So recently, something has piqued my interest greatly, to the point of digging in the good old world of my attic for hours: vinyl records. I was too young to really have vinyls in my life, so I figured I'd play some catch up now. I learned from Newbury Comics that National Record Store Day is on April 18th, and since my iPod has been on the fritz and I have nothing better to do on vacation, I went into each of the attics in my house (two) and found probably over fifty 12-inch records and probably somewhere between a hundred and two hundred 7-inchs, plus a busted, but extremely fixable and good quality record player. Fortunately, relatives came up and brought with them a working record player and I can listen to the dozens of Fleetwood Mac and Elton John albums my parents once listened to.
First record I put on though: Meat Loaf's Bat Out Of Hell. Go buy this record. Imagine the most zany, grandiose rock opera ever. Multiply by a hundred. That pretty much sums up this album. Then, I put on the classic album for trenchcoat-wearing loners just looking for love and a jukebox to hold up to a girl's window, Peter Gabriel's So. I love this record. "Red Rain", "Sledgehammer", and, of course, "In Your Eyes" are the best. He is so wacky in the way he makes music; there are billions of artists now doing weirder things with music, but I just get the sense he wanted to be and was regarded as a quirky, experimental artist. Definitely deserving of its immortal status as a classic album of the era. After jumping through several singles (A copy of the transmissions from the Moon landing in the 60's, "Dream On" by Aerosmith, and an scratched up, skipping version of "Bohemian Rhapsody" by Queen), I got to what has been one of my favorite records thus far, Fleetwood Mac's Rumours. There's truly something magical about this record. The cover shows this sense of elegance mixed a sense of humor (what are those bells symbolizing between the guy's legs?) and the album just feels joyful and right. Although it's old enough to include my mother's added touch of writing her (maiden) name on the cover, done to keep her brothers and sister from stealing it (and they would too; gotta love my big, weird family), the pictures inside on the lyrics sheets feel timeless, as if each crazy picture of the band sticking their heads out the window of a car or laughing and playing on stage are of friends and not of the rockstars that Fleetwood Mac truly are. It's weird too how some of the songs are already engrained in my head on first listen, so much so that I could sing them (poorly) aloud word for word. They've become such legends of the FM radio that each time a song of theirs were on a station on any various family road trip and ride to the grocery store of my childhood, they would become secretly engrained in my brain. It's also weird to know that during this record's creation, each member was divorcing or breaking up with someone (most within the band) because it truly is an empowering and almost happy record in a sense. Definitely buy this record. It is so worth it and I guarantee you'll feel a little happier after listening.
Overall, I actually love vinyl. There's something calming about the hiss and crackle as the music begins, almost as if the record's being played next to a fire. It's fragile and somewhat mystical watching the needle fall into the grooves, broadcasting music as it spins. It'll be interesting to buy new records and play them, just to continue something my parents bought when they were my age. If anyone has any suggestions on a record I should buy, definitely put a comment in on it.