LATEST ADDITIONS

Michael Fremer  |  Jul 16, 2020  |  2 comments
Southern "New Age" is a new musical sub-genre for me, but if this is a typical example of it, y'all can be sure I'm on board. Luke Schneider coaxes from the 1967 emmons push-pull pedal steel guitar (named for the pedal steel guitar great, the late Buddy Emmons) cosmic otherworldly, uplifting heavenly sounds that instantly engage the head and message the heart.

Michael Fremer  |  Jul 15, 2020  |  29 comments
Back in 1972 the original Thorens introduced the TD 160, a triple spring-suspended sub-chassis design that quickly became a long-in-production classic and the blueprint from which many other turntables, er, sprung—Linn for instance.

The original AR XA turntable designed by Edgar Villchur and introduced way back in 1961 for $58 was, to the best of my knowledge, the first to place the platter assembly and tone arm on the same sub-chassis isolated by a three point spring mount from the rest of the turntable (and from the outside world).

Michael Fremer  |  Jul 13, 2020  |  9 comments
Of course you can put a Grado cartridge on your Rega turntable without Hagerman Audio Labs' permission or help, but because of where Rega positions the motors on its turntables, doing that comes at a cost: hum.

Michael Fremer  |  Jul 10, 2020  |  15 comments
A vinyl-loving physics professor at Florida State University emailed to tell me that William Stead, a "brilliant film student" was in his astronomy class and came up to the prof one day and told him he was a huge Bowie fan and that he loved vinyl. Stead made a short documentary about Doug and Michelle Allen, owners of Banana Records who I profiled in my Banana Records video, which you can find on the AnalogPlanet YouTube channel.

Michael Fremer  |  Jul 03, 2020  |  47 comments
What better time than during a period of self-isolation and social distancing could there be to explore Bach’s “Suites For Unaccompanied Cello”? Arguably, there’s no finer recorded performances than the ones Janos Starker performed for Mercury Records April 15 and 17, 1963, September 7-8, 1965 and December 21-22, 1965 (though some may prefer other performances by Casals, Rostropovich, Yo-Yo-Ma, etc.). I'm not here to argue with you. The finest version of these historic recordings, is without a doubt, this latest one from Analogue Productions and the sound is unassailable.

Malachi Lui  |  Jul 01, 2020  |  187 comments
No matter your (likely misguided) opinion of him personally, Kanye West is indisputably one of the greatest artists of all time. While in certain occupations others come close, only Kanye has the wide scope and collaborative energy to succeed in everything. Whether it’s music, fashion, or film, he enlists world-class multimedia artists’ assistance, precisely executing most media (except opera). As the man himself said in “Kids See Ghosts,” “[I] don't like being less than any a competition in any of my professions/So I gotta guess then, I gotta stay the best man/What else you expect from, uhhh, Mr. West man?” He lives up to his word; despite the often delayed and cancelled album releases (through online groupbuys the material eventually leaks), within a matter of time he accomplishes everything he talks about. Currently, he’s working on a budget clothing line with Gap (fulfilling his 2015 promise to make YEEZY garments affordable), IKEA-type affordable housing developments, and creating American jobs through prison reform systems. His wide range of artistic disciplines and personal achievements make him without question “the greatest artist resting or alive.”

Malachi Lui  |  Jun 30, 2020  |  1 comments
(Review Explosion is a recurring AnalogPlanet feature covering recent releases for which we either don’t have sufficient time to fully explore, or that are not worthy of it. Curated by AnalogPlanet contributing editor Malachi Lui, Review Explosion focuses on the previous few months’ new releases.)

Evan Toth  |  Jun 29, 2020  |  2 comments
Great music doesn’t exist, nor is it created in a vacuum. It evolves from years of being influenced by composers, performers, producers and genres. We don’t reward musically mediocre derivatives; rather, we celebrate musicians who manipulate their favorite influences to create a composite that results in something new and exciting— like Black Pumas’ music.

Malachi Lui  |  Jun 28, 2020  |  36 comments
(Vinyl Reports is an AnalogPlanet feature aiming to create a definitive guide to vinyl LPs. Here, we talk about sound quality, LP packaging, music, and the overarching vinyl experience.)

As the world moves to reopen, record stores are slowly allowing customers back in. Here in Portland, OR, Music Millennium recently held a week of appointment-only personal shopping experiences (charitable donation necessary), then subsequently reopened with a 10 person limit and new safety measures. I shopped during the “be the only customer inside!” period and reviewed below are four recent acquisitions.

Jeff Flaim  |  Jun 26, 2020  |  4 comments
Avant-garde trumpeter Jaimie Branch has a lot on her mind; racism, love, compassion and the state of our union. Tackling these issues is not an easy task, especially for someone who plays instrumental music. On FLY or DIE II: bird dogs of paradise, her second album—recorded live over a few nights at London’s Total Refreshment Center—the New York based musician delivers a passionate, searing set of tunes.

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