New pressing plant opens in Chicago, presses first vinyl in the city in more than 20 years

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New pressing plant opens in Chicago, presses first vinyl in the city in more than 20 yearsFrankie Knuckles Mural Chicago

A brand new pressing plant called Smashed Plastic has pressed the first vinyl record in the birthplace of house music in more than 20 years. Located in the northern part of the Windy City, Smashed Plastic will press records for several local labels. One of the four investors who collaboratively established Chicago’s new Smashed Plastic is Andy Weber, a DJ, who outfitted the plant with a new vinyl press sourced from Toronto, Canada, manufactured by one of the two companies that make new vinyl presses worldwide. Weber’s investment is said to total around $200,000.

Smashed Plastic will make its full launch in January 2019, and for now will assist smaller scale imprints and Chicago-based artists with record pressing. The investors’ idea to open Smashed Plastic reportedly followed several conversations with local musicians, who expressed the challenge inherent in finding a vinyl presser who could quickly deliver new records.

H/T: DJ Mag

Porter Robinson shares favorite full albums of 2018

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With the year coming to a close and hindsight coming into 20/20 view, most everyone is reflecting on the tracks and albums that defined their year. Porter Robinson is no exception to this tendency, and following his shoutouts to his favorite tracks of the year on his birthday, it’s only natural he’d take the next step and shout out his favorite full albums released in 2018.

Robinson has been spinning fluid and loving sound since he walked through the door and these personal shout-outs from musician to musicians hold an intrinsic value. Twitter may have its shortcomings but a door into the-minds-ear of a producer like Robinson in a blessing. Robinson with just a few links and the words “i love” is able to connect worlds of music, influence, and sonic innovation.

Kero Kero Bonito’s Time ‘n’ Place is a sweet, psychedelic, sweeping collection of tracks soft on the ear and penetrating towards to soul. Harmonious and experimental, the trio from London seamlessly brings raw acoustic and instrumental sound together with contemporary electronic noise. The album has bass (both guitar and beats), synths, breakdowns, build-ups, subtle poetic freestyling, jovial sing-alongs, eastern and western influence — making it a mosaic of an album. The juxtaposition between the tracks “Only Acting” and “Sometimes” truly show how versatile these three are. Robinson really did everyone a favor with this glance.

G Jones didn’t really need any looks, having had DJ Shadow call him “the most gifted Ableton beatmaker I’ve ever seen.” Still, The Ineffable Truth‘s unprecedented standing is not to be overlooked. Released October 26, the traction on this work is simply exponential. Sometimes a solid record reveals itself right off the bat. Within seven seconds of the first track, “222 / Unknowable,” G Jones does just that. A wise voice simply states, “I want to feed off of this feeling which seems to be coming from everything,” after the briefest pause, in big-bang fashion G Jones rips the world apart for just a moment. He knows how to break down space and resemble it and has an understanding of sound and technology that combined create an organic experience. Making this form of music that organic is what will continue to propel these beats into the future.

Swardy‘s Here on My Own is a beautiful collection of one half of The M Machine‘s essence. Light, fun, and mystical, this five-track release causes a desire for introspection that Robinson himself has a talent of bringing forth. The tracks are flush with groove, melody, and steady beats that allow the listener to close their eyes and explore their minds and their hearts. These tracks don’t get stale and supply a timeless opportunity to explore the infinite space that is the self.  Appropriately, Here on My Own is out through Mat Zo‘s Mad Zoo label.

Vinyl lovers can now make in-app record purchases on Discogs’ iOS app

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Vinyl lovers can now make in-app record purchases on Discogs’ iOS appScreen Shot 2017 09 12 At 7.04.44 PM

Discogs browsers surfing the platform’s stock of nearly 40 million items will newly be able to make in-app purchases, thanks to Version 2.0 of the Discogs iOS app.

Whereas the iOS supported Discogs app previously redirected buyers to Discogs’ mobile website, Apple users can now browse Discogs’ fully integrated marketplace and proceed with their purchases without ever leaving the app. Version 2.0 additionally integrates Discogs’ sister site, VinylHub, allowing shoppers to peruse VinylHub’s database of more than 7,000 record shops around the world from within the app.

The iOS update follows in the footsteps of the previously introduced Android version, debuted in January.

H/T: Resident Advisor

YouTube record label NoCopyrightSounds hits milestone $1 million in sales despite free downloads

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In 2011, Billy Woodford established a unique UK-based record label and music organization known as the YouTube channel NoCopyrightSounds. Since then, NCS has transformed into a global music label with millions of listeners and more than 13 million YouTube subscribers.

