleaner Brush Buy Now
  • MFSL Record Brush MFSL Record Brush Quick View

    $19.99
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    MFSL Record Brush

    The Mobile Fidelity Record Brush is Our All-Time Best-Selling LP Brush! Heres an inexpensive tool for keeping all of your irreplaceable records clean and cared for! We are very proud to offer the latest in essential record care products: The MoFi LP Record Brush! Easy to use, easy to clean; this record brush is guaranteed to keep all of your LPs clean and quiet! It gets really deep into the grooves and helps scrub all that nasty, noisy dirt out. The key to its great vinyl cleaning is found in Mobile Fidelitys proprietary cleaning pad and ergonomic brush handle. Its been designed for multi-purpose use: it can be used as a wet-cleaning brush (we recommend using it as part of your intensive record cleaning machine workout) or as simply the best dry record brush ever designed. One cleaning pad will clean hundreds of your favorite LP's. For best results, we recommend the use of a simple, single step record cleaning fluid like our best selling Mobile Fidelity fluids. Not only is the best record brush ever designed, its also the cheapest! Stock up on a few of these brushes and keep you records in pristine condition!


    For cleaning: We recommend keeping an unused toothbrush around for cleaning the pads on the MD LP Brush. Remember...a clean brush is a happy brush...and one that will not transfer debris onto other records!

    Accessories
    $19.99
    MFSL Record Brush Buy Now
  • The Grinding Wheel (Yellow And Black Vinyl) The Grinding Wheel (Yellow And Black Vinyl) Quick View

    $31.99
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    The Grinding Wheel (Yellow And Black Vinyl)

    Pressed On Yellow And Black Vinyl

    Armed with pioneering pure metal proposals like Death Rider, The Beast Within, and Raise The Dead already in 1982, New Jersey's Overkill were a rock-solid part of the first clutch of bands forging in fire this music known as thrash metal. Along with Metallica, Exodus, Slayer and cross-town doppelgangers Anthrax, D.D. Verni and Bobby Blitz Ellsworth were helping to create a new form of metal that is still as vibrant today as when the band's first album, Feel the Fire was issued by Jonny Zazula's Megaforce Records back in the spring of '85.

    Witness Overkill's 18th album of blistering yet precise and thought-provoking thrash magic, The Grinding Wheel, a record on which thrash's ultimate team of five machined parts shows up and executes to perfection with a little punk thrown in for bad measure.

    But a life dedicated to metal can be a grind, hence the title of this sparks-a-flyin' record. It just makes sense for us, reflects D.D. If you've been making metal for almost 40 years like we have, it can be a grind. But we also liked the old school metal idea of referencing Grinder, the Judas Priest song, which suits the album because it has classic metal parts on it as well as the thrash parts. There's a blue collar feel to that title too, and that's how we approach Overkill. The guitar case is basically a lunchbox and we go to work.

    One of the principles-if not characteristics-of the band is that it's been grinding through for long, long periods of time, seconds Blitz. Decades to this point. And not necessarily with huge gains with regards to popularity, but for sure, with huge gains in as much as we can earn a living while doing the kind of music that we want. And so the idea of grinding it out over the decades became a device for writing the album, whether it would be riffs or lyrics.

    Despite, as D.D. says, the album's classic metal references (such as Black Sabbath in Come Heavy and Iron Maiden in The Long Road and the epic and cinematic title track), when the band gets up a full head of thrash steam, they bring to the party a trademark punk aesthetic, forged from trips on the train to CBGB and Max's Kansas City to witness original punk legends such as The Damned and The Dead Boys.

    Punk is huge for Overkill, confirms Verni. And it's something we very specifically brought back to the band in a sort of second wave, beginning with Ironbound in 2010 and then The Electric Age and White Devil Armory. I know from my end, it came from talking to the band and talking to fans. We had some of those metal records in the middle of our career where I wasn't paying enough attention to the punk rock vibe of the band. But just before we started writing Ironbound, I was very specific about getting back into that mentality, picking up on that energy again. You're not going to hear any Green Day or Ramones in us, but the energy and the attitude of punk mixed with the New York vibe that's what Overkill is, compared to other bands. You don't hear any of that in Megadeth; you don't hear any of that in Slayer. It's more specific to what we brought to the thrash world.

    Central to that premise is the incendiary Let's All Go to Hades which is sure to become a pit favourite. This one was a hell of a lot of fun, says Blitz. You know, I've always written abstractly. I'm not the guy who says, 'I'm going to crush your skull into dust.' I like writing more so from an abstract point of view, putting a slew of thoughts together that create one idea, like a puzzle more than a specific black or white. And when I looked at all these lyrics when I was done, I said, oh my God, I'm 57 and I finally matured (laughs). Oh, this is gross! (laughs). But I do like tongue-in-cheek songs like 'Hades,' where it says, sort of let's all go to the Bataclan, you know, stand arm in arm and sing 'Killed by Death.' I kind of tied in not long ago events, specifically what happened in Paris, with losing Lemmy. After that, I'm on a train from Paris to Istanbul on the Orient express, which actually existed (laughs)-it actually went from Paris to Istanbul. So that one is mapped out a bit more.

    Adds D.D., It's not a 'smash your face into the wall' kind of song. It got a little bit of fun in it. I know any time you talk to the really heavy thrash guys, they go, 'Oh, no, no, no-no fun allowed. It's got to be heavy and brutal every second.' But that song definitely has a bit of fun in it. And we've done that before, with things like 'Old School' and 'Fuck You.' We're not afraid to do a bit of that sometimes.

    Another favorite lyric of Blitz', which is set to a non-nonsense old school thrash track, is Our Finest Hour. It's about the recognition of sameness, explains Ellsworth. I think people are comfortable when they recognize themselves in someone else. And 'Our Finest Hour' is kind of a detailed journey through that concept. It's like, 'Come on over here; I recognize you.' I've always been a firm believer in the fact that it's great to accomplish things on your own, but people are always stronger as a group-that's the basic outline of that tune.

    At the other end of the spectrum from punk is a song like The Long Road. D.D. readily agrees that there was a Maiden influence as part of this one's crafting. Oh yeah, for sure. The opening, along with a little section in there with the vocals, definitely feels like New Wave of British Heavy Metal.

    More evident in the band's panoramic classic metal passages, but even articulated here on Our Finest Hour, is another storied Overkill trademark, the definition one gets in the band's bass parts. Combine this with the Mensa-like percussive wizardry of Ron Lipnicki (laid bare for all to hear at headphone levels through the smack of his gravity-defying double bass work), and The Grinding Wheel emerges as a record with a remarkable rhythm section foundation from which to rise.

    I've had that kind of sound now for a long time, says Verni. There are a lot of bass players that say, 'I want to feel the bass.' And it's like, I just couldn't give a shit about feeling the bass. To me that's low-end. Guitars have low-end, kick drums have low-end, bass has low-end-I want to hear the bass, not feel it. So from a long time ago, that's what I would be doing on my EQ. I would be tweaking and turning knobs until not only could I feel it, but I can hear it separate from the guitars. And as a result, the bass just got more and more aggressive. I'm not a finesse player at all, on a bass. I bang the shit out of it, and I kind of do that to get away from the guitars and give it its own identity, its own sound, its own thing, so the bass has its own personality, not just serving as a foundation for the guitars.

