Record Store Day 2015.. meh

Record Store Day 2015

Music Millennium @ 8:48PM 4/17/2015.
Line starting 12+ hours before opening RSD 2015.

Tomorrow is Record Store Day 2015. As we’ve gotten closer to the annual event, there have been a million articles writing about why it totally sucks here, here, here, here, here, ETC. As I’ve shared in the past, I have been heading out to RSD every year since 2012 to show my support for local record shops (though besides one year I usually head in much later after the crowds have left). One lame thing is that for many, this is the only time they will visit a record shop (or even buy stuff on wax) each year. While it is a bummer, I had still been thinking that it is good that the record shops have a great sales day like this to make some money anyway. Along with this, there will hopefully be some who are introduced to the medium by these types of events and they may make more than one day of the year a “record store day”.

While I’m still not sold on the idea that RSD is doing more harm than good for record stores themselves (smart stores know to avoid overstocking the garbage releases that won’t move), the last few years it has become more clear that the event is doing some shitty things to the rest of the industry. If you buy records from indie labels these days for instance, you’ll likely notice that vinyl versions are delayed months after the release of the album (it is even common for pre-orders to be delayed!) The demand from major labels repressing junk is making it so that pressing plants are at complete capacity, which is making it harder and more expensive for the smaller guys to put more quality stuff out. While it does sound like good news for the pressing plants too, it is going to hurt bad when the major labels run the “vinyl revival” into the ground through gimmicks and greed then leave the newly opened plants barely able to stay open yet again. At the end of the day, I suppose this is all really more the fault of the major labels perverting the good intentions that Record Store Day was founded on than RSD itself.

When I went to Music Millennium tonight, I was going there with the plan to pick some stuff up before all the craziness begins tomorrow. Most years I’m not picking up any RSD exclusives anyway, so I thought I might as well skip the actual day itself too since it has become somewhat meaningless to myself.

When I left the shop, I was surprised to see people lined up sitting in lawn chairs outside. At first I thought it was some weird group of nicely dressed homeless people (I don’t drive into Portland often, it seemed possible!) but then I realized that these were instead people waiting in line 12+ hours before the store opens in the morning for RSD. I thought I was nuts to go to Easy Street Records a couple hours early a few years ago, I did not realize Record Store Day was now officially at Black Friday status of crazy lines. Checking out Millennium Music’s website, the first person in line was there about 16 hours early!!! After reviewing the list of RSD 2015 exclusives, I can’t think of anything there that’s worth waiting in line that long. Guess so long as people are willing to buy from flippers, this will only continue to occur over the years. If an album meant so much to me that I’d either have to wait in line for 16 hours or pay $50 more, I can’t say I blame those buying on eBay/Discogs though. Fortunately for me the quality of RSD releases has only been getting worse each year.

I think this is a going to be a start to a new Record Store Day tradition for myself. Visiting a record shop the evening before the event will be an interesting way to gauge whether the hype for RSD (and possibly the “vinyl revival”) will continue to grow or start dying off. While it’s great to see lots of interest for vinyl and record stores, here’s to hoping people will start to ignore some of the major label crap that clogs things up so that the more grassroots nature of the day can be more relevant again.

Record Store Day 2015 records

Run the Jewels 2 & BBNG III were better than any RSD 2015 exclusive in my opinion.

ps: Rega’s press release about RSD is cringeworthy

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Captain Murphy Laugh Sample

Finally solved the mystery of where Captain Murphy’s laugh comes from. Thanks STMB! The clip above is the sample at 24% lower pitch, 5% slower, and a little more bass. Flylo pitches it even lower/etc on a lot of stuff though.

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James Pants Hotel Collection

While digging through some old James Pants links on his Tumblr I found out about this collection of tracks. I knew about the Valet track from the OVWAT promo but had no idea that was associated to even more JP stuff I haven’t heard yet. Can’t wait for a new Pants record, hopefully that will happen sooner than later!

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As mentioned in a post earlier this year, waxramble has been in hiatus status for a bit now. During this last week of vacation time (which ultimately turned into a staycation) I’ve been thinking more about the site and what I want to do with it.

I had the thought of moving everything over to Tumblr and even spent many hours converting posts here to bring over there. The thought with that was that if I’m not going to work on things here, I may as well not pay to host the site. Tumblr’s mobile app also looked appealing, as I could do more of photo posts/micro posts there. The thing with Tumblr though is that in comparison to WordPress the options for everything are so limited.

I was not happy with how the Tumblr site was looking so I have ultimately decided to stick with WordPress here. I’ve spent a lot of time today making site improvements, which include moving all photos in posts to now being hosted in my WordPress media library (no more tinypic/imgur images!), adding a new slideshow function to images (no more Flickr slideshows!) as can be seen in my last post, and other smaller adjustments.

Now that the site is more integrated in WordPress, I can finally start utilizing things like the mobile app. The recent 4.0 update is also making the desktop experience much better as well.

I’m not sure yet what will be coming next for waxramble, but I did just want to post an update to explain that I’m at least thinking about the site more these days! My last post about the record fair last month is probably what content will look like more in the future, in that it will be less sharing what all these other active music blogs share but instead more unique content/personal posts that may be of some interest to those who find themselves on my site somehow. Looking forward to more posts here soon!

ps: I’m guilty of being a real life Clickhole article -_-

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Crate Diggers Record Fair

crate diggers record fair crate diggers 2

Last month we ran a pretty awesome record fair/after party in Portland, thought it would be worth sharing a bit here about the experience. The day started off with the record fair, we had over 30 vendors from all over the place selling some great stuff. Really wish the event had taken place closer to my payday, I could have easily spent hundreds of bucks there but ultimately decided to hold off. I did grab a signed copy of PBW’s My Vinyl Weighs a Ton (the 3LP version!) for $30 which was sweet.

After checking out a lot of the vendor stuff I ended up manning the Discogs area until the start of the after party. It’s been a long time since I’ve helped run a booth at an event like this, it was definitely a lot of fun. Giving out Discogs merch and  getting a chance to hear feedback from the community (most of it very positive!) was awesome. I’m looking forward to helping out at future record fairs to experience this again.

Unfortunately the weekend this all took place was a very very busy one for me. The day before I had driven to Seattle for a Seahawks game and came back home after so I was running on about 4 hours of sleep or so. I managed to catch some of the earlier sets from the after party which were fantastic but I couldn’t stick around for Dam-Funk’s set which was a huge bummer (big fan of his stuff). If this becomes an annual event I will definitely be planning ahead better!

The event turned out really well and was a great time. It took a lot of work from those involved to make everything a success, I’d like to think it was all worth it. It sounded like everyone was hoping to do this again in the future, so hopefully this won’t be the last “Crate Diggers” event!

Below are some photos of the event:


OPB also interviewed Liz/others and wrote up an article here.


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