The Oreo Music Box is like a record player for cookies

Here's a turntable that no one asked for: the Oreo Music Box ($20 but includes cookies). To get it to work, just place a cookie on it, put the arm on the cookie, and then press the black "play" button. No, there's no actual music embedded in the Oreos. What you'll hear is one of four prerecorded songs they've installed in the player. And, if you take a bite out of the cookie and place it back on the box, it will play a different song.

If you want to see how it works, watch this:

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You can buy Sonic Youth's old music gear and records

Sonic Youth is selling a couple hundred pieces of music gear and a slew of rare vinyl records including test pressings of their own LPs and other fine platters. The Official Sonic Youth Reverb Shop opens for business today. From Reverb.com:

One of the guitars included in The Official Sonic Youth Reverb Shop is a '70s Fender Telecaster Deluxe used by Ranaldo, Jim O'Rourke, and Mark Ibold from 1987 to 2009, and Ranaldo's Travis Bean TB1000A Artist. The Travis Bean was stolen in 1999, but Ranaldo got it back in 2002 and continued to play it until 2011.

After that same theft, Kim Gordon used a replacement blue Fender Precision Bass until 2004. This P-Bass, as well as a copper sparkle Ibanez Talman, was used by Thurston Moore and Gordon from 1999 to 2010, throughout Gordon's solo SYR5 gigs.

Befitting a band that helped popularize offsets—a candy apple red Fender Jazzmaster used by Moore for more than a decade and a sunburst Jazzmaster used Ranaldo will also be available in Sonic Youth's Shop. In addition, there are more than 100 vintage and used effects pedals used by all members of the band, including Ranaldo's Klon Centaur Silver Overdrive.

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Listen to Vincent Price's delightful 1969 lecture on witchcraft, magick, and demonology

In 1969, Capitol Records released this incredible double LP set (and double 8-track tape) from Vincent Price titled "Witchcraft-Magic: An Adventure in Demonology." Hear the whole thing above. The nearly two hours of spoken word includes sections on the history and culture of "witchcraft" and helpful guides such as "How To Invoke Spirits, Demons, Unseen Forces" and "How To Make A Pact With The Devil." I certainly wouldn't vouch for the factual accuracy or research rigor of the material, but hearing horror icon Price's silky narration about such topics as necromancy and the "Witches Sabbat" is a joy.

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Interviews with women in the vinyl record scene

Jenn D'Eugenio is a badass record collector, indie label maven, and vinyl industry veteran who now works at the esteemed Furnace Record Pressing company in Virginia. Recently, Jenn started interviewing her peers in the record scene "to empower and highlight the women that are working in the vinyl / music industry to create, preserve, improve and enhance the art of music on vinyl."

Check out Women In Vinyl for interviews with the likes of Katy Clove of Merge Records, Italians Do It Better label president Megan Louise Doyle, audio archivist Amanda McCabe, and designer Kate Koeppel who makes fantastic products for vinyl collectors.

"Not enough of the female + vinyl focus is on the women behind the record stores, labels, manufacturers, vinyl accessories, etc. and I hope to change that with interviews and stories about these women," Jenn says.

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Join in the chant! Massive new Nitzer Ebb box set on the way

Electronic body music pioneers Nitzer Ebb are releasing a career-spanning retrospective box set. From Pylon Records, "Nitzer Ebb: 1982-2010" features 10 LPs with all five of the band's Geffen/Mute albums along with bonus tracks and 12" club mixes. Below, the "Join in the Chant (Burn!)" 12" mix. Lies, lies, lies, lies. Gold, gold, gold, gold. Guns, guns, guns, guns. Fire, fire, fire, UH!

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Moby is selling his record collection to benefit an animal rights org

In April, Moby sold a slew of his vintage synthesizers to benefit the anti-animal testing organization Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. Now he's parting with 1,000 of his vinyl records with the proceeds going to the same group. The collection ranges from test pressings of his own albums to post-punk classics to 12-inches that he spun during his rave and club DJ days in the early 1990s. The sale launches Thursday on Moby's Reverb LP Shop.

