Take out the record players and wipe off the dust proudly: On April 19, musicians, music-lovers and record collectors will get together in stores all over the world to celebrate Record Store Day — a tradition that started in New York seven years ago and gained momentum, becoming an international event that is celebrated every third April, including here in Tel Aviv.
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In honor of the day, independent record stores offer special releases and have shows and events celebrating the love of listeners for vinyl records, which have been enjoying a revival in past years and continue to be relevant even in the digital age. No fewer than 600 new releases are expected on World Record Store Day, including remakes, singles and collectors’ edition, as well as albums and projects that were created especially for the day. Out of the list of fascinating releases, here are nine.
As happens every year, Warner Brothers’ Side by Side series will be releasing a new single in honor of the day. The seven-inch record’s A side will contain a rock classic, and its B side will contain its modern version. This year’s record will have The Cure’s 1987 classic, Just Like Heaven, on its A side, while its B side will contain Dinosaur Jr.’s grunge version.
A limited edition of "Pennyroyal Tea," one of the best-known tracks from Nirvana’s third studio album, "In Utero," will be issued to mark the 20th anniversary of the death of Kurt Cobain. The song was originally planned as the album’s third single to be launched, with the release date set for April 1994. But a few days before the projected release date, Cobain committed suicide at his home, and the single was shelved. Now, two decades later, "Pennyroyal Tea" will be re-released with its original cover, on a seven-inch record, with the track "I Hate Myself and Want to " on the B side.
Darq E Freaker is considered one of Great Britain’s most prominent hip-hop producers of recent years. This young musician, who has already declared himself “the professor of urban electronica,” heads the UK Grime collective Nu Brand Flexxx and has also worked with the British indie trio London Grammer and Danny Brown. Freaker will be releasing a 12-inch vinyl record of the frenetic track Ironside. Die-hard Tarantino fans will definitely recognize the sampler inside.
Jagwar Ma and Temples, two psychedelic bands that issued two of the most successful debut albums of 2013, will issue a joint release for Record Store Day — a single containing one band’s remix of the other’s song. Side A will have Jagwar Ma’s remix of Shelter Song, while Side B will have Temples’s remix of Man I Need.
"The Space Project" is a fascinating release that gives new meaning to the space rock genre. A project of Lefse Records label, the album contains 14 new songs that were written and produced on the basis of unique sound samples (or, more accurately, “electromagnetic vibrations”) that were recorded by Voyager 1 and Voyager 2, the space probes launched by NASA in 1977 to study the outer Solar System. Among the artists who participated in the album’s production were Youth Lagoon, The Antlers, Jason Pierce of Spiritualized, and Beach House.
Nigerian funk artist William Onyeabor was ahead of his time, a one-man band who presented a fusion of Afro-beat and American-style disco with synthesizers and drum machines, which were considered cutting-edge technology at the time. Onyeabor retired from music in the mid-1980s to become a clergyman, but his music continued to echo as far as the West. A special salute to Onyeabor’s work was held early this month, and on Record Store Day a double tribute album in 12-inch format will be released with covers and remixes by The Hot Chip, Caribou, The Vaccines and other great classics from this electro-funk pioneer.
Three years ago this month, the dance-funk band LCD Soundsystem performed its farewell show at Madison Square Garden. It was there that James Murphy concluded his magnificent run with the band, in what was described as the most joyous funeral that New York City had ever seen. The Long Good, a special set of five 12-inch vinyl records that contain the entire performance and mixed by Murphy himself, will be released on Record Store Day.
Thirty-six years after it first came out and became a rare, in-demand collector’s item, a new, limited release of Joy Division’s debut EP, "An Ideal for Living," is due to come out in honor of Record Store Day. The EP contained four songs that laid the foundations for the gloomy, minimalistic sound that became identified with the band. The new edition, which will be released with a new cover (the original cover was controversial because it contained an illustration of a member of the Hitler Youth), was remastered at Abbey Road Studios early this year.
Johnny Cash’s estate continued releasing previously unreleased recordings of the country singer — songs that are being published more than a decade after his death. On Record Store Day, his 1957 debut album, Johnny Cash with His Hot and Blue Guitar, which went out of print years ago, will go back on the shelves in a new 12-inch vinyl limited edition of several thousand copies only.
Filmmaker and surrealism expert David Lynch, who in recent years has focused more on making his own music, will re-release the instrumental album, "The Air Is On Fire," which came out in 2007 and has since become a rare item. The album was written and recorded by Lynch as a soundtrack to his art exhibit of the same title, which was presented at Foundation Cartier in Paris that year.
Want to celebrate Record Store Day in Tel Aviv? Head over to the Pasaz (Passage) Club starting at 1 P.M., where guests from abroad, local artists, five vinyl record stores and DJs will connect with the Kol Hacampus radio station for a party that will last until the wee hours.