Well for the first time ever the digital download combined sales have outsold the conventional physical formats. Funnily enough I was only just talking about how much I would rather have a new piece of music held in my hands still. You can not beat the artwork on a twelve-inch release. It was bad enough when CD’s first came out and the sleeves shrunk in size. Still I guess the record labels have saved a small fortune on packaging and distribution. But this too is hammering some nails in the coffins of our last surviving record stores.
True 8 tracks and cassettes and have both gone and rightly so. I had a few boxes of cassettes which have oxidised and now are totally useless to play. I have lost countless Peel sessions and demo’s sent to me over the years. I know you can buy those handy cassette to MP3 units but the quality of a cassette just does not warrant the expense. I did buy a new record deck to transfer my earthly sounding vinyl to the digital format. Though I will not be selling some of my prized vinyl records still. Sometimes I just pick up a record and look how good it looks and read the sleeve notes.
You can not do that with the digital download, it is faceless and clinically clean. So what happens when your hard drive decides to die, there goes your collection in seconds. Yes I know certain places will let download them again for free but it is not the same. But the younger generation seem to live for the now and the fact it is not physical as they have everything on their phones or portable PC’s and once bored with the track it is deleted. Call me old-fashioned I do not mind but I cherish my collection. It is still great going back and rediscovering an album that has not seen the light of day in ages.
Please have a read the following BBC article which deals with it in more depth – Click Here!