Time Waits for No One – January 26, 2020

Background: After a visit to the Turntable Doctor during Boxing Day week, the recent inspection of my Ortofon 2M Blue cartridge stylus, the verdict was 1000 hours of life left on it. So how long is 1000 hours of stylus life? Obviously, the answer is 1000 hours. The quick math translates 1000 hours to 6 weeks of 24/7. However being human, how long would it take me to explore my record collection to reach 1000 hours of play? The answer is the subject of these posts. Turn off the lights and have a listen to 1000 hours and counting down.

Dead Dogs can learn new tricks. Dead Dog Records know all the old tricks.

Enter through their doorway in the Bloordale Village and it’s the place where everyone calls you Joe. The folks there have my tastes down to a T so we start with the letter G.

Gillian Welch - Harrow
Gillian Welch The Harrow and the Harvest

GILLIAN WELCH
The Harrow and the Harvest
ACNY 1109LP

Gillian Welch fans know Gillian is pronounced with a hard G. Consider me a learned fan now. Whether this record be country or Americana, the album is plaintive songs filled with simple stories sung of harrowing tales and hard times, faith and the other side ahead.

There’s six white horses coming after me
Six white horses coming after me
Pretty as a picture, certain as the scripture
Six white horses coming after me
Steely Dan - Gaucho
Steely Dan Gaucho

STEELY DAN
Gaucho
MCA 6102
Release: 1980

It is 1:11 a.m. on a cold winter’s day. And what better time to slip on Steely Dan onto the turntable evoking the cool hipster lifestyle of sunny CaliforniL.A. Walter Becker and Donald Fagen tunes, immaculate players and playing with a horn section from Tom Scott to boot taken to the limit. Too cool for school? I have read too many reviews of snobophiles who use a myriad of Steely Dan AJA pressings and SACD as the test source for showing off their equipment, I do not fall into that camp, but I thought Steely Dan Gaucho would be a smooth experience.  The quest for perfection in the studio. Or obsession. Who is up for a listen to Toto IV or Dire Straits?

led zeppelin I
Led Zeppelin

LED ZEPPELIN
Led Zeppelin
Atlantic ‎– 8122-79664-1
Release: 2014 (initial release 1969)
“The Led Zeppelin legend began in January of 1969 with the group’s eponymous debut. From the opening salvo of “Good Times Bad Times,” on through to “Babe I’m Gonna Leave You,” “Communication Breakdown,” and “Dazed And Confused,” the album introduced the band’s unmistakable sound and left an indelible mark on the music landscape.” So said so well straight from Led Zeppelin itself.

rolling stones rnr.ROLLING STONES
It’s Only Rock ‘N Roll
Label: Atlantic
Rolling Stones Records ‎– COC 79101
Release: 1974

Production at Musicland by the “Glimmer Twins” of Mick Jagger and Keith Richards.
Rhythm n bluesy swagger in the studio with a very forward imaging. It’s Only Rock ‘n Roll is the classic anthem of r n r. Brash, sassy, arrogant.

NINE INCH NAILSNIN - Pretty Hate Machine
PRETTY HATE MACHINE
BICYCLE MUSIC COMPANY B0015099-01

The start of it all in a reissued format on 180gm. Bicycle Music Music bought out TVT and pressed this on 180gm black vinyl album.

Continue reading “Time Waits for No One – January 26, 2020”

Life on the road 2020

Snowy weekend in Toronto. It is the middle of January and already the camera has been traveling to three different clubs. What happened to hibernation?

  1. January 4, 2020 – Heather Valley – Cameron Club – Toronto, ON
  2. January 9, 2020 – Time Machine release party – Sappho – Tomacco – Ary – Body Double – Junction City Music Hall – Toronto, ON
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  3. January 16, 2020 – Pretox – Straight to Business – Bovine Sex Club – Toronto, ON

More travels to come!

You call some place paradise, kiss it goodbye – January 18, 2020

Hotel California

Background: After a visit to the Turntable Doctor during Boxing Day week, the recent inspection of my Ortofon 2M Blue cartridge stylus, the verdict was 1000 hours of life left on it. So how long is 1000 hours of stylus life? Obviously, the answer is 1000 hours. The quick math translates 1000 hours to 6 weeks of 24/7. However being human, how long would it take me to explore my record collection to reach 1000 hours of play? The answer is the subject of these posts. Turn off the lights and have a listen to 1000 hours and counting down.

Linda Ronstadt, the subject of The Sound of My Voice movie on CNN inspired tonight’s listening. Skye Wallace’s self titled album has been burning a hole into my ears and her photos from recent club performances on stage with band fronting for Lowest of the Low (see image below) have been blazing from my smugmug and others social media. The record itself is black vinyl with a test pressing label! The listening was quite enjoyable with little to note about any distracting noise. The album ranges from moody reflections to full on guitar and bass rockers which capture the adventures of her life.