    This affects the writing as well, says Blitz. Don't forget, D.D. is a guitarist. He's been playing guitar probably more so than bass in his spare time since the late '80s. This is a guy who has two-and-a-half decades of six strings under his belt. So we get more of a unique perspective; it gives this band its unique qualities when it comes to songwriting. Because it's a guy holding six strings who's got plenty of experience playing those six strings, but thinking from the other perspective. So you get a punchier thing; you don't get a lot of fluff. When you compare Overkill to some of our contemporaries, there you get a guitar player writing guitar-based songs. D.D. is writing, first and foremost, from a rhythm perspective, and that's what drives the songs. Add Dave Linsk to the picture, once there's a ten-note riff written, then you have the best of both worlds.

    Which brings us back to the aforementioned machine-like efficiency of the five guys that comprise Overkill, this idea that there are no weak links within this particular classic five-piece with two guitars lineup of metal warriors.

    That's the strength of the band, explains Blitz. Dave is really the one that holds the guitar reigns in this band. He's a writer at his core. You know, he's one of these guys who brushes his teeth and hears a rhythm the way the bristles are hitting the enamel (laughs). He's that dude. 'Oh wait a second, I have another idea.' He has an idea a minute, and if that's the case, some of them are going to be great. So he holds the reins. When it comes to Derek, he's more the opinionated thought later on. And so when it runs through the machine, being D.D. and myself, then Dave, Derek comes in and can change that song. It's always kind of good to have, let's say, a chief and some Indians. And it depends who's wearing the chief hat at any particular time. But I think at the end of the day, when you're looking for a clean perspective, it goes through Derek-that's usually what his contribution is, more of a finalization.

    And Ron? He's one-of-a-kind, says Verni. He's a great drummer. I've worked with him for a bunch of records now. This is our fifth record together and so I really understand how he plays at this point. Working with him in the studio is just a pleasure, because he's so right on it.

    After heaping all manner of praise on legendary producer Andy Sneap (brought on only for mix given Verni's proven acumen at the task), D.D. further clarifies the reason Overkill can be at the top of their game 18 records into their distinguished run.

    I have a studio and I did most of it at my place; I've been doing it that way for a while now. And now the group of guys we have in the band has been pretty consistent for a while. So we have a nice mix; everybody kind of knows their role, and is good at their role. Everybody brings a little something to the party. And I think that's why these last couple of records people ask, 'How is it that your records get better after 25 years?' And I think part of it is that everybody has a role in the band, everybody is comfortable with their role, and they're really good at the part they have. So the records actually get better. It's like having a team, instead of having a whole bunch of chiefs and no Indians.

    But a proven people's band like Overkill-a more personable bunch you'll never meet-fully recognizes that part of the band's success in being able to survive and thrive with the grind is due to the allegiance of the band's considerable worldwide fan base.

    For sure, says Blitz. One of the things with regard to grind, with regard to four decades of Overkill, it's good to be here, but it's obviously earned, not just by us but by the people that support this in general. The fact is that it's not just us grinding it out. I mean, maybe it is when it comes to the studio and writing and recording songs, from that selfish perspective. But the reason something exists for decades is based on group effort. Like we had talked about earlier with 'Our Finest Hour,' people are stronger together. In that light, this band is, let's say, not just our project, but it's a project by and for all those who hold it dear.

    1. Mean, Green, Killing Machine
    2. Goddamn Trouble
    3. Our Finest Hour
    4. Shine On
    5. The Long Road
    6. Let's All Go To Hades
    7. Come Heavy
    8. Red, White And Blue
    9. The Wheel
    10. The Grinding Wheel
    11. Emerald
    Overkill
    $31.99
    Colored Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Model 1.5 FI Cleaning Machine (On Sale) Model 1.5 FI Cleaning Machine (On Sale) On Sale Quick View

    $1,015.00 $913.00 Save $102.00 (10%)

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    Model 1.5 FI Cleaning Machine (On Sale)


    Have a question about this product? Please email our audio advisor or call 1-877-929-8729 with any questions or concerns regarding your equipment purchase.


    Semi-automatic operation, featuring automatic application of record cleaning fluid, brushing and rotation of the record during brushing and vacuuming. Black vinyl wood grain cabinet.


    We may not sell Nitty Gritty products outside of the US.


    Nitty Gritty Record Cleaners-Accessories
    $1,015.00 $913.00 Save $102.00 (10%)
    Model 1.5 FI Black Vinyl Woodgrain Cabinet Buy Now
  • GrooveWasher G2 Record Cleaning Fluid Kit GrooveWasher G2 Record Cleaning Fluid Kit Quick View

    $19.99
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    GrooveWasher G2 Record Cleaning Fluid Kit

    Have a question about this product? Please email our audio advisor or call 1-877-929-8729 with any questions or concerns regarding your equipment purchase.


    The G2 Record Cleaning Fluid Kit includes:


    • One 2 ounce bottle of G2 Fluid, with mist spray top.
    • One 4 ounce bottle of G2 Fluid with spout top. Use to refill the 2 oz mist spray bottle. 900+ mist sprays in this kit.
    • Label protector mask. Use to keep your record label dry when using the mist spray.
    • Record Cleaning Instruction Booklet.


    GrooveWasher G2 Fluid is the result of years of research and testing. The formula was guided by the D series fluids of the 1970s. G2 is perfectly safe for vinyl records. The ingredients are balanced for effective cleaning without rinsing. Evaporates quickly after cleaning per instructions. Anti-static action on contact. Honest cleaning to release the honest sound of the recording.


    Designed for use with the GrooveWasher cleaning pads. But you can use G2 Fluid with your preferred absorbent brush or fabric. NOTE: Carbon fiber brushes are non-absorbent and not designed for wet cleaning. Use of G2 Fluid with a carbon fiber brush is not recommended.


    RCM owners tell us they prefer G2 Fluid for the cleaning cycle.


    G2 does not fix scratches or scuffs. Once the signal in the microgroove is lost, nothing will recover it.


    The two ounce mist spray bottle has more than 300 fine mist sprays. With the 4 ounce refill bottle this kit provides 900+ fine mist sprays. Enough to clean both sides of more than 100 records! (YMMV)


    Some vinyl cleaning fluids on the market are plain distilled water with limited cleaning action. Others have a high level of alcohol which can harm vinyl records. Some leave a layer in the microgroove that reduces sound fidelity.


    High Tech G2 Fluid Contains:


    • Surfactants: State of the art detergents dissolve and suspend fingerprints and other oily grime.
    • Super wetting agent: A specialty chemical that reduces the G2 Fluid's surface tension to reach the bottom of the groove. When you spray G2 Fluid on a record you can see it spread down the grooves.
    • Emulsifiers: Holds the oils, dirt, mildew and microdust particles in suspension. Then the microfiber fabric cleaning pad wipes and pulls the dirt-filled solution from the record surface.
    • Purified, deionized water: Powerful carrier for the active cleaning ingredients. Eliminates static electric charges on the record's surface on contact.

