Just before my most recent birthday a little cubical box came through the post. "What's this," I asked my better half. "It's for your birthday," she said before taking the box off me and venturing into the back room. It turns out that she had ordered a new cartridge and stylus for the turntable. Awesome news! Let's go into the loft and grab some stuff which hasn't had an airing for about fifteen years.
Let's have a look shall we? There must be some stuff which I didn't buy again on CD or indeed download (Marx was definitely correct about conspicuous consumption.) Lee Aaron's Metal Queen and Call of the Wild? Don't mind if I do. Both albums by obscure AOR gurus Tycoon? Check. Loads of Accept? Yes! Oh my word – there's the Cooper Brothers, the first three Outlaws LPs and Lightning Strikes Twice by Molly Hatchet and it's still as not-very-good as it ever was.
Thereafter some new speakers were acquired and in many ways my life changed quite radically. Like many of you I suspect, I have music playing constantly and the re-emergence of vinyl into my life gives me many more welcome options as well as being inarguably the best, warmest platform on which to listen to music. I can Bluetooth music into the bathroom which is always a fun option which I could have dreamed of growing up in the 70s and 80s, plug either my iPod or other device into the car – so many choices.
Mrs Simon is somewhat less than pleased about the fact that I can now begin to spend time in record shops again (not that there are many left here in provincial UK) and my word my newly improved system is fantastically loud. I have recently purchased Hugh Cornwell and Dr John Cooper Clark's decidedly odd This Time It's Personal and the triple LP version of Roger Waters' most recent live attempt at The Wall and the new heavier vinyl is just tremendous, what an experience!
In many ways I feel like I am going back to my teenage years and actually listening to music properly again given that I have to change the disc over (or not) every twenty-odd minutes and many times I just plonk the needle back down on the side which I have just listened to which is relatively unusual in today's fragmented goldfish-like society so I am pleased to say: Vinyl: Welcome back!