Sip and Spin

“Music isn’t just for listening, it’s a lifestyle. Every record, every record store, and every piece of gear tells a story. Sip… Spin… Repeat..”

Now that I have told you about how my record lovin’ days started, way back in that Christmas of 2014, it’s time to talk about the future of my record collection! Plus, I know you have all been trying to think of what to give your favorite record blogger this year. Well good news for ya… Here is what is on my Christmas list for 2020 (records only of course… I have a tablesaw and a couple of other things on there but for some reason, I don’t think you are here for that)!

1 – METALLICA – S&M2 (Indie Exclusive Colored 4 LP Vinyl)

I can almost taste the Blackened whiskey just looking at this (which is excellent BTW… go get some now!). If I’m going to go with a copy of this album, it HAS to be the limited edition indie record store copy. This is something Metallica has done with a few releases now and I love the support for the local retailers.

While I wish the song assortment didn’t repeat any tracks from the first S&M, the sequel 20 years in the making still delivers. The songs from “Hardwired…”, “Death Magnetic”, and yes even “St.Anger” make nice additions to the classics.

And goddamn is it a tight recording!

I loved S&M when it first came out. In fact, my buddies and I had front row seats when the show came around to MSG. I even got Hetfield’s pick! (He didn’t use it… his tech gave it to me… still cool… whatever guys)

2 – The Midnight – Monsters (Limited Double LP pressed on Purple Swirl Vinyl)

This might be my favorite album of 2020. I was even making bold statements about a Grammy Nom, though the so called “experts” disagreed. Either way, this is a fantastic synthwave album, and band for that matter, that gives you all the nostalgic feels, especially if you were born in the 80’s and raised in the 90’s (hiya.. that’s me).

I don’t own anything by The Midnight but definitely looking to change that with this album and maybe even an earlier album… (enter segue, preferably with A LOT of synth)

3 – The Midnight – Kids (Midnight Magenta Vinyl)

This is the album that first introduced me to “The Midnight” and is my favorite from the duo. My recommendations, if you want an introduction into synthwave, you start with The Midnight. You absolutely cannot go wrong there. Next, once you find The Midnight, put Kids on first. It is the perfect introduction.

I obviously do not own this so I can’t give a full on review but the magenta vinyl is certainly eye-catching and I always love a good gatefold. 

I’ve had this one on my list for a couple of years now and I have been EXTRA good this year. Fingers crossed!

4 – Amy Winehouse – Back To Black (White Vinyl Limited Edition)

Taking this one back to 2006 to Amy Winehouse’s second and final album. You can’t really go wrong with it. So many good vibes from start to finish.

This one is a Sound of Vinyl exclusive variant. Seems there are a few difference exclusives out there (randomly saw a Target one the other day), but I kinda dig the 180g White vinyl.

Another amazing artist taken away from us at the age of 27. RIP

5 – The Protomen – Act II (Limited 2 LP Gold Vinyl)

This is one of my 2020 band discoveries (thank you Spotify Discover Weekly). At first, I didn’t know what I was getting into. It starts off as a western sounding maybe even Kill Bill-ish in a way. Then it blasts off into more operatic rock that’s more along the lines of Queen and Meatloaf. There is a lot to unpack on this record, but it rocks and is epic as fuck!

This one comes in a hard bound sleeve with a pop-up booklet. Worth every penny in my eyes as this package is definitely not cheap!

6 – AC/DC – POWER UP (Yellow LP – Exclusive)

I LOVE AC/DC, but I was admittedly not excited about this album. The releases since Razor’s Edge have not really done it for me, but then I gave this a listen and man, does this album RIP! Everything that you love about 80’s-era AC/DC is packed in this album. Now that I think about it, I don’t own any albums by them on vinyl (I do have the full catalog on CD though)! I will definitely be keeping them in mind the next time I’m digging through the “A” section at a record store but for now, I don’t mind starting with this Yellow vinyl exclusive. 

2020 rock album of the year? It’s up there!

In addition to these few records, I have some accessories I have my eye on…

Like this Onzow ZeroDust Stylus cleaner. I have a cheap brush and alcohol that I use, but I’m fascinated by this.

I definitely need to dial in my cartridge alignment a little better so I want to check out this Turntable Phono Cartridge Alignment Protractor Tool from Turntable Lab.

And lastly, some new Archival Record Outer Sleeves. I bought a cheaper brand a few years back off Amazon but they are way oversized. Hopefully these are a bit more snug.

That’s all I got on my list and like I said… I’ve been EXTRA GOOD THIS YEAR!!!

What do you have on your list? Drop it in the comments!

Be sure to follow the blog by subscribing down below, so you see the latest posts. Next up will be a review of one of my METAAAAAAAAAAAL Christmas albums!

Follow Mike D. on Instagram @sip_and_spin

Check out Mike D.’s Discogs Store:

Mike D
Mike DColumnist, Recordholic, Storyteller
My name is Mike, and I am a Recordholic. I am a Long Island born and raised husband and father of 2 boys that have worked in the music industry for over 8 years. Music has always been my life. I consider myself a multi-instrumentalist but my main instrument would be the bass guitar. As a collector of music, starting with tapes followed by CD’s, I began collecting records in 2014. Every record, record store, and piece of gear tells a story. Grab a drink and join me as I share my stories with you.

LET’S TOAST TOGETHER – Subscribe to “Sip and Spin”