Mike Evans: Vinyl: The Art Of Making Records

Groovy: high-gloss history of 70 years of recorded music.

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In 2007, vinyl accounted for a measly 0.1 per cent of all music sales. Thankfully, initiatives like Record Store Day have since arrested this decline, and as Evans points out, vinyl’s sheer collectability may yet ensure its survival in the digital age.

No surprise, then, that this weighty 250-page tome is an unapologetic celebration of everything from the gatefold sleeve to the run-out groove.

Lavishly illustrated with potted histories of key labels (Verve, Casablanca, Factory, Warp) and covering releases from the 1940s to the current day, it’s also packed with fascinatingly nerd-ish trivia.

So while it may be common knowledge to some that Hendrix was inspired by the guitar sound on Kenny Burrell’s 1963 jazz album Midnight Blue, it’s unlikely many know the story of Alex Steinweiss, the founding father of album cover art. A great stocking filler for wax addicts of all ages.

Paul Moody is a writer whose work has appeared in the Classic Rock, NME, Time Out, Uncut, Arena and the Guardian. He is the co-author of The Search for the Perfect Pub and The Rough Pub Guide.