    I haven't realized how dirty my record grooves have been. I used the Groovewasher on a 1979 copy of JJ Cale's 5 record. This is a quiet, laid back, nice, record and I heard parts of JJ Cale's voice that I have not noticed before. This out shines all the competition. I hope this flies off of the shelves as people discover it. Keep up the good work. Thomas Lee


    This is simply the best cleaning fluid available today. I highly recommend this product and this company. Dan B


    G2 Record Cleaning Fluid is formulated and made by GrooveWasher in North Kansas City, MO, USA.

    GrooveWasher
    $19.99
    Record Cleaning Fluid Kit Buy Now
  • Spin Clean Roller - Clear Spin Clean Roller - Clear Quick View

    $19.99
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    Spin Clean Roller - Clear

    Our amazingly smooth and balanced Spin-Clean® rollers help rotate your vinyl through its ultimate process of bathing, brushing, and cleansing. These are the clear rollers, which are used with the Limited-Edition, see-through unit.


    15 Reasons Why You Should Buy A SPIN CLEAN Record Washing System


    Beyond Compare in Record Care


    1. Spin Clean is the only record washing system on the market that is a bath type complete record cleaning system.


    2. Spin Clean is the ultimate in record care, easy to use. Just spin the record two or three times in the Spin Clean record washing system, remove and wipe dry with the special lint-free cloth. Presto, it's clean.


    3. Spin Clean leaves no residue on the record to build up and come off on your needle later.


    4. Spin Clean removes the static from your record as it is cleaned.


    5. Spin Clean removes fingerprints, grease, smoke, film and dirt from any size record: 45s, LPs & 78s.


    6. Spin Clean is the only record washing system that has a special washer fluid that encapsulates the dirt and keeps the dirt suspended in the system instead of re-depositing it back onto the record.


    7. Spin Clean record washing system comes with enough washer fluid to clean over 700 records (Spin Clean comes with enough washer fluid to fill the system 14 times. Each filling will clean up to 50 records just add 3 capfuls to water and go.)


    8. Spin Clean is the most economical way to clean any record, less than a penny a record.


    9. Spin Clean contains no alkalines, soap solutions or phosphates and is biodegradable.


    10. Spin Clean is safe to use, easy on your hands, and it works with hard or soft water and warm or cold water.


    11. Spin Clean does not leave any solutions on your record to evaporate and leave behind dirt deposits (you remove all the fluid when you dry the record).


    12. Spin Clean extends the life of your records by removing dirt, thus reducing needle wear and keeping your records like new improving their sound.


    13. Spin Clean was tested by a private laboratory and the results were remarkable. After Spin Clean had been used output sensitivity was substantially increased and channel separation was improved. Also, amplified record noise was reduced. (An STR 100 test record was used. Test report furnished on request).


    14. Spin Clean has dual velvet brushes that gently and effectively remove dirt particles. No other system cleans both sides of the record at the same time.


    15. Spin Clean uses no electric or other costly power source. For a few minutes of your time and very little money, Spin Clean will work for you. It's a sound investment to protect your investment in sound. No record collector can afford not to have the Spin Clean record washing system. It makes a perfect gift every time.


    This product not available for discount

    Accessories
    $19.99
    Roller Buy Now
  • Model 1.0 Cleaning Machine (On Sale) Model 1.0 Cleaning Machine (On Sale) On Sale Quick View

    $529.00 $476.00 Save $53.00 (10%)

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    Model 1.0 Cleaning Machine (On Sale)


    Have a question about this product? Please email our audio advisor or call 1-877-929-8729 with any questions or concerns regarding your equipment purchase.


    An entry level record cleaning machine and a great value. The Model 1.0 is the least expensive wet vacuum cleaning system available. Features manual application of record cleaning fluid, manual brushing and rotating of record, manual rotation of record during vacuuming. Model 1.0 (black vinyl cabinet)


    We may not sell Nitty Gritty products outside of the US.


    Nitty Gritty Record Cleaners-Accessories
    $529.00 $476.00 Save $53.00 (10%)
    Model 1.0 Black Vinyl Woodgrain Cabinet Buy Now
  • Crow Autumn Crow Autumn Quick View

    $15.99
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    Crow Autumn

    Crow Autumn is the latest album by English composer Richard Skelton, who releases haunting and evocative music under a variety of guises through his own much-acclaimed Sustain-Release Private Press. From Clouwbeck to Heidika, Carousell to Riftmusic, his recordings brim with intensity and stark beauty, redolent of the landscapes that inspire them.


    Recording here as A Broken Consort, his most prolific and successful pseudonym, Skelton expertly builds on the achievements of last year's Box Of Birch, creating a dense-yet-delicate weave of textures from a broad palette of acoustic instruments, including guitar, mandolin, piano, violin and accordion. The result is a stunning sequence of swells and eddies, culminating in the orchestral intensity of The River, with its torrent of interleaved violin melodies and seething undertow.


    Originally released in two installments on the artist's own label, this special edition for Tompkins Square distills the essence of those recordings into a coherent whole, and augments them with new material, including the beautifully elegiac Like Rain, and the brooding coda of Leaves. With Crow Autumn, Skelton has created a work of enduring beauty that should firmly establish him as one of England's most uniquely talented contemporary artists, capable of rendering with a fine brush the visceral majesty of the natural landscape.

    1. Day Reveals
    2. A Mercy Kill
    3. Like Rain
    4. Mountains Ash
    5. The River
    6. Beneath
    7. Leaves
    A Broken Consort
    $15.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • No Pop No Pop Quick View

    $19.99
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    No Pop

    Since their blown-out 2011 debut Hollandaze, Toronto trio Odonis Odonis has continued to push their sound further into the depths of post-apocalyptic experimentation. Following 2016's foreboding Post Plague, No Pop is the band's starker, more dance-floor-friendly fourth LP. Executed with precision, every sonic component of No Pop commands attention. Stripping down instrumentation to a handful of synths and an electronic drum kit, the band worked quickly to write and record, bringing demos and improvised takes into the studio and completing the recording process over the course of three days. The result is a focused blend of hard-hitting industrial, techno, and noise - but each track on No Pop is never just one of those elements.


    Pulsing rhythms lay the ground for textural soundscapes masterfully woven together to create a palpable sense of doom that is thick and satisfying. Taking its name from the anti-commercial No Pop movement, which infers that there is no expiration date on music nor is it limited by geographic or regional boundaries, No Pop is raw with emotion that's elevated by deft production. Each hypnotizing meditation captures an uncomfortably honest cynicism with a brush of humor, emphasized by sparse vocals that taunt the current dystopia of technology, human emptiness and the mundane. No Pop is the soundtrack of a sinking ship, and we're all happily aboard to go down with it.