“These are all the records that I bought and loved and played and carried all around the world,” Moby says. “I would rather you have them than me, because if you have them, you’ll play them, you’ll love them, and the money will go to the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. So everybody wins. Well, except me, because now I don’t have any records.”

(Reverb)

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New Guns N' Roses box set is over the top and $999

Guns N' Roses is reissuing their iconic Appetite for Destruction (1987) in various editions ranging from double LP and CD sets (all with unreleased music) to the fully-blown "Locked N' Loaded" massive box set. For $999, you get "four CDs, one Blu-ray (containing hi-def 5.1 surround audio of Appetite, bonus tracks and music videos), seven 12-inch LPs, seven seven-inch singles, a hardbound book and a variety of collectibles. The selection of ephemera includes five skull face rings, a replica of the band's stage banner from their early club days, several posters, replicas of old fliers and ticket stubs and even two temporary tattoo sheets featuring life-size recreations of the band members' actual ink. The entire collection will be housed in a solid wood box wrapped in faux-leather and stamped with a 3D cross on its front doors," according to Rolling Stone.

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Sinks that look like turntables

Check out these groovy turntable sinks. The collection is called "Vinyl" and it's the creation of Italian designer Gianluca Paludi for Olympia Ceramica. It appears, appropriately, that speakers are an available attachment.

(Design Milk)

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Captain Kirk, Spock, and Uhura want you to stay off hard drugs

In 1973, the National Association Of Progressive Radio Announcers released "Get Off," a 1973 vinyl record featuring dozens of musicians delivering anti-hard drug warnings. Along with personal warnings from Grateful Dead, Alice Cooper, the Doobie Bros., BB King, Ravi Shankar, the Staple Singers, and Frank Zappa, the crew of the starship Enterprise visits a planet ravaged by hard drugs. Just say know.

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San Francisco: Voyager Golden Record event at Tunnel Records this Saturday

This Saturday (3/10) from 5pm-7pm, my friends at San Francisco's Tunnel Records + Beach Goods are kindly hosting a Voyager Golden Record Party with complimentary beverages! I'll be there to talk about the iconic message for extraterrestrials launched into space on a phonograph record 40 years ago. My friends Tim Daly and Lawrence Azerrad and I co-produced the first ever vinyl release of the Voyager Record this year and we were honored with a 2018 Grammy award for Best Boxed or Special Limited Edition Package.

Tunnel Records will have the Voyager Golden Record 3xLP Box Sets and 2xCD-Book edition available for sale. Can't make it? You can also order directly from our label Ozma Records. Read the rest

Ursula K. Le Guin on vinyl! "Music and Poetry of the Kesh"

Ursula K. Le Guin's "Always Coming Home" (1985) is a combination novel and anthropological study of the Kesh, a culture that "might be going to have lived a long, long time from now in Northern California." Early editions of the book included a cassette of faux "field recordings," indigenous songs, and other audio of the Kesh. Now, the good people at Freedom to Spend are bringing the Kesh experience to vinyl in a lovely limited edition that includes an LP containing the audio of the original cassette, "a deluxe spot printed jacket with illustrations from Always Coming Home, a facsimile of the original lyric sheet, liner notes by Moe Bowstern, multi-format digital download code and a limited edition bookmark letterpressed by Stumptown Printers in Portland, OR." From Freedom to Spend:

For Music and Poetry of the Kesh, the words and lyrics are attributed to Le Guin as composed by Barton, an Oregon-based musician, composer and Buchla synthesist (the two worked together previously on public radio projects). But the cassette notes credit the sounds and voices to the world of the Kesh, making origins ambiguous. For instance, “The River Song” description reads, “The prominent rhythm instrument is the doubure binga, a set of nine brass bowls struck with cloth-covered wooden mallets, here played by Ready...”

The songs of Kesh are joyful, soothing and meditative, while the instrumental works drift far past the imaginary lands. “Heron Dance” is an uplifting first track, featuring a Wéosai Medoud Teyahi (made from a deer or lamb thigh bone with a cattail reed) and the great Houmbúta (used for theatre and ceremony).

