From the Editors

Best Record in the World?

You may think that your music library is complete, but there’s one record that you surely don’t have. The good news is that you can soon get a copy.

That record is NASA’s Golden Record, which has gone farther than any other release in history. As Wired notes, “The iconic record, which NASA developed to represent humankind to alien civilizations, was printed onto gold-plated copper and launched into space aboard Voyager 1 back in 1977. Today, it’s nearly 13 billion miles away from Earth.”

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3163821489_5f3513335f_o (Not) Giving Us What We (Don’t) Want

I will always remember the day in the late 1980s when I walked into my local record shop to pick up a new release. I easily located it on CD, but the LP — my preferred format — was nowhere to be found. I found a clerk and asked him if I had somehow missed it,
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Dirty Mind End of the Purple Reign: Remembering Prince

I was introduced to Prince by Rolling Stone‘s gushing lead review of Dirty Mind in February 1981. I immediately bought the album and could not stop playing it.  As Ken Tucker observed, “At its best, Dirty Mind is positively filthy.” Perhaps more important, though, “Dirty Mind jolts with the unsettling tension that arises from rubbing complex erotic wordplay against clean, simple
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Record Store Day 2014 by D Double U via Creative Commons 2.0 license When Every Day Was Record Store Day

April 16 marks the ninth annual Record Store Day. Started as a way to get people back into record stores after downloads (legal and the not-so-much types) sapped the desire for physical media, the event proved wildly successful. Around the globe, people line up in the early hours hoping to leave with special records available nowhere else. Some store
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New_Gold_Dream.jpg Somewhere (Now and Again) in Summertime

To be alive is to know something about ebbs and flows. Sometimes everything feels stale and blocked, and the challenges come one after the other. But then a switch flips and doors open, and the challenges give way to opportunities. Half a lifetime ago, I heard the switch flip. Early in my career as a
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melanie-de-biasio-blackened-cities Melanie De Biasio Sees the Light in Blackened Cities

I often laugh when I rip a new CD to my music server and see what genre the recording gets assigned to. A death metal album is Pop? A choral album is Male Vocal? There are more than 100 different genres across my collection, but to be honest I pay no attention to them beyond the
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Folder An Affectionate Look Back at The Associates

Not a day goes by that I don’t stop by to read the latest from Paul Sinclair at, which focuses primarily on expanded deluxe releases and reissues. I rarely buy anything I read about there, as I am not a completist who needs every rejected take and poorly recorded live track a band has committed
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Folder A Key Album from Masha Qrella

One of the joys of being a music lover is the serendipity of stumbling across those little-known artists who push all the right buttons for you. Or in the present case, of having a friend do it for you. About a decade ago, friend and SDLU Editor Mark Sullivan heard German musician Masha Qrella open for a
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Folder Quiet Time with Kings of Convenience

So much great music seems seems to be intimately tied to the times in which it is created, often as part of a new genre that just feels right for the moment. Such was the case with many of the artists featured on 2001’s A Quiet Riot compilation. Maybe it was that the world was ready to
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