    1. Night Beat
    2. Check My Profile
    3. Nasty Boy
    4. One
    5. Eraser
    6. Tracer
    7. Vision
    8. Fluke
    9. By The Second
    10. Needle
    Odonis Odonis
    $19.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • A Charlie Brown Christmas A Charlie Brown Christmas Quick View

    $21.99
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    A Charlie Brown Christmas

    Green Vinyl


    Multi-Platinum-Selling: One Of The Most Popular And Beloved Holiday Albums Of All Time!


    The Original Soundtrack To The Perennially Favorite Holiday TV Special, A Charlie Brown Christmas


    National Recording Registry Inductee, Library Of Congress (2012)


    Grammy Hall Of Fame Inductee (2007)


    Peanuts creator Charles M. Schulz called on pianist extraordinaire Vince Guaraldi and his trio to compose and perform music that would reflect the humor, charm, and innocence of Charlie Brown, Snoopy, and the entire Peanuts gang for their 1965 Christmas TV special. It was a perfect match: Guaraldi strings together elegant, enticing arrangements that reflect the spirit and mood of Schulz's work and introduce contemporary jazz to youngsters with grace, charm, and creativity. What Child Is This touches on cool jazz's richly textured percussive nuances, while The Christmas Song reflects Christmas' relaxing, mellow moments. The renowned Linus and Lucy gives the Peanuts characters a fresh, energetic feel with its tantalizing meter changes, brilliant percussion, and dashing, humorous piano lines. Christmastime Is Here, perhaps the album's most endearing and eloquent moment, is six minutes of soft, lullaby-like melodic and percussive flavors. This collection of soul-soothing melodies would not be complete without the romantic gem Skating, which blends musical references to falling snowflakes with the dashing feel of swing. Finally, the uplifting, emotionally stirring swing tune Christmas Is Coming really brings the listener into the joyous light of the Christmas spirit. Fred Marshall's alluring walking basslines and drummer Jerry Granelli's hauntingly beautiful brush work give most of the album a warm foundation, while Monty Budwig and Colin Bailey shine through with eminent dexterity on bass and drums on Greensleeves. As for Guaraldi, his penetrating improvisational phrases paint pictures of the first winter snowfall, myriad glistening trees, and powdery white landscapes. With its blend of contemporary jazz and lyrical mannerisms, A Charlie Brown Christmas is a joyous and festive meditation for the holiday season.

    - Shawn M. Haney (All Music)


    Vince Guaraldi - Piano

    Monty Budwig - Bass

    Colin Bailey - Drums

    O Tannenbaum
    What Child Is This
    My Little Drum
    Linus and Lucy
    Christmas Time Is Here (instrumental)
    Christmas Time Is Here (vocal)
    Skating
    Harke, The Herald Angels Sing
    Christmas Is Coming
    Fur Elise
    The Christmas Song
    Greensleeves
    Vince Guaraldi Trio
    $21.99
    Colored Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Record Master 1 Cleaning Machine (On Sale) Record Master 1 Cleaning Machine (On Sale) On Sale Quick View

    $519.00 $467.00 Save $52.00 (10%)

    Buy Now
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    Record Master 1 Cleaning Machine (On Sale)


    Have a question about this product? Please email our audio advisor or call 1-877-929-8729 with any questions or concerns regarding your equipment purchase.


    An entry level record cleaning machine and a great value. The Record Master 1 is the least expensive wet vacuum cleaning system available with a built-in adapter for 45s and 78s. Manual application of record cleaning fluid, manual brushing and rotating of record, manual rotation of record during vacuuming. Black vinyl woodgrain cabinet.


    We may not sell Nitty Gritty products outside of the US.


    Nitty Gritty Record Cleaners-Accessories
    $519.00 $467.00 Save $52.00 (10%)
    Record Master 1 Black Vinyl Woodgrain Cabinet Buy Now
  • Born With Stripes Born With Stripes Quick View

    $16.99
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    Born With Stripes

    San Diegos The Donkeys strike a balance of smiling, surfer mysticism and winking, slacker mystique. They reanimate the charming hallmarks of sunshine-rock past without being sepia-toned retro or bubblegum-cloying. There is an innate playfulness and honesty to the music they make. Its a dynamic that has made public champions of keen-eared musicians like John Darnielle (Mountain Goats) and Craig Finn (The Hold Steady). It was Darnielle who claimed The Donkeys were benevolent keepers of what he called The Antidote to an unnamed sickness plaguing indie rock.


    Born With Stripes is an altogether less twangy affair than the bands 2008 Dead Oceans debut, Living On The Other Side. The nods to Grateful Dead and Buffalo Springfield are better balanced with echoes of other Cali arists, notably Pavement and Beck. The country-rock flairs are often overtaken by powerpop hooks. What some might call a lazy melody is really just a melody on its own clock. Nice and relaxed.


    Ceiling Tan, feels like a lost weekend in Tijuana with Mutations and Crooked Rain, and may well be the bands mission statement. I Like The Way You Walk also cops a 90s alt-rock lick, but ditches any esoterica for earnest yearnings and sweet nothings.


    What makes the Donkeys so potent is not their ability to rehash the past, its that their records embody a pureness, an authenticity that is unmatched in contemporary music. We were not the only ones to feel this undeniable connection. The Donkeys had a brush with Hollywood when Lost producer Eddy Kitsis heard the band, and cast them as Geronimo Jackson, a band he had written into the Lost story as an obscure San Francisco band from the 70s, who were peers of the Grateful Dead. Kitsis heard the Donkeys and felt they so embodied this fictitious band, that he actually had the band re-record their song Excelsior Lady as Dharma Lady and weaved it into the TV show.


    The album was mixed by Pernice Brothers Thom Monahan, whose involvement not only gives us the crispest, warmest Donkeys recordings to date, it also serves to remind us of the bands loose connections to an array of psych-dappled kindred spirits: Vetiver, Papercuts, BrightblackMorning Light, Devendra Banhart. Monahan was not the only outsider the band collaborated with on Born With Stripes. The playful album artwork was created by California illustrator and cartoonist Tony Millionaire, best known for his comics Maakies and Sock Monkey, and as the creator of the Adult Swim show Drinky Crow.

