Technological advancements in recent years have seen music reach meteoric heights in terms of how easy it is to play and record.
In the past twenty years alone the world has seen the introduction and demise of many electronic devices used to play music.
The ways in which we consume music are numerous, from hard copy CDs to computer-based programs such as Spotify and iTunes in which online databases are created and maintained by the user.
It seems as if there is no end to the ways in which people all over the world can hear and enjoy music however the most consistent and well-respected medium is still the classic vinyl record.
The History of Vinyl
The vinyl record was created in the 1870s by history’s great pioneer of sound, Thomas Edison. It was obviously revolutionary at the time and has since never gone out of production.
It’s rise in popularity peaked in the 1970s when record giant RCA released a thinner, more flexible vinyl which,
although initially a cost-cutting procedure that reduced the quality of the vinyl, allowed for mass-market production and vinyl music to reach thousands more people.
During the late 80s and early 90s, compact discs became the sought after medium with consumers not only drawn in by their size and durability but also the new sharpness of sound.
This massive new product was the catalyst in a nosedive in vinyl sales, with only the professionals sticking to this seemingly outdated medium.
However it seems as though the record is making a massive comeback and it seems to be speaking volumes about society’s disillusionment with the music industry.
The Comeback of Vinyl
Records seem to be a symbol of a bygone era when the music was purer, more gritty and recorded on real instruments.
Many music lovers cite vinyl records as having a warmer sound, with more detail than the sharpness of CD recording.
This resurgence in ‘real sound’ has seen people turn to music genres that were also becoming obsolete such as folk music and blues.
It seems as though the rise in vinyl sales has prompted a revival of classic sound,
with the public wanting something less sugar-coated and pop and more real and honest.
The rise of internet listening programs such as Spotify have aided in the demise of high street record stores,
the most prominent of which, HMV, was closed down last year.
However, even though the majority seem to be in favour of instant downloadable music, those who want hard copies of their music are turning to the new abundance of record-only stores that are popping up all over the country.
This grass roots campaign has gotten great backing from consumers and professionals alike, even in the modern music world.
Drum and bass and dance DJs have always favoured vinyls for their ability to be directly manipulated, for example scratching and cutting samples.
So the reputation of the vinyl is changing once again, from something only your granddad knows how to work to the must-have accessory for the hipster audiophile generation.
It shows no signs of slowing down either, which can be seen as a real message about what people want from the music industry these days.
The sound quality is such that the music appears more honest, less watered-down and more rustic and perhaps in today’s world of mass-marketed pop puppets, a little musical integrity goes a long way.
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