You can’t move an inch these days without encountering another story about how vinyl is rising from the ashes to reclaim its proper place at the top of the music-format food chain. And the numbers certainly seem to suggest there’s some truth to that notion. You may have also heard about the increased demand being put upon the few vinyl processing plants left. But a story in the New York Times has shed some light on one of the most prolific producers of vinyl on the planet, and it’s not what you might have expected.
It turns out a tiny village called Lodenice in the Czech Republic is the home of GZ Media. Run by Zdenek Pelc for the last 33 years, the company has weathered the rise and fall of everything from CDs to communism, mostly due to Pelc’s dogged determination to keep vinyl alive, at least in his little corner of the world.
“Frankly, if someone had told me back then that vinyl would return, I wouldn’t have believed it,” he said. “Vinyl rose from the ashes.”
Today, with the resurgence of the format, GZ, which is currently operating on a 24/7 schedule to meet demand, has become one of the biggest pressing plants around. To give you some point of reference, the company currently boasts 49 presses, which include half a dozen new ones custom-made for GZ, which are apparently the first new machines made for vinyl in decades. So don’t let anybody tell you the record revolution hasn’t gone global.