All it takes to make an album is a biscuit and a stamper — who knew?
American metalcore band August Burns Red dropped its ninth studio album “Guardians” on April 3. The release included several limited-run vinyl editions — only about 500-1500 are available of each print.
The collection includes specialty vinyl patterns like grey abalone, emerald and onyx splatter and defender nebula. The band dropped a few behind-the-scenes videos on Instagram about the printing process.
You might imagine that vinyl is mass-produced by a factory machine, but human touch is needed from start to finish for inspection and quality control.
First, the music is recorded by the artist and sound engineer. The soundwaves are then carved into specific grooves which become the stamper or mold for the record.
To press the vinyl, polyvinyl chloride (PVC) pellets are sent to an extruder which heats the material up into a puck-shape called the biscuit.
The emerald-colored biscuit is combined with onyx-colored pellets to create the cool splatter effect. Next, the biscuit and labels are pressed in the extruder.
The puck is melted with about 2,000 square pounds per square inch of pressure and at around 300 degrees Fahrenheit. During this process, the soundwaves are permanently imprinted with the stamper to create the perfect vinyl record.
August Burns Red’s “Guardian” snagged the No. 1 spot on the Christian album charts at Billboard. The band’s fanbase on Instagram was enthusiastic about watching the vinyl process in action.
“This was awesome to see!” one Instagram user said.
“Got mine in the mail the other day,” another person said.
“Now I want one. I don’t even have a record player,” a different user said.
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