Published last month by Taschen, Extraordinary Records by Giorgio Moroder, with the contribution of renowned collectors Alessandro Benedetti and Peter Bastine, is a record collector’s must. This book covers rare, unusual and artistic vinyl records giving us an insight on a niche of the record collectors world.
Indeed, with pictures of over 500 of the most exceptional records, this book gives us a new image of vinyl: original, colorful and artistic. Some of these gems, often pressed in very limited editions, are little works of art of their own.
The most striking ones have been pressed in a variety of shapes. Far from circular, these vinyls have been designed to match song titles, band logos, or just to be purely distinctive. Shapes include The Rolling Stones’ iconic tongue, an electric guitar (Def Leppard), Elephant (Blue Zoo), map of Africa (Toto), fish head (Barnes and Barnes) and a Christmas tree (Christmas rock punk compilation).
Yet, it should be pointed out that such sought-after records are not all classic tunes. Some are in fact recent releases. Californian label, Stones Throw, produced 1000 heart-shaped vinyls of Mayer Hawthorne’s first single Just Ain’t Gonna Work Out, for Valentine’s Day. German independent music label, Gunner Records, presses limited editions of psychedelic-looking colored vinyl LPs for the American band Gaslight Anthem.
With such original shapes and colors, these records feed the ears as well as the eyes, comforting consumers seeking fetish qualities that mp3s and CDs fail to provide.