20191214_211754__DSC5166

Luxury Liner
Emmylou Harris Luxury Liner

Emmylou Harris Luxury Liner was handy and was the natural follow-up. (Dolly Parton and Nicolette Larson provide back-up vocals amongst many. Dolly Parton, Emmylou Harris and Linda Ronstadt comprised Trio for their two albums.) Even though this is a Warner Brothers Canadian pressing from 1977, the production was immaculate with little if any surface noise. The highlight of Luxury Liner is naturally Emmylou Harris’s voice itself and stellar talent in the band.

Hotel California
Eagles Hotel California

While sorting through albums, the Eagles Hotel California on Asylum Records 1976 turned up more than coincidentally (the members of the Eagles being early members of Linda Ronstadt’s band). Checking the 7ES 1084 catalogue number, this album copy is the 1976 Canadian pressing with the gatefold from Asylum. The record might have needed a little bit of record cleaner and a zap of the Zerostat gun. There were a few reminders that this Hotel California was not a compact disc. Otherwise, the memories of past sitting down by the stereo come back. Which is part of the vinyl experience. The familiar intro to Hotel California led all the way past New Kid in Town to the end of side one with Wasted Time. Flipping over the record brings in the reprise of Wasted Time. The second side is the opposite of Life in the Fast Lane and exits with the more sombre outro of The Last Resort. Raise the needle and turn off the stereo for the night. It is 1:11 a.m.

If you have a nice comment or stylus recommendation:

DATE ARTIST ALBUM FORMAT TRACK ALBUM TIME RUNNING TOTAL CASSETTE TIME
2019-12-28 NILS FRAHM SCREWS ALBUM SIDE A/B 00:28:00 00:28:00  
2019-12-28 CRASS Sheep Farming in The Falklands flexi SIDE A 00:05:22 00:33:22  
2019-12-28 U2 NO LINE ON THE HORIZON ALBUM SIDE A 00:17:00 00:50:22  
2019-12-30 BOB DYLAN LIVE AT BUDOKAN ALBUM SIDE B 00:26:42 01:17:04  
2019-12-30 SUPERTRAMP EVEN IN THE QUIETEST MOMENTS ALBUM SIDE A/B 00:43:25 02:00:29  
2019-12-30 APHEX TWIN SELECTED AMBIENT WORKS 1985-1992 ALBUM SIDE A/B 00:34:20 02:34:49  
2020-01-01 EMMYLOU HARRIS LUXURY LINER ALBUM SIDE A/B 00:38:35 03:13:24  
2020-01-02 BOBBY WISEMAN SINGS WRENCH TUTTLE IN HER DREAM CASSETTE SIDE A   03:13:24 00:29:07
2020-01-05 ELUVIUM COPIA VINYL SIDE A 00:18:50 03:32:14  
2020-01-05 ELUVIUM COPIA VINYL SIDE B 00:21:00 04:12:55  
2020-01-05 GLENN GOULD WELL TEMPERED CLAVIER VINYL SIDE 1/6 00:19:41 03:51:55  
2020-01-08 The Replacements Pleased To Meet Me VINYL SIDE A 00:16:16 04:08:11  
2020-01-08 The Replacements Don’t Tell A Soul VINYL SIDE A 00:19:14 04:27:25  
2020-01-18 Stevie Nicks Bella Donna VINYL SIDE A 00:19:28 04:46:53  
2020-01-18 Skye Wallace Skye Wallace VINYL SIDE A/B 00:33:21 05:20:14  
2020-01-18 EMMYLOU HARRIS LUXURY LINER VINYL SIDE A/B 00:38:35 05:58:49  
2020-01-18 The Eagles Hotel California VINYL SIDE A/B 00:36:58 06:35:47

 

1000 Hours of Stylus and counting down – January 8, 2020

Today’s listening was a couple of classic albums from The Replacements! The records listened to were Pleased to Meet Me (1987), and Don’t Tell A Soul (1989). These are on black vinyl, the original price of Pleased to Meet Me is a whopping $6.97. These two albums are going to be re-issued soon with coloured vinyl. However, the two Replacements albums are minty black and sound fine the way they are. Talent Show from Don’t Tell A Soul and Alex Chilton from Pleased To Meet Me are alive as ever.
As well, Stevie Nicks Bella Donna from 1981 is about as perfect an album as there is and is also going to be re-issued. This one might be worth exploring as a re-issue. (Total album listening time to date is 4 hours and 48 minutes.) Also spun the compact disc of The Replacements Let It Be which sounds fine as a CD.