    1. Don't Know Who We Are

    2. I Like The Way You Walk
    3. Bloodhound
    4. Born With Stripes
    5. Kaleidoscope
    6. West Coast Raga
    7. New Blue Stockings
    8. Ceiling Tan
    9. Oxblood
    10. Bullfrog Blues
    11. Valerie
    12. East Coast Raga

    The Donkeys
    $16.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Radiant Door Radiant Door Quick View

    $14.99
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    Radiant Door

    Earn is Matthew Sullivan, known to some already as Privy Seals, his extremely harsh noise project, collaborator with underground ambient artist Sean McCann, owner of the cassette label Ekhein, one half of the group 1958-2009 and former member of the legendary Deep Jew. A prolific gentleman with an ear for blissful engulfing tones and radiance that go beyond ambient or shoe gaze. His project Earn stands as a testament at his ability to use minimalism as an approach to guitar playing to find sounds, exude gentle brushes of color and embrace the emotional state of the player.
    1. Dark Eyes
    2. Radiant Door
    3. Still as the Night
    4. Low Profile
    5. Frost Inside the Asylums
    Crystal Stilts
    $14.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • A Following Shadow A Following Shadow Quick View

    $14.99
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    A Following Shadow

    Earn is Matthew Sullivan, known to some already as Privy Seals, his extremely harsh noise project, collaborator with underground ambient artist Sean McCann, owner of the cassette label Ekhein, one half of the group 1958-2009 and former member of the legendary Deep Jew. A prolific gentleman with an ear for blissful engulfing tones and radiance that go beyond ambient or shoe gaze. His project Earn stands as a testament at his ability to use minimalism as an approach to guitar playing to find sounds, exude gentle brushes of color and embrace the emotional state of the player.
    1. Avenue
    2. Pressure Of Speech
    3. Living Daylight
    4. Leather Rose
    5. A Following Shadow
    6. Only Black Out
    7. Hundreds of Years
    Earn
    $14.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Weirdo Shrine Weirdo Shrine Quick View

    $15.99
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    Weirdo Shrine

    For most, a brush with death would be cause for retreat, reflection, and reluctance, but Seattle band La Luz found something different in it: resilience. Having survived a high-speed highway collision shortly after releasing their 2013 debut LP It's Alive, La Luz, despite lasting trauma, returned to touring with a frequency and tirelessness that put their peers to shame. Over the past year-and-a-half of performing, the band arrived at a greater awareness of their music's ability to whip eager crowds into a frenzy. In response, frontwoman Shana Cleveland's guitar solos took on a more unhinged quality. The basslines (from newly-installed member Lena Simon) became more lithe and elastic. Stage-dives and crowd-surfing grew to be as indelible a part of the La Luz live experience as their onstage doo-wop-indebted dance moves. When it came time to record Weirdo Shrine, their second album-due out August 7th-the goal was to capture the band's restless live energy and commit it to tape. In early 2015, Cleveland and Co. adjourned to a surf shop in San Dimas, California where, with the help of producer/engineer Ty Segall, they realized this vision. Tracking most of the album live in shared quarters, La Luz chose to leave in any happy accidents and spur-of-the-moment flourishes that occurred while recording. Cleveland's newly fuzzed-up guitar solos-which now incorporated the influence of Japanese Eleki players in addition to the twang of American surf and country-were juxtaposed against the group's most angelic four-part harmonies to date. The organs of Alice Sandahl and the drumming of Marian Li Pino were granted extra heft and dimension. Thematically, Cleveland channeled Washingtonian poet Richard Brautigan on "You Disappear" and "Oranges," and sought inspiration from Charles Burns' Seattle-set graphic novel Black Hole. The resulting album is a natural evolution of the band's self-styled "surf noir" sound-a rawer, turbo-charged sequel that charts themes of loneliness, infatuation, obsession and death across eleven tracks, from the opening credits siren song of "Sleep Till They Die" to the widescreen, receding-skyline send-off of "Oranges" and its bittersweet epilogue, "True Love Knows." In describing Weirdo Shrine, Segall remarked that it gave him a vision of a "world burning with colors [he'd] never seen, like mauve that is living." In "Oranges," the Brautigan poem which inspired the aforementioned track of the same name, the poet writes of a surreal "orange wind / that glows from your footsteps." These hue-based allusions are apt: the sound of La Luz is (appropriately) vibrant, and alive with a kaleidoscopic passion. Weirdo Shrine finds them at their most saturated and cinematic.
    1. Sleep Till They Die
    2. You Disappear
    3. With Davey
    4. Don't Wanna Be Anywhere
    5. I Can't Speak
    6. Hey Papi
    7. I Wanna Be Alone (With You)
    8. I'll Be True
    9. Black Hole, Weirdo Shrine
    10. Oranges
    11. True Love Knows
    La Luz
    $15.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • The Complete Island Recordings The Complete Island Recordings Quick View

    $235.99
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    The Complete Island Recordings

    This stunning vinyl collection features 11 albums on 180 gram vinyl spanning a decade's worth of Bob Marley & The Wailers releases on Island Records.


    The Complete Island Recordings includes 11-LPs packaged in a rigid card box with lift top lid, and wrapped in silver paper that simulates the brushed metal finish of a flip-style lighter. The box includes Bob's 70th Birthday logo and all nine Bob Marley & The Wailers studio albums recorded for Island Records, featuring some of their most celebrated releases, including Catch A Fire, their 1973 label debut, and Rastaman Vibration, their 1976 breakthrough album in the United States, along with two live albums Live! and Babylon By Bus.


    Vinyl titles in the set are:

    Catch A Fire

    Burnin'

    Natty Dread

    Live!

    Rastaman Vibration

    Exodus

    Babylon By Bus

    Kaya

    Survival

    Uprising

    Confrontation


    Apart from the actual disc labels which will feature more recently reissued artwork, the LP's will faithfully replicate the original album pressings. The Live! album will include the original poster with the vinyl, while the Exodus album will feature the original gold metallic jacket with embossed lettering. The Babylon By Bus album will feature the die-cut cover with the color printed inner sleeves showing through.


    Catch A Fire
    1. Stop That Train
    2. Kinky Reggae
    3. Stir It Up
    4. Concrete Jungle
    5. Slave Driver
    6. 400 Years
    7. Baby We've Got A Date (Rock It Baby)
    8. No More Trouble
    9. Midnight Ravers


    Burnin'
    1. Get Up, Stand Up
    2. I Shot The Sheriff
    3. Burnin' And Lootin'
    4. Duppy Conqueror
    5. Hallelujah Time
    6. Pass It On
    7. Put It On
    8. Small Axe
    9. One Foundation
    10. Rastaman Chant


    Natty Dread
    1. Lively Up Yourself
    2. Bend Down Low
    3. No Woman, No Cry
    4. Them Belly Full (But We Hungry)
    5. Rebel Music (3 O'Clock Roadblock)
    6. So Jah S'eh
    7. Natty Dread
    8. Talkin' Blues
    9. Revolution


    Live!
    1. I Shot The Sheriff
    2. No Woman, No Cry
    3. Trenchtown Rock
    4. Burnin' And Lootin'
    5. Them Belly Full (But We Hungry)
    6. Lively Up Yourself
    7. Get Up, Stand Up


    Rastaman Vibration
    1. Roots, Rock, Reggae
    2. Positive Vibration
    3. Johnny Was
    4. Cry To Me
    5. Want More
    6. Crazy Baldhead
    7. Who The Cap Fit
    8. Night Shift
    9. War
    10. Rat Race


    Exodus
    1. Jamming
    2. Natural Mystic
    3. Exodus Waiting In Vain
    4. Three Little Birds
    5. One Love/People Get Ready
    6. Guiltiness
    7. The Heathen


