Oh for the love of indie

July 8, 2009 § Leave a comment

So the cool indie band, Werewolves posted this on their Myspace bulletin board, encouraging others to repost it. Most of it is pretty self-evident, but I liked the urgency with which they posted it. Tim has a justified grudge against the band, as he ordered the Fire 7″ single and it never arrived and they never replied to his complaints. Mine arrived and the A-side is fab, like Velvet Underground meets noise rock, so I’ve no qualms.

At any rate, here in full reproduction, “PRESS YR OWN RECORDS: A diy guide”

“Please feel free to repost this, as we all want everyone to express themselves freely and positively and universally. 

we get a lot of message about where we press our vinyl, how much is it, where do you get jackets, do any companies have packages, etc.

If you are poor like us, and you love vinyl like us, and you want to make super happy fun custom vinyl jackets with cost efficient vinyl pressing… 
this company in nashville, TN can do it (the vinyl anyway – the packaging you make yrself!)
http:​/​/​www.​urpressing.​com/​specials.​php#​LtdSpecial
they have monthly specials that are pretty legit. A lot of the time they have 500 colored or black 7″ records for $600. the vinyl isn’t the highest grade, but it sounds good (!!!really) and if you want a higher grade (audiophile, etc.) you can customize the order. 🙂

WE DO NOT WORK FOR THAT COMPANY!!, we’re not trying to advertise!!, we’re just trying to spread the love. we have used several other pressing plants that work well too. we have heard that RTI presses the dopest shit. OH yeah, PLEASE DO THINGS LOCALLY. save money on shipping, save pollutants from shipping. IF YOU LIVE IN BROOKLYN/NYC: get yr laquers cut by SALT MASTERING, plates cut in EDISON, NJ, and get yr vinyl pressed at BROOKLYN PHONO. 

GUIDE TO FREE/cheap JACKETS (for 7″ or 12″)

– free mailers from the post office
– free cardstock/​paper from yr library/​university
– buy old records from garage sales, flea markets, or craigslist FREE ads; spray paint or silkscreen whatevs and you got yrself a jacket.

local print shops sometimes make stamps.. stamps work for EVERYTHING including labels, tracklists, covers, etc.

what else can we say?

CASSETTES ARE NOT DEAD. make ’em. they’re cheap. go to a salvation army, buy some used tapes really really cheap, a lot of times you can find ’em on the street for free=
– spray paint the actual tape casing
– dub yr groovy tunes
– scam free cover copies at yr local university or library

CD-Rs ARE NOT DEAD.
same goes for these babies…

ALWAYS REMEMBER TO DO IT YOURSELF.

HAND NUMBER EVERYTHING!!! 

TELL SOMEONE YOU LOVE THEM TODAY & TOMORROW!!

feeling good. in the desert. it’s very late,, we love you.
although the rest of our tour dates are cancelled, we are looking at the positive side. We scammed a lot of free recording time on this tour and we will be giving it to you soon. we put up two new tracks the other day, we’ll have four more tunes for you in a few days.

sincerely
WEREWOLVES”

So here I am, having read this enthusiastic guide Werewolves posted thinking, so why do we love vinyl? This is a strange thing to think about and the various technical dis/advantages are well-documented, but nevertheless it’s fun to mull over. Some say it’s the sound quality that is appealing, yet my friends, Tim and Julian just bought solid copper 7″ What’s Up singles with apparently awful sound quality, yet they were both enamoured with the spectacle of the object, neither having even listened to the band before. Think how many pennies could come out of that record, literally. Adding to that, most new releases on vinyl were originally recorded on computers and mastered on computers, meaning that so-called “analog warmth” you’re hearing from new records is more likely the result of subpar equipment that you own, or a placebo effect, this “warmth”, however, may very well be true for older releases from the pre-computer recording age. Vinyl certainly isn’t convenient; an LP can fit about 5 CD cases in that same space and you can’t take it anywhere you go on the run (though more and more records are coming with MP3 downloads for your iPod). I think it is the very fact that vinyl is inconvenient and massive that I love it. I’m forced to listen to a record in my room, with my full attention; when side A finishes I have to physically swap over to side B. There’s a sort of care that exists there, which makes the music feel more precious, rather than the casual way I treat digital files as being utterly replaceable and easily duplicated. A record’s physical presence also carries the same precious and epic weight that the act of playing one does and a CD’s diminutive size, while more pragmatic lacks that commanding aura. Cover art always looks better if it’s huge and that’s just a rule–there are so many classic album reissues on CD that look awful compared to their vinyl counterparts, as an aesthetic person, I find this important. I’m far from an obsessive collector, but it helps when every record seems to be a rarity (limited number print, hand-numbered, coloured vinyl….) You know, I’m a starving student (literally, I had to borrow 50 cents to pay for a $2.50 meal consisting of a pizza slice and a Pepsi two days ago) so I can’t afford to be snobbish about the vinyl issue, but I do have the preference, when appropriate for the wallet, for vinyl, despite the shortcomings.

Touching on the theme of loves is one of my more recent affairs. Shelflife Records initially drew me in when I stumbled upon the Swedish band, Days. This was shortly followed by my purchasing the-now-sold-out Tour de Force by The Ruling Class, who incidentally sound like huge Stone Roses fans… and so it has continued. I just blew $50-odd bucks on the site. Referring back to the appeal of vinyl, I mentioned the limited print, well Shelflife has a series of EPs that are limited to 300 copies, all of which are wrapped lovingly in superb packages, including a CD and a 7″ together. The considerate folks even provide MP3s for the unlucky sorts who do not own a turntable for the 7″, or just want the songs on the iPod too. The label, also appears to have an implicit mandate that requires all signed bands to be big New Order fans. I can’t complain about that when I’m either hearing Peter Hook-style basslines or lush synth choruses in every song by any of the bands. Now, it’s not all fun and games, as I’ve said to others before, I consider record, book and movie shopping to be a little like Sophie’s Choice–by that I mean, I always have to give one up in order to keep the other. Sure, Sophie does it because of Nazis, I do it because of monies, but you know it’s practically the same thing. In today’s case I had to set aside everything released on Shelflife, besides the four items I purchased (Burning Hearts, Language of Flowers, Champagne Riot, Socialist Leisure Party), because it all really seems that I should just have everything. I will be back though….

Honourable mention of the day goes to The Depreciation Guild, having just released their 7″ single Dream About Me (see the bottom of the link for the video) going for $5 on white vinyl. Think Slowdive. Think My Bloody Valentine. Ignore the shitty wannabes you’ve heard since and think of this song.

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