Music albums are like a bottle of wine — they should be decanted, pondered and absorbed for pleasure.
Sure, rock music needs to be felt while standing up and Top 40 passes the hours while waiting in big box store lineups, but with today’s noise-cancelling head phones and surround-sound speakers it’s easy to warm up the room, precisely place the needle, and sip slowly while listening to the likes of Jimi Hendrix’s Axis: Bold as Love; Radiohead’s The King of Limbs or The Beatles’ Love, Deluxe Edition, all recently released as old-fashioned, 12-inch vinyl records and all available at a local shop in East Kildonan.
Planet of Sound, at 201-1109 Henderson Hwy has been trading and selling music for well over a decade, and has recently added vinyl records to its inventory.
"Vinyl music is alive and great artists still release their music in physical formats," explains store owner Dave Wright. "We started carrying new releases and have found that there is a demand, vinyl is really coming back over the last few years."
The resurgence in vinyl’s popularity with audiophiles is partly due to new innovations in turntable technology. The majestic tones and incomparable clarity of today’s turntables beg for tunes to be enjoyed in their true analog form.
Walking to the music store is exercise for the body and spirit while deciding on the material to match your mood is a soul-soothing experience.
"It’s not always the music, it’s the process" says one local vinyl enthusiast, Matthew G. "Records make you realize the method of listening to music has changed. When you hold the record you are holding a body of work, and it puts you in a better place to enjoy the artists. I am also a fan of the packaging — the picture discs have amazing art. You feel like you are buying something more," Matthew says.
While his store also sells DVD and Blu-ray movies and video games for new and retro consoles, Wright has always stuck to his not-for-profit views on local musicians.
"Local bands have enough of a struggle for us to take a cut from their record sales," he says.
If bands, rappers, DJs or musicians of any genre want to sell their music without losing money to the retailer, "Planet of Sound is ready to help them out," Wright says.
Evan Comstock is a community correspondent for East Kildonan.