    Babylon By Bus (2 LP)
    1. Positive Vibration (Live At The Pavillon De Paris, 1977)
    2. Punky Reggae Party (Live At The Pavillon De Paris, 1977)
    3. Exodus (Live At The Pavillon De Paris, 1977)
    4. Stir It Up (Live At The Pavillon De Paris, 1977)
    5. Rat Race (Live At The Pavillon De Paris, 1977)
    6. Concrete Jungle (Live In Europe, 1976)
    7. Kinky Reggae (Live In Europe, 1976)
    8. Lively Up Yourself (Live At The Pavillon De Paris, 1977)
    9. Rebel Music (3 O'Clock Roadblock) (Live At The Pavillon De Paris, 1977)
    10. Medley (Live At The Pavillon De Paris, 1977):
    a) War/No More Trouble
    b) Is This Love
    c) Heathen
    d )Jammin'


    Kaya
    1. Is This Love
    2. Satisfy My Soul
    3. Sun Is Shining
    4. Kaya
    5. Easy Skanking
    6. She's Gone
    7. Misty Morning
    8. Crisis
    9. Running Away
    10. Time Will Tell


    Survival
    1. One Drop
    2. Survival
    3. So Much Trouble In The World
    4. Zimbabwe
    5. Top Rankin'
    6. Babylon System
    7. Africa Unite
    8. Ride Natty Ride
    9. Ambush In The Night
    10. Wake Up And Live


    Uprising
    1. Redemption Song
    2. Could You Be Loved
    3. Coming In From The Cold
    4. Real Situation
    5. Bad Card
    6. We And Dem
    7. Work
    8. Zion Train
    9. Pimper's Paradise
    10. Forever Loving Jah


    Confrontation
    1. Buffalo Soldier
    2. Chant Down Babylon
    3. Jump Nyabinghi
    4. Mix Up, Mix Up
    5. Give Thanks & Praises
    6. Blackman Redemption
    7. Trench Town
    8. Stiff Necked Fools
    9. I Know
    10. Rastaman Live Up

    Bob Marley and The Wailers
    $235.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP Box Set - 12 LPs Sealed Buy Now
  • Profile: Best Of Emmylou Harris Profile: Best Of Emmylou Harris Quick View

    $21.99
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    Profile: Best Of Emmylou Harris

    Already celebrated as a discoverer and interpreter of other artists' songs, 12-time Grammy Award winner Emmylou Harris has, in the last decade, gained admiration as much for her eloquently straightforward songwriting as for her incomparably expressive singing. On Hard Bargain, her third Nonesuch disc, she offers 11 original songs-three of them co-written with Grammy- and Oscar-winning composer Will Jennings-that touch on the autobiographical while reaching for the universal. She recalls the storied time she spent with her mentor Gram Parsons ("The Road") and composes a sweet remembrance of the late singer-songwriter Kate McGarrigle ("Darlin' Kate") and the time they spent together, right up to the end. Harris locates poignancy and fresh meaning in events both historical and personal. On "My Name Is Emmett Till" she recounts a violent, headline-making story from the civil rights era in a heartbreakingly plain-spoken narrative, told from the murdered victim's perspective; on "Goodnight Old World," she fashions a bittersweet lullaby to her newly born grandchild, contrasting a grown-up's world-weariness with a baby's wide-eyed wonder. "Big Black Dog," with its loping canine-like rhythms, is also a true tale, about a black lab mix named Bella. Harris, who runs a dog shelter called Bonaparte's Retreat on her property, rescued Bella from the Nashville Metro pound and provided an especially happy ending to her story: "She goes on the tour bus with me now, along with another one of my rescues. I think of all the years on the road I wasted without a dog. They make it so much more pleasant. I'm making up for lost time now, that's for sure."Few in pop or country music have achieved such honesty or revealed such maturity in their writing.

    Forty years into her career, Harris shares the hard-earned wisdom that-hopefully if not inevitably-comes with getting older, though she's never stopped looking ahead. The candor of Harris's words is matched by a simple, elegantly rendered production from Jay Joyce (Patty Griffin, Jack Ingram, Cage the Elephant), with whom she'd previously recorded a theme for the romantic drama, Nights in Rodanthe. While Harris's acclaimed 2008 All I Intended to Be was recorded intermittently over a span of three years and featured an all-star cast of musician friends, including Dolly Parton, Vince Gill, and the McGarrigles, Hard Bargain was cut in a mere four weeks last summer at a Nashville studio, with only Harris, Joyce, and multi-instrumentalist Giles Reaves. Joyce gets big results from this strikingly small combo: Harris played acoustic guitars and overdubbed all the harmonies; Joyce layered shimmering electric guitar parts; Reaves-employing piano, pump organ, and synths as well as playing percussion-conjured gorgeous atmospherics, often giving these tracks, as Harris puts it, "a floaty, dreamy quality.""It's such a beautifully realized sound," says Harris. "We didn't have the need for anyone else given how versatile Giles and Jay are. We became our own little family in the studio. We cut very simply, with just maybe a click and whatever they wanted to play and me on an acoustic guitar, going for that vocal and that feel, right to the heart of the matter. After we got a track, there were all those lovely brush strokes they were able to add to it later on. I particularly love the guitar part Jay put on 'My Name Is Emmett Till.' It's a simple part but it just breaks my heart whenever I hear it. It's like a cry from heaven or something. Jay works really fast but he puts so much thought into what he does. I've been very lucky to work with so many great producers over the years and now I guess it was time to increase the stable."On "The Road,"

    1. One Of These Days
    2. Sweet Dreams
    3. To Daddy
    4. (You Never Can Tell) C'est La Vie
    5. Making Believe
    6. East From Now On
    7. Together Again
    8. If I Could Only Win Your Love
    9. Too Far Gone
    10. Two More Bottles Of Wine
    11. Boulder To Birminham
    12. Hello Stranger
    Emmylou Harris
    $21.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Blues Singer Blues Singer Quick View

    $39.99
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    Blues Singer

    Pressed On 180 Gram Audiophile Vinyl

    Housed In A Gatefold Sleeve

    Grammy Award 2004 Winner In The Category 'Best Traditional Blues Album'

    The album is all acoustic and dedicated to John Lee Hooker with the line, In Memory of John Lee Hooker. You are missed.

    Not known for his acoustic work, Buddy Guy unplugs for a rare album-length excursion into folk blues. The guitarist gets down and dirty with 12 tracks that sound like they were recorded after hours in his living room or on his back porch.

    Guy's stinging leads are still evident as is his emotive voice, but both are less flamboyant in the unplugged setting. Accompanied by spare stand-up bass and brushed drums, Guy sounds nearly possessed on covers from Skip James (Hard Time Killing Floor), Johnny Shines (Moanin' and Groanin'), Son House (Louise McGhee), and John Lee Hooker (Sally Mae) among others. It's a low-key, low-down affair made for late nights, rainy days, and the saddest of moods.

    Guy is just as convincing here--arguably more so--as on his barnstorming electric albums, making Blues Singer one of the bravest and most poignant albums in his catalogue.

    The album earned Guy the 2004 Grammy Award for 'Best Traditional Blues Album'.

