Bless This Acid House Kasabian Download 'Bless This Acid House' on iTunes
Ever wondered how that black round thing makes that beautiful music? Let's take a trip to The Vinyl Factory and see what goes into making your LPs.
To make vinyl, you'll need a pressing plant. The Vinyl Factory in Hayes, Middlesex is the largest facility in the UK and produces up to 1.4 million records a year.
First you need a lacquer master to press the millions of records from. This will be cut from the original tapes or digital master from the studio.
The lacquer master is checked both by listening to the sound…
...and then it’s checked with a microscope!
The master is then blasted with air to make sure there’s no crud in the grooves.
It’s then submerged in nickel and plated with the metal to produce the “stamper”.
The finished, plated master is then cleaned with water.
The stampers are then left to dry.
The finished stamper is then ready to get to work. This is a master stamper of the classic album Definitely Maybe ready to press a whole batch of Oasis-y goodness.
A worker digs out a batch of labels ready to be added to fresh new vinyl. Make sure you have the right ones!
These are NOT the right ones. Wrong LP.
Now you need the PVC capsules that constitute the vinyl itself. The raw vinyl will be pressed by the stamper to produce the finely-detailed grooves that will play your tunes.
You can, of course, have any colour of PVC you like.
Once the raw vinyl has been imprinted and stamped with the magical grooves that contain the music, the labels are then fixed to the surface.
The finished records are slipped into the inner sleeves.
The masters don't last forever - so they are routinely chucked out after a run and replaced. That's what we mean by "first pressings", and so on.
Not all of the pressed vinyl records are perfect - look at these rejects. Ouch.
Some parts of the process are done manually. Here, a worker slips the inner sleeves into the outer covers.
Another worker attaches promo stickers to the covers. "Free Poster!" "Contains All The Hits!" etc etc
The finished albums are boxed up, ready to go to the distributor.
From the distributor, the records are then sent to the shops and then onto... YOU. Woo-hoo!