NCS is a unique service in that it provides the option for listeners to enjoy music for free, but at the same time, users are presented with the ability to support artists through paid services. By giving away the music for free, creators are able to easily access more material for their work. Free downloads also mean new audiences will discover more music through easy access.

Despite the free download option, NCS has just announced it’s reached more than $1 million in record sales. This unique milestone is good news for the electronic music community as it cements the opportunities labels have in the channels they are monetizing for their acts. Companies like NCS have access to an entire generation of artists and can possibly alter the state of musical communication altogether.

“The demand for fresh original music from Creators is enormous and growing daily,” asserts Woodford. “I believe the music we support on the label compliments all types of content, from the Make-up and Beauty community through to the vlogging and gaming world. The fans of these content creators from each community are discovering NCS artists, and that is translating into traditional sales.”

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The U.S. has the most record shops in the world

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When it comes to vinyl, the U.S. seems to have set its own record.

Music database Discogs and its ‘sister site’ VinylHub have determined that the United States is the host of the most record shops in the world, with 1,482 total vinyl-selling storefronts. The United Kingdom trailed behind the US with 537 shops, with Germany coming in third with 453.

When Discogs and VinylHub narrowed its focus to specific cities, Tokyo emerged as the city with the highest number of record stores, at 93 total shops. Berlin followed with 87, and London with 79.

The top three U.S. cities were New York with 47 shops, Chicago with 30, and Los Angeles with a close 29. Berlin surfaced as the site with the ‘densest cluster of shops in the world,’ where 46 record shops exist within a kilometer of each other. Discogs and VinylHub’s results indicate that even in the digital age, vinyl remains a preeminent musical form.

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H/T: Resident Advisor

Wilkinson and Dimension release hotly anticipated collab, ‘Rush’

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Dimension has made a name for himself in the UK drum and bass scene with his standout production talents. The producer has released track after track that capably highlights his abundance of skill— the most recent of them being “Black Church.”

Ending his three-month hiatus, Dimension has just released his hotly anticipated collaboration with another one of England’s finest producers, Wilkinson— aptly titled “Rush.”  Each producer’s contribution to the melodious single is clear to hear, as their combined effort has surely produced a modern drum and bass classic.


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Mixcloud solidifies deal with Warner Music Group

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Mixcloud — the British counterpart and streaming rival to SoundCloud — has just signed a licensing agreement with Warner Music Group.

The agreement will allow the UK-based streaming company, which has previously implemented statutory radio licenses for its music usage, to begin implementing subscription services.

Nico Perez, the co-founder of Mixcloud recently spoke with the Financial Times on the rollout, “We don’t want to do the $9.99 a month. That’s done. That market is served. What we’re building is going to be very customized.”

Perez continued, “Since the beginning, we have worked with rights holders to both monetize long-form audio and champion the importance of curation in the streaming industry. As we embark on direct licensing relationships with the major labels, we are committed to doing what is best for artists, curators, music fans, and the industry.”

Currently, Mixcloud has around 17 million monthly users with 12 million long-form radio shows, podcasts, and DJ sets. In addition to the recent agreement with Mixcloud, Warner Music Group recently purchased Spinnin’ Records. The agreements come with immense excitement in the music industry. With the preservation of long-form content presently called into question, the move towards track alternative long-form content suggests that the industry will not entirely move towards instant gratification. Mixcloud is also reportedly working out contracts with two other major music groups, Universal and Sony, respectively.

H/T: Resident Advisor

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This miniature turntable plays teeny tiny cookie records

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Lovers of records can, at last, have their vinyl and eat it too thanks to the amazing work of the Dimensions Plus agency in Hong Kong.

Dimensions Plus was tapped by Oreo themselves to create perhaps the collaboration of the year in an effort to make the sugary treats hip again. Oreo Vinyl is thus a mini turntable capable of playing vinyl record versions of the specially crafted cookies.

With etched grooves on the surface of the cookie, the delectable treat is packaged alongside its very own mini record player. Oreo Vinyl is capable of playing the Oreo anthem in four distinct styles: jazz, classical, Chinese, and yes— electronic.

Dimensions even went on to detail their creation of the mini records:

“The data on the cookie is embossed with a mod which is made with laser cutting and engraving technique. And we wrote a program to transform the music into a pattern. After that, we make it into a laser-engraving friendly format and produce the mod for the Oreo Vinyl production. ”



H/T: Mixmag

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