    LP 1
    1. Hard Time Killing Floor
    2. Crawlin' Kingsnake
    3. Lucy Mae Blues
    4. Can't See Baby
    5. I Love The Life I Live
    6. Louise McGhee


    LP 2
    1. Moanin' and Groanin'
    2. Black Cat Blues
    3. Bad Life Blues
    4. Sally Mae
    5. Anna Lee
    6. Lonesome Home Blues

    Buddy Guy
    $39.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - 2 LPs Sealed Buy Now
  • Touch And Flee (Speakers Corner) Touch And Flee (Speakers Corner) Quick View

    $34.99
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    Touch And Flee (Speakers Corner)

    Touch And Flee is the new recording from Neil Cowley Trio, and marks a defining moment in the evolution of the band. It is their bravest, most daring album to date, spotlighting the ever- increasing brilliance of Cowley as a composer. With long time band mates, Evan Jenkins on drums and Rex Horan on bass, they jump headlong into new territory to present what they describe as »our concert hall record« for an altogether deeper listening journey.



    Gone are the familiar hook laden tunes, repeating riffs and pounding crescendos, replaced, in the main, by shifting, expansive melodies, longer elegant passages, and a broader brush stroke on Cowley's blank canvas. What is familiar though is Cowley's power to move through music. Exquisitely graceful movements meet with dark haunting passages. And although this is a new direction for Neil Cowley Trio, their personality, and unmistakable sound, still shines through. We hear, for example in the epic, sweeping Kneel Down, a three movement piece containing pulse, power, climax, spaciousness, and then, gentle surprise. The wonky jazz of Winterlude keeps the head nodding while Cowley's proclivity for atmospheric film scores remains.



    Touch And Flee was recorded at the legendary RAK studios with Grammy nominated Dom Monks in the producer's chair. RAK has seen some of the biggest names in music record there - David Bowie, Al Green, Michael Jackson, Pink Floyd, Arctic Monkeys, and of course Adele, with whom Cowley recorded the global hit, Rolling In The Deep. Touch And Flee is the result of three gifted musicians who think as one, growing together, driving forward. A collection of tunes best savoured in a darkened room, at full volume. They demand attention, but as always, deliver to the listener the most blissful of rides.



    Musicians:



    • Neil Cowley (piano)

    • Rex Horan (bass)

    • Evan Jenkins (drums)




    Recording: 2013 by Dom Monks and Helen Broadhurst at RAK Studios, London

    Production: Dom Monks





    About Speakers Corner



    At the beginning of the 90s, in the early days of audiophile vinyl re-releases, the situation was fairly straightforward. Companies such as DCC, Mobile Fidelity, Classic Records and, of course, Speakers Corner all maintained a mutual, unwritten ethical code: we would only use analogue tapes to manufacture records.



    During the course of the present vinyl hype, many others have jumped on the bandwagon in the hope of securing a corner of the market. Very often they are not so ethical and use every imaginable source to master from: CDs, LPs, digital files, MP3s - or employed existant tools from the 80s and 90s for manufacturing.



    A digital delay is gladly used when cutting a lacquer disc because tape machines with an analogue delay have become quite rare and are therefore expensive. When cutting the lacquer, the audio signal is delayed by one LP revolution against the signal, which controls the cutter head, and for this a digital delay is very often employed. Of course, the resultant sound signal is completely digital and thus only as good as this delay.



    We should like to emphasise that Speakers Corner Records on principle only uses the original master tape as the basis for the entirely analogue cutting of lacquer discs. In addition, the pressing tool is newly manufactured as a matter of principle. We have one digital recording in our catalogue (Alan Parsons / Eye In The Sky"), but even in this particular case we used the analogue tapes for cutting.



    We only employ existing tools for manufacturing if an improved result is not forthcoming, e.g. the title Elvis Is Back, which was mastered by Steve Hoffman and Kevin Gray, or several titles from our Philips Classics series, which in any case Willem Makkee cut from the original masters at the Emil Berliner Studios in the 90s. It goes without saying that we only used the mother and that new tools were made for our production.



    To put it in a nutshell: we can ensure you that our releases are free from any kind of digital effects - excluding the exception above - and that the lacquer discs are newly cut.


    This title is not eligible for discount.

    1. Kneel Down
    2. Winterlude
    3. Sparkling
    4. Gang of One
    5. Couch Slouch
    6. Bryce
    7. Mission
    8. Queen
    9. The Art
    Neil Cowley Trio
    $34.99
    180 Gram Audiophile Virgin Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Babel (Awaiting Repress) Babel (Awaiting Repress) Quick View

    $16.99
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    Babel (Awaiting Repress)


    Babel follows the 2009 release of Mumford & Sons' debut album, Sigh No More. It is produced by Markus Dravs.


    Fantastic 4 Star review from American Songwriter!



    There are some guitar sounds so indelibly stuck into our collective pop-consciousness that even those who can't tell a minor from a major chord can identify the band or player from just a few riffs -a dreamy John Lennon lick, the cosmic climb of Joe Perry, Slash's slash, Nirvana's fuzzy-barre rips, the post-punk fury of Sonic Youth. Now, the chugging, kinetic strum of Mumford & Sons is slowly creeping onto this revered list - not born out of extreme skill or virtuosity but by sheer branding, note for note. And it's how the band's second album, Babel, opens on the title track: with that same very strum, born somewhere between English mountain folk and an old time Appalachia. You can nearly hear the sweat flying off Marcus Mumford, his Martin instrument hiked high on his chest, every time he and banjo player Winston Marshall attack their strings.

    So it's no coincidence, it seems, that the band's highly anticipated sophomore record begins exactly where we might expect, and the rest of LP that follows proves that this isn't an attempt to smash any expectations with a sudden progression of their style. For those devotees looking for the Mumfords to evolve drastically, well, you're out of luck. But who would that audience be, anyway? The band is no doubt polarizing: old time and bluegrass faithfuls wouldn't be caught dead with a copy of Sigh No More, and their most ardent followers are more likely to have an iPod stocked with Coldplay and John Mayer than Bill Monroe or Doc Watson. Even pop addicts can't deny the catchy craft of "Little Lion Man" or "The Cave." No one is looking for their Kid A. Thus Babel's not a new sentence in the book of Mumford & Sons - it's what happens after an ellipses. And in many ways, that suits them just fine. It will most definitely suit their fans.


    Marcus Mumford has always been a bit of a melancholy fellow, and even a marriage to pixie-haired starlet Carey Mulligan, sold-out shows and Grammy nominations haven't shaken the teary introspection from this set of songs. Obviously, Babel deals in a lot of religious imagery and lyrics - with all the success and opportunities to indulge, it seems the boys have taken a moment to ask a few questions of their maker. "This cup of yours tastes holy/but a brush with the devil can clear your mind," Mumford sings on the second track "Whispers in the Dark." It's an anthem call with a firm statement: "I'm a cad but I'm not a I'm not a fraud / I set out to serve the lord." Maybe the trials and tribulations of being simultaneously loved and harangued have worn on the Mumford's, but at least they can prove to themselves, their audience or even their lord that this stuff comes from the heart.


