Former White Stripe Jack White has a lot on his plate right now. A new record, “Fear of the Dawn”, is coming in three weeks. Then another, “Entering Heaven Alive,” hits shelves in mid-July. And, he just announced a North American and European tour that will run from April to August. It would make sense then that he would want to ostensibly discuss one of these points, wouldn’t it?
White has vinyl production in mind. He would like to talk about the problems that music lovers and creators have in getting music in the format in a timely manner. And he wants the big labels to step in and help change the situation.
“At least once a week, without fail, someone will contact me asking to help expedite the making of their vinyl record,” he said in a written statement released last Monday. “It’s a natural thought… knowing that I own a pressing plant and have my own label, ‘If anyone can help, it’s this guy!'”
In 2017, when it was clear that the vinyl resurgence was more than just a trend embraced by hipsters before moving on to the next brand of beard oil, White opened a record pressing factory under the name from Third Man Pressing as a sort of extension of his Third Man records. Since 2009, the label began to focus on vinyl.
“With industry-wide turnaround times for vinyl currently leaning toward the length of a human pregnancy, it’s obvious, in a world so dependent on the news and the right time (a single , an album, a tour, etc.), these delays are the killers of momentum, soul, artistic expression and all too often livelihoods,” White continued, adding that he has did “everything in my power to help”.
Currently, there are less than two dozen vinyl pressing plants in the United States. The New Statesman reported in September last year that there were less than 100 pressing plants worldwide. Meanwhile, 2021 saw vinyl sales overtake compact discs, moving 41.72 million units to a 30-year high and growing 51.4% from the previous year.
Unfortunately, all of this growth creates issues with the speed of turnaround between the time a group places an order and when the physical copies are available. White claims to have “doubled down” on presses, employees and hours to meet product demand. But that’s not enough, and he wants the majors to get involved to help reduce the delays.
“I look to our big college brothers in the music business, Sony, Universal and Warner, and politely plead with them to help reduce this unfortunate backlog and start pouring resources into building pressing plants themselves. “, said White. “To be clear, the issue isn’t big labels versus small labels, it’s not indie versus mainstream, it’s not even punk versus pop. The problem is simply that we have ALL created an environment where the unprecedented demand for vinyl records cannot keep up with the rudimentary supply of them.
White explained that it’s easier to buy a vinyl press now than it was four decades ago, calling it “a no-brainer” for majors to show a more focused interest in production and that the upward trajectory cannot. continue only with their help.
“As MC5 once said,” White added in a video plea to accompany his written statement, “you are either part of the problem or part of the solution.”
VINYL OF THE WEEK
Keep an eye on this place as each week we’ll be reviewing new or upcoming vinyl from a variety of artists. It can be a reprint of a historical recording, a special edition or a new collection of a legendary act. This week it’s the soundtrack to one of the biggest movies of the year.
ORIGINAL SOUNDTRACK FROM THE MOVIE ‘THE BATMAN’
“The Batman” had the biggest debut of a movie released in 2022 with a staggering $128.5 million in its opening weekend. It is now approaching $250 million domestically and $500 million worldwide. What a disappointment it would be if such a blockbuster had a ho-hum soundtrack. Luckily, that’s not the case, and as far as the vinyl release goes, it’s nearly as massive as the three-hour opus currently in theaters.
Mondo, in partnership with WaterTower Music, is currently taking pre-orders for Michael Giacchino’s brilliant score for ‘The Batman,’ which stars Robert Pattinson as the dual role of Gotham City’s vigilante detective and his alter ego, the reclusive billionaire. Bruce Wayne. The composer’s credits feature some of the most popular and acclaimed film projects in recent history, including “The Incredibles,” “Ratatouille,” “Jurassic World,” “Rogue One: A Star Wars Story” and “Spider- Man: Homecoming”.
Giacchino once again proves he’s one of the greatest living composers as he introduces a powerful and instantly canonized new theme to one of music’s most iconic superheroes. When ‘The Batman’ director Matt Reeves first heard the theme, he was with film producer Dylan Clark and said in a statement, “I was blown away! It was so emotional. We literally both of us cried…it was amazing.
Nearly two hours of score housed on three LPs, featuring all new artwork by Henry Abrams and pressed on 180 gram vinyl, also has a color exclusive to the Mondo online store at mondoshop.com. And it’s not just the Caped Crusader getting a new theme; Selina Kyle/Catwoman gets a slinky, dark score, because the Riddler has one that’s a lot more haunted, backed by the Tiffin Boys choir. Like the movie itself, it’s dark and black as night, which should be the case when it comes to providing the soundtrack for one of history’s darkest heroes.
‘The Batman’ movie soundtrack is also available on 180 gram black vinyl and can be found online and in stores at all respectable retailers that sell vinyl. It should arrive in August.
To contact music columnist Michael Christopher, email [email protected] Also check out his blog at www.thechroniclesofmc.com