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Watch this Beatles-themed vinyl jukebox get designed and built

Vinyl jukeboxes are making a comeback, and Sound Leisure built this incredible Sgt. Peppers Lonely Hearts Club Band vinyl jukebox to celebrate the album's 50th anniversary. Read the rest

John Carpenter's new music video (and vinyl release) for the "Christine" movie theme

Along with directing such classic films as Escape from New York, Halloween, The Fog, and The Thing, John Carpenter also composed the soundtracks. For those who want a survey of Carpenter's synth stylings, I recommend the new compilation from Sacred Bones Records, titled "John Carpenter Anthology: Movie Themes 1974-1998." The celebrate the release, Carpenter created this music video for the theme from Christine (1983), in which a woman summons an Uber and the demonic driverless 1958 Plymouth Fury shows up. Just kidding about the Uber part.

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Magnificent new Hüsker Dü box set

In 1979, Hüsker Dü played their first show, paving the way for Nirvana, The Pixies, Foo Fighters, and really the entire realm of alternative rock. I have a special love for the band as they were my first club show, back in 1985 or so. (My first concert was Styx and, yes, that was amazing too.) Over the years I've become friends with Bob Mould who is a very warm, funny, earnest, and mellow gentleman. Of course Bob didn't sound mellow back when he, Grant Hart, and Greg Norton were making the ferocious music heard on this new 4xLP box set (and CD set) of Hüsker Dü's early material.

From the Numero Group label, Savage Young Dü contains 69 tracks, 47 of which have never been issued, and 108-page hardbound book of photos, flyers, session details, and deep liner notes. Yes, Bob, Grant, and Greg were all on board with this release. No, they absolutely will not reunite for any live shows.

And in case you missed it, here's a classic Boing Boing Video/Remedy Editorial performance and interview from 2014: "Bob Mould: An Old Punk Kicks New Ass"

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The Voyager Golden Record on NBC Nightly News

Last night, NBC Nightly News aired the wonderful video below about the Voyager Golden Record vinyl box set I produced with my friends Tim Daly and Lawrence Azerrad! Forty years ago this month, NASA launched two spacecraft, Voyager 1 and 2, on a grand tour of the solar system and beyond, into the mysteries of interstellar space. Mounted to each spacecraft is a golden phonograph record, a message to introduce our civilization to extraterrestrials, perhaps billions of years from now. The Voyager Golden Record tells a story of our planet expressed in sounds, images, and science. As Lawrence said in the video, "it's a lovely reminder of what it means to be a human." Thank you to NBC Nightly News!

(GIF via Electric Space Kool-Aid)

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Adam Savage learns how records are made with Jack White

Our pal Adam Savage visited Jack White's Third Man Records vinyl pressing plant in Detroit and records his Brain Candy song! Then Jack and Adam talk about cutting records and the creative process. (Tested)

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After 28 years, Sony resumes vinyl record production

Sony last pressed a vinyl record in 1989. And it'll be pressing them again by March 2018, reports The BBC, proof of the mainstream return of the ancient format—once again a billion-dollar business.

Folks always argue about quality (will mainstream product mean mainstream mastering?) but the reasons for vinyl's resurgence are complex. It's a nice thing to own, it's a pleasing retail experience, it's nostalgic, it's a better gift, it's big enough to hang on a wall, you can fend off zombies with it, and so on.

There are seriously lame aspects to vinyl, though: quality deteriorates with use; easily damaged even when stored; no metadata; no controls; fiddly hardware.

So whenever I read a "vinyl returns" article I dream of a new HD physical media format that's backward compatible with it. An LP-sized optical disk with the grooves on a clear laminate layer, perhaps. Or maybe a vinyl with a hidden flash storage layer within and exposed metal rings to read it with near the spindle. Or some kind of bad-ass sharpened metal disk played the old-fashioned way but at nyquist-busting RPM. Read the rest

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