Record Store Day has been getting a bit of bad press. Is it still all about indie shops and the spirit in which it began? Or has the focus shifted to the product, the vinyl, and how the majors leaped in with their overpriced reissues and One Direction picture discs, dumping big corporate label shit on the whole event?
Who knows? The pulse is still there, weak but beating. Alcopop Records, aware of some of the criticism being pointed at record labels, are keen to get things back on an even keel. Last year they and their record label mates clubbed together, collected some tracks from their stable of talent and released 500 beautiful multi-coloured records at a tenner a pop, featuring ace acts like Menace Beach, Joanna Gruesome, Tellison, The Pains of being Pure at Heart and the Mercury-nominated C Duncan.
And they’re doing it again. This time with the help from the likes of label buddies Fortuna POP!, Transgressive, Elefant and Too Pure, they are releasing another spanking piece of vinyl (this time in “ice white and ‘Plymouth Green'” splatter). But they’re not stopping there: for your thousand pennies you’ll also get hundreds of downloads with exclusive interviews and video content.
“We love Record Store Day” says Jack from Alcopop, “but completely understand the criticisms that are levelled at it – and we’re keen, in our own small way, to redress the balance. We think RSD should be about musical discovery, and not paying through the nose for it.“
This second volume features the power pop punk of Martha, channelling early Blink 182 on ‘Christine’; brand new band Happy Accidents taking sweet boy/girl harmonies and layering it over lo fi guitars; The School keep doing their Phil Spector 60s thing with a 21st century twist. The Fairweather Band sound like they’ve borrowed Frank Turner to sing and Graham Coxon to lay down the licks while Swim Good have been listening to a fair bit of Paramore. The quality carries right through with Youthman‘s Bjork-like vocals.
Sensible Record Labels Volume 2 is just as limited edition as that picture disc you think you want, but it looks nicer spinning round and you’ll actually be promoting new brilliant music for bands and labels that actually need it. Remember, there’s only 500. Make sure you get there nice and early.