Physical media matters. It’s not (for me) a question of digital rights or anything like that; it’s more that when I buy a piece of physical media it means it matters to me, more than just quickly pressing a button and having something instantaneously available. A piece of physical media is real – it takes up space, space that can become increasingly valuable and scarce.
It’s also something you can take your time with. I was opposed to collecting vinyl for years due to a number of reasons – space was just one of them. But over the course of the last few years, especially since I started writing for Nine Circles, I wasn’t taking the time to really digest the music I was listening to. Sure, I was still finding new things to love and getting hooked on music both new and old, but the time I would take to really get to know an album was fading.
Vinyl helped to bring that back. Taking the time and ritual to clean the stylus before each play, wiping down the record, and just sitting there, looking at the artwork or reading along to the lyric sheet…that’s something that was definitely lost in the years of promo sheets and deadlines and work commutes where you’re trying to plan the whole day and catch what you can of what’s being played.
So the goal is pretty simple: I’m going to listen to all the albums I have on whatever physical media I own them on, and write about it. Try to listen with fresh and open ears. See what, as I write about constantly, the media we consume says about us. I’ll be going in alphabetical order, then chronological. Sometimes my thoughts will wander.
(They usually do)
This isn’t everything I own – there’s thousands of digital files sitting on hard drives that I love dearly, but that’s for another time. This is really for me, and it’s probably more about me that I’d care to admit. I hope if you stumble across this space you find something of interest, and follow along.
Thanks. Now let’s get listening.