DATE ARTIST ALBUM FORMAT TRACK ALBUM TIME RUNNING TOTAL CASSETTE TIME
2019-12-28 NILS FRAHM SCREWS ALBUM SIDE A/B 00:28:00 00:28:00  
2019-12-28 CRASS Sheep Farming in The Falklands flexi SIDE A 00:05:22 00:33:22  
2019-12-28 U2 NO LINE ON THE HORIZON ALBUM SIDE A 00:17:00 00:50:22  
2019-12-30 BOB DYLAN LIVE AT BUDOKAN ALBUM SIDE B 00:26:42 01:17:04  
2019-12-30 SUPERTRAMP EVEN IN THE QUIETEST MOMENTS ALBUM SIDE A/B 00:43:25 02:00:29  
2019-12-30 APHEX TWIN SELECTED AMBIENT WORKS 1985-1992 ALBUM SIDE A/B 00:34:20 02:34:49  
2020-01-01 EMMYLOU HARRIS LUXURY LINER ALBUM SIDE A/B 00:38:35 03:13:24  
2020-01-02 BOBBY WISEMAN SINGS WRENCH TUTTLE IN HER DREAM CASSETTE SIDE A   03:13:24 00:29:07
2020-01-05 ELUVIUM COPIA VINYL SIDE A 00:18:50 03:32:14  
2020-01-08 ELUVIUM COPIA VINYL SIDE B 00:21:00 04:12:55  
2020-01-08 GLENN GOULD WELL TEMPERED CLAVIER VINYL SIDE 1/6 00:19:41 03:51:55  
2020-01-08 The Replacements Pleased To Meet Me VINYL SIDE A 00:16:16 04:08:11
2020-01-08 The Replacements Don’t Tell A Soul VINYL SIDE A 00:19:14 04:27:25
2020-01-08 Stevie Nicks Bella Donna VINYL SIDE A 00:19:28 04:46:53

WELCOME TO 2020 : 1000 HOURS AND COUNTING DOWN

The news? Moving into a new apartment with a view in upper Scarborough, we decided to bring the old stereo system back to life. This system is about as analogue as it can get, with Kenwood KA 3500 40 watt amp, Technics SL-1200 MKII turntable, two former Mirage speakers with a Ring Audio internal design and two cassette decks: one Sony and one AIWA.

THE Turntable Doctor at Bay Bloor Radio examined the stylus of the Ortofon 2M Blue After an electronic cleaning and although the stylus was already shorter than an original needle, he pronounced the stylus was still good and had 1000 hours left on it.  Now how long is 1000 hours in record playing terms? That was a good question. The Turntable Doctor said that should be three years. I thought why not keep track of what is 1000 hours?
As well, the technician suggested demagnetizing or clearning the cassette heads every 30 hours. So keeping track of that well will be on the table. The titles listed will be either on vinyl or cassette unless listed otherwise. There will be compact discs played as well and those will be included as well (but will not count towards the 1000 hours).

Welcome to my listening, good taste or whatever you may term it.

DATEARTISTALBUMFORMATTRACK ALBUM TIMERUNNING TOTALCASSETTE TIME
        
2019-12-28NILS FRAHMSCREWSALBUMSIDE A/B00:28:0000:28:00 
2019-12-28CRASSSheep Farming in The FalklandsflexiSIDE A 00:05:2200:33:22 
2019-12-28U2NO LINE ON THE HORIZONALBUMSIDE A 00:17:0000:50:22 
2019-12-30BOB DYLANLIVE AT BUDOKANALBUMSIDE B00:26:4201:17:04 
2019-12-30SUPERTRAMPEVEN IN THE QUIETEST MOMENTSALBUMSIDE A/B00:43:2502:00:29 
2019-12-30APHEX TWINSELECTED AMBIENT WORKS 1985-1992ALBUMSIDE A/B00:34:2002:34:49 
2020-01-01EMMYLOU HARRISLUXURY LINERALBUMSIDE A/B00:38:3503:13:24 
2020-01-02BOBBY WISEMAN SINGS WRENCH TUTTLEIN HER DREAMCASSETTESIDE A  03:13:2400:29:07
2020-01-05ELUVIUMCOPIAVINYLSIDE A 00:18:5003:32:14 
2020-01-06ELUVIUMCOPIAVINYLSIDE B00:21:0004:12:55 
2020-01-06GLENN GOULDWELL TEMPERED CLAVIERVINYLSIDE 1/600:19:4103:51:55 

The most recent listen goes back to the classical, Glenn Gould Well-Tempered Clavier. No. 1 is in C, it always starts that way. These are pieces that many have undoubtedly played while learning piano for the Conservatory. No doubt no one will ever play them as well as Glenn Gould could.
Eluvium is a taste that goes back 10 years to 2009. The Volume 1 box set of that time is long out of print, but back then it was one hundred sixty dollars which was a lot of money then.