Hopefully you’ve picked up the latest issue of Uncut by now (if you’re in the UK, anyway): it’s the one with Springsteen on the cover, plus our Top 75 Albums Of The Year, Father John Misty, LCD Soundsystem, The Weather Station, Hurray For The Riff, Mavis Staples and plenty more.
If you’ve been to the newsagents these past few days, though, you may well have spotted another Uncut publication, racked alongside that Springsteen issue and our Steely Dan Ultimate Music Guide.
The Ultimate Record Collection (which you can buy now from our online shop) is our latest project, a theoretically exhaustive (and, by the by, exhausting to compile) magazine that seeks to fulfil the promise: “How to buy all the greatest music of the last 60 years.”
To that end, John Robinson and the extended Uncut family have identified over 1,500 choice albums that you can currently buy new, on vinyl. It’s all pretty subjective, of course, but we do believe that our collective insights have created a mag that sets out to be useful rather than provocative. Now you can measure up your collection against our attempt at a Platonic ideal. You can find ideas of how to fill in the gaps. If you sold off your vinyl years ago and have spent the intervening years bitterly regretting the act, the Ultimate Record Collection is the perfect guide to starting from scratch. And if you’re not invested in the vinyl revival, it works just as well as a map for navigating the bewildering mass of music streaming across the internet.
As the other John says, “You can listen on the train or in the car, at the computer or on your phone. In your room. In the bath, or out on your bike. You might invest in noise-cancelling headphones for your hi-res audio player, or go retro with a cassette mixtape on a Walkman you found in a cupboard.
“Or, you could join the swelling tide of music lovers in returning to the joys of listening to great albums on vinyl. Whether you’re drawn in by the luxury of the package, of discovering new stuff, or the audiophile promise of hearing new dimensions in music you already know, vinyl is a fantastic way to listen. Which is where The Ultimate Record Collection comes in. We can’t pretend this is a definitive list of all the music you will ever want or need. Instead, we’ve made a selection of the very best music available to buy new on vinyl right now.
“Inside, you’ll find an authoritative introduction to each decade, and dedicated features on pivotal artists in each, whether that happens to be Miles Davis, Joni Mitchell, Jack White or Kendrick Lamar. Major developments in music, be that in jazz, Americana, hip hop, grunge or German rock also receive specialist focus.
“Rather than limiting things, the emphasis here is on suggesting the vastness of what’s on offer. The only qualification for inclusion in these pages to be a great album which you can buy new on vinyl now.
“That’s The Ultimate Record Collection – all of the music, but with none of the surface noise.”