Collecting 45s means mostly going through old boxes and bins and suitcases looking for ancient donut holes, but, occasionally– and more lately than before– new records have found their way into my hands. I’m drooling excitedly about the back to back RSDay 45s (RUSH does Love!) and the For Jukebox Only releases that Virgin, and a few others, put out with songs with Radiohead, Pavement and others. This is to say nothing of Guided by Voices mass releases, countless independent 45s, and Velvet Underground and REM boxes. Sonic Boom in Toronto on Spadina Avenue even has a Snailhouse record in its store jukebox. Now, to tap a hammer to its glass slowly when no one is looking…

It was at Sonic Boom where a Phoenix 45, “Entertainment,” was yielded, but Kops records on Queen had it for 2 dollars, which may or may not have been a clerk’s error. In any case, it came home snuggled in my valise, and I pressed it to the matt a few moments after walking in the door. It’s a noisey record and a noisey song: slugs of keyboards padded one over the other for the first few measures– and a few more after that– before the skies break and the singing starts; clearly and beautifully and riding over the Gallic grooviness of the band. It goes back and forth that way for awhile, and, really, just ends, but what it did for me was beyond its musical construct: it made the sounds coming out of the jukebox seem as if a thousand year old man wasn’t playing his thousand year old records. Were it possible, I would spin music by Villagers and Babymetal and Weaves if they made 45s– if the world made 45s– but they don’t so a lot of what I have lives in the 50s, 60s, 70s, 80s, and 90s. Still, records that were made in the last few years works to transfuse the contraption and make it seem like more of a steampunk device or Tardis or magic lightbox– future meeting the past– than an old blinking thing rescued from a malt shop that is now hawks juice cleanse programs. Also, in the space below I am trying to provide a YouTube link to the songs, even though I’ve resisted up until now (blame Andrew Coyne). So, here’s a transformative post in more ways than one.


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