Record Store Day. I remember the first two years. I was one of those keen beans queuing up for hours on end to get into Rough Trade East, somewhere I usually walk in and wander around freely became sheer pandemonium as people sought to find some rare, bespoke releases for the day. It was a huge success around the UK and more.
Then major labels properly caught onto a 'good thing', last year saw the event morph into a re-re-re-release farce, seeing the official Record Store Day release list swamped with vinyl that hadn't been seen for thirty years, mainly with good reason too. For me at least, it lost a fan, I never went to a record shop last RSD, all the marketing/PR resources that major labels have at their disposal to overshadow independent, interesting releases meant (in part that) people were more keen on spending their cash on £29.99 Aerosmith/REM/Dinosaur Jr LP's or £12.99 Picture Discs. That's not what record stores are about, they are about discovery and enhancing the experience of music, sifting through sleeve after sleeve unsure what you'll find, taking a chance on something because the artwork and the shops write up sounds cool.
I've not looked through this years list in full but what I've seen is a carbon copy, Rolling Stone's headline on the event ran with 'Foo Fighters, Paul McCartney, U2 Plan Releases;Johnny Cash, Brian Wilson, Bruce Springsteen will also put out unique vinyl'. Give it a fucking rest boys. It means the actually special releases get overwhelmed and completely lost for the normal record store attendee (it also means that limited pressing plant resource is taken up by your 5000 'special edition' copies of the 25th pressing of Macca's latest, greatest guest appearance). Instead it's left to hardcore geeks like yours truly to sift out the actual good releases whilst all the collectors are searching through eBay to find one of the countless releases that is being re-sold in the name of profit...
A rant, it's because I care about independent, creative artists ahead of the gravy train.
I'll come to topic now, exciting news from one of my favourite, most talented and wonderful artists (sorry for all waffle) Lazy Day. The London based quartet led by Tilly Scantlebury have announced a Record Store Day (eek!) split single with Tuff Love due via Lost Map Records.
Lazy Day's contribution "Portrait" is a track that's been included in their live sets thus far (that'd be two -three on Friday) and sums up exactly why they've got some obsessive fans following their every release (that'll be me), an addictive, sumptuous slice of darkly-hued melodic melancholy which sees the marriage of intoxicating guitar fizz, soft percussive beats and Tilly's magnetic vocals combine with enriching results, their most personal, emotive track to date is powerful in both its message and delivery.
The single will be on sale in select independent record stores around the UK from Record Store Day on April 18, 2015, then thereafter also from the Lost Map webshop and as an iTunes/Bandcamp download. Make sure it's on your list ahead of Macca, or I'll be knocking on your door...