Surface Noise. How Vinyl Speaks to Our Desire for Authenticity

AvatarMarc Henshall
Culture & Industry4 Comments

John Peel’s famous surface noise quote is held up as capturing perfectly the sentiment behind vinyl’s unlikely revival in the digital age. Digital music production and playback has allowed us to clean up the noise of analog tape and production techniques to a level of perfection never thought possible throughout most of the 20th century. In many cases, electronic musicians … Read More

It’s Personal. Norman Records are Keeping Independent Online Vinyl Alive and Well

AvatarMarc Henshall
Culture & Industry2 Comments

The struggle for independent record stores to compete against large global behemoths—such as Amazon—is a well-documented story. What is perhaps less understood, is the equally challenging position of running an independent online music store. One such outfit is Norman Records, based in Leeds, England. Norman Records started when the internet was in its infancy, and thanks to a huge amount … Read More

What is Half Speed Mastering?

AvatarMarc Henshall
Tech Talk2 Comments

Sound Matters offer a simple explanation of half speed mastering as a practice while gaining some more detailed insights from experienced Mastering Engineer, Barry Grint. (Barry’s work includes award-winning artists George Ezra and Tom Walker, plus many classic projects, including Madonna, Prince, Oasis, and many more). The Basics To understand what the term “half speed mastering” means, we must first … Read More

“Twelve Inch” Magnet Vinyl Display Systems in Review

AvatarMarc Henshall
Reviews2 Comments

A big part of what draws music fans into the world of vinyl records is the joy of owning the physical product. Music on vinyl is both practical and beautiful, enticing many collectors to display records in their home as art in its own right. Just like a painting, the pieces you choose to display make a statement about you … Read More

Direct-Drive vs Belt-Drive Turntables – What’s the Difference?

AvatarMarc Henshall
Tech Talk1 Comment

When buying your first turntable, or even upgrading your current setup, there are many technical terms and details that cause some confusion for would-be vinyl enthusiasts. At Sound Matters, we present answers to many of these frequently asked questions in a way that cuts through the jargon, getting to the key points you need to know. Today, we tackle the … Read More

Spinning Forward: Record Store Day Observations with Co-Founder, Michael Kurtz

AvatarMarc Henshall
Culture & IndustryLeave a Comment

In a recent Sound Matters feature, we asked a cross-section of the industry what Record Store Day (RSD) meant to them. Overwhelmingly, our contributors spoke highly of the RSD, citing the benefit it brings to independent stores and the continued growth in consumer interest for music on wax. The event draws huge crowds each year as people all over the … Read More

What Does Record Store Day Mean to You?

AvatarMarc Henshall
Culture & Industry2 Comments

Now in its twelfth year, Record Store Day is one of the most significant dates in the musical calendar. Fans across the globe gather at participating independent shops to discover new releases, watch live performances, and absorb the great atmosphere. The sales numbers are pretty impressive too, with last year’s event helping to shift 733,000 vinyl albums in the US … Read More

Why Do I Need a Phono Preamp for My Turntable?

AvatarMarc Henshall
Tech Talk1 Comment

If you’re new to the world of vinyl records, it may surprise you to learn that you cannot simply plug your turntable into most sound systems, just as you might do with any other piece of audio equipment. If you’ve ever tried plugging your turntable into the input marked as “aux” or “TAPE” on your sound system, you’ll likely notice … Read More

Creative Ways to Display Your Vinyl Records

AvatarMarc Henshall
Enjoy Vinyl, Record MaintenanceLeave a Comment

Besides the great sounds, ritual, and process, a huge part of vinyl’s lasting appeal is undoubtedly the aesthetic. Enthusiasts hail the large format artwork and the sense of satisfaction that comes with physically owning the music you love as just part of the reason why vinyl record sales continue to grow year-on-year. Many album covers are pieces of art in … Read More

Ten Common Vinyl Record Myths Uncovered

AvatarMarc Henshall
Tech Talk1 Comment

The world of HiFi is shrouded in many myths and untruths that continue to trigger debate and controversy. Vinyl records, particularly when considering the mastering and production process, are certainly no exception. To uncover the truth behind an array of common vinyl mastering myths, we discreetly interviewed a mastering engineer who will remain anonymous – lest we unleash an angry … Read More