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Vinyl albums bring different music experience

Photo by Hayden Corwin '15 -- Many music enthusiast believe records create better sound and a more authentic listening experience.

By Hayden Prescott Corwin ’15

Vinyl albums were brought to the general public in the late 1800s and have remained a traditional standard of listening to music.

Music listeners do not have to buy these big plastic discs to listen to their favorite artists anymore.

After 8-tracks, cassette tapes and CDs, the new standard of music listening has become digital.

Listeners of today often choose to go on a music provider such as iTunes or Spotify to get their fix of sound artistry.

This does not mean that vinyl music has died out though.

Music consumers seem to have retained an affinity towards the vinyl album, and if anything there has been a resurgence.

An article in The New York Times stated that the new Daft Punk album “Random Access Memories” sold 339,000 copies and out of those 19,000 were on vinyl pressings.

Vinyl records are a different experience from digital recordings.

“I would say that (vinyl records) provide a more authentic sound,” said Ryan Beggs ’15.“It’s also like reading an e-book versus an actual book. There is a lot more satisfaction with the feel of a vinyl than spending $1.29 on iTunes; you appreciate the vinyl more.”

The experience of a vinyl album is different from any other recorded medium in that it has deeper and richer tones with more headroom.

When the needle touches down on the album, distinctive crackles, pops and hisses begin sounding through the speakers.

These pops and hisses are the intros and outros to each and every track.

A vinyl album usually comes in a cardboard jacket with the album artwork displayed on the front and back of it.

The inside of the album jacket also contains a paper sleeve, which holds the vinyl inside of it for protection.

A lyric sheet may even be inside of the jacket.

This is not to say that musician’s compact discs are not packaged in this same manner.

Recently, CD cases have turned into paper jackets and sleeves, almost like mini versions of vinyl albums.

Lyrics pamphlets are also usually found inside of CD cases.

The CDs are, in a way, attempting to replicate the feel of a vinyl album.

The digital song has its purposes beyond merely CDs as well.

A digital song is usually a convenient way to listen to music on the go.

“Listening to a vinyl is a more intimate experience with the artist,” said Ian Hart ’15.

A jogger cannot bring their phonograph with them on the Central Avenue Bridle Path.

The jogger would use something such as an iPod or some other form of portable listening device.

The music industry has constantly made strides to take the music listening experience to a more portable level.

However, many listeners still continue to appreciate the vinyl album for the distinctive musical experience it provides.

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