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National Record Store Day picks


Built to Spill / Live (double LP) / Warner Bros. /

Limited release of 2,500

Absent a concert, live recordings are the best way to experience Boise, Idaho, alt-rock legend Built to Spill. This vinyl reissue of a collection of recordings made across the U.S. in 1999 and unavailable for the last decade includes an epic 19-minute version of "Broken Chairs."

Destroyer / This Night / Merge /

Limited release of 2,000

This is the second straight year that Vancouver, Canada-based adult contemporary- tinged and poetry-laden singer Dan Bejar has an RSD release. This Night feels like a mashup of The Who and The Smiths and is full of his trademark almost spoken word vocals.

John Coltrane / Newport '61 / birdland/cargo /

Limited release of 1,000

By far the sexiest RSD release this year is an ultra-rare recording of the legendary saxophonist at the Newport Jazz Festival in 1961.

Public Enemy / Public Enemy: Planet Earth— The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame Greatest Rap Hits / Eastlink / Picture Disc/

Limited release of 2,500

Rap group Public Enemy's best songs on remastered picture vinyl. Need we say more?

Dazed and Confused Soundtrack / Rhino / weed green vinyl, double LP /

Limited release of 4,750

Be careful, the 20th-anniversary edition of this classic rock soundtrack might entice you to don tight jeans, cruise for high school chicks and binge drink. Actually, I think we just accidentally planned our Friday night.

Olafur Arnalds / For Now I Am Winter / Deutsche Grammaphone /

Limited release of 1,000

Traipse across a snowy landscape underneath a starry night with the scintillating orchestral electronica of Iceland's Olafur Arnalds. This genius of an instrumental album might have you scratching your head when you learn Arnalds was also formerly the drummer for a hardcore metal band called Fighting Shit.

The Smoke Fairies / Upstairs at United Vol. 6 (10/17/2011) / 453 Music /

Limited release of 5,000

This is one special RSD offering. First, British indie-folk duo The Smoke Fairies recorded the songs with members of rock group Blitzen Trapper. Second, the duo recorded most of them in a single take directly to quarter-inch tape. Third, the recordings are all analog.

Austra + Gina X / Mayan Drums / Domino /

Limited release of 500

A collaboration between Toronto's dark pop group Austra—who turned in one of 2011's best albums—and German electro goddess Gina X is just too promising to pass up.


Mumford & Sons / Live at Bull Moose / Glassnote /

Limited release of 4,000

Somehow, English folk rock group Mumford & Sons will probably win a Grammy for this collection of live recordings from the Bull Moose record store in Maine.


Billy Bragg / "No One Knows Nothing Anymore"/"Song of the Iceberg" / Cooking Vinyl /

Limited release of 1,000

Brand-new music from the modern king of English beer-drinking-protest-folk-rock!

Frightened Rabbit, Manchester Orchestra and Grouplove / "Architech" /"Make It To Me" / Atlantic /

Limited release of 2,300

The song "Architech" is a better-than-peanut-butter-and-jelly collaboration between anthem/punk-fusion rockers Frightened Rabbit and post-punk band Manchester Orchestra. "Make It To Me" is a better-than-peanut-butter-and-chocolate collaboration between Manchester Orchestra and 2012's mega-pop breakout band Grouplove. Sounds like one awesome RSD 7.

JD McPherson / Fire Bug / Concord /

Limited release of 1,000

The term "vintage rock" gets tossed around a lot these days, but at no time is it more applicable than when describing the '50s rock music of Oklahoma singer and guitarist JD McPherson. He isn't just influenced by that old jukebox/sock-hop sound—he is recreating it.


The modern 33-rpm vinyl record was first brought to market in 1948 by Columbia Records.

The average LP has 1,500 feet of grooves on each side, just under a third of a mile.

Vinyl sales have increased for five straight years, up 17.7 percent in 2012 with 4.6 million records sold.

67 percent of all vinyl sold in 2012 was sold at independent record stores.

Jack White's solo album Blunderbuss was the best-selling vinyl record of 2012. For the three prior years, the Beatles' 1969 albumAbbey Road held that distinction.


Orchestral Maneuvers in the Dark/ English Electric / BMC Chrysalis / Collector's tin with DVD / Limited Release

OMD is making new music, and it is worth buying. The special edition of this electro-heavy album includes a plethora of extras including a DVD with commentary explaining the meaning of each song, music videos for three of the songs, a demo CD and a bonus vinyl 7" single.

Strike ultra-limited gold!

Bonobo/ The North Borders / Ninja Tune / 7 x 10" set with CD / Limited release of 100>

Holy cow! Seven 10" vinyl records make up The North Borders, the brand- new album from British electronic music producer Simon Green, who records as Bonobo. This record is a step forward for the EDM veteran with a blend of trance, house and atmospheric heart throbbing beats.

Kill Rock Stars/ Kill Rock Stars: The Compilations / Cassette tape / Limited release of 400

Go old school with a three-cassette box set of reissued Kill Rock Stars samplers. You read that right—cassettes. These portable analog reel-to-reel devices contain some of the best underground punk and fuzzy lo-fi rock you've ever heard from artists like Bratmobile, Unwound and 7 Year Bitch.


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