Much of a fan as I am of Ariel Pink’s Pom Pom, would I shell out more than $21 for it on vinyl? When Rdio’s all-you-can-listen-to-and-more-! option costs me $8 a month, it’s debatable; there’s a reason why a large number of us–Taylor Swift notwithstanding–are moving toward the buffet equivalents of music shops.
That’s a little sad, really. I spent my formative years working at record fairs, carrying boxes of vinyl (which, when you load one up, is deceivingly heavy), and, of course, buying the goods, too. Holding a 12” gatefold sleeve will forever be a more memorable experience than looking at the same information on your palm-sized phone or whatever.
Therefore I am glad we still have stores like Rainy Day Records, the kind that managed to survive through physical media’s downfall, and are now flourishing (I hope) in a time filled with nostalgia and cool kids who only want the real thing.
The selection at the store is good. It’s not like it’s Rainy Day’s fault that vinyl is expensive these days, so if you’re into 180 grams of analogue sound, then I see little reason why you’d want to buy it anywhere else than here. They have a good selection of anything new, neatly organized in a space that’s probably way to hip for me. (Credit where credit is due, actually–the staff is bafflingly un-pretentious.)
There is a decent selection of used records, too (which I’m sure is where the really real kids flock to), and the prices are, to my fading knowledge, fair.
Does anyone still buy CDs? With vinyl and the iTunifys of the world, I guess I don’t quite see the need for them. There’s a section of them here, though. I guess my take on it, is that you probably should go with vinyl should you so prefer physical media. I can get into the whole analogue vs digital argument (analogue sounds better because the ear doesn’t have to process it like it does digital sound, and yada, yada, yada), but really–if you want to hold something physically, it might as well be a large 12” sleeve. The CD sleeves appear smaller than they would on an iPad.
So yes, this might have turned more into a rambling about LPs, CDs, and MP3s, but that is also kind of the point. Vinyl has made a comeback of sorts, and that’s awesome. We have a good store here that caters to a need very well, and I can’t think of a reason not to like Rainy Day. It’s a cool spot, and, despite what it might sound like, I don’t really think you need to be particularly cool to go in and enjoy it, either.
To round it off where this started, then, here’s some goodness from Ariel Pink’s latest album…
… beautifully available in a gatefold sleeve at Rainy Day Records!