    The album's single, "I Will Wait," is an easy crowd-pleaser moment with an arena-ready hushed chorus, set to those furious strings. The lyric and melody could easily be a Fray song if you removed the plucking banjo -and that's the amazing thing about Mumford & Sons. Purists aside, there's no one else that can get an audience from ages eight to eighty screaming along to a bunch of acoustic instruments or urge a kid to choose guitar lessons over computer games. Every time they perform - live or on Babel - they do it with sheer fervor, as if it's both their first and last time.


    While the band is mostly known for their "Americana" sound, they also pull references from their side of the pond: from both classic British countryside folk and Celtic punk bands like The Pogues. Those influences run a little more clear on Babel - "Ghosts That We Knew" and "Reminder" are both soft, melancholy stunners born out of grassy hills and cockney-tinged tales told in wood-paneled bars. And "Broken Crown" is the boys at their angriest yet: "I'll never be your chosen one," Mumford sings lightly before launching into an all-out war over minstrel plucks. It's a force of a song, and not your firmest pick nor hard-earned callous could weather that storm.


    Babel has some other unexpected moments, too, like on "Hopeless Wanderer," which begins with keys instead of strum, and "Lover of the Light" is a sunnier moment, perhaps a nod to the singer's recent vows ("to have and to hold," Mumford howls on the track). And the album's closer, "Not Without Haste," is a beautiful lullaby meant more for singing a restless man to sleep than a still-innocent child.


    There's also a continuation of the Mumford's love of literary references, with the boys even copping recently to ripping a line from Hilary Mantel's Wolf Hall - this is the band, after all, that was able to loop Macbeth's fateful cry of "stars, hide your fires" into their rollicking song "Roll Away Your Stone." So while the album title, Babel, is most likely a biblical reference, it's hard not to think of Jorge Louis Borges' short story, The Library of Babel. In it Borges imagines a universe composed of an endless library that contains every book in every possible permutation, and, therefore, nothing at all. This excess causes great despair for people of the library as they try to search for meaning in all of it. They fret. They come up empty.


    Babel may not hold all the answers, and it may not be some exotic transformation of their original formula - it's a safe bet to say that nothing from the Mumford & Sons may ever be. In The Library of Babel, the final realization that everything repeats itself is the universe's saving grace. And in Babel, you could say the same. Though there may not be endless possibilities, there's comfort - elegance, even - in that familiar, now nearly iconic rip of those strings, strummed in the way only those boys from West London can strum. It's not perfect, but it's perfectly Mumford & Sons.


    1. Babel
    2. Whispers In The Dark
    3. I Will Wait
    4. Holland Road
    5. Ghosts That We Knew
    6. Lover Of The Light
    7. Lovers' Eyes
    8. Reminder
    9. Hopeless Wanderer
    10. Broken Crown
    11. Below My Feet
    12. Not With Haste
    Mumford And Sons
    $16.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed AWAITING REPRESS Buy Now
  • Chiaroscuro Chiaroscuro Quick View

    $22.99
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    Chiaroscuro

    I BREAK HORSES is the musical project led by Maria LindÉn. From her
    Stockholm base, the Swedish artist delivered an extraordinary debut album
    in the shape of Hearts, released by Bella Union in August 2011. Forward
    two years, and the arrival of an eagerly awaited follow-up, entitled Chiaroscuro, is upon us. The latest chapter in I Break Horses' much celebrated
    songbook is everything fans could wish for and more. In the words of
    LindÉn: My only aim when starting to write this album was to ignore any
    possible second album expectations. The result is a more confident and
    evolved sound with a more dramatic expression.


    The title of Chiaroscuro - meaning light-dark - serves as the perfect
    embodiment of LindÉn's sonic creations, where an atmosphere and mood is
    created that evokes innermost feelings and thoughts residing beyond the
    surface reality of the material world. Affecting ballads such as 'Heart To
    Know' and 'You Burn' are wrapped in fragile beauty. 'Denial' and 'Medicine
    Brush' are sublime synth-pop odysseys whose pulses guide you to new
    horizons. 'Faith' is a dance anthem complete with hypnotic beats, swirling
    synths and the mesmerising looped vocals of LindÉn. I let myself write
    both the happiest songs but also the saddest, and then I put them
    together, states LindÉn. This arrangement of light and dark forms the
    essence of Chiaroscuro.


    'Ascension' is rooted in a gorgeous 80s synth-pop sound, where LindÉn's
    vocals melt into the lush sonic tapestry. The song deals with love and
    forgiveness. An irresistible groove lies at the heart of 'Disclosure' where a
    divine purity is distilled in the intricate array of instrumentation. 'You Burn' is
    perhaps the album's centrepiece, as well as being the opening track, where
    a brooding darkness envelops the surrounding human space. The delicate
    piano chords drift magnificently amidst Linden's searching lyrics. I Break
    Horses are one of those rare bands capable of conjuring up raw emotion
    through a sound that is ultimately something life-affirming.

    1. You Burn
    2. Faith
    3. Ascension
    4. Denial
    5. Berceuse
    6. Medicine Brush
    7. Disclosure
    8. Weigh True Words
    9. Heart To Know

    I Break Horses
    $22.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
  • Life/Thrills Life/Thrills Quick View

    $14.99
    Buy Now
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    Life/Thrills

    Acting as a respite from the celebrated strains of modern Australian
    underground music, Lower Plenty manage a deconstruction of folk
    music like none other: unsettled, unforgiving, unconcerned with
    what came before or what's to follow. Acoustic guitars shuffle in
    and out of phase with one another, double-tracked vocals hover
    above in careful meter, brushed snare rattles the very frame of their
    sound, and then everything shifts again, and again. Comfort's not
    long here, though beauty is maintained; melodies start sweet but
    turn inward, wane nostalgic and wax without resolve. Lyrics pawn
    regret out of the ordinary, drifting in and out of your consciousness
    like something heard in passing and reconstituted in a dream. Their
    sound demands your attention, to the point where gloved, spectral
    hands could very easily jump out of their music and grab you by the
    sides of your head.


    Life/Thrills is the Melbourne group's third full-length, and their
    collective experience (members play in a host of other bands, not
    limited to Total Control, The UV Race, Exhaustion, Deaf Wish and
    Dick Diver) will leave you thoroughly unprepared for the beautiful
    confusion suggested by these ten songs, which seem to have the
    power of slowing and even stopping time. Suitable comparisons to
    this music are as disparate as early Cat Power, Arab Strap, the
    Shrimper roster ca. 1992, the Sun City Girls, and the late '60s/early
    '70s output of the Red Crayola, but as with much truly original
    music, Lower Plenty resists direct comparison and defies
    expectation. Their shambling, discordant presence will relieve you
    of any preconceptions - this is one best experienced alone, as the
    sun fades into the horizon for the night.

    1. Waiting on a Tram
    2. Calculations
    3. Life/Thrills
    4. Took a Trip
    5. Concrete Floor
    6. On the Beach
    7. Jealous
    8. Go Down
    9. You Pushed Me
    10. Lots of Lows

    Lower Plenty
    $14.99
    Vinyl LP - Sealed Buy Now
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