Ask just about any young adult under the age of 20 what a vinyl record is and they'll probably say, "that's easy - its a CD!"
Now if you're over 30, you'll probably sigh, or just shake your head in disbelief as another bastion of your youth is forgotten.
But, things are never that bad when the area of music is concerned. A new revolution is gaining steam as the current generation is rediscovering the retro sound of the vinyl record.
Personally, I think its about time classic "sounding" music garnered its second coming. In a sense, its the same argument made for those who enjoy the look of older movies, with their jitters, static noise look and occasional skips.
Younger music listeners missed out on the additional sounds of cracking, higher "highs" and a range of audio depth that could only be gained from increasing the bass or, made easier by just listening to a vinyl recording.
Don't know the difference between vinyl and digital music sounds? Take our test with lil Stevie Wonder!!
In this corner, analog, or a vinyl record! Get a feel for the crackling sound and comforting feel your mom and dad loved as kids! Ya feeling it? Mmmmm....
And in this corner, digital, or a CD! Ok, we admit its quite a bit clearer to listen to. But, don't you think that sound comes with a more sterile feel? Hmmm...
Heard em both? What do you think? Which version sounds better? Make with the comments below!
Research by ICM suggests 18 to 24-year-olds are buying more vinyl records than any other age group under fifty.
The surge also coincided with the Record Store day; a mass-music push held the world over on April 20th. The event is encouraged by hundreds of musicians who release one-off singles and albums (primarily vinyl) to encourage fans to buy music in their local record shop.
And it seems the younger generation are gaining a new appreciation for the medium on the whole.
At one shop in east London, 19 year old Alex is pricing up stock for Record Store Day, he explained why he buys vinyl: "The thing about playing a CD is you put it in, press the button and it plays. This sounds a bit corny but the artist has put so much effort in with vinyl you have to get it out of its sleeve, put the needle on and I think it's respectful."
| || |
And with this new respect come increased sales by many from the digital generation. And although vinyl is more expensive, most feel its an experience of going to a local record shop.
"You go, search for the records, talk to the staff, they say, 'Why don't you get this as well?'."
The total sales figures are small compared to the combined sales of CDs and downloads which amounts to more then twenty million.
But sales of vinyl have increased steadily since 2004 and at the moment that shows no sign of changing.
With music on vinyl being more expensive than buying a CD or a download, that can mean a significant cash injection for record labels.
Sales of digital music continues to increase but Spencer Hickman feels there is room for both: "For years you've heard people say, 'Digital's the way'. There is room for both to exist, I think vinyl offers something completely different to digital or CD."
